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Just then Partida drove up in his truck. The shooter extended his right arm and pointed the gun at the truck. The truck was only two to five feet away. Partida drove it forward into the man and hit him. Durkee said she saw the shooter fall backwards to the asphalt street, and then he rolled onto his side as if he were going to get up.

Just then, the other two construction workers —Steven Kane and Mario Contreras — caught up to the sprawling shooter. They brought him onto the nearby curb and then onto the sidewalk. Not gently.

Durkee said, “I stayed there and I watched them.” The three construction workers together made sure the shooter waited for police, who arrived in about two minutes, according to Durkee’s estimate. “Two to four police cars pulled up, all of a sudden.”

Carlsbad police arrested Brendan Liam O’Rourke, 41, on suspicion of attempted murder and other crimes, on October 8, 2010. O’Rourke pleaded not guilty to 14 felony charges at his arraignment the following week in San Diego’s North County Superior Court. Prosecutor Summer Stephan said the man was disarmed of a Ruger .357 Magnum six-shot revolver and a speedloader and extra ammunition.

According to authorities, the shooter had failed to eject all the spent shell casings out of his revolver, and this prevented him from successfully using the speedloader to put a new load of ammunition into the gun.

O’Rourke’s next court appearance is a preliminary hearing scheduled for December 15.

Durkee was glad she was able to help. “I was just doing my job for those little children.” Durkee has lived in Carlsbad for 30 years and said her own two daughters are grown up and out of school now. “They both went to Kelly Elementary,” said Durkee.

“I was going to retire this year, but now I don’t think I can,” she said. “I don’t think they’ll let me.”

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dthomas Dec. 3, 2010 @ 8:03 a.m.

I fail to understand what the physical build of Ms. Durkee has to do with the fact that she was a hero. Could you simply mention she is a hero and leave her pant-size out of it?


SurfPuppy619 Dec. 3, 2010 @ 10:06 a.m.

I agree, that was a cheap shot that served no purpose. I hope they edit the article.

She should be worshipped, not slammed with backhanded insults.


MsGrant Dec. 3, 2010 @ 8:57 a.m.

Or her age, for that matter. Is "middle-aged" supposed to imply "average"?


SurfPuppy619 Dec. 3, 2010 @ 10:04 a.m.

“You better run, ’cause I’m going to shoot you dead!” In fact, two second-grade girls were struck in the arm by bullets.

Why would anyone target small children?? Makes no sense unless mentally ill. I am SO glad none of the children were killed-that would, and easily could have, been the worst day anyone has ever seen (well, since that women shot up a San Diego school playground 30 years ago). . .

Durkee was glad she was able to help. “I was just doing my job for those little children.”

Thank God you saved them. It really is a miracle no children were killed.


Eva Knott Dec. 3, 2010 @ 3:39 p.m.

Some readers might find it interesting that a plump, middle-aged woman chose to confront an armed man, while other adults on the scene were hesitating. Some readers might find it interesting that the author is also a plump, middle-aged woman.


SurfPuppy619 Dec. 3, 2010 @ 4:27 p.m.

No, I highly doubt most readers would find either of these personal descriptions interesting, and it certainly appears from the posts here I am correct.

Age, skin color, creed, ethnicity, body type, they really don't add to the story IMO.

BTW-we all did like the story.


MsGrant Dec. 3, 2010 @ 5:04 p.m.

The story was great. You just never see "plump, middle aged" used to describe men, regardless of their actions, heroic or otherwise.


contusion Dec. 5, 2010 @ 12:52 p.m.

No readers find it interesting that the author is a plump middle aged woman...not because she is, but because it has nothing to do with the story. The author is unimportant unless it's an autobiography, which this is not. And including that bit of info about the subject of the story does seem superfluous.


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