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Old February 27, 2006, 10:22 PM   #1
Doug.38PR
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Mugging defense senario

Okay:
You are walking through the parking lot one night to your car. It's after the movie is over. How do you spot and confront trouble when it is looking for you?


I try to watch in between cars, I watch what is in the cars around me if I can, I try to watch for suspicious cars going through the parkinglot or down the street (driving real slow as though spying me).


But what if I did spot something suspicious? It's too easy to say "Just pull your gun." But at what point? What exactly are you looking for? A subtle approach? A quick strike? What in detail qualifies as suspicious?
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Old February 27, 2006, 10:51 PM   #2
#18indycolts
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I hate to say it, but ya gotta wait and see what happens. If I feel threatened I put my hand on my piece. In order to draw it, I gotta see/hear/feel a danger.
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Old February 27, 2006, 11:57 PM   #3
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I think it comes down to "how do you feel between your nose and knees". I've never been in a attack/defense situation. Still...at the core...humans still have some kind of internal trigger...the gut feel that trouble is here. You may be seeing indicators, so pay close attention and look for those movements.

I watch hands. If hands go into a pocket...are they moving as to intersect with my line of travel?...if a group, have they seperated?..are they just waiting/watching from shadows?...are they whispering/talking quietly (planning)? Well, you see where this is going. Every encounter is different. Got to play it by ear. Like I've said...never been there. I'll probably get caught with my mind somewhere else...at the wrong time.
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Old February 28, 2006, 01:43 AM   #4
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Question for Texans: Do your concealed carry classes teach you how to recognize shoot/don't shoot situations on any level?
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Old February 28, 2006, 04:53 AM   #5
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Most of the time, if you look them square in the eye, they will choose a less wary target. Just be sure to adjust your piece while you are doing so. Un fortunately, there is a fine line between brandishing and legitimate self defense. I believe that drawing a weapon is only acceptable when there is a credible threat, and that threat must be sufficient to cause death or grave bodily harm for you to escalate to lethal force. There is probably some grey area here but you have to use your judgement and common sense. If you hesitate too long, you may not get the chance to draw and you might even lose your weapon. I've heard that some people carry in their jacket pockets with their guns in their hands. If you really go to theaters that are that bad or feel that threatened, that ay be the way to go. Just be sure to stare down any potential attackers first and your chances of having to shoot someone will go waaaaaaaaaaaay down.
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Old February 28, 2006, 10:56 AM   #6
invention_45
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The way the law reads in Florida, it looks to me like if you pull (i.e., show) your gun in an attempt to deter a crime in progress, you are not brandishing.

The problem is that it has to be a crime in progress. So when you pull the gun, you may stop the crime from progressing. If you do that before any evidence is created of the crime you stopped ever happening, then it's your word against the criminal's. And now he's seen your gun and can describe it.
So, if there's not already damage or some kind of evidence already, you can't get away with pulling your gun until you HAVE to shoot.

If you are about to walk into the parking lot and see something suspicious but not clearly criminal going on, you'd be a fool to pull your gun out. But there's nothing wrong with giving the grip a little tug to loosen it in your holster, or clicking the safety off, or whatever might make drawing faster for you. At the same time, this sends the message that there might be something right there for you to use against the bad guy, which he does not want, without enabling him to describe your gun.

If this were me, and I saw anything that was clearly not right or I just had a "bad feeling" (see below), my first act would NOT be to just get my gun ready and stomp out into the parking lot. I would probably wait until several other people were also moving into the lot and then go at the same time. I would do as described above, to hint to any miscreants that I am armed, so that if he's determined, he'll pick another of those other people as his target rather than me.

Now, if you are trying to say that there are signs that somebody in or near the parking lot is fixated on YOU as a target, well, that doesn't change the legalities of when you can defend yourself with deadly force. You are faced with knowingly stepping into a situation you strongly think is dangerous but has not yet turned threatening to life and limb.

The problem with that is the bad guy, in this case, is ready to go. You are not, and cannot act as quickly as he can. In this case, I would go back inside and see whether I could figure out a safe way to reach my car. Is there a security guard? Will the manager walk out with you? This might make you feel like a wus, but what do you like better, that or death/serious injury by a criminal because you put yourself where you couldn't react fast enough, or life in prison because you reacted too fast?

