Fox News interviewed the father of the dead children and reported the following:
“Lott cited a Merced, Calif. family whose guns were put away because of the state’s safe storage law. John Carpenter, who lost two children in an attack in 2000, said a gun would have stopped the man who broke into his home with a pitchfork. ‘If a gun had been here, today I’d have at least a daughter alive,’ Carpenter said.”
It doesn’t appear that Fox News interviewed the father at all, but rather that they interviewed Lott and Lott claimed that the father said that. This quote also appears to be a fabrication. None of the newspaper reports written at the time of the murders has this quote and it doesn’t make sense—three of his daughters survived, while the quote makes it sound like all his daughters were murdered. [Update: Lott has posted a Fox transcript that shows the quote is genuine.] [Further update: Kevin P interpreted the above as an accusation that Lott fabricated that quote. That was not my intent. I was suggesting that he was repeating another fabrication, not that he was the source. I apologize for my careless wording.]
It is also rather odd for Lott to cite himself to support one of his claims. Anyway, Lott goes on to write:
On top of this I appeared on a radio show with Rev. John Hilton, children’s great-uncle, who repeated what he said in the quote used by Suprynowicz. In addition, there were two articles that were published in a local California newspaper that discussed this case.
In the newspaper article that Lott refers to, Hilton does argue that if Jessica had had a gun she could have stopped the murderer:
Their father, John Carpenter, kept a gun in the home. His children had learned how to fire it. But he kept it locked away and hidden from his children.
“He’s more afraid of the law than of somebody coming in for his family,” Hilton said. “He’s scared to death of leaving the gun where the kids could get it because he’s afraid of the law. He’s scared to teach his children to defend themselves.”
However, this is just another example of the sort of tactics that Lott has used to attempt to defend himself on the question of the missing survey—there, since he can’t provide evidence that he conducted a survey in 1997, he keeps providing evidence that he had a hard disk crash, even though that is not being questioned. Here, he tries to make it seem that the Hilton quote is being questioned when what is being questioned is Suprynowicz’s claim (quoted by Lott in The Bias Against Guns) that:
the sensible girl ran for where the family guns were stored. But they were locked up tight.
and Lott’s claim that the Fresno Bee story
“included the fact that while he was breaking in the eldest child, a fourteen year old girl with experience in target shooting, went to her parents’ bedroom, got out their handgun–and was unable to use it because of the trigger lock that her father had put on in obedience to a recent state law.”
and his claim that
that part of the story was cut out by every newspaper in the state
All these claims are false. The Fresno Bee story is quite clear—after she found that the phone in her bedroom was dead, Jessica climbed out of her bedroom window to go and get help—she didn’t go and get her parent’s locked handgun. Instead of admitting to his mistakes, Lott has once more tried misdirection.