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Old March 4, 2005, 09:39 AM   #1
Duxman
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Handgun Holster Snatch / Retention

Everyone,

I have read some previous threads about handgun retention, but most concentrate on the scenario that a BG is trying to grab an OUTSTRETCHED gun. (Out of the holster in your hands, pointing at presumably the BG).

Does anyone know techniques on if a BG were to attempt to snatch your weapon while still in the holster on your hip? (Either from behind or the side, or from the front...) Also what about a shoulder holster?

What effective countermoves are there?
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Old March 4, 2005, 10:48 AM   #2
BillCA
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The primary advice for when someone attempt to snag your gun from it's holster is hang on!

If you carry in an open-top holster with no thumb-break, safety strap or other retention device, you may be looking at your own gun before you can act. Whether your holster has a retention device or not, get your hand on your gun and/or on HIS hand and push DOWN to keep the gun in the holster. Meanwhile, your other hand is trying to rip his eyes out, strike the adam's apple or otherwise inflict pain or damage while you move into him with your shoulder and drive him against a solid object (wall, post, car) as hard as possible. Twist your body to get the gun outta his hand.

Someone going for your gun is an immediate life-threatening situation. Bite, claw, scream, spit, kick, gouge and generally fight dirty to get him to let go and so you can get away.

Once you get clear, move away, draw and hold the gun with your forearm tight against your side pointed at him.
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Old March 4, 2005, 12:01 PM   #3
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Pretty much what Bill said.

If you have a knife off-side, deploy it if you can (I'm guilty of not practicing this enough). Get that blade right under the grabbers nose and PUSH UP HARD!!! He will most likely let go of your gun...

If you use a knife on his grabbing hand, do yourself a favor and don't slash, you're just as likely to cut yourself. Put the point on his wrist (or wherever you have a clear opening), and shove it in as hard as you can.

If you don't have an off-side knife or BUG, stomp, bite poke, knee, etc....

Don't play fair is the bottom line.
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The primary target is what we call the thoracic triangle. Shots to this area tend to make people FDGB (“fall down go boom”).
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Old March 4, 2005, 05:15 PM   #4
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this works also

"If you have a knife off-side, deploy it if you can (I'm guilty of not practicing this enough). Get that blade right under the grabbers nose and PUSH UP HARD!!! He will most likely let go of your gun..."

This can work even without a knife. If you make your hand open, fingers togethor, and stiff as you can get it, then place the pinky under the nose and against the teeth then press up and into the skull as hard as you freakin can the tendancy is for the head to go that direction and the body to follow. This has to be practiced to be effective and needs to happen very fast - remember the BG is in a fight for his life as well and will try to bite, scratch, kick... etc just as you are doing.

This is something that if practiced can be followed with a strike to the fleshy area directly behind the chin and more then likely get you far enough away from the BG that you can then either run or do whatever else you have to do based on situation.

Note that you can get creative with this also, as another person suggested, poke them in the eyes. Most people I know will drop fast when there eyes have been comprimised...

There are many targets available, the biggest thing is to train on how to use them.

If you train your much more likely to succeed when you need it...
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Old March 4, 2005, 06:16 PM   #5
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[Quotation]

This can work even without a knife. If you make your hand open, fingers togethor, and stiff as you can get it, then place the pinky under the nose and against the teeth then press up and into the skull as hard as you freakin can

jburtonpdx, If you take the heel of your hand and drive it hard enough up and against the BG's nose he's a gonner!

Do either of you folks write action novels or movie scripts? Good stuff!
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Old March 4, 2005, 06:39 PM   #6
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First thing, hang on to your gun! Press it down hard, so that it can't be drawn. Then, depending on where the BG is, fight dirty. Try to hit groins, eyes, nose, etc. Remember, even a light swipe of the nose will disorient most people, along with being hit in the groin. Once you get free, step back a few paces, and draw on him! Call cops, or have someone do it for you. The best defense for this kind of situation, is a good offense! Don't allow someone to see your gun! Concealed means concealed! The better hidden it is, the lower the chance of it being taken. About the knife, I would just make a huge gash on the inside of the guy's leg, right below the groin, as a major artery runs there, and the guy would bleed out in about 3 min, all the while, quickly becoming weak.
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Old March 4, 2005, 06:49 PM   #7
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A long time ago, I was taught that the arch on the top of your foot, and your toes are very, very vulnerable, . . . and, . . . have a tendency to emit real pain when they are hurt.

