Sounds to me like he was looking for trouble...but, of course, I wasn't there.
You need to rethink this.
Self defense is only justified if you are the victim. Sitting in a restaurant with loud patrons disturbing your quite does not make you a victim. In this case you complain to the manager, pay your bill and leave.
If after the waitress asked the group to be quiet, one or more of the men got up and approached CJ, then he may feel he was in danger. But that is not the case.
CJ approached the group himself, he was the aggressor.
Now let us pick up where one or more of the men in the group was too drunk to be intimated by his display, and got up to face off with him. Suppose one or more thought their live was in danger because they did not have a gun, and some stranger approaches and tells them to shut up?
Let us say someone does something stupid, CJ misinterprets their action pulls his gun and shoots someone. Who is at fault?
If I was on the jury CJ would be going to jail.
I am not a lawyer, but I do not believe you can be an aggressor and then claim self defense, when it would be just as easy to leave the restaurant.
If CJ can be so easily annoyed by the stupid behavior of others, perhaps he should not carry a weapon but that is a decision only he can make, and one that may end up costing him more then he expects.
I am surprised by some of the responses here. In New Hampshire, open carry is by right, as it should be, and (I think) concealed carry requires a permit. The logic being that with open carry, everyone knows what's going on.
"It wasn't brandished, CJ did no wrong..."
Yes he did. "Brandish" doesn't necessarily mean to unholster it and wave it about. Check out definition 2:
Main Entry: 1bran·dish
Function: transitive verb
Etymology: Middle English braundisshen, from Middle French brandiss-, stem of brandir, from Old French, from brand sword, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English brand
1 : to shake or wave (as a weapon) menacingly
2 : to exhibit in an ostentatious or aggressive manner
Ostentatious is a given. Aggressive is open to debate, but I say the double walk around the table, showing the weapon, was aggressive.
Yeah, but the question is, did Joe?