For methods of dealing with that "bad feeling", see The Gift of Fear by Gavin deBecker.
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Old February 28, 2006, 11:25 AM   #7
Glenn E. Meyer
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Doug - given all your scenarios and questions about when to pull your gun - I really think that if you are serious student of the art, you would greatly benefit from some of the fine tactical classes around the country that discuss such incidents and tactics.

OPS, Insights, LFI, Rangemaster, Moses, KRtraining, etc. all go through this kind of thing in great detail.

How about this - you see something suspicious - When do I pull my gun?

Instead, maybe you just turn around and go back the other way. Or do you want to pull your gun? I don't mean to be rude but you are constantly posting ways to pull your gun.

You pull your gun when you are in fear of grievous bodily harm. You need to build awareness and tactical evaluation skills. You need to read up or study up about awareness levels and how BGs approach and risky situations.

That will do you a world of good as compared to continuing scenarios that seem to want always to funnel to a gun usage.
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Old February 28, 2006, 07:24 PM   #8
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Doug asked: "You are walking through the parking lot one night to your car. It's after the movie is over. How do you spot and confront trouble when it is looking for you?"

Personally, . . . I look for the trouble as hard, if not harder than it is looking for me, . . . and I look for ways out.

It starts with parking the vehicle where the location does not offer trouble.

It progresses to being observant, vigilant, watchful: pick the term.

Next is looking for alternatives, . . . 3 guys on the park bench 40 feet in front of me, . . . looking hard at me and my wife. I'll hang back and wait for another couple to catch up (if the movie just let out, . . . there are others) and then there will be 4 of us, . . . or maybe, . . . I'll just go across the street, . . . if they move across, . . . we're turning and going back to the theater.

Remember that the weapon is the last means.

May God bless,
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Old March 2, 2006, 02:00 AM   #9
Sir William
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www.netflix.com www.oldies.com Pay per view? I stopped going to the movies. Cheaper and no parking lot fender benders. OTT, awareness BEFOREHAND. A good stentorial, "Good evening!" causes most criminal activity to cease. Criminals hate being outed and recognized.
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Old March 2, 2006, 09:15 AM   #10
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This is not a senario,

It's a general question best addressed by taking a serious class at any one of a number of places mentioned previously or many more not already covered.

A good but very distant second would be to read any number of books on the subject.

Any of these outlets will help you refine your skill in keeping your situational awarness at it's peak as well as addressing many other issues.

As to when you draw your weapon, the obvious anser in most all instances unless you want to look the fool is when you are threatened (not when you feel a little sphincter pucker, when there is a discernable threat to you) and you have reached the gun part of the force spectrum.

That's right there is a spectrum of things you can do in a situation and force that you can use, the use of your gun lies at the very end of that spectrum, not the begining, the fact that criminal and cival defense costs a bunch of money as well as the fact that every gun or knife fight has a winner and a loser, and no one is so good as to have their position win vs. lose a sure thing, ought to be enough to make you want to at liest try the things at the light side of the spectrum if at all possible.
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Old March 2, 2006, 10:21 AM   #11
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I'll drop my .02 as a ex-city dweller. Muggers don't usually hide and just jump the first person that walks by (can't see if that gu. They basically hunting like a wild animal hunting a herd. They are looking around, looking at people, looking for an easy target. My theory is everyone has a purpose when they are out. They are moving to point A to point B or they are waiting around for some purpose (killing time waiting for a movie to start, or looking for and waiting for a friend, etc), it the ones that are just loitering, hanging around with no purpose. Sure teen boys can just hang around too, but they will be checking out girls, and laughing and talking among themselves. A lone mugger or gang of teens with possible intent on mugging will be checking out everyone (male and Female) that passes, sizing them up, and less likely to look like they are having "fun" and more looking like they want to fight. Look out for these so called hunters and avoid them. If they start moving in your direction avoid them and keep an eye on them, and be ready. They may run ahead and try to ambush you later. A mugging will go down one of three ways, an outright attack (hopefully you will see it coming), a weapons flash with a demand of money, or a probe and then either A or B. The probe is a mugger, or a group of mugger approaching you and asking something stupid (got a cigarette). If you get probed, get ready to draw (maybe palm your weapon but don't draw) look the guy straight in the eyes (it says I'm not afraid and I will make a good witness) and never let anyone get behind you. NEVER, Never offer change to anyone who ask. Just say I don't know and keep moving. If they try to stop you, something is up. A good thing that will throw them for a mental loop is to say "don't I know you from somewhere" or if your older "don't I know your mom?" It may cause them to back down if they believe your bluff. If anyone lays a hand on you...or threatens you...draw.
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Old March 2, 2006, 10:32 AM   #12
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I would say that you should be a little less paranoid, are you the kind of person that people are after (if so and it is that big of a risk you should reconsider what you do for work or fun) It sounds like you are going to give your self a heartattack or an ulser and put yourself in the hospital. Looking inbetween cars in the parking lot of a movie theater is no way to live your life dude maybe move or something, try to enjoy life not by looking in every single shadow for a possible mugger.....just my opinion, dont mean to start fires.
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Old March 2, 2006, 11:32 AM   #13
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Urbanassault, If you are going to carry, you had better look for danger in advance. That is not paranoia it is being prepared.