I have ever since, practiced and relied (because I virtually always wear boots with a very hard heel) on the idea of breaking the other's arch and or toes, whichever my falling foot lands on.

This works especially well if they are wearing tennies or something of that type.

A follow-up shot to the other knee (all weight will be on that leg by then) will put him/her down, . . . and only surgical precision will ever allow them to walk reasonably well again.

As an aside, . . . they will no longer be interested in you, your gun, your money, or anything else. The pain of a broken arch, several broken toes, and a knee joint that has been reversed, . . . will keep them well occupied until they can get to their lawyer.

May God bless,
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Old March 4, 2005, 07:42 PM   #8
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Bullrock, I learned that from a local SD's Defensive Tactics Instructor. He's got more tricks up his sleeve than Carter has pills, most of 'em 'dirty', too

He demonstrated on me with the flat backside of my own knife. I'm 6'-6", and by the time he was done, I think I topped out about 7' or so
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The primary target is what we call the thoracic triangle. Shots to this area tend to make people FDGB (“fall down go boom”).
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Old March 4, 2005, 09:05 PM   #9
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Yep, under the nose is a very good presure point. Imagining it applied with a knife blade brings tears to my eyes...

And the stomp to the arch, which is what I wanted to address, but Dwight covered that one pretty well. But be careful when lifting a foot to stomp or even step when struggling as that leaves you with only a half support - be quick and vicious - your balance doesn't need the weakening.

Rake to the eyes is great if you're facing the attacker. Really good if you can get to some keys in your off pocket.

But if he's behind you, use that off elbow hard and often! Center mass - sternum area if you can't get his head, groin if it's in reach, or his arms if you can reach 'em, he'll let go if you break one. Strong, vicious...

Should also mention the don'ts. Don't try to match strengths - don't wrestle around with the guy trying to show you are strong enough he can't force the gun out. Get some kind of equalizer - a weapon, or go for one of the soft spots on the guy. He's trying to kill you - there's no such thing as fighting fair is such an instance.

Don't give up.

Don't fight silently. Cuss, scream, call for help, threaten, whatever. Vocalization attracts attention and can be demoralizing to an attacker.

Don't stay near when you do break free - create distance.

Don't try to draw the weapon on your own until you have a safe distance from retention threats.
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Old March 5, 2005, 07:52 AM   #10
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that would be nice

"Do either of you folks write action novels or movie scripts? Good stuff!"

It would be cool if I could get paid for my desire to take personal responsibility for mine and my family's safety...

At the same time it would be great if the info helped anybody out of a bad situation. I have studied fighting since I was young - I don't call it martial arts, what I study is not artistic it is fighting.

Still the best method of retention is to not let the BG get in physical contact with you or your gun. Seems obvious I know, but often people do not consider that.

One of the first methods of formally taught defense I learned was - don't be there when the attack is made. Sounds kind of wimpy but it works very well - if the excrement is about to hit the fan, get you and yours out of there. Then it is far less likely to turn into a wrestling match for your firearm, unless it is also the favorite firearm of your wife/girlfriend/husband/boyfriend, in which case you are SOL...
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Old March 5, 2005, 12:43 PM   #11
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Pushing down works well with most types of holsters and is the only way to go with an IWB.

With an OWB holster, try grabbing the bottom of the holster and pulling it up and out. This will lock the butt of the pistol into your waist area and is very effective with a holster that is securely attached to the belt. This technique, for obvious reasons, will not work with a paddle holster.

For an attempted snatch from the rear, quickly turning towards the side you wear your pistol on will often break the attackers grip. From the front, which way you turn will depend upon which hand the attacker uses to grab your weapon. Movement is simultaneous with other defensive measures.

Since movement and defensive measures must be instinctive to be effective, get with a buddy or SO and practice at half speed to prevent injuries. Ring’s Blue Guns are highly recommended training tools for retention drills. www.blueguns.com

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Old March 5, 2005, 01:21 PM   #12
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I've practiced "fighting dirty" ever since High school. If ya wanna take a poke at me it ain't gonna be pretty

Anyway, back to the question. I watched as the local Chief of Police, a guy about 6', 170lbs. was giving a class and as part of it he brought up a patrolman with a non-retention holster on his duty belt, about 6'4" and 265lbs.
After 3 checks for "clear" of his firearm by 3 different people the Chief explained to everyone that he was going to disarm officer Bob and turn his own gun on him. He explained this was going to happen very fast and officer Bob needed to be prepared to defend his firearm.
That said, 2 1/2 seconds later ol Bob was a bit astonished and staring down the barrel of his firearm.

If you have a non-retention holster maybe you shouldn’t keep bullets in it..
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Old March 6, 2005, 11:40 PM   #13
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I agree with almost all of the posts on this subject, but I have a problem with some of the terminology. The phrases "fight dirty" and "fair fight" should not
be allowed into this conversation. When you are fighting for your life, nothing is "dirty" fighting, "fair play" has no place in it, and I resent those terms being used to describe a life-or-death struggle.

The bottom line is that you do what you have to do to stay alive, period.
If that means ripping the guy's jugular out with your teeth, you do it.
I could get more graphic, but the point is, to stay alive, you do whatever is necessary at the moment.

There are two sides to every story, but in a life-or-death fight, the loser
won't be around to tell his side of it.

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Old March 7, 2005, 05:39 AM   #14
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Don't get taken by surprize.

Depending on how good your peripheral vision, you have for the sake of practicality, up to about 180 degrees of vision. The 180 degrees you can not readily see or detect movement facing straight ahead is a major vulnerability. You must constantly be aware of who and what is going on around you.

There are specific techniques for breaking off a grab wearing a strongside belt holster and others, but they might be difficult to properly articulate in words alone. Better to seek a professional trainer for some one on one hands on.

An alternative or supplemental is to carry a knife accessible to the weak hand - either a small fixed blade or one-handed opening folder if legal in your state/locality. Trap with the strong hand, draw and use blade with the weak hand.

But bear in mind that if someone get's their mitt around the grip of your piece you'd better be able to turn it on 100% in an instant. Depending on their speed, agility and strength, your assailant might be able to pull you right off your feet, tear your whole belt and holster out of the trouser loops, or around your body etc - all by the grip of your handgun.

It can not be emphasized enough that if you spot trouble coming, even if you only get a few seconds, you have a far better chance of prevailing than if you are taken completely by surprize.
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Old March 7, 2005, 06:29 AM   #15
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dirty/fair fight

"I agree with almost all of the posts on this subject, but I have a problem with some of the terminology. The phrases "fight dirty" and "fair fight" should not
be allowed into this conversation. When you are fighting for your life, nothing is "dirty" fighting, "fair play" has no place in it, and I resent those terms being used to describe a life-or-death struggle."

The only fight that is dirty, is one I loose... It is my responsibility to be prepared and adhere to the instruction I have been given.

I was taught at a very young age to make it home for dinner and I intend to do that every day. (if you ever see my belly you will believe that I have not missed a meal )

Any fight is a fight for my life and I will not loose. It is that simple. I am not going to break somebodys neck if it is not required to win, and if possible I will run away but I will not loose the fight. More then likely the only time I would not be able to run away is if my wife and kids are with me. In that case any threat is going to be considered as deadly or an iminent bodily harm threat in my mind, and I will do whatever is needed to protect them.
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Old March 8, 2005, 11:03 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walter
I agree with almost all of the posts on this subject, but I have a problem with some of the terminology. The phrases "fight dirty" and "fair fight" should not
be allowed into this conversation. When you are fighting for your life, nothing is "dirty" fighting, "fair play" has no place in it, and I resent those terms being used to describe a life-or-death struggle.
Walter -- Point noted.

