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Old August 14, 2008, 03:00 PM   #26
Shawn Dodson
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WHO'S THERE?
You're concerned about pointing a loaded weapon equipped with a light at a family member? This is the beginning of the threat identification process and it establishes your presence.

I HAVE A GUN!
It communicates to potential "friendlies" that you're in alarm mode and you aren't playing around. The bad guy has just been informed you have deadly force capability to resist.

I'VE CALLED POLICE!
Communicates to intruder that the risk of being caught increases if he/she doesn't leave immediately.

GET OUT OF MY HOUSE NOW!
Commands intruder to leave to avoid confrontation.

Verbal challenges are best issued from a position of advantage. The bad guy has to approach your general position to make contact. He is less efficient in detecting you than vice versa. He has a large area to monitor - you only have to monitor the avenue of approach.

When I was in patrol my verbal command SOP for making contact with people during a patrol check:
SIR/MA'AM - STOP!
SHOW ME YOUR HANDS!
STAY WHERE YOU ARE!
DON'T MOVE!

Quote:
The BG has stopped listening to you at the second sentence. You'll only have a couple of seconds of his attention before he's thinking what to do next.

FREEZE!
or
STOP OR I'LL SHOOT!

Short and to the point. That's what out CWP instructor told us.
I agree. Keep commands short and to the point. However it's easy to presumptively think that the bad guy is in his right mind. What if he turns around and leaves? You gonna shoot him in the back because he disobeyed your command to Freeze or Stop? It's an inappropriate command if you don't have visual contact. If the noise is at the far side of the house how many times are you going to repeat it? (I really mean it this time!) What if there's more than one intruder - which is likely if they're merely there to burglarize your home? The best course of action, both safety and legally, is to simply compel the bad guy to leave.

Quote:
As far as splashing the light off the walls etc... If someone is in my house I want the light in their eyes.
I reiterate: You *should* almost never find yourself in a situation where you have to illuminate a threat to ID it. A simple verbal challenge, in a command voice, will do the job for you, unless you have a sleep walker or a deaf family member/visitor. If the verbal challenge is ignored then the threat now becomes a target and I don't need light to identify it.

Blinding light? That's a myth. I've had "blinding light" (Surefire 6 and 9 volt) shined directly in my eyes during no-light training. The first time I performed the exercise I drew and put two bullets in one hole in the left eye of a realistic, life-size paper target. I was chastized by my instructor for not allowing a couple of seconds for my eyes to recover. I didn't know my performance until I asked one of my co-students why everybody gasped when I shot - it appears they were surprised at my performance, as was I once I found out.

Cheers!
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Old August 14, 2008, 03:15 PM   #27
James K
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I have had occasion to enter large dark areas, and my training was that the best way to illuminate the scene was simply to turn on the lights, if possible, then move away from the switch.

It is best if you can have cover/concealment when doing so, but remember that anyone hiding in the place is temporarily blinded while you know the lights are going to come on and can be prepared.

If you enter a dark area and are doing as I see in the gunzine ads and on TV and have a light on the gun and the gun in front of your face, anyone hiding in the place will shoot at the light and kill you.

We were trained that if absolutely necessary to use a flashlight, to hold it in the left hand, out and forward of the body. The idea (or at least hope) is that the BG will think the light is in your right hand and shoot to your left of the light, missing you. With the light right in front of your head, he won't miss.

Jim
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Old August 14, 2008, 03:16 PM   #28
Keltyke
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Quote:
When I was in patrol my verbal command SOP for making contact with people during a patrol check:
SIR/MA'AM - STOP!
SHOW ME YOUR HANDS!
STAY WHERE YOU ARE!
DON'T MOVE!
So you were a LEO - big difference. What's appropriate for LEOs isn't necessarily appropriate for private citizens.

Quote:
What if he turns around and leaves?
When I'm sure he's left, I holster my weapon and wait for the cops.

Quote:
You gonna shoot him in the back because he disobeyed your command to Freeze or Stop?
No, I'm not stupid, thank you. The command is intended to divert him from what he's doing - trying to steal my stuff or harm me or my family.

