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Thread: Never, EVER, give up!

  1. #1
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    Shenandoah Valley, VA

    Never, EVER, give up!

    Robbery victim breaks his restraints, kills robber

    By Kim Wilmath, Times Staff Writer
    In print: Saturday, November 8, 2008

    TAMPA Late Thursday night, two friends of Anthony Velez's came to his apartment. They'd been there many times before, a neighbor said. This time, police said, they tied Velez up and robbed him. And this time, only one left alive.

    Velez, 21, fatally shot one of the men after breaking free from the restraints and wresting a gun away, Tampa police said.

    It happened about 11 p.m. at the Tuscany Point Apartments, 3350 W Hillsborough Ave. The other man fled on foot, and Velez suffered only minor injuries.

    The fugitive was identified by police as Ramon Antonio Varela, 34, with no known address. He is described as having a shaved head and a goatee, a tattoo on his forearm reading "Domingo," and another tattoo across his stomach. He is known to frequent adult entertainment establishments.

    Varela is facing charges of felony murder, armed robbery with firearm and kidnapping.

    Laura McElroy, a Tampa police spokeswoman, said Varela faces a felony murder charge even though authorities say he didn't pull the trigger because state law allows such prosecution if someone dies during the commission of a felony.

    Velez could not be reached for comment.

    One of his neighbors, Will Nieves, said Velez is a good guy, but too trusting. The two met when Velez moved into the apartments about a year ago.

    They used to play video games together, but Nieves said they stopped hanging out after Velez began spending time with a "not-so-great crowd," including the men at his house Thursday night.

    "They were practically living there," Nieves said.

    Nieves, who lives at an apartment downstairs with his wife and 3-year-old son, said he was worried for his family's safety.

    Just a month after they met, Velez offered Nieves a spare key to his apartment, Nieves said. "I handed it back," he said.

    Though Velez has been arrested twice before on charges of drug possession and probation violation in 2006 Nieves didn't consider him dangerous. Velez was mostly a hermit who reached out to new friends by paying for lavish gifts and parties.

    "I've always talked to him like a big brother," Nieves said.

    "I told him, 'You've got to watch who you trust. In this world, not all that glitters is gold. Some people will hide behind a fake smile.' "

    News researcher John Martin contributed to this report. Kim Wilmath can be reached at or (813) 226-3386.
    "The dogs bark, but the caravan moves on"

  2. #2
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    I think the biggest take-home message in this case is to be careful who you invite into your life. An ounce of prevention and all that...
    "Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place." - Frederic Bastiat, The Law

  3. #3
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    Ex-inmate and drug user, too. Take that into consideration as well.
    If total government control equals safety, why are prisons so dangerous?

  4. #4
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    Ex-inmate and drug user, too. Take that into consideration as well.
    So - Are you saying that he has no right to self defense because of those two criteria? Based on what was not mentioned in the news report, it seems the police are not worrying about his legal status while in possession of the robber's gun.

    I do not support the lifestyle he has chosen, but I still believe he had a right to defend himself. The Virginia Supreme Court also believes that even felons retain the common law right to self defense Humphrey v. Commonwealth, 37 Va. App. 36, 553 S.E.2d 546 (2001) .

    stay safe.

    While it may be fun to soar with the eagles, no weasel has ever been sucked into a jet intake. ((c), TM/SM 19xx - 20xx)

  5. #5
    Senior Member  
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    Harrisonburg, VA
    Good for him and I'm glad it turned out right. Thats all I have to say
    "Truth is the greatest weapon in the fight for Justice"

  6. #6
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    Virginia 757
    Very Churchillian.
    You can't spell "B.O.H.I.C.A." without B.H.O.

  7. #7
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    Everyone has a right to defend themselves and I'm glad he did so successfully.

    I think it is short sided to not allow people on non violent felonies (within reason) to posess a firearm for self defense.

    In this instance he wasn't a drug dealer nor was he a violent person he was probably just stupid when he was younger and maybe has changed. Maybe there just ought to be a limit say after 5 years you can now posess a firearm. I don't know I'm just thinking out loud. Violent criminals would be excluded from this idea though.

  8. #8
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    Mass had a five yr period on gun owning after a conviction til the antis changed it.and then you could seal it.the gay gungraber broke that too.
    now there are 1,500,000 gun owners who won't pay the $100 license fee.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    North Idaho

    Right To Self Defense

    Jeff White (an actual LEO and man of the world) has two things that he says about things like this:

    1) everyone has the right to self defense, even a criminal.

    2) if you don't hang out with stupid people, go to stupid places, and do stupid things, the odds of having something stupid happen to you are dramatically reduced.

    I entirely agree.

    Daughter: "Dad, how do I know who's a real friend?"
    Me: "A friend is someone who cares how your life turns out."

    "Truth is a dangerous thing: once found, you must never turn your back on it." -- gh@c2

    "Look at it this way. If America frightens you, feel free to live somewhere else. There are plenty of other countries that don't suffer from excessive liberty. America is where the Liberty is. Liberty is not certified safe." -- gh@c2

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