Latter-Day David Saves Sister With Slingshot

by Kevin Burton

    So now you know two stories involving a slingshot. And two extraordinary stories they are.

   Thirteen-year-old Owen Burns heard his sister screaming earlier this month, then looked out a window to see someone trying to kidnap her.

   Burns grabbed what he had at hand, what he was familiar with, a slingshot, and fought off the assailant.

   “A 13-year-old boy in Michigan saved his younger sister from a potential kidnapper by shooting the attacker with a slingshot, according to authorities,” wrote Maya Yang of The Guardian:. “Police called the boy’s actions ‘extraordinary’ and said he deserved to be commended after defending his sister with a weapon many associate with the biblical hero David, in his mortal battle against Goliath.”

   The David and Goliath story unfolds beginning in the Old Testament book of I Samuel, chapter 17. It is superfamiliar even to non-Christians, to the point that any contest involving a heavy favorite and an underdog is  framed as David versus Goliath.

   Burns’ 8-year-old sister was hunting for mushrooms in the family’s back yard in a rural area of Alpena Township, Michigan on May 10, when a 17-year-old boy emerged from the woods, according to Michigan state police.

   “The suspect had come through the woods on to the property and came from behind her, grabbed her like you’d see in the movies – hand over the mouth, arm around the waist – and was attempting to pull her into the woods,” police lieutenant John Grimshaw told WGTU-TV, Traverse City.

   The girl’s older brother saw the apparent abduction attempt from his bedroom window and proceeded to shoot the assailant in the head and chest with his slingshot, police said. He used a marble and a rock as projectiles.

   “He really is the one that I believe saved his sister’s life or from something seriously bad happening to her,” Grimshaw said. “For a 13-year-old to see that and to pop into action that quickly is extraordinary and he should be commended for it.”

   The suspect allegedly tried to hide out at a gas station, but troopers found him with “obvious” slingshot projectile wounds, police said. 

   “I was just lucky. He’s just a big target because he’s not like one Pepsi can,” Burns said.

   For his slingshot work, the then shepherd boy David was eventually made king of Israel.  If Burns isn’t made a king, he should at least get a Pepsi commercial.

   Imagine being a parent, lamenting that your son is wasting his time shooting rocks at pop cans, then this happens.

   Burns said he was stunned by the whole ordeal because “nothing bad happens” where he lives. Then, said the boy, “boom, something happens.”

   “If I wasn’t out there and I didn’t hear her scream, then she was gone,” the hero teen said.

   “Owen’s mother Margaret said that thanks to her son her daughter lived to see her 8th birthday, which was the Saturday following the Wednesday afternoon incident,” reported  “The mother described her daughter as ‘okay’ and ‘bouncing back,’ but wanting to forget what happened.

   How sweet was that birthday cake! How bright and joyous those eight candles.

   “Authorities said that 17-year-old suspect is being charged as an adult and faces numerous charges, including attempted kidnapping/child enticement. The defendant is also accused of attempted assault to great bodily harm less than murder, and assault and battery. He was booked in Alpena County with a $150,000 bond, state police said.

   The siblings’ uncle posted about the case on Facebook, Newsweek reported.

    “Hey everyone earlier today my niece was almost kidnapped out of her own yard here in Alpena on the south end of town,” the post read. “A young 17-year-old with a black mohawk grab my niece and tried kidnapping her my nephew heard her screaming and saw through his window and shot the guy with a slingshot the guy let go cops were called found out that the guy now in custody.”

   “Our kids are too precious to let somebody try to take them when your kids are outside playing, we really need to pay attention to what they’re doing and who’s around them. I’m very proud of my nephew and I know my niece’s traumatized and I’m sending prayers for her.”

   WGTU reported that the suspect confessed to authorities that he had planned to severely beat the girl.

   Go hug your kids. That’s an order.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: