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B. Lahey
March 10, 2011, 12:19 PM
Well, I wasn't going to mention this experience until the fellow's court case was resolved, but he plead guilty to two counts of C-Felony Intimidation and one count of misdemeanor battery last week, so I guess I can open my mouth. I had a vagrant attempt to rob me around the holidays. I was armed. I ran away. I feel good about that decision.

I was loading a great hulking box of paper into the backseat of my car in my office parking lot when I noticed a man walking in my direction. He stopped about 5-7 yards away and asked me for money. I declined to give him any. He took that poorly, and stated that he was going to rob me while placing his right hand into his pocket...

I contemplated drawing and firing at that point, and I have had a number of lawyers tell me I should have done so and saved everyone else that now has to deal with this guy the trouble.:rolleyes:

But I did not do so, although I was indeed in reasonable fear for my life. I figured I could hop into the driver's seat of my car and lock the door before he could close the distance. I thought that if he tried to close the distance at that point or presented a weapon, I could fire through the window or try to run him over. Either way, I figured at least attempting to escape was a better option.

It worked. He didn't try to close the distance, he just stood there with his hand in his pocket trying to look mean (really looking more like the sad, middle-aged, drug addict that he is), and I was able to drive briskly from the parking lot. Thanks in part to some of the excellent tips I received in my last hairy-situation thread (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=385645), I was able to give the cops a very detailed description and they picked him up with little trouble.

Apparently, after I ran away, he tried nearly the same stunt with somebody else, and then randomly beat up some guy in a mexican restaurant, resulting in the additional intimidation and battery charges.:eek:

I thought he should have been charged with Attempted Robbery, as I think his crime satisfied all the elements of that charge, and I would have testified to that, but that's the prosecutor's call. I'll go down and speak at his sentencing, and hopefully he will receive a substantial sentence. I've heard he has quite an extensive and violent record, so that seems likely. Just figured I would share my experience. I've been told I would have been justified in shooting him, but I'm glad I at least gave escape a chance, and that it worked out.

Brian Pfleuger
March 10, 2011, 12:24 PM
Well done sir. Violence is always the last resort of a civilized man.

aarondhgraham
March 10, 2011, 12:41 PM
Well done sir.
I agree 100%,,,
In my not-so-humble-opinion,,,
You made the correct choice for the situation.

Not so much for the fact that he didn't deserve to be shot,,,
But for the fact that you didn't deserve the personal aftermath of shooting someone.

Violence is always the last resort of a civilized man.
Not so sure that I agree with this though,,,
I cringe at the word "always",,,
But that's just me.

A swift violent response has saved my bacon in the past,,,
Mom didn't wonder what the man was doing in our living room,,,
She assumed he had bad thoughts and shot him down where he stood.

He was a violent man with a violent criminal record,,,
Her violent response was very civilized,,,
Ended his threat to society forever.

You, my friend,,,
Made a very good situational choice,,,
You didn't let your ego override your good sense.

Happy that you were unscathed.

Aarond

Vanya
March 10, 2011, 12:41 PM
Yes, well done indeed.

It's great that you were able to put what you learned from that "Be a Good Witness" thread to such good use... (I'd forgotten about that one -- there's some excellent information there.)

And that you'll speak at the fellow's sentencing... Bravo, again.

You've shown how a model citizen should behave; that's about as good as it gets.

GDCooper
March 10, 2011, 12:42 PM
Since your account doesn't state that he was armed, I assume he wasn't so you would have shot an unarmed man who YOU say was threatening but nobody else was present to see. And you had the opportunity to retreat, and wisely did so while maintaining the option to use deadly force. So you made a very wise decision, and at the very least saved yourself a huge expenditure on attorneys.

We who carry should always try to avoid shooting, not look for excuses TO shoot. It's about self-defense, bottom line.

That said, there isn't always much time to decide, and the "he who hesitates is lost" axiom. Training, training, training, to hone the decision-making process.....

Tinner
March 10, 2011, 12:43 PM
Good decision..

motorhead0922
March 10, 2011, 01:16 PM
Good job, B.

I take that he actually didn't have a gun in his pocket, since there were no weapons charges. Correct?

Also, was there any media attention on this? I hope they would make mention of this example of a responsible gun owner, to counter the often negative tone that is taken.

Onward Allusion
March 10, 2011, 01:41 PM
B. Lahey
Run Away!
<SNIP>
I was loading a great hulking box of paper into the backseat of my car in my office parking lot when I noticed a man walking in my direction. He stopped about 5-7 yards away and asked me for money. I declined to give him any. He took that poorly, and stated that he was going to rob me while placing his right hand into his pocket...


I think it was poor tactics to get into your car while he still had his hand in his pocket. Did you turn your back on him? What if he rushed you as you were getting into the car? Yes, you now know that he wasn't armed, but what if he was? Also, even if the guy only had a knife, 7 yards is a couple of seconds away.

I contemplated drawing and firing at that point, and I have had a number of lawyers tell me I should have done so and saved everyone else that now has to deal with this guy the trouble.

Dunno about firing, but you should have drawed, have him get his hands up, and tell him to get the F* away from you - LOUD. Call the cops immediatedly afterward. If he doesn't comply and continues toward you...well...

But I did not do so, although I was indeed in reasonable fear for my life. I figured I could hop into the driver's seat of my car and lock the door before he could close the distance. I thought that if he tried to close the distance at that point or presented a weapon, I could fire through the window or try to run him over. Either way, I figured at least attempting to escape was a better option.

What if he decided to draw and shoot you as you were closing the back door and getting into the driver's seat? Would you have time to draw?

It worked. He didn't try to close the distance, he just stood there with his hand in his pocket trying to look mean (really looking more like the sad, middle-aged, drug addict that he is), and I was able to drive briskly from the parking lot. Thanks in part to some of the excellent tips I received in my last hairy-situation thread (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=385645), I was able to give the cops a very detailed description and they picked him up with little trouble.

Like I'd said, I am glad it worked out for you.

Apparently, after I ran away, he tried nearly the same stunt with somebody else, and then randomly beat up some guy in a mexican restaurant, resulting in the additional intimidation and battery charges.


Did you call the cops afterward? Lot's of armchair QB'ing here, but it could have stopped with you.

<SNIP> I've been told I would have been justified in shooting him, but I'm glad I at least gave escape a chance, and that it worked out.

Please don't take any of my comments personally. It's what I would have done. Anytime you make it out unscathed is a good thing.

Spats McGee
March 10, 2011, 01:56 PM
Well done. There is no reason that these two sentences:
. . . .I was armed. I ran away. . . .
cannot sit back to back. Having a gun doesn't mean that you have to shoot someone. I think most, if not all, of us have read up on what the aftermath of (even the cleanest) SD shooting can be. You avoided being robbed, being injured, and being sued by the family and estate of the vagrant. That's a good result for you.

sdw1961
March 10, 2011, 02:57 PM
Good for you making the right decision and being able to think so quickly!

Thanks in part to some of the excellent tips I received in my last hairy-situation thread (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=385645), I was able to give the cops a very detailed description and they picked him up with little trouble.
Thank you for directing me to this most helpful information.

We who carry should always try to avoid shooting, not look for excuses TO shoot. It's about self-defense, bottom line.

That said, there isn't always much time to decide, and the "he who hesitates is lost" axiom. Training, training, training, to hone the decision-making process.....

Thank you for this statement.
Everywhere I go in this forum I'm learning something valuable!!