Doug, Just use your head. Scan for potential trouble and avoid it. Always keep space between you and anything suspicious. If a threat changes directions to intercept you turn around and go back, whatever. If you cannot retreat and you have made sure that the suspected badguy is intent on a confrontation, it is no longer brandishing a firearm. Several have said that trouble doesn't just jump out and that is correct. You can see it comming. Your job is to do whatever you can to avoid it, including retreat.

When to pull your gun? I pull my gun anytime my space is threatened by what I have determined is a potential threat. In 99.9 of these pulls the threat never sees my gun.

I often pondered the question "what do you do if someone suspicious walks up and asks for change or a stupid question"? The only answer (unless you are Ken Shamrock or Chuck Ladell) is to not allow your space to be breached. Use of evasive tactics or even a plain old get away from me or stop following me, whatever just keep them away. A friend of mine will tell you to stop. If you don't he will say very loud "stop don't rob me, I don't have any money". That has worked for him everytime. It also makes for very good witness interviews if you are forced to use your very last resort.
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Old March 2, 2006, 11:41 AM   #14
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So I am the only one that thinks that this is a little overboard and not really a healthy way to go about your civilian life?
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:14 PM   #15
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Urban, You might enjoy being competely helpless and at the mercy of another but most of us don't.

BTW How do you prevent the ruffian from preying on you?
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:19 PM   #16
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I would not consider myself completely helpless and at the mercy of others I also dont think ninja zombies are going to jump out from between cars at the movie theater. I also do not feel like pray, I however also do not carry, maybe you get the super hightened sence of paranoia with a permit to carry. At this point in my life I feel pretty safe in the position I am at, if everywhere you go you are LOOKING for somebody to shoot chances are you are going to find somebody to shoot, good luck in the hunt.
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:36 PM   #17
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Quote:
How do you prevent the ruffian from preying on you?
I would say them actually praying (or planning) on me is unavoidable, the weapon I use as a pre-emptive counterattack.....my brain. I do plan to carry, but where I am now I dont feel it necessary. The way it sounds you are more offensive than defensive.
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:48 PM   #18
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Quote:
posted by urbanassault I would not consider myself completely helpless and at the mercy of others I also dont think ninja zombies are going to jump out from between cars at the movie theater. I also do not feel like pray, I however also do not carry, maybe you get the super hightened sence of paranoia with a permit to carry. At this point in my life I feel pretty safe in the position I am at, if everywhere you go you are LOOKING for somebody to shoot chances are you are going to find somebody to shoot, good luck in the hunt.
So if you are not completely helpless and don't carry, then how do you prevent yourself and family from becomming prey. You avoided answering the question.

I don't look for somebody to shoot. I do look for potential threats to me and my family like a man should. In over 14 years of carrying I have not been forced to shoot anybody. The reason I look for potential threats is to avoid them as well as not be surprised by them. Perhaps your mindset is such that you see me being prepared to defend myself as looking to kill someone however mine isn't. Glenn Meyers has a thread on your kind and thankfully you have chosen not to carry.
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:50 PM   #19
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You're not paranoid if they're really out to get you.

And you can be sure they are. Anybody who says otherwise denies that muggers, robbers, rapists, stalkers, etc. exist.

Yes, running scenarios through your mind every time you see anyone on the street does seem paranoid. But if you live in a bad place or go to areas you don't know anything about, maybe it's better safe than sorry.

Your brain is set up to catch most dangerous situations automatically. You just get a bad feeling. If you aren't one to take, at all times, some of the overzealous precautions we see discussed here, you should do it when you get that feeling.