But we also have to remember that most people are indoctrinated by TV that the "good guys" play fair, fight only with their fists and don't kick someone when they're down.

Thus, the term "fight dirty" is to wake up the sheeple to the idea that "fighting dirty" is perfectly acceptable when your life is on the line. In such a case, there is only ONE rule: Don't lose.
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Old March 8, 2005, 11:25 PM   #17
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I totally agree with BillCA! No matter how ugly it gets, DON'T LOSE!
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Old March 17, 2005, 09:44 PM   #18
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Whether a one hand grab or two hand grab from front or rear, you should immediatly trap the attackers hand on top of your weapon as tightly as you can all the while twisting from side to side with your hips as fast and hard as possible. First and foremost before you can attack him you have to keep him from accessing your weapon. Get free and get distance from the attacker. Once you are free you can make the decision to use the necessary level of force. You can practice this with a dummy weapon and a friend. Make it real, be forceful. It will give you a reality check especially if you are one of those that uses an open top holster. Once again, that is why it is so important to be aware of your surroundings, and better to be concealed, if you have an easy access holster.
Good Luck
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Old March 18, 2005, 02:43 PM   #19
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Dux, there are several fine programs on retention out there.

I highly recommend OSG's class: http://opskillsgroup.com/description_hrc.htm

Benjamin Salas, without question, is one of the up and coming "stars" of the "training community".

Best wishes.
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Old March 21, 2005, 11:38 AM   #20
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I'm going to explain what I was taught by a judo instructor. I don't know if he designed this or someone else.

His method was to not go for retention but to disable the person attempting to take your gun. Empty your gun and holster it. Have someone, "Bob" here, grab and hang on to your gun. I'm explaining right hand strong side carry since I'm right handed. Get your right arm behind Bob's arm with the bend of your arm below Bob's elbow. Swing your right hand up smartly and lift. This traps Bob's arm and hand against your side. As demonstrated to us even if Bob got the gun out he could only shoot the floor not you. I consider the next step shown optional.

The instructor would take his left hand, thumb extender, and using the Bob's nose as a guide, shove his left hand thumb into the left side of Bob's right eye, getting his thumb behind the eye and pulling forward to remove the eye.

When you try this be very careful because it seems like you could break your Bob's arm very easily. If it were a BG than a broked arm is a plus. The eye removal is still optional.

I am not LE or Judo trained. I was just so impressed with the demo it has a permenate spot in my brain.
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Old March 21, 2005, 09:29 PM   #21
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Col Klink,

That will work only as long as you can simultaneously keep pressure on his forearm with your right arm and make the jabs at his eyes.

The problem I have with this is twofold. First, it allows the BG to get the gun out of the holster. This is bad for any number of reasons, not the least of which is the danger to bystanders, your feet/legs, side, etc. For if the BG is able to wrench his arm free, you are potentially DOA.

Secondly, in martial arts it is well known that concentration on our muscle groups can lapse when the mind is preoccupied with other things. For example, if someone has you in a rear choke hold, slamming your heel down on his instep might work to injure him, but the toes are more sensitive and more easily broken. Slamming onto them, even if it doesn't cause pain, distracts the mind from the hand you have on their wrist. If you pull on their wrist just after slamming onto their foot you can usually gain a few inches to duck out of the choke hold. Thus, in the above scenario, YOUR mind is diverted while poking at his eyes and he may be able to break your forearm "grip" at that point.