Bartholomew Roberts
March 10, 2011, 03:12 PM
Well done! Thanks for sharing the story with us and glad to hear of the outcome.

youngunz4life
March 10, 2011, 03:19 PM
glad you are ok and glad you were able to exit the situation unharmed. You made the right choice in this situation. However, what would you have done if this guy wasn't bluffing(or wasn't such a slow thinker)? Things can escalate quick; I would hate to see that you were injured and/or killed because you didn't want to exercise your right to use your CCW. If he pulled and fired because he was deranged and/or upset with you leaving(like he was upset you didn't respect his panhandling), he could've put you in a world of hurt. If you had drawn, you 1)can leave while having a gun pulled on him & then can dial the police or 2)use lethal force if he truely had a weapon and drew it. Whatever the case it seems you thought quick on your feet which is definately a good character trait.

powderball
March 10, 2011, 03:25 PM
You probably would have ended up getting sued by the robber, or doing a life stint. Sometimes you have to go the other way to stay out of trouble. Glad you didn't get hurt!:D

Frank Ettin
March 10, 2011, 03:26 PM
Good decision and good outcome. Well done.

youngunz4life
March 10, 2011, 03:32 PM
doing a life stint

for drawing a CCW on a guy thats claiming to have a weapon, stating he is going to rob you, and who has a dangerous past? Lahey rolled the dice and made it out ok. this isn't always the case.

Wildalaska
March 10, 2011, 03:39 PM
Great job. A real man knows when to retreat. A gun doesnt make you God, and the last recourse of a civilized man should be violence

WildfwiwyouhavemyrespectAlaska ™©2002-2011

glockcompact
March 10, 2011, 03:40 PM
Sounds like you made the right decision. Glad you were armed too just incase. Nothing like having an ace of spades in your pocket incase your delt a bad hand.

KennyFSU
March 10, 2011, 03:44 PM
Thank you for sharing, a very wise decision on your part and I'm very glad it had a happy ending for you.

madmo44mag
March 10, 2011, 03:45 PM
It is very easy to sit and say you should do this or that or I would do this or that but from personal experience I can assure you that even with training you don't "Really" know what you will do until you face that situation.

Good job in taking the right steps to prevent an escalation.
I suspect there was something about this guy that made you seconds guess he didn't have a weapon or a set of variables that made you feel escape was possible.

Your subconscious process a lot of information under stress you are not even aware of. It happens very fast and plays out in slow motion after the event has passed.

Any time IMHO you can avoid drawing on someone is a victory. Killing a man is an ugly thing even if they deserve it.

markj
March 10, 2011, 04:00 PM
The plan you had worked, great thinking. Shows that the best weapon is your brain.

My nephew told me killing a person isnt so good for the one doing the killing. He just got back from Iraq and Afganistan. I belive him, I dont wish to test that out.

gearhounds
March 10, 2011, 04:09 PM
Well done. Had you shot him, fear not withstanding, chances are he would have survived to tell a harrowing tale that differed from the truth. Oh that poor homeless man!

And remember, you didn't run away, you made a tactical advance in an unencumbered direction.

"My nephew told me killing a person isnt so good for the one doing the killing. He just got back from Iraq and Afganistan."

Probably better for him than the one killed, I'd wager. Even in war, killing isn't easy, but beats the alternative for sure.

FM12
March 10, 2011, 04:26 PM
Personally, I'd avoid the counsel of the previously mentioned lawyers. Bad advice.

bighead46
March 10, 2011, 04:31 PM
I think the movies and TV shows have influenced our attitudes about "running away". A wild animal, say a tiger or grizzly bear, has no qualms about running away if the situation doesn't seem right, they may turn on a dime and attack but the "running away" part- no self esteem problem.
Same thing in combat, a good way to get killed is deciding you are never going to run away, retreat to good fighting ground and then kill the SOB. In any event, NEVER worry about "running away", absolutely the right thing to do in most circumstances. If the guy comes after you then you know for sure you are justified in shooting, you've bought yourself a precious couple of seconds to plan your actions, you can unexpectingly wheel around and shoot the SOB and save your life. :cool:

Glenn Bartley
March 10, 2011, 10:35 PM
Well good for you.

I don't know that I would have run away, in fact, I am fairly certain I would have shot him without hesitation had I beleived my life was threatened and could get the shot off. Certainly, I would have had to have been in that exact situation in your place to be sure but I am, as I said, fairly certain of what would have happened had it been me.

You said that you felt good about evading danger, and that is very understandable but I wonder, how do you feel about the other guy having been beaten? How would you have felt if he had been maimed, or killed? (Any information on how badly beaten the other victim was?) Would you have felt better then had you shot the bad guy? I am sure that if I put down a guy who had just tried to rob me, I would feel badly, I would feel guilty for having hurt or killed another person even if I had been fully justified. I also know, if I ran and the guy I evaded went on to hurt someone else I would feel miserable I had not stopped him when I had the chance. That is just me, just wondering how you think you would feel if such happened. I am not saying you should feel one way or another or that you did right or wrong, just asking.

Now for my own witty saying: Violence is often the last resort of the dying man, as he vainly struggles to survive. Had he resorted to violence sooner, he may have lived longer.

All the best,
Glenn B

Frank Ettin
March 10, 2011, 11:55 PM
...You said that you felt good about evading danger, and that is very understandable but I wonder, how do you feel about the other guy having been beaten? How would you have felt if he had been maimed, or killed? ... Would you have felt better then had you shot the bad guy?...In my view that should not properly be a consideration.

First, you have no idea, and can't predict and can't be responsible for what your assailant may do. And you have no duty to take action. You are not a cop.

Second, your first duty is to yourself, your family and those who may depend on you.

Third, if you do shoot, you can't know if it will be immediately accepted as justified. Maybe the local district attorney thinks it's a bad idea to encourage citizens to shoot unarmed, alleged robbers; so maybe the DA prosecutes. Now you need to establish you were justified. You could wind up throwing away your kids' college educations. You could lose your job and your house. You could put yourself and family through months or years of emotional travail and economic hardship. In my view a truly lousy idea, especially when done to avoid an uncertain, highly speculative result.

Hiker 1
March 10, 2011, 11:59 PM
Nobody got hurt and nobody went to jail or sued. Sounds like a pretty good outcome.

Frank Ettin
March 11, 2011, 12:01 AM
Nobody got hurt and nobody went to jail ...Well at least the guy who finally did go to jail was the one who actually deserved it.

Ryder
March 11, 2011, 05:47 AM
Doesn't sound like it worked out so well for the guy who got beat up at the Mexican restaraunt who got beat up. What if he did have a gun and shot the next guy, you'd be OK with knowing you could have prevented that?

We have stand your ground law in this state. That's something I've always done even before shall issue became law. It's not something I'll change now that I am armed. Just plain luck that he didn't blow your head off as you were driving away, I wouldn't chalk that up to tactics.

gearhounds
March 11, 2011, 09:14 AM
Uhh, unless you can see the future, there's no way he could have known that someone would get beat up (or worse) later, and not your place to make that determination. It cracks me up to see the folks saying they would have just shot this guy. If you could articulate the belief that you were in danger, you could have been justified to draw on this toad, but not to shoot under these exact circumstances. You zap him for putting his hand in his pocket, and I guarantee you'll end up on the losing end here in the long run.

I'm not suggesting that someone should not protect themselves, but it must be done prudently. No need to beat up on the OP here for making the best decision for him at the time, given the circumstances.

LordTio3
March 11, 2011, 09:37 AM
First thing's first...

Great job. You are a respectable model citizen. We are lucky to have you in our community.

Secondly (and more nit-pickey);
I like to make a distinction between "Running Away" and "Tactically Disengaging".

