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Harold Fish, a retired schoolteacher, had been hiking near Strawberry, Arizona, in May 2004, when he ran afoul of a violent man with two vicious dogs at a trailhead. The big canines, Hank and Sheeba, had a long history of anti-social behavior, with Hank in particular attacking human beings.

When the unrestrained dogs came after Fish barking ferociously, Fish drew his legally carried pistol and turned them away with warning shots. Their owner, a homeless man with a long history of violence and mental illness, Grant Kuenzli, began screaming wildly that he would kill Fish and ran toward him, arms flailing menacingly. When he could wait no longer, Fish fired three shots, all of which struck Kuenzli in the thorax area. Kuenzli died of his wounds. There were no other witnesses.

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Harold Fish, a retired schoolteacher, had been hiking near Strawberry, Arizona, in May 2004, when…