On October 22, recent Islamic convert Michael Zehif-Bibeau shot and killed a Canadian Forces reservist, then went into Parliament Hill with rifle in hand, but the carnage that could have followed was prevented when a good guy with a gun–Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers–shot and killed the attacker.
According to the Toronto Sun, Zehif-Bibeau was “just outside the Parliamentary library” and therefore close to reaching the MPs when Vickers stopped the attack. Reuters reports that the attacker was a mere 60 feet away from the MPs when Vickers intervened.
Vickers’ role as Sergeant-at-Arms is largely ceremonial. However, he is a 29-year veteran of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, according to the National Post, and his training and experience appear to have come into play exactly when they were needed.
The Sydney Morning Herald quotes Canadian Veterans Affairs Minister Julian Fantino as saying: “[Vickers] did a great job and, from what I know, shot the gunman.”
The assistant commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said the attack “caught [them] by surprise,” that they didn’t see it coming. So it is unclear how many more lives may have been lost if a good guy with a gun had not been present to stop Zehif-Bibeau.
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