Activist with firearm defends himself against thugs . No injuries.

Activist Chris Cantwell was confronted by a drunk, angry and violent group of assailants. faced with this attack, he defended himself by drawing his firearm. Here is his description of the events, along with video so you can judge the situation for yourself. I will be writing later about my analysis of this event, the actions of the people involved and my response to some of the commentary on the event.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jU2fn_wVVI
Cached Copy Follows:

I Almost Killed Somebody Last Night

Recently, there have been some thefts at my friend Ian’s house. So I have been taking it upon myself to sit on his porch at night in an effort to catch the crooks in the act. Last night I was there until around 3am, and on my way home, I heard women crying, and men yelling at them on Main Street in Keene New Hampshire.

I approached them with my camera phone recording the scene. There were two men, and two women. I stayed in the center divide of the street and only spoke when spoken to. They asked me to stop recording, but I refused because I feared the incident might turn violent. I told them “I’m just here to make sure nobody gets hurt”.

At one point, one of the men said “Get the fuckin camera out of here now” and I told him “I’m not gonna do it”. A man and a woman began walking toward me in an aggressive posture, before the woman began screaming and ran toward me. I told them repeatedly to stay away from me, as I am a licensed concealed carrier, and had a revolver under my jacket.

I ran across the street to get away from the woman, and then the men advanced toward me. One of the men wore a red sweatshirt, the other had no shirt on. The man with no shirt on began running toward me, so I told him “I’m not getting in a fight with you stupid, I’ve got a gun on my hip!”. He kept coming, so I pulled out my weapon, dropped my phone and told him to get the fuck away from me.

He stopped his advance for a moment, then he advanced on me again. With my finger on the trigger I shouted “Don’t come any closer!” thinking to myself “This guy is advancing on a loaded gun pointed at his chest, he’s dangerous and I’ll kill him before I let him get within arm’s reach”.

His friend, and the women all came closer to me, at one point saying something to the effect of “You’re not gonna shoot me, you’re not a cop bro”. Luckily, he did not test this theory. I am not a cop, far from it, but will end lives before I let multiple assailants attack me while I carry a loaded gun. The thought of one of these lunatics getting my weapon put me in survival mode like I’ve never experienced before.

Within moments, the Keene police arrived. The KPD knows who I am. They are all too familiar with the things I’ve said on this blog and on my YouTube channel. Despite that, they were professional, courteous, and fair. I allowed them to take my weapon, and check my pockets. I explained the situation to them, I showed them the video, and they were convinced I was in the right. They gave my gun back to me, shook my hand, and let me go.

They told me they were taking one of my assailants into “PC”, which I assume means protective custody. This made sense to me, because somebody who advances on a loaded gun pointed at their chest likely is not in his right mind. I explained that I was not asking them to do anything to my assailants, they said they understood and were just taking the one into PC.

You can see and hear the entire incident in the video below. I’d like to talk more about it, but if I’m honest with you, this incident still has me rattled and my language skills are not at their peak. This video could afford some edits for the sake of quality, but I present it here with no edits other than my watermark for the sake of transparency.

Now you can subscribe to Free Keene via email!

Don't miss a single post!


33 Comments

  1. Here is a better headline for this article – “Fat-tivist neck bearded slob is wandering alone in downtown Keene at 3AM. He momentarily shows some compassion for others by recording a situation to ensure everyone’s safety. However, when asked by the woman and man he was filming to turn off the camera and leave them to their business he arrogantly refuses. The woman he is harassing with his nerd-phone gets upset and runs aggressively towards Cant-do-anything-well. Cowardly Chris in turn yells in a higher pitched squeal than the woman and points his stubby little gun at her and her male companion. Rich Paul then writes an article to detail the events because, well, Rich has a sad life and this is the best thing he can spend his time on to feel important. Activists, Activate!” I know it is a long title but it definitely provides a most excellent description. The most pathetic part of the video is that Chris will pull a gun on a woman before using his hands to protect himself. The cherry on top of the entire event is the police show up at the end to bail his ass out. You guys are really taking the articles and videos to a whole new level of suck-ness these days. Pretty sure this incident has not helped in Freeing Keene in the least. Very good for a laugh though!!!