Quote:
It's an inappropriate command if you don't have visual contact.
DOH! Really? Since we're talking about shining lights on the BG, I assumed I had a visual.
Quote:
If the noise is at the far side of the house how many times are you going to repeat it?
Jeez...I'm not going to hide under the bed and shout commands at an unseen BG from 40 feet away. To answer your third asinine question:

Only once AFTER I have him in my sights. There's no second warning. If he continues to move forward, I'll take him out.

So many times I've seen suspects become confused with 5 cops all shouting different things at him. I want him to focus on one thing - stop or you'll die.
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Old August 14, 2008, 03:36 PM   #29
Sparks2112
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I'm with Keltyke on this one. Way different commands when I'm a private citizen with an unknown intruder in my home versus a LEO responding to a call.
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Old August 14, 2008, 04:11 PM   #30
raimius
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Maybe different commands, but the points about using a command voice is definitely worth repeating. It leaves no doubt that the person issuing commands is serious and resolute (at least, on the first command).

As for "blinding" lights, they MAY work. My eyes don't adjust very fast, so I would lose a lot of my vision for a couple seconds...but that doesn't work for everyone, and determined intruders might just shoot at the light source. There is something to be said about the disorienting ability of several things in combination (i.e. bright light, command voice, and any other available advantages).
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Old August 14, 2008, 04:19 PM   #31
Creature
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An intruder in my house (with me in it) gets no warning.
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Old August 14, 2008, 07:24 PM   #32
paddling_man
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To the OP:

I asked a similar question a few weeks ago. A staff member here noted this article. It is a good read.

http://www.imakenews.com/valhalla/e_....cfm?x=b11,0,w

To the spinoff topic:

It depends on the level of threat recognition. In some cases, issuing verbal commands - others, responding in an aggressive non-verbal manner.
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Old August 14, 2008, 08:12 PM   #33
Logs
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I just picked up a G3 Sure fire light and it is twice as bright as my glocklight. I am for having a weapon light and handheld.
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Old August 14, 2008, 08:17 PM   #34
Glenn E. Meyer
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I've had Shawn's command set run by me in training. One advantage of his is that if you have called the police and leave the line open - your repeated commands give a clear indication that you were threatened and tried to lower the threat than just a Don't Move or Freeze.

Freeze - BANG can indicate that you shot the guy when he stopped moving.
Tell him to get out is a good idea because - duh - if they do - you've won the day. Having a potentially armed person near you is a risk - rather have them go bye.

Telling them the police are on the way encourages them to leave.

About the light - I agree that the blinding factor is much overplayed. Having been in the dark as a shooter in FOF, all the various distraction holds are really baloney. It is child's play to determine where the shooter is and shoot at them.
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Old August 14, 2008, 08:21 PM   #35
BikerRN
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Originally posted by Slopemeno:
Quote:
My 2 cents, and you can take it for what it's worth- stay inside. Use your eyes and ears. If I thought someone was breaking into my house the last thing I'd be doing was opeing the door for them.
Very good advice. If you think it's a real intruder, don't go searching for them. Hunker down and get ready to "repel boarders".

As far as a light on my gun, no thanks. I'll use the one in my weakhand. It's called a handgun, not a handsgun for a reason. I've used lights on my gun, prefer them to not be there because I don't like pointed a loaded gun at everything I illuminate.

Biker
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Old August 16, 2008, 01:17 AM   #36
Shawn Dodson
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Quote:
Jeez...I'm not going to hide under the bed and shout commands at an unseen BG from 40 feet away. To answer your third asinine question:

Only once AFTER I have him in my sights. There's no second warning. If he continues to move forward, I'll take him out.
IMO, your ego is getting the best of you.

I've confronted a lot more bad guys at gun point than you, in many cases gangbangers that taunted my authority, and never I had to fire a shot to control them. And I've encountered many other situations that were just wierd - out of the ordinary - in which shooting the "bad guy" would have been totally wrong if I hadn't allowed the opportunity for the situation to develop to understand (orient) to the circumstances (e.g., drunk, nude guy in the backyard trying to open the sliding glass patio door.)

You have your rules of engagement, I have mine.

Good luck!
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