If you step out of the theater and face the dark parking lot and something is getting ready to go down, there will be signs. You might not be able to articulate them. But you will get an apprehensive feeling. That's the time to stop dead in your tracks and explicitly evaluate the situation.

You get this feeling because you in fact did see the signs. Something wasn't right. Somebody in the parking lot not doing a "going-to-or-from-the-movies" activity. A car with lights off not parked in a space. Somebody clearly pushing away from leaning against the wall and walking toward the same parking lot at the very moment you exit the theater.

I'm not saying stop and stand there every time you come out and go down a huge laundry list of things to look for, although the more things you get in the habit of looking for the safer you'll be. I'm just saying that when these things happen, there are signs and very often the victim knows it intuitively but ignores it, then walks into a trap.

Another good habit is to be alert whenever you change environments. I know it's hard to consciously walk around like that all the time. But when you leave a building, look around and don't look at the ground. If you ARE alert, you'll LOOK alert, and this is enough to make most would-be attackers wait for another victim.

Crossing the street is an example of this. Before you go from sidewalk to street, you check carefully (if you have any sense). Once the coast is clear, you cross. You don't have to be hyper-alert the whole time, but if you hear a strange sound, you don't want to ignore it. You stop and think. It could be a vehicle that came out of a parking lot, and you need to know it's there.

Get a copy of The Gift of Fear, by Gavin deBecker. It'll show you how to stay out of danger without driving yourself nuts over it.
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:53 PM   #20
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Great answer your brain. I use mine FIRST as well. The difference is once you have been chosen as prey and your brain has come to the end of the list of possible remedies, you are helpless to stop an attack.

BTW How does your brain keep you safe?
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:57 PM   #21
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Quote:
Glenn Meyers has a thread on your kind and thankfully you have chosen not to carry.
Please elaborate on this, Im not sure what "my kind" is. I would really like to hear how you view me and what kind of person you think I am, please enlighten me sir.
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Old March 2, 2006, 12:58 PM   #22
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Quote:
How does your brain keep you safe?
Search for "brain" and you might find a couple good posts. Or are you just trying to argue with me over everything? Your brain is your primary weapon a firearm is just a backup.
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Old March 2, 2006, 01:06 PM   #23
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urbanassault: "the kind of person people are after".

Hmm.

That almost sounds like an accusation.

What if you are an 80 year old grandma going to deposit a social security check? You're the kind person people are after.

What if you meet a friend at the corner bar and, in the process, happen to look at the wrong creep for a second too long? You're the kind of person people are after.

What if you are being stalked by a disgruntled and insane ex? You're the kind of person people are after.

What if you accidentally leave your wallet at a restaurant, somebody takes it, uses your identity, and you catch him and press charges? What if he's a career criminal and doesn't much like what you did? You're the kind of person people are after.

You don't have to live in the ghetto or deal with loan sharks or be a drug-using club-goer to be "the kind of person people are after".

You can sometimes acquire this distinction by just being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Sometimes, practicing being alert can ward off some of the more random of the would-be assailants. That doesn't mean you necessarily have to sniff around under all the cars before you go to a parking lot. But some people are more comfortable handling their personal security that way. I don't see them as looking for somebody to shoot. Other aspects of their personalities reflect that better. Sometimes they outright say it.
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Old March 2, 2006, 01:08 PM   #24
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Well you see a person who is using his brain and looking for potential threats to avoid them and thus remain safe as
Quote:
LOOKING for somebody to shoot
or as potential quarry
Quote:
good luck in the hunt
Glenn's post was about people who are looking for an excuse to shoot someone. Your train of thought seems to see someone being prepared the same as someone looking for a target. If my interpretation of your posts are as wrong as yours was of mine, I apologize. Again, despite what you seem to think, I have no desire to hurt anyone. My actions are all geared on preventing harm to myself and family, nothing more.
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Old March 2, 2006, 01:13 PM   #25
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Search for "brain" and you might find a couple good posts. Or are you just trying to argue with me over everything? Your brain is your primary weapon a firearm is just a backup
We agree. My point is that when I use my brain to prevent an attack by looking for potential threats, you cry foul. Then you have the nerve to say that your sole method of self defense is your brain. Basically you use it to keep you away from danger........same thing you called me "paranoid" for doing. That is why I asked how your brain keeps you out of trouble. It is hypocritical to call someone paranoid while doing the same thing.
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