  2. Wow! So glad nobody got hurt. That screaming woman has some issues, to say the least. Clearly he was merely recording for her protection and she just went nuts! No good deed goes unpunished, eh? No idea if “shirtless guy” was on anything or not, but he wasn’t acting in sober manner!

  3. Title sounds misleading. Your title sounds like the alleged thugs were armed. Maybe should read , “Activist with firearm defends himself from thugs.” or “Activist uses firearm to defend against threatening thugs.”

  4. Agreed, Brian. I’ll change it.

  5. If you don’t expect Cantwell to de-escalate a situation before pulling his gun, then how do you expect cops to? Do video cameras grant extra rights?

  6. It is not considered a good deed to pull out your phone and record a couple that is in the middle of an argument and continue to do so after both of them have clearly asked you to stop. Life away from the internet is not an episode of the Jerry Springer Show and if you can’t understand that than please keep your misguided “good deed” to yourself. I’m glad that nobody got hurt because Chris decided to give troubled intoxicated people a speech about his right to film. He did start off with a good intention and followed through with being a complete asshole as usual. Pulling a gun on people in the middle of Keene, NH is nothing to be proud of.

  7. If they don’t wish to be recorded, then they shouldn’t scream, yell, and argue in public.

  8. So do you personally make a habit of recording other peoples arguments, conversations, and other communications in which you have no business? I thought the principle of being a Libertarian is to have less laws, more freedom, and let people voluntarily interact between themselves? Seems like you may be worse than Homeland Security if you have nothing better to do than to record strangers and police their interactions.

  9. Why would he shoot an unarmed man?

  10. Why didn’t he try to de-escalate? Why would he shoot an unarmed man who posed no threat? #copblocklogic

  11. Because he is a neck bearded coward, why do you think he carry’s to begin with. He wants to be able to cause confrontations, thumb his nose at people, but then hide behind a weapon because he cant back up his mouth without the protection of a gun.

  12. Sounds right to me.

  13. If he would have shot at them, and they weren’t armed, he would have a mess of legal problems. Cantwell was recording and instigating the whole argument. Why he feels he has to jump into people’s arguments ect.. is beyond me. At the end, Cantwell threw his gun down anyhow. It was a very poor decision on his part.

  14. It is so obvious that Cantwell loves the idea of being a cop. Interfering in other’s business, refusing to listen when people ask him to butt out. He carry’s the gun and loves to get reactions out of people who could truly care less about him. Notice how submissive and thankful “Mr. Anarchist” was when the cops finally arrived. Come on Chris, I thought you were so level headed, didn’t need cops to help out in any situation. I understand entirely how this situation turned serious quick however it was Cantwell who had to inject himself into a situation where he wasn’t wanted. Major credibility lost.

  15. RichardBauman Jumping Jacks He did retreat and he did not use deadly force.

  16. He was out of line it was none of his business I am the blond as he refers to and us 3 are great friend just a bit intoxicated and were just drunk talking with no aggressiveness just friends resolving a issue , and for this guy who is a wanna be cop needs to call the cop’s instead next time because you almost killed my husband and father of 2 over son thing you had to continue and what did you think we were just going to stage a show for you to post, and were thugs tho??!!

  17. Yeah but was real dam close to it and the first place he would shoot is the chest, why not a leg or arm huh wtf dose he need to kill anyone a female at that and with no weapons and he went in to survival mode because he thought we would try to take his weapon he never would have had to pull out if he just called the cops and let the right authorities take car of it, I’m not happy about this being posted ether, so take it down!!!

  18. You are a stupid man mind your own business!!!! U all most shot a kid a farther of two boys and yes some ones son!!

  19. Wow

  20. so using lethal force against unarmed people is ok now?

