A Montana woman was able to turn the tables on two assailants who reportedly attacked her during a robbery attempt.
According to Billings, Montana, police, the 25-year-old woman shot the men, ages 29 and 37, in an apparent case of self-defense, according to KTVQ-TV in Billings.
The incident took place about 12:45 p.m. Saturday.
The Billings Police Department initially described the incident as a "possible robbery with shots fired in alley" on its Twitter account.
23-006448 1/28/23 1245hrs. BPD responded to a possible robbery with shots fired in alley 2000 block of Cook Ave. Two male suspects were shot, and transported for injuries sustained from the GSW's. BPD is early in the investigation, all parties are accounted for- SGT Milam
— BillingsPD (@BillingsPD) January 28, 2023
"The report indicates the suspects attacked the victim at her car outside of her residence," police Lt. Matt Lennick said in the statement.
"The victim pulled her concealed firearm and both suspects were shot."
One of the wounded men was still at the scene when police arrived. The other was found at a local hospital after seeking treatment.
Although neither man was armed, police say that Montana law doesn't require that they needed to be for the law to allow an individual to respond with gunfire.
"As far as the victim using a firearm for self-defense the law is pretty clear on people’s right to use self-defense when they can articulate a threat to themselves or others," Lt. Lennick said in a statement to KTVQ.
"Like all cases of this nature the case will be reviewed by the County Attorney’s Office and they could bring [forth] criminal charges against the shooter if they deemed the threat didn’t meet the level of force used."
Two men hospitalized after shooting near West High School https://t.co/wSFrfqoSYB
— Billings Gazette (@billingsgazette) January 28, 2023
“People think of self-defense or things like that, but the actual legal term is justifiable use of force,” said Missoula, Montana, attorney Paul Ryan, who represented a man sentenced to 70 years for shooting and killing a German exchange student he found trespassing in his garage in a widely publicized case in 2014.
“The law allows you to defend yourself with the same force that they’re coming with, essentially."
Thus, under the law, individuals can use force if they believe serious bodily harm, if not death, is an imminent possibility.
“There’s different standards depending on location," Ryan said. "For example, there’s different standards if you’re in your house versus outside your house. There’s different standards if you’re defending property versus your person."
In this case, if the facts we're being presented with are accurate -- a woman being accosted in her car in an alleyway outside her residence -- there's a high likelihood this is far different from a mere trespassing situation.
As for the wounded men, neither had been charged as of Monday.
"Due to their injuries, neither suspect was arrested or charged immediately, but the case was sent to the County Attorney’s Office for review and official charges," Lennick said.
Of course, details are sketchy at this point, and the story could change. There were even suggestions on social media that the woman might have been involved in a potential drug deal that turned violent.
But if the police maintain the position that this woman was justified in her use of force, this was likely a situation that could have turned out much uglier if she hadn't been able to defend herself.
That's why the Founders gave us the Second Amendment and Montana law allows individuals to use force if they believe serious bodily harm is imminent.
Remember that the next time someone questions whether or not we really need guns -- particularly as crime rates soar across America.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.