Running away is what people do when they have no other options. It's a defensive move with no other intent than self preservation. It's a "Get me out of here!" response.

Tactically disengaging, however, is a result of assessing the situation and deciding that leaving the situation is the most desirable course of action in order to preserve the safety of the most people. It's not a fear response, it's a calculated decision. It takes a quick mind, a cold head, and a steady hand. This is what I believe you accomplished and I commend you for it.

Tactically disengaging is one of our best options in any defense scenario; being a large part of our overall optimum outcome of Nonviolent resolution.

Well done, Sir.

~LT

Hiker 1
March 11, 2011, 09:56 AM
Well at least the guy who finally did go to jail was the one who actually deserved it.

Right, at least the OP didn't go to jail.

sirsloop
March 11, 2011, 10:30 AM
Well hindsight is always 20/20 so its a win! If I was packing I probably would have drawn on the guy, hoped he didn't charge or draw, hopped in the car, took off, called the police.

overkill0084
March 11, 2011, 10:52 AM
A soon as he said he was planning on robbing me and put the hand in his pocket, I would have probably drawn on him. Your way worked and is probably the smarter way forward.
The best outcome prevailed. Everyone lived, and that's what matters.

thunderkyss
March 11, 2011, 01:03 PM
We who carry should always try to avoid shooting, not look for excuses TO shoot. It's about self-defense, bottom line.

I completely agree with this.

However, in this situation, I wouldn't have had a problem if you did shoot.

What's to say you turned to get into your car & he shoots you?

Again, I have no problem with your decision, I most likely would have done the same thing. I also would not have had a problem had you shot him, but a judge and jury might have seen things differently.

You never know.

aarondhgraham
March 11, 2011, 01:08 PM
I've read some silly things in these forums,,,
I've posted some fairly inane things in these forums.

This might top them all.

What if he did have a gun and shot the next guy, you'd be OK with knowing you could have prevented that?

I say,,, Huh?

He is an armed citizen for self defense,,,
Not an armed vigilante.

...you'd be OK with knowing you could have prevented that?

He's not an Oracle either.

~Sheesh!~

Aarond

sirsloop
March 11, 2011, 01:12 PM
IMHO, in this scenario the BG is putting his hand in his pocket to intimidate you. He knows you will think he has a concealed weapon. If you are in a situation where a BG is possibly holding a concealed weapon, has the ability and intent to use it... I think you have ever right to react with equal force. I don't think you can shoot cause the guy put his hand in his pocket, but you certainly can draw on the guy with every intent of using deadly force if the BG makes his move. Massad Ayoob talks about this in "The Gravest Extreme" to some degree, where the good guy is usually at a disadvantage because he morally and legally cannot make the first move.

Its certainly a grey area if the threat has been made, the BG has shown that he possibly has a weapon, but no weapon has been revealed. At the distance we are talking about, it could be a simple steak knife or any ol piece of hard object "shank" which would pose extreme danger to you. Police have shot people in this same scenario MANY times. Lets say you do draw and shoot... turns out the guy was poking his finger in his shirt to make it look like he has a pistol. Certainly a sticky situation legally, and you will have to live with yourself for shooting an unarmed man (granted he may have thrown away any chance for your pity when he put you in that situation).

Seaman
March 11, 2011, 01:45 PM
Bottom line, you survived and lived to tell the tale and I am happy for that.

As for the guy at the Mexican restaurant who took a needless beating...he shoulda had a carry permit, a small 25, 32, or even 380 woulda saved his bacon.

sirsloop
March 11, 2011, 01:51 PM
Yeah, I wouldn't even think about what this dude did after you didnt, but could have, shot him. Most of the general public have no concern over their own safety. Why should that responsibility fall on you? You're no law man or vigilante. You just got held up and decided NOT to shoot the dude for it.

Vanya
March 11, 2011, 02:43 PM
You said that you felt good about evading danger, and that is very understandable but I wonder, how do you feel about the other guy having been beaten? How would you have felt if he had been maimed, or killed? (Any information on how badly beaten the other victim was?) Would you have felt better then had you shot the bad guy? I am sure that if I put down a guy who had just tried to rob me, I would feel badly, I would feel guilty for having hurt or killed another person even if I had been fully justified. I also know, if I ran and the guy I evaded went on to hurt someone else I would feel miserable I had not stopped him when I had the chance.

He is an armed citizen for self defense,,,
Not an armed vigilante.

Exactly. It's a source of endless fascination to me, in these discussions, that so many forum members are quick to say that if you don't shoot a "bad guy," you're somehow responsible for what he does after that. And it's often the same members who are quick to say that if a "good guy" accidentally shoots an innocent bystander while "taking out" a "bad guy," the good guy shouldn't be held responsible for the injury or death of the innocent; after all, he meant well. :cool:

We are responsible for, and have to live with, our own actions; we're not responsible for what other people may do.

Manco
March 11, 2011, 03:18 PM
While I'm certainly glad that you're alright, that you didn't have to shoot anybody (the absolute last resort, without a doubt), and that you made decisions and acted decisively, there is still something that bugs me a little. As a couple of other posters have mentioned, what if the perp had not been bluffing? In my view, putting myself in your place, a threat is a threat regardless of the underlying truth because at that moment I don't (and can't) know whether the perp is armed and really intends to kill me. I have to react as if my life were in danger because for all I know it may be about to end within seconds! :eek:

Now, don't get me wrong--my first (and only, at least initially) priority is surviving the encounter, preferably unharmed, and without shooting anybody if at all possible. If I could escape quietly without endangering myself or even drawing my gun, then that's what I'd do. That said, what I would NOT do is allow a bad guy to outdraw and shoot me first (especially in the back) if I can prevent it. There's nothing wrong with retreat being the preferred option, but any notion of "duty to retreat" ends as soon as my life is actually threatened. I'd say that a guy who is trying to rob me reaching for his pocket in a threatening manner must be treated as a serious threat, and my response would be pointing a gun at him, ready to shoot (and evade any incoming fire) in an instant if he continues to escalate the situation.

If this is not a valid use of a gun, then aside from the obvious case of a home invasion, when can one use a gun (shooting only if forced to) in self-defense and for what reasons? I'd rather not wait to get shot first if I could have threatened the bad guy and thereby possibly avoided bloodshed altogether (or at least my own).

markj
March 11, 2011, 03:23 PM
Even in war, killing isn't easy, but beats the alternative for sure.

That is exacly what I told him.

Good no great news, he and his wife are expecting a child due in Oct. So now I can tell him if he hadnt come home that baby would never have been concived.

Glenn sure can rain on a persons parade.... :( how could he have known the guy would go and do that?

Do we gun down all those we feel would go and do harm to another? We may all be shot if that is the case......

sirsloop
March 11, 2011, 03:29 PM
Given the general tone, not to mention topic, of this forum...its likely that most of us hold much higher standards on our own personal safety than most. I think if EVERYONE was as worried and vigilant about their own safety we would only see a fraction of the violent crime that we do today. Ya know... when you walk into a ma&pa corner store in Texas you are like 95% sure they have AT LEAST a loaded pistol under the counter. That's standard practice there. In NJ, that may be case 1% of the time

cls12vg30
March 11, 2011, 05:16 PM
I have to start off by saying that I can only hope that I would have handled the situation with such a level head as you displayed. You got out of the situation with no one getting hurt. That in itself is a WIN.