  21. RichardBauman Jumping Jacks NH does not have a duty to retreat.  Notice the date on that?  2011.  SB88 passed later that year, eliminating the duty to retreat (which was never strong, since it was based upon doing so in “complete safety,” which never actually exists during a violent encounter – to the best of my knoweldge, no one was ever prosecuted based upon failing to retreat).  Amusingly, SB88 left the “complete safety” language, but also added the lack of duty to retreat… but no one has ever said that the RSA’s are not a bit cluttered…

    The actual law is here: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/RSA/html/LXII/627/627-4.htm

  22. logging You can’t just magically hit arms and legs – they’re small targets (and a hit to the femoral artery is not much less deadly than a hit to the chest).  You shoot for the center of the body, because it’s the best possible target.  If you are not justified in shooting someone in the center of their body, then you are not justified in shooting them, at all, because shooting someone is always considered deadly force.

  23. @FlintNH @RichardBauman @Jumping Jacks If Cantwell had shot at them, he would be doing prison time. If you recall, in the video, he began an argument with those people. HE shouldn’t of said anything and just called the police.

  24. RichPaul RichardBauman Jumping Jacks It did not matter. The fact that he threatened to use his gun when he should have just called the police first, shows he made himself part of the problem. If he had shot at any of those people, he would be looking at prison time.

  25. Jumping Jacks Sorry, but that’s not how it works.  If they attacked him, and he reasonably believed that they were going to use deadly force against him, he would have been justified in defending himself.  None of your “shoulda’s” can change that.

  26. FlintNH Jumping Jacks There was no evidence they were going to attack him. The woman was walking up to Cantwell while another person behind her was trying to bring her back. 

    You wrote, ” If they attacked him” Then you said, “None of your “shoulda’s” can change that”. Your direct quote applies to you as well. 

    I suggest you look at New Hampshire law regarding carrying of hand guns
    http://www.efnappen.com/uploads/1/0/8/0/1080251/e.f._nappens_nh_deadly_force_basics.pdf –  Also, Cantwell had a duty to retreat. That is part of the law. He is not a police officer and he was including himself in the confrontation.

  27. Jumping Jacks FlintNH That nonsense was already covered.  Nappen’s article is from 2011, before the legislature changed RSA627:4 to remove the duty to retreat.

    The current text of the law is here: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/RSA/html/LXII/627/627-4.htm

  28. FlintNH Jumping Jacks Actually, there is still some duty to retreat in 627:4 (III)(a):
     “III. A person is not justified in using deadly force on another to defend himself or herself or a third person from deadly force by the other if he or she knows that he or she and the third person can, with complete safety:
         (a) Retreat from the encounter, except that he or she is not required to retreat if he or she is within his or her dwelling, its curtilage, or anywhere he or she has a right to be, and was not the initial aggressor; or
           (b) Surrender property to a person asserting a claim of right thereto; or
           (c) Comply with a demand that he or she abstain from performing an act which he or she is not obliged to perform; nor is the use of deadly force justifiable when, with the purpose of causing death or serious bodily harm, the person has provoked the use of force against himself or herself in the same encounter;”

  29. RichardBauman FlintNH Jumping Jacks Are you suggesting that he did not have a right to be on a public street?  No?  Then he had no duty to retreat.

  30. FlintNH You are correct and I failed to take note of the phrase – “or anywhere he or she has a right to be,” in the statute.

  31. FlintNH RichardBauman Jumping Jacks Yes, he had a duty to retreat.

  32. Jumping Jacks FlintNH RichardBauman What is that claim based upon?  The statute does not say so.  Are you claiming that there’s caselaw which changes that?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. RIch Paul’s analysis of the Cantwell Incident | Free Keene - […] is my analysis of Cantwell’s self defense incident. In my capacity as Mad Monk of the Church of the…
  2. First, they came for the NAZIs: Cantwell Convicted, First Amendment Attacked | Free Keene - […] the line of advocating violence against the police. After he moved back to Keene in 2015, he had an…

Care to comment?