One method that I did see demonstrated could be used if you were alert to someone getting "too close" (instead of being surprised). Push your strong hand down on the gun & his hand then TURN into him with your off-hand palm up and rigid. Strike to the diaphram area with a straight jab as HARD as you can, trying to twist your off-side shoulder into the movement. When hit, his grip weakens and you can peel it off the gun and twist away. If done correctly you won't have to shoot him because he will be preoccupied just trying to breathe!. I should add that striking the throat will work too, but increases the likelihood of a crippling or fatal injury. The heel of the hand to the chin or base of the nose could work too, if you have the reach.
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Old March 21, 2005, 09:37 PM   #22
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Fight to live and fight to kill... fighting for honor is for the graveyard.

I had a person try to grab my service pistol in a scuffle at a call one night, I pulled my baton, and cut right into his throat with it and killed him.

That was an IA nightmare, but I was cleared. It's either us or them people!
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Old March 25, 2005, 05:45 AM   #23
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Unfortunately, I've never taken (I plan on changing this) any hands-on weapon retention training, but based upon the exposure to the subject that I've had, I would likely prefer the Lindell system of retention, or perhaps a simplified version based upon it. Material from Habermehl, Caracci, and Ayoob typically show the first response is to clap the strong hand directly atop of either the handgun's grip or the attackers hand, with the the support coming across and providing more strength to that grip, pressing down and back into the holster. They all seem to stress that having only one hand on the gun and attempting to strike is not the thing to do.

Apparently, another thing in vogue with "snatchers" is attempting to rip the entire holster itself (with holstered handgun) off of the belt, achieved by coming down with all one's weight between the holster and belt. The method of holster attachment to the belt becomes very important at that moment, one would expect. Stitches ripping, plastic breaking, etc. Another reason to update ones equipment should it be old and broken down.

If I can recall the Lindell system relies upon leverage, not brute strength, and utilizes trapping, positioning, and leverage. Habermehl and Caracci's training tapes both mentioned to trap and then drop your center of gravity, bringing the attacker off balance and not as able to utilize his strength. The concept of the outer part of a circle turns faster than the center is used also, i.e., trap the attackers hand/s, then turn a quick and violent small circle, which should prove difficult for anyone to hang on.

C'mon, I believe there was someone on this forum in the past that was Lindell trained. Anyone here to enlighten us as to the advantages of the system.

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Last edited by EricO; March 25, 2005 at 06:19 AM.
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Old March 25, 2005, 06:36 AM   #24
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Regarding retention techniques, here's a old post by Marty Hayes, of FAS (Firearms academy of Seattle) that speaks about the Lindell method vs. "destructive" techniques.

"Any method that relies on destructive techniques also hinges on physical strength to overpower an opponent. Having said that, if you possess the physical strength to do the techniques properly, no prob. But, as an instructor, I believe I need to teach techniques that people who are not the most physically fit can also do. Hence, I started teaching the LIndell method about 7-8 years ago, and continue to do so today.

As previously stated, it takes practice to master the techniques. I got news for you, mastering ANY skill takes practice. If a person took the time to practice WR as much as they do shooting, they would either be very skilled at WR or lousy at shooting too.

The Lindell method relies on leverage, not strength. Thus, pretty much anyone who has a reasonable level of physical strength and mobility can learn the techiques."

Interesting.... I would think that being well rounded, knowing the Lindell system very well, yet also having the capability to do strikes as well, would be very beneficial.

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Old March 28, 2005, 09:46 PM   #25
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BillCA wrote:
Quote:
The problem I have with this is twofold. First, it allows the BG to get the gun out of the holster. This is bad for any number of reasons, not the least of which is the danger to bystanders, your feet/legs, side, etc. For if the BG is able to wrench his arm free, you are potentially DOA.
As it was presented to us the BG couldn't get the gun out. We each had the hold done TO US as well as doing it to someone. When I was the doee there was no way I could move my arm even when I had a grip on the gun.

Bill: Someday we will be in the same place at the same time. Check out "Elk Grove Shoot" in Glock Talk State Clubs/California. I have the same user name there. When we are face to face remind me to demonstrate the hold.
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