That being said, if it had been me, I probably would have pulled, if only to make it clear to the assailant that I was armed and prepared to defend myself. Odds are that would have made the assailant run away. In that case, I would not pursue, but would call 911 with a description of a dangerous individual. In this case, drawing would have been justified. (I don't know about other states, but in NC pointing a weapon at a person counts as use of force, but in this case it is legally justified, as the assailant led you to believe he had a weapon.)

I would wait for the police, give my statement and description, and feel that I had done my civic duty to do all I could to prevent this individual from harming others.

thunderkyss
March 11, 2011, 05:21 PM
Manco (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4489576&postcount=40)
I'd say that a guy who is trying to rob me reaching for his pocket in a threatening manner must be treated as a serious threat, and my response would be pointing a gun at him, ready to shoot (and evade any incoming fire) in an instant if he continues to escalate the situation.

I don't know that a jury of your peers would see it the same way.

This, could possibly escalate a bad situation to a worse situation. This is very "gray" area stuff, so right now I don't know if there is a right answer.

But to me, a person should not pull their gun, unless they feel their life is in grave danger, and if you think your life is in grave danger, why would you not shoot?

" My client was simply going to show the defendant a picture of his homeless daughter..... " He could go on to say, "After seeing the gun, my client reacted in self defense (blah, blah, blah) & got himself shot."

As it was said earlier, I'm not a cop - I'm not an armed vigilante. If my gun comes out, the decision to shoot has already been made.

MLeake
March 11, 2011, 05:58 PM
... and happy that you didn't shoot him when he failed to produce a weapon.

However, I'm of the school that says it's safest to believe the threat. I'd have drawn, and told him to very slowly and carefully bring his hands into sight, while I backed around to the far side of my engine block.

I would not have turned my back on him, or left myself vulnerable as I tried to enter a vehicle, in case he really did have a weapon of any kind.

I'm not overly worried about a brandishing charge if a guy tries to rob me.

Note: I am not of the "You must shoot if you draw!" school as I think that is a bunch of BS. But I am of the "forgive from a position of strength" school.

Note2: I am not opposed to retreating, when it is tactically sound. I am just very leery of turning my back on somebody who claims to have a weapon, and ill intent, unless I am dead sure I can make it to cover. (I'm not that fast a runner, and I'm a bit on the long-torso'd side for ducking quickly into a vehicle door - as a scar or two on my scalp would attest.)

sirsloop
March 11, 2011, 06:27 PM
I'm certainly in the "if you draw, you had better expect to have to shoot and not hesitate of forced to" crowd. No reason to shoot a guy cause he asks you for money and puts his hands in his pocket, but there is equally no reason why you should not think that is an aggressive act and respond accordingly. Retreating is always a great option, and is probably the best bet unless the BG has the means and intent to immediately take lethal action against you.

youngunz4life
March 11, 2011, 06:41 PM
If my gun comes out, the decision to shoot has already been made.

I disagree thunderkyss but respect your opinion. There is no need to shoot this indivdual if the threat is thwarted by drawing your weapon.

Seaman
March 11, 2011, 07:43 PM
Agree with thunderkyss, if the gun comes out, it goes boom.

No sense standing there holding a gun on an unarmed man, chances are I get shot by someone mistaking me for the perp.

Its happened.

motorhead0922
March 11, 2011, 07:50 PM
I disagree thunderkyss
Agree with thunderkyss

Looks like the first amendment is alive and well, while discussing the second amendment. :D

MLeake
March 11, 2011, 07:51 PM
... as I'm pretty sure no state has a "it's always ok to fire the gun once drawn" clause.

If the BG surrenders, but you shoot because you drew, you are (and most likely should be) completely screwed.

sakeneko
March 11, 2011, 08:27 PM
FWIW, I agree with most of the thread. B. Lahey chose well and acted well throughout. Having a gun, and having justification for shooting, doesn't always mean that you should shoot. If you have an option that doesn't significantly risk your life or somebody else's, I'd take it. And Lahey did. Good job. ;)

Seaman
March 11, 2011, 08:33 PM
Should my life be under imminent deadly threat I shoot to stop the threat. The BG had better surrender real fast, because my gun is out and fired in 4 tenths of a second.

In the incident outlined, the robber did not present a weapon or rush the GG.

Why would I shoot an unarmed man 15 to 21 feet away from me? Because he says he has a weapon? Gotta do more than that. I would order him to stop and kiss the pavement, then call in the cavalry, and you wanna know I wouldn't take my eyes off the BG excepting glances to my six.

subierex
March 11, 2011, 08:46 PM
Live to fight another day. You chose wisely. I would have done the same.

My feeling is that, while my hand would have gone immediately to my gun, in preparation, I would have done everything to dissuade this individual. The gun is there only as the absolute last resort.

TailGator
March 12, 2011, 03:12 PM
if the gun comes out, it goes boom.

I would order him to stop and kiss the pavement

You would give him such orders without drawing? Would you expect compliance? And if he did not comply would you then feel justified to draw and shoot? And if so, can you elucidate how you feel your life would be more at risk at that point than a moment before?

I'm not sure I understand what you are recommending or how it relates to current law.

OP did fine, with the sole exception that if he turned his back on a potential assailant, he took a risk he perhaps shouldn't have.

LockedBreech
March 12, 2011, 03:47 PM
To the original poster,

Your actions prove that you carry a gun as a last resort. As any of us should.

You did well, and I am glad you emerged unscathed.

TheNatureBoy
March 12, 2011, 04:15 PM
Shoot if you have to, run when you can. Good decision.

Single Six
March 12, 2011, 04:24 PM
I can't fault you in the least. Retreat, when possible, is always preferable to resorting to our weapons. Plus, if the worst-case scenario does happen and you end up having to resort to deadly force, being able to show that you did all you could to avoid it is always a good thing. Good show.

Seaman
March 12, 2011, 04:59 PM
Yo Tailgator:

Have run following protocol by three different south-east Michigan PDs and they are fine with it. Also reviewed it (during a training session) with a retired Detroit police officer, of 2 decades service, now instructor, who lectures on CCW related legal issues.

Please note that Michigan has open carry, concealed carry, and a brandishing law.

My self defence protocol is as follows:

If I am approached by a suspect BG who looks menacing/threatening I do NOT draw my weapon until it is 100% certain that there is an imminent deadly threat. For example - the suspect rushes at me with a knife drawn, or threatens me and draws a gun.

And if I don't see a weapon, but strongly suspect trouble, I order the BG to stop and back off.

My gun would NOT be presented while ordering the suspect.

If the suspect is innocent he can simply stop and withdraw.

If the suspect has verbally threatened me and stated he is armed (but no weapon presented or seen by me) and intends robbing me, he would have the choice of complying with my stop and drop order, or fleeing, or attacking.

I would only draw my gun if attacked. And yes, if I draw my gun it goes boom.

If the preceeding is not clear, please query further.

TailGator
March 12, 2011, 05:49 PM
Thanks for the clarification, Seaman. I notice two things:

(1) The protocol that you proposed to the instructors and LEOs lacked the "kiss the pavement" line. I would not expect compliance to that line. I am not clear on when you go from "stop and withdraw" to "stop and drop." Telling someone firmly to back off is tried and true. Ordering someone to the ground, with no badge and no weapon, maybe not so much.

(2) I am not on board with the idea that a drawn gun has to be fired. You yourself indicated that when an assailant sees you are armed he might surrender or flee (if you can forgive the paraphrase). Shooting a surrendering or fleeing assailant will, in many jurisdictions, be a pretty big problem. There are claims that an extraordinarily large number of defensive uses of a firearm are successful without a shot being fired. (My foggy memory says 95%?) We should be prepared to fire, but we should also be prepared to spare ourselves the emotional, legal, and financial hardship of firing unnecessarily.

won-a-glock
March 12, 2011, 06:43 PM
Congratulations. The good news is you're not going through the emotionally draining "are they going to charge me" / "should I cover my A**" / get a lawyer at $$$, etc.

