Dane Gallion was so worried about public shootings that police say he committed one.
Last Thursday, Gallion popped a Xanax, ate a pizza and downed a 22-ounce (650 millilitre) beer. Then the 29-year-old headed to an evening showing of 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi in the Seattle suburb of Renton, Washington.
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From guns to video games to mental health, a lot has been blamed for America's violence, but as Obama said in October, it has all "become routine."
But not without his handgun.
Despite a Regal Cinema prohibition against firearms, Gallion sneaked his piece into the cinema. He was, he later told police, "concerned about recent mass shootings in public places". So concerned, in fact, that he kept his gun unholstered and tucked into his waistband, according to the Seattle Times.
Fifteen minutes into the movie, Gallion's gun somehow went off, police say, striking the woman sitting in front of him. Gallion quickly ghosted out of the cinema, allegedly discarding his gun's magazine in a rubbish bin on the way out. It was only when his retired air force colonel father learned of the shooting 90 minutes later and called 911 that Gallion finally turned himself in, according to the Times.
Gallion was arrested and charged with third-degree assault. His attorney, David Allen, told the Times that the shooting was "a terrible accident" and that there was "no intent involved".
Doubts remain about how the shooting occurred, because of inconsistent statements Gallion gave to police.
And the shooting – which left 40-year-old Michelle Mallari in hospital with a 9-millimetre bullet wound on her back – has once again raised questions about whether concealed weapons do more harm than good.
Concealed weapon ownership has skyrocketed in recent years as the United States reels from successive mass shootings. A survey released in December found that two-thirds of Americans consider mass shootings a "critical" issue for the country, and the percentage of Americans who believe owning a gun will protect them and others has risen to unprecedented levels.
Yet people with concealed-carry permits are more likely to commit mass shootings than to stop them, according to The Washington Post's Christopher Ingraham. He found that concealed-carry permit holders have committed at least 29 mass shootings since 2007, compared with roughly eight known cases of permit holders using their weapons to stop such mass shootings.
San Diego hospital sweep finds no 'active shooter'
No evidence of a shooting has been found at the Naval Medical Centre San Diego, which went under lockdown following reports of an 'active shooter' at the military hospital.
Anecdotal evidence keeps piling up on both sides.
On Friday night, for instance, a pair of concealed-weapon permit holders prevented what might have been a mass shooting in Columbia, South Carolina. When two armed men tried to knock over a barbershop, a pair of customers pulled out their concealed weapons and opened fire, killing one suspect and sending the other one scrambling. There were several children inside the barbershop at the time of the shooting, according to WISTV.
"He smacked me in the back of my head, and I said, 'OK, this is probably when he's going to shoot me now," robbery victim Chauncy Harris told the television station. "But that's when my man let loose. That's when everybody else had their stuff and was ready to take care of business."
And then there are times, such as on Thursday in Renton, when concealed-weapon permit holders themselves prove dangerous. That was also the case in October when a female bystander pulled out her concealed weapon and shot at a pair of shoplifters in Michigan. Prosecutors called the woman's decision to pull her gun "disturbing" and charged her with misdemeanour reckless use of a handgun. A concealed pistol licence instructor, meanwhile, called the Michigan incident her "worst nightmare".
In Washington state, Gallion appears to have brought to life his own worst nightmare by bringing his gun to the cinema.