Knife Tip: Once In A While, Fist Beats Knife. But Don’t Count On It.

Gregory McCallum was a neighbor from hell. His noisy parties had prompted many complaints from neighbors, and the Oxford police had just shut down another of his parties last August 18th.

The next morning, still drunk, he armed himself with a multi-bladed knuckle knife and decided to pay a little visit to the neighbor he assumed responsible. He broke into the home of 72 year old pensioner Frank Corti, and slashed at him.

Big mistake.

When the constables arrived a few minutes later, McCallum looked like this:

Image courtesy Thames Valley Police

Corti had a few bumps and scratches. The unassuming Mr. Corti was a Royal Engineers veteran and former boxing champion from the mid-1950s. He dodged McCallum’s lunge, pinned his arms, and beat him senseless. Court documents described Corti’s home as ‘looking like a murder scene,’ and the battered McCallum as looking like he’d been in a car accident.

From the Daily Mail:

A knife-wielding burglar had a shock when he attacked a pensioner in his home – and discovered his victim was a retired boxer.

Senior citizen Frank Corti, 72, a former junior boxing champion is still a bit handy with his dukes. And when he spotted the aforementioned intruder, Gregory McCalium, in his hallway he sprang into action and delivered two right hooks.

The blows were so powerful that McCalium, who had just lunged at Mr Corti with the knife, was left looking like he had been in ‘a car accident’.

The pensioner then restrained him until police arrived. He was jailed for four and a half years yesterday after a judge told him he had ‘got what he deserved’.

After sentencing, Mr Corti said: ‘I was scared when he first drew the knife but most people would have acted in the same way. If you can’t defend what’s yours, where are we at?’

Where are we at, indeed? In a country that no longer recognized the natural right of self-defense (whether armed or unarmed) Mr. Corti is lucky that he’s such a likable and sympathetic fellow. If he were younger, or if he had armed himself with a weapon to defend his life, home and family, Mr. Corti would be going to prison along with the thug who tried to murder him. It wouldn’t be the first time an elderly homeowner went to prison for defending his castle from vicious thugs.

Once-Great Britain may be sailing to hell in a leaky rowboat, but the Crown at least had the common courtesy to sentence McCallum to four and a half years in prison.

There are a lot of takeaways from this story. One is that there are no dangerous weapons, just dangerous men. Another is that a sober fighter has an advantage over a blind drunk fighter. And another is that human beings have a natural right to armed self-defense, and if most of us had been in Corti’s shoes (retired and unarmed in Oxford, England) we would probably be dead. Because once-Great Britain has decided that lives like his don’t deserve to defend themselves with anything more frightening than bare hands.

It should have been a defensive gun use.


  1. Paul B says:

    England is once again leading into a place we don’t want to follow. They never did make a good clean break from feudalism, which explains much of the problems they are having.

    But the Royal Engineer is a sign they are not completely bollixed yet.

  2. SD3 says:

    “If you can’t defend what’s yours, where are we at?”

    Indeed. But if the state didn’t have a steady supply victims, how could it possibly stamp-out crime?

  3. mk10108 says:

    Crime IS the Business of Government. If citizen are allow to defend then they would be out of work.

  4. Russ Bixby says:

    While I’m moderately good in a fight — presuming I’ve failed to avoid it, at which I’m also pretty good — I’d much rather be armed when facing the armed.

    Likely had the old fellow used a kitchen knife or ‘brelly, the Crown would as well have approved. But a gun? Unfortunately, not so much.

    I do love the U.K, and feel sorry to see them take this road. I loved my father as well, even as I watched his poor choices kill him.

  5. Russ Bixby says:

    “Once in a while, fists beat knife…”

    Is that like rock beats scissors?

    1. Chris Dumm says:

      More like paper beats rock, I think.

      1. Matt in FL says:

        Rock crushes lizard.

  6. Out_Fang_Thief says:

    “The next morning, still drunk, he armed himself with
    a multi-bladed knuckle knife..”

    Like this:

    I bet this kid makes lots of new friends where he’s going.

  7. While it is great fun to beat up on the UK for not allowing reasonable access to guns for self defense, homeoweners can use weapons in defense of their homes without too much of a risk.

    It is the exceptional cases that make the papers.

  8. scubamatt says:

    By God, if I had this old gentleman’s address, I’d send him a gift and a thank you. This story made me laugh out loud. Poor George, he’s going to have a rough time in the Old Bailey after word gets around that he got his ticket punched by a pensioner.

  9. Pat says:

    I am glad the fist beat the knife in this instance. Even an older fist vs a drunk hand on a knife.

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Knife Tip: Once In A While, Fist Beats Knife. But Don’t Count On It.

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