And, it's very very unlikely you're going to end up the victim in a civil suit.

Congratulations, YOU WON!

Seaman
March 12, 2011, 07:39 PM
Hallo TailGator -

"Kiss the pavement," you're right, a touch colorful.

Stop and drop --- for the perp threatening armed robbery --- Suffice it to say I would make it abundantly clear that I wanted them on the ground, facedown, arms and legs spread. Whether they comply is up to them. If the BG withdraws, thats fine, I am in no danger and my gun is still concealed. If he attacks, I defend myself, meaning I draw and shoot.

Stop and back-off (withdraw) --- Is for when I am 100% sure the person moving towards me is dangerous but has not verbally threatened me or shown a weapon. If he continues moving towards me I would try to withdraw and put distance between us. If he attacks, I defend myself.

(Example --- My wife was once pushing the baby stroller late at night. She heard a quick succession of footfalls behind her, she wheeled and in a firm clear voice shouted -- "STOP, BACK OFF." It worked.)

"You yourself indicated that when an assailant sees you are armed he might surrender or flee (if you can forgive the paraphrase)." [TailGator] Did not say that, hope I did not imply that.

The only time the assailant will see my gun is when it is drawn...if he sees it at all...and I don't draw unless I am under deadly attack...point being the bad guy will be attacking me, likely 3-8 feet from me...the perp has been warned, all I can do now is draw and fire.

I would never shoot someone who is withdrawing, fleeing, or otherwise surrendering. But understand, any talking I do, my gun is concealed. It only comes out when I have to use it.

When the gun comes out, it goes boom, because if it doesn't go boom, I get cut, or shot, or battered, etc.

Hope this clarifies things, thanks for your comments.

MLeake
March 12, 2011, 08:23 PM
... ignores the statistic that in over 90% of cases when a gun is drawn for self-defense, the attack stops without shots fired.

So, the odds are good that drawing the weapon will be a strong deterrent.

One can't count on the draw alone doing the job, and one should be prepared to actually shoot, but one should not discount the extremely strong possibility that the draw itself will deter the BG.

Some folks seem to argue that they worry about a brandishing charge in such instances.

My counter to that is simple: In order to avoid a "brandishing" charge, you are willing to let the situation develop to where you may have to face a "homicide", "manslaughter", or "aggravated assault with battery while using a firearm" charge; how does this make sense?

To the poster who said he wouldn't draw until he saw a weapon: better hope you're a faster draw than the BG if he really has one; also, who says he'll draw from his pocket? I wouldn't need to, with my 442.... A BG who actually has gun in pocket could just shoot without drawing.

Seaman
March 12, 2011, 08:49 PM
A perp can draw from anywhere. In a showdown NEVER lose sight of the perps hands.

4 tenths of a second (with one accurate shot) is the best I can do. Not Bill Jordan speed, but it'll have to do.

Southern Rebel
March 12, 2011, 09:04 PM
I see no logic to the general attitude in this thread - ie, the results of the OP's action were positive; therefore, his actions were wise. That is no better than a gambler going in and betting his home and life savings on one spin of the roulette wheel. Ok, he won the spin and won a billion dollars; therefore, the gambler's actions were wise. :rolleyes:

The results of the encounter were actually determined by the actions of the bad guy. If he had been armed and had chosen to draw and shoot, the results of the encounter would likely have been different and the thread responses likely would have drifted toward critizing the OP's decision to turn and run and leave the bad guy with ultimate control.

Being a mathematician, I would NEVER allow anyone to convince me that the roll of the dice coming up seven the first roll indicated that would be the wise bet every time I roll the dice. Having seen one outcome out of many possiblilities is not a smart way of calculating the odds for a positive outcome in general.

TailGator
March 13, 2011, 09:25 AM
Seaman, I think we shall just have to agree to disagree. I see no reason that a person intent on an armed or strong-arm robbery would stop and get down on the ground just because you or I said so. This scenario reminds me in some ways of the idea that bad guys will observe signs and laws prohibiting them from having guns, in that their lack of respect for rules is what makes them bad guys to begin with. I would have zero expectation of compliance if I gave such an order without drawing. Perhaps you have a more authoritative voice than do I.

I am trying to imagine a situation where I would feel justified in ordering a stranger to the ground but not justified in clearing leather, and I honestly can't come up with one.

Plus, as MLeake said more eloquently and accurately than I, your policy loses you the very real opportunity to end the threat by producing a firearm but not firing.

OldMarksman
March 13, 2011, 11:03 AM
Posted by Seaman: I would order him to stop and kiss the pavement, then call in the cavalry, and you wanna know I wouldn't take my eyes off the BG excepting glances to my six.I am not sure why you think it would be wise to issue such an unenforceable command without having given any indication that you are armed, or why it would be to your benefit as someone who is not a sworn officer to try to hold the person in the first place.

I'm sure you are well aware that you may not shoot simply because he chooses to not comply.

I'm not sure you have considered the legal risks, criminal and civil, that you would face should he turn out to be unarmed and dispute your account of the encounter.

And, of course, the tactical risks--getting shot in the back or side by his accomplice while your attention is focussed on him, "glances to your six" notwithstanding.

Not the best idea, in my view.....

Whether and when one should draw in such a situation is going to depend on a lot of things and will require some quick judgment.

If it turns out that you were in fact in imminent danger and did not draw quickly enough, the outcome could be disastrous.

If you draw, and the danger dissipates with no shots having been fired, great.

If you draw and shoot and he drops a weapon, you have defended yourself against the immediate threat, and your action will then be the subject of an investigation.

If it turns out that he was unarmed and bluffing and you draw, or draw and shoot, you had better hope that you can produce some evidence of justification, and that you are not faced with unfavorable witness testimony.

The outcome for the OP was just fine.

Seaman
March 13, 2011, 12:06 PM
TailGator:

I was trained by professionals who instructed me very clearly, if you are ATTACKED, you draw and shoot. Period.

As for the 90% that drawing and talking worked out for (MLeake stats), that's good, for the other 10%, hope they survived.

Anytime a gun is drawn many bad things can and do happen, I choose to avoid that.

"I'm sure you are well aware that you may not shoot simply because he chooses to not comply." [OldMarksman]

No mention of that in any of my posts. Read them all. Thank you for your comments.

In the real life example cited, I would have ordered the perp to stop and drop, (he would have complied, withdrawn or attacked) I would not have drawn unless attacked.

You're a good man TailGator, I have family in Florida, next visit I'll stop in at a local PD and see what they think of my sd protocol.

All the best.

OldMarksman
March 13, 2011, 12:56 PM
Posted by Seaman: I was trained by professionals who instructed me very clearly, if you are ATTACKED, you draw and shoot. Period.I respectfully suggest that that instruction is oversimplified, or that it is incorrect, or that you have remembered it incorrectly.

What's wrong with it? First, to justify the use of deadly force or the threat thereof, the threat must be imminent and very serious (capable of causing death or serous bodily harm), and you must have no other means of avoiding the danger; second, your having drawn does not mean that you have to shoot.

I suggest that you study this (http://www.useofforce.us/), very carefully.

So, to try to put it in the terms of a decision tree:


Do you have reason to believe that the person, or persons, have the ability, the opportunity, and the intent to cause death or serious bodily harm? If no--do not draw; if yes, go to (2).
Do you have any safe (to you) means of avoiding such harm, short of threatening or using deadly force?If yes, avail yourself of the alternative; if no, draw, and go to (3). Note: there is no requirement that an actual attack has been started.
Does your presentation of a weapon cause the imminent danger to dissipate? If yes--do not shoot; if no, you may shoot.


There are minor variations in a couple of jurisdictions, namely, Arizona and Texas.

I hope you find this helpful.

In the real life example cited, I would have ordered the perp to stop and drop,...And should he for some strange reason comply, you would now be liable for anything that may happen to him, your fault or not, and you would be potentially subject to criminal sanctions, should you be unable to produce adequate evidence that he had in fact committed the kind of offense that justifies a citizen's arrest in your jurisdiction.

All downside, no upside. Better to leaver that to trained, indemnified, sworn officers.

MLeake
March 13, 2011, 01:03 PM
Seaman,

1) If you are ATTACKED, draw and shoot. Makes perfect sense, the attack has already commenced. (Assuming the sort of attack that justifies deadly force.)

But that doesn't address the period where you are threatened, before the attack has commenced.

2) Trained by which professionals? In what environment?

You do realize a lot of posters here are LE, right? And many others are military, right?

There are a lot of posters here who've had much more training than I have had. With that in mind, I've received training on the military side from instructors from several services, including Navy Master-at-Arms, Marine drill instructors, Army drill sergeants, and ODA members. (I was not on an ODA; I just happened to luck out on some liaison duty, and I never turn down free ammo and range time.) On the civilian side, had an initial session in 2001 and later refresher in 2007 for a Florida CCW (those covered legal aspects more than tactical).

For hostile conditions, leaving the weapon holstered or slung when under imminent threat would be considered ridiculous, and probably dereliction of duty in a military context.

For peacetime conditions or non-permissive ROE, all of those instructors taught the theory of escalation of force, or force continuum. None said to leave the weapon holstered until it was absolutely necessary to shoot. Not one.

I'll attend Massad Ayoob's MAG-40 class later this year, and I suspect he also won't teach "leave it holstered until you decide to shoot the guy." I'll have to let you know his take on it this August.

3) I never said drawing and talking would be the end-all. In fact, I specifically said not to expect that to be the end-all, but to be ready for the possibility that it might end the scenario. But even though I'm in good shape, and of reasonable size (6'/210) I don't particularly expect a potential attacker to stop because I tell him to, if he doesn't see the weapon.

If he stops when he sees the weapon, so much the better. If he doesn't, the weapon is drawn and ready, and I'm actually a pretty good shot.

4) Speaking of drawn and ready, do you get that .4 second draw time you mentioned from a concealed holster? If so, from under how many layers of clothing? Have you tried it when a BG is already in physical contact? Have you ever had clothing snag, or some other hindrance that slowed down your draw? What do you suppose the odds are that Murphy will have some say in your draw speed, if you wait until you really need to shoot?

Seaman
March 13, 2011, 01:56 PM
"Trained by which professionals? In what environment?" [MLeake]

Training done by professionals (at a Michigan State approved training facility) with umpteen years of military and police background who certified me as part of the requirements pursuant to the aquisition of a Michigan Concealed Pistol License.

"But that doesn't address the period where you are threatened, before the attack has commenced."[Ibid]

I agree, its a gray area...I'm not saying your method is incorrect, whatever brings you out intact is fine with me...I'm just saying I was taught differently, for me it lessens the chances of gunplay, the last thing I want to do is draw the gun, and I will do anything I can to safely avoid violence. Depending on the situation I might just punch out the perp, but I would not draw the gun unless attacked.

"For hostile conditions, leaving the weapon holstered or slung when under threat would be considered ridiculous, and probably dereliction of duty in a military context." [Ibid]

The CPL is not a military license.

"Do you get that .4 second draw from a concealed holster? Under how many layers of clothing? Have you tried it when a BG is already in physical contact? Have you ever had clothing snag, or some other hindrance that slowed down your draw? What do you suppose the odds are that Murphy will have some say in your draw speed, if you wait until you really need to shoot? " [Ibid]

Yes, one layer, no, no, Murphy or....Lady Luck has been with me so far.

The (fast draw) gun I carry is the perfect rough and tumble gun, that can pretty much be used as easily as you use your fist.

The whole trick in my fast draw is not fast draw, its more like fast illusion, the body is almost motionless, almost like a magician's trick where something is magically produced from nothing.

Thank you for the interesting comments.

PS --- OldMarksman, just saw your post, thank you, I'll comment once I've reviewed it.

Seaman
March 13, 2011, 02:17 PM
"And should he for some strange reason comply, you would now be liable for anything that may happen to him, your fault or not, and you would be potentially subject to criminal sanctions, should you be unable to produce adequate evidence that he had in fact committed the kind of offense that justifies a citizen's arrest in your jurisdiction." [OldMarksman]

An excellent point. The perp may well be unarmed, and likely deny all wrongdoing.

Its a cruel world, since the time of Jesus, the criminal has had the advantage: he plans, picks his ground, and commits the crimes, and somehow the good citizen must successfully defend himself, all the while avoiding physical and monetary harm.

Thanks for the web referral, I'll check with my police contacts and if there is anything new to report, I shall do.

Glenn E. Meyer
March 13, 2011, 04:58 PM
Interesting thread - by the way, police contacts aren't the sole decider if you get in trouble. You might want to discuss things with local DAs and/or self-defense attorneys.

Since lots of us know police, attorneys, trainers, etc. - who teach more than just getting a carry license course and DON'T ever say you must shoot if you draw, I suggest more research is needed.

License courses from that one 'expert' dude can get strange at times. :rolleyes:

Wildalaska
March 13, 2011, 09:02 PM
Training done by professionals (at a Michigan State approved training facility) with umpteen years of military and police background who certified me as part of the requirements pursuant to the aquisition of a Michigan Concealed Pistol License.


Thats why you use terms like "check six":rolleyes::D

WildthreatplateAlaska ™©2002-2011

Glenn Bartley
March 13, 2011, 11:46 PM
Originally Posted by Glenn Bartley
...You said that you felt good about evading danger, and that is very understandable but I wonder, how do you feel about the other guy having been beaten? How would you have felt if he had been maimed, or killed? ... Would you have felt better then had you shot the bad guy?...

In my view that should not properly be a consideration. How presumptive to think I was asking that as if it were a consideration as to whether or not the original poster should have shot the bad guy. It was only a question about he he felt afterwards and about he he may have felt afterwards had things turned out differently. Remember, this post was not solely about whether or not he handled it properly but how he felt afterwards. I was making an inquiry, not suggesting he draw and fire a weapon based upon any sort of comic book or fantasy novel seer saying ability based upon his emotions. You implied way too much, about what you think I was getting at, from a question I asked.

How anyone here interprets that as me advocating shooting someone on how you think you may later feel, well you are just being quite less than inciteful.

One person here did mention that he was amazed at how folks like me, he used my words to quote, think that we are responsible for the actions of others. I do not beleive that unless I trick or force others to do something. I beleive I am responsible for my own actions and not those of anyone else. I also believe though, I am responsible for my own inaction and that to take no action can at times be morally wrong or can be wrong in my line of thinking; I also know that in fact it can also be legally wrong in certain types of cases. (I am not saying in this type of case.) Yet none of that was in my queston. I asked someone how he thought he would have felt if things had turned out differently in specific ways and pointed out how I would feel. None of that was to make a person think, not even for a moment, that how you think you would feel later would justify shooting earlier.


All the best,
GB

BigBob3006
March 14, 2011, 05:04 AM
Lahey,

The action you took was the very best thing you could have done. Lawyers are quick to tell people what the should, or should not do. They don't tell you how to live with it after wards. In law enforcement we had a 90-10, 10-90 concept that sure seemed to be right on the ball. 90-10 means 90% of the people only do 10% of the crime, and 10-90 means 10% of the people do 90% of the crime. Killing someone is as big a crime as we know of. It seems as if everyone who kills someone, such as in this case, at some time that person sits in judgement of what they did. They will know if the reason they did so was because it was the only thing they could do to stay alive. Or if it was because they thought they could get away with it. Today, when so many murders are "thrill killings" the fact that so many of these killers don't realize what they've done until much later is terrible. So many of them can't handle it. If thy cannot handle it, what chance does a decent person such as yourself
do. I don't know if you have reached that point yet or not, but after that the healing starts. You may be called different names by those who tell you you should have killed the man, but they are idiots. You did a damn good job! :)

curmudgeon1
March 14, 2011, 05:04 AM
To the OP,
Everything turned out well for you,nobody was injured, so you must have done everything right in that situation.
Had it been me, I'm sure my reaction to the predator's hand-in-pocket approach would have been like LordTio3's "tactical disengagement"; my gun would have been pointed at his center-mass while I moved to the drivers seat to roll away from him.
(I like that ....... "TACTICAL DISENGAGEMENT" [thanks LordTio3]........ Chesty Puller called it "attacking in a different direction".)

B. Lahey
March 14, 2011, 10:27 AM
Sorry I haven't been back to check on my thread, I had a busy weekend. Thanks for the comments.

To clear up a few things:

1. I didn't have to turn my back on him to jump in my car. He approached from the side/front of the car at about 10 o'clock. I was able to keep my eyes on him and get to the driver's door with a short sidestep. I would not have felt as good about that move if I had to turn my back, and probably would have hustled off in a different direction.

2. I don't know how bad the guy at the mexican restaurant was beaten, but it wasn't bad enough to charge him with the felony version of the battery charge. That would have required "serious bodily injury", as I recall. But in any case, tough luck for him. I'm not psychic and I'm not a cop.

Vanya
March 14, 2011, 11:18 AM
How presumptive to think I was asking that as if it were a consideration as to whether or not the original poster should have shot the bad guy. It was only a question about he he felt afterwards and about he he may have felt afterwards had things turned out differently. Remember, this post was not solely about whether or not he handled it properly but how he felt afterwards. I was making an inquiry, not suggesting he draw and fire a weapon based upon any sort of comic book or fantasy novel seer saying ability based upon his emotions. You implied way too much, about what you think I was getting at, from a question I asked.

It may not have been explicit, but suggesting that someone might have felt better had he acted differently in a particular situation clearly implies, I think, that you believe he ought to have acted differently. Claiming that you are "just asking a question" about how he felt doesn't change this, it just gives you some prevaricatory wiggle room.

One person here did mention that he was amazed at how folks like me, he used my words to quote, think that we are responsible for the actions of others. I do not beleive that unless I trick or force others to do something. I beleive I am responsible for my own actions and not those of anyone else. I also believe though, I am responsible for my own inaction and that to take no action can at times be morally wrong or can be wrong in my line of thinking; I also know that in fact it can also be legally wrong in certain types of cases. (I am not saying in this type of case.)
Again, implied criticism of the way Mr. Lahey responded to this situation. I think it's important to point out that he did take very effective action to help stop the man who threatened him. From his first post:
Thanks in part to some of the excellent tips I received in my last hairy-situation thread (http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=385645), I was able to give the cops a very detailed description and they picked him up with little trouble.

So he was able, under stress, accurately to note details of the man's appearance, and he gave the police that description, which enabled them to catch him. This is a job well done, and not some sort of morally suspect "failure to act," which is what your comments imply.

Edited to add:
The question of whether one's conduct should be guided by how he expects to feel about it after the fact is an interesting one. This may actually be a sign of a high level of moral development...

Daugherty16
March 14, 2011, 03:36 PM
I just don't see how anybody is second guessing Mr. Lahey. He identified a threat before it was upon him, evaluated it and took charge with a strong command letting the BG know he was "made", then Mr. Lahey kept moving and created distance with an obstacle between him and the BG (also would have served as primary cover if needed), found an avenue of escape and took it, de-escalating the entire event. :cool:

Perfect. He turned what-might-have-been into a non-event to be posted on a forum from the safety of his home. If you're going to carry a gun, you better check your ego at the door, gentlemen. You want to be Charles Bronson, you'll likely do hard time and lose everything you're trying to protect. :eek:

Mr. Lahey, i hope i do as well as you did should the need ever arise.

Wildalaska
March 14, 2011, 04:34 PM
This may actually be a sign of a high level of moral development...

Isnt that wonderful to see in a sea of blast the goblin threads :D

WildccccccccAlaska™©2002-2011

thesheepdog
March 14, 2011, 04:48 PM
"Bad guy; I would like your groin to meet the heel of my shoe; your face to meet a straight punch, hook and uppercut, a pair of knees to your nose, and an arm bar."

Running is always the first option, but due to his close proximity, I would let him have a preview of some Krav Maga; leaving him crippled/incapaciated long enough for me to keep him down and call the COPs, as well as get my sidearm ready-in the event it's not on my person.

MLeake
March 14, 2011, 07:33 PM
... and a few others, who figure since it all turned out well, it was obviously perfect...

... and with all due respect to B. Lahey, who was able to walk away (drive away, really), and who handled things pretty well...

It's possible to constructively criticize the OP without 1) attacking him or his performance, or 2) being particularly bloodthirsty.

The decision made in this instance worked out well for the OP; his ability to provide a good description to the police after the event was a huge plus, and deserves specific praise.

However, it's possible to say he did well, and to be happy for him, yet still think he could have created some vulnerabilities had the BG really turned out to have been armed.

I'm not sure how much time it took the OP to actually get into his car, get the engine running, and get the car moving to safety. My guess is it took longer than it would have taken to draw a weapon, and by a substantial margin.

If the BG really had a weapon, and had decided to use it, the time the OP needed to do all the things he did could have subjected him to gunfire, at close range, while he was in a confined but not bulletproof space.

Without meaning to armchair quarterback or pick on the OP, I do feel that this is something that should actually be considered by the "retreat is best" side. I'm all for retreat, if I feel I can do it in relative safety.

But I, personally, would not get into a car, especially one that wasn't already running, if a BG were threatening me with what might be a firearm. (In fact, what training I've received in that area would lead me to exit a vehicle if it weren't capable of immediate departure.)

youngunz4life
March 14, 2011, 09:21 PM
I stated my opinion earlier in the thread. Also, the only bashing I have seen has been from the side that has been defensive about any kind of constructive criticism. Please correct me if I am wrong here. One example is a post that seems to state that anyone who doesn't see his side is an idiot. At least that's how I read it the one time I did.

I would like to point out also to Daugherty, I do not think the OP made it clear in his post he let the BG know he was "made" if I am reading this correctly. He never used his box as a barrier; he was just loading up the vehicle, but I guess you were saying he could have. There are times when it is acceptable to draw a weapon, and this is certianly one of them in my opinion. It doesn't mean that a weapon had to be drawn, as the OP has proven. This situation probably would've escalated if the OP hadn't left or if he had engaged the BG with any kind of conversation or action good or bad. This is speculation, but he definately meant business - his record and later actions have shown this to be true.

Also, not talking about anyone in this thread but TFL in general - there are people on the forum from all kinds of life, backrounds, age, careers, etc. I think it is just sometimes easier for certain individuals to react to these situations differently. I mean, some people do not want to pull a gun no matter what. Others this scenario would be like second nature to draw on the perp. I just, in my opinion, don't think some people realize how close to serious danger the OP was. It is very possible the BG was armed, but he was going to make a move if he got a chance either way. This BG seems like he had already 'graduated' and moved up in his life of crime. He was probably in his 2nd personality needing attention half drunk or on drugs but who the heck knows and who should have to care when I am just trying to go about my business?

Many of these BG's just don't think right. You might do him a favor, and then he gets mad at you when you won't do a second one. A good example is this exact scenario: the BG got mad at the OP because he wouldn't give up any change and/or didn't seem interested in his plight. "Well maybe I'll just rob you instead". Huh? Maybe your %^$ just ran into someone who has absolutely no problem standing his ground on you justifiably and in a calm and cool manner as well as with total confidence in the boys down at the station to boot. I'm not going to do anything I do not feel is right. I will face any aftermath with honesty and integrity as well. I know if I am doing something that is sending me down the river. That is one of the reasons why some people do not carry. They do not want to get in an emotional situation that backfires or do something stupid when they're trying to do the right thing. I am not worried about this. Perhaps I haven't seen enough in my life and there still is time to change my mind on that subject. I did serve four yrs active duty, and I did see a lot and learn some things but that is a different matter plus neither here nor there in this thread. Bottom line - if and when I ever use my weapon it will be for the right reason. If not, then I deserve whatever I get and yes, I know it might have to work its way thru the maze either way. Thats life. I do not think a prosecutor is going to try and ruin my life and family for doing the right thing and/or trying to do the right thing. Again, I know it isn't always that cut and dry but I am willing to stand up for myself. sorry for the rambling after the fact. I just figured since I hadn't said much I midas well stand my ground.

I wouldn't have shot this man, but I wouldn't have just gotten in my car and left unless I felt in my mind he wasn't a threat to do so(a good,early post mentioned this and this is very possible). The reason wouldn't be because I was scared to draw my weapon or if I wasn't sure what to do either. To the OP, I am not saying either of these last two sentences were your reasons. I would not have shot this man until more had happened after drawing, as I originally stated. Hopefully this wouldn't be the case. Seaman, yes check with the PD. You were given some advice and conversation. I recommend doing more research. There are other examples of having a firearm not shot yet while you hold it, and I wouldn't want to shoot off an ATTACK of a college drunk trying to get in a fistfight as even a further, totally seperate example I just eluded to. That scenario was going thru my head with some of your posts. The ordering of the perp without the weapon can lead to escalation and not de-escalation. The BG might not know what is coming without you showing the firearm. That in my mind would be wrong in numerous instances. It is common sense and a basic duty(duty might be a stretch but you're covering all the bases) to give the perp a chance to stand down. Obviously sometimes he/she isn't that lucky and Many people Die because they are too nice, flexible, and give a BG too many chances.

B. Lahey
March 15, 2011, 09:05 AM
I didn't draw because I didn't see a weapon, and I didn't want to instigate an episode of gutter bravado ("Aw, you got a gun? You better shoot me! Go on and shoot me you *insert explitive of your choice*!"). The read I got on this character was that he had little regard for his own life, and was as likely as anyone to pull a suicidal toughguy stunt like that.

Also, my gut told me he did not have a gun. It seemed more likely to be a screwdriver or knife or something, and he was just far enough away for me to gamble on the move to the driver's seat. I agree that it was risky, but it appeared to be somewhat less risky than other options at the time. I have practiced drawing from concealment while seated in a car, and am relatively confident I could have done so should it have been required.

I made a number of judgement calls and took a number of calculated risks in this incident, which is why I started this thread. It worked out, but I encourage some degree of monday morning quarterbacking.:)

BikerRN
March 15, 2011, 10:52 AM
The original post really shows that all situations are different and the correct answer is: "It depends."

What worked this time, evading, may not work next time, but we won't know until that situation presents itself. For this scenario the correct response was to flee. In another scenario it may very well be the wrong approach.

I have had the displeasure of drawing my gun on another person three times with the full intent of stopping their actions by force that would most likely result in death. Thankfully the actions I was attempting to stop did in fact stop with my producing a weapon. It was all very fast, but as I'm sure some of you know, time slowed down to a crawl.

Would I have been correct in discharging my weapon? That's for the courts to determine. I'm just thankful I didn't have to find out. In my humble opinion B. Lahey acted correctly in this scenario. One can only judge this scenario based on what B. Lahey knew at the time and how he perceived the actions of the criminal actor. The fact that he was able to drive away without being harmed proves to me that he acted correctly.

While it would be charitable to consider the future victims of the criminal actor, it is not realistic, practical, or even ethical. I say ethical because one's responsibility is to themselves and their loved ones. "Justice" is reserved for the courts, and we are not empowered with a code of vigilantism. We should only be concerned with the here and now.

Now being that a future victim was afforded the same opportunity to provide for their own personal protection, but made the decision not to, as the original poster says to me that it's their choice and they will have to live with that choice, good or bad.

Biker

Daugherty16
March 15, 2011, 12:37 PM
i stand corrected - the OP did not issue the verbal command. After 4 pages of BS and bravado, i guess i misremembered. I probably would have made it clear that further advance was going to come at great peril to the BG. And probably would have escalated, rather than de-escalated the situation, I recognize to my chagrin.

Could he have stood his ground? Sure. Could he have drawn or at least put a hand on the butt of his pistol? Of course. I might have. That's why i say, i'd like to have done as well as he did. Who knows if my comand to stop and a hand on the butt of my pistol might not have enraged the BG and precipitated a physical attack, or worse? Mr. Lahey didn't even have to find out.

In the situation Mr. Lahey found himself, he used his intellect and instincts and drove off unscathed, and didn't even have to explain to a local cop why he had drawn a gun on a poor homeless man. He CERTAINLY didn't reaction-shoot what was probably an unarmed man who hadn't even laid a hand on him yet but was closing the distance rapidly. That's a win/win/win and was unquestionably the correct decision. This isn't a what-if scenario - this is historic fact. I feel pretty confident saying thay Lahey would have reacted very differently if his radar gave him a different "read" of the BG.

So QB all you want; we weren't there, weren't the one taken by surprise, weren't able to make our own firsthand assessment or size the guy up, didn't have to make Mr. Lahey's decision. Unless the BG actually displayed or threatened a weapon, Lahey would have had to actually be getting assaulted before the AOJP loop would be satisfied. Instead, he just went on his way.

I think Mr. Lahey is fully prepared to shoot if necessary and justified. I for one, am glad he isn't aching to prove it.

nogo
March 17, 2011, 07:53 PM
You made a wise decision and did not have to defend shooting an "unarmed man" and saved yourself many 1000's of dollars in legal fees, grief, bull****, and stress.

Mutatio Nomenis
April 1, 2011, 10:37 PM
Well done, you avoided being lawfully guilty on murder charges. It's not a lawful homicide unless the killing was the only way to prevent an active, capable threat from otherwise inflicting immediate harm on a person. And take that antiguns who think that we get guns and permits so that we can kill people whenever we have the slightest opportunity!

Glenn Bartley
April 2, 2011, 12:25 AM
It's not a lawful homicide unless the killing was the only way to prevent an active, capable threat from otherwise inflicting immediate harm on a person. Please tell me where is that the law. That will be one state I try to avoid.