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Old May 10, 2011, 09:34 AM   #1
Bartholomew Roberts
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Knife-wielding suspect vs. 5 armed officers

Came across this video on another gun forum, I thought it was worth sharing because it illustrates how deadly a knife can be, how fast these situations can develop, and why you cannot treat a firearm as a magic talisman that will ward off evil.

http://www.youtube.com/verify_age?ne...%3DeexGDSsJn9c

In this video, a man is being confronted by Nicaraguan police officers. There are approximately 5 officers, including one armed with an AK47 and the remainder armed with pistols. Using both poor tactics and judgment, the officers attempt to surround the man and he stabs several of them - killing two officers before anyone even attempts to stop him with lethal force and stabbing several others after being shot repeatedly. Naturally, the video is very graphic.

Because there were so many mistakes in this video, I think it provides a good discussion of how this might have been handled better. In addition, I also think the video does an excellent job of why a person with a knife is a very serious lethal threat that you cannot simply dismiss because you've got a gun.

EDITED TO ADD: The relevant fight scene takes place around the 7:00 minute mark if you just want to skip the news report.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; May 10, 2011 at 10:40 AM.
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Old May 10, 2011, 09:48 AM   #2
nathaniel
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I have absolutly no training whatsoever but do people normally turn their backs and run away when the perp has a knife? To me it looked like they all panicked instead of taking control of the situation. Maybe they have no training either its hard to say, but it could have been handled very differently.

Id like to pose a question for anyone to answer. Do you think a Tazer would have made a difference in this encounter?
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Old May 10, 2011, 09:57 AM   #3
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Here is a clear case of a woman not wanting anything more to do with her ex. And so goes to the nearest police station for safety. But for the first several minutes this reporter constantly asks her the same question over and over, (Why don't you want anything more to do with him?) Geez! What an instigator! The armed police are clearly inept and way too comfortable with situation, and so suffers the consequences. Way too much emotion exhibited, and a third-world tactical approach.
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Old May 10, 2011, 10:03 AM   #4
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A Tazer should only be used against a knife if you don't have something more effective on hand.

Police aren't expected to match force with the bad guy. Continuum of force is intended to have the police use the least force necessary, but that always assumes the least force is one step above what the BG is using.

If the BG is using a deadly weapon, the police (and for that matter the rest of us) should be using deadly weapons, not LTL.

Tazers and mace, etc are intended for belligerent BG's who are NOT using deadly weapons.

At least when I went through use-of-force training, the continuum was:
1) Verbal commands
2) Cuffs
3) Hands-on
4) Chemical (security department at that base didn't have Tazers at that time)
5) PR-24 (tonfa stick) which was considered lethal force, but still at a lower level than a firearm
6) Firearm

If the BG went to hands-on, the patrolmen were expected to elevate to chemical.

If the BG produced a non-lethal weapon, or was just too tough for the patrolman to take with chemicals and bare hands, the patrolman was expected to go to the stick.

If the BG produced any weapon, the patrolman was expected to use his issue sidearm.
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Old May 10, 2011, 10:31 AM   #5
2damnold4this
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It looked like they picked sticks up off the ground to try and take on the fellow with the knife. I wonder if that's standard practice for them or if they were trying to avoid shooting him because of the camera.
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Old May 10, 2011, 10:39 AM   #6
MLeake
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I've trained at weapon takeaways for many years in aikido, jujitsu, and arnis.

That said, if somebody pulls a knife on me, I will most likely just shoot them (assuming they don't immediately cease and desist when the gun is drawn). I may be better than the average civilian at taking away a blade, but there is still a high percentage likelihood of getting cut in the process.

An untrained person attempting to do it is very likely to get badly hurt, or worse.

Somebody who did it once at a class at the academy, and hasn't practiced with any regularity, is for all intents and purposes untrained. (Note: some of my instructors have been LEO's, and they train a lot, but the vast majority of their training is on their own time and their own dime.)
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Old May 10, 2011, 10:51 AM   #7
Bartholomew Roberts
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It is also worth noting that even as he is being shot, the suspect covers a LOT of ground and stabs several officers. A handgun is not a death ray and may not stop someone instantly. If you don't have space, a determined attacker can inflict serious injuries even from what appears to be a great distance.

Another thing the video illustrates well is mindset. I imagine there are many teaching points just on that issue alone.
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Old May 10, 2011, 10:55 AM   #8
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Speaking of the BG continuing, and the gun not being a death ray... For those who have the mobility and health to do it, a bit of MA training is a good thing. If only to learn how to get out of the way, and possibly deflect the knife while you shoot and while the BG bleeds out.

If you never get hit, kicked, stabbed, sliced, or shot, you don't lose the fight. You may not "win" but you won't lose.
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Old May 10, 2011, 11:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
At least when I went through use-of-force training, the continuum was:
1) Verbal commands
2) Cuffs
3) Hands-on
4) Chemical (security department at that base didn't have Tazers at that time)
5) PR-24 (tonfa stick) which was considered lethal force, but still at a lower level than a firearm
6) Firearm
How times have changed, in 1974, our force of training was "suspect attempts to fist fight, use stick and break hand or arm. Suspect had weapon of any kind, step out of range and shoot them." The good old days, were not always the best days.
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Old May 10, 2011, 11:19 AM   #10
MLeake
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old bear, in 1991, our guys were taught to avoid hitting hands with the stick, as multiple small bones were much more likely to sustain permanent injury. The stick was intended for use against long bones (femur, humerus) if possible. It was not supposed to be used against hands, wrists, ankles, heads, collar-bones; I wonder if the people who came up with those rules ever tried to surgically strike an aggressive, moving target...
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Old May 10, 2011, 11:28 AM   #11
aarondhgraham
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Quote:
I wonder if the people who came up with those rules ever tried to surgically strike an aggressive, moving target...
The people who come up with rules of engagement rarely ever have tried to implement them.

A close friend of mine was a new park ranger in Sacramento in the early 90's,,,
She shot and killed a Homeless man who was advancing on her with a kitchen knife,,,
A newly minted assistant DA who was looking for a name making case wanted to charge my friend with manslaughter.

They arranged for her to go to the academy where they ran the Tueller (sp?) drill against her,,,
She backed off the case very quietly.

This is one of the downsides of civilians making up the rules for LE and Military,,,
Not that I would want it the other way but the civilians should be required to try out their own ideas.

Kinda reminds one of Viet Nam doesn't it.

Aarond

I hope McNamara is burning in hell,,,
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Old May 10, 2011, 12:34 PM   #12
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Well, at least the DA in your friend's case was willing to learn from the academy, instead of taking her beating in court, after putting your friend through a full trial. That puts her above some others, out there.

Still, it would have been better if she'd done that bit of research prior to filing charges in the first place...
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Old May 10, 2011, 12:38 PM   #13
aarondhgraham
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Hello again MLeake,,,

I think I wasn't perfectly clear,,,

Quote:
They arranged for her to go to the academy where they ran the Tueller (sp?) drill against her,,,
The "her" in this case was the assistant DA,,,
She was the one with a starter pistol having the "bad guy" close on her.

According to my friend the DA got stabbed repeatedly in the drill.

My friend was also a she,,,
That's where I wasn't clear in my writing.

Sorry for the confusion.

Aarond

But Wait,,,
There's something in the water at OSU today,,,
You had it correct al along AND I'M THE ONE HAVING A BRAIN FADE.

~smacking self on forehead~

.
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Old May 10, 2011, 12:38 PM   #14
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It seems that whenever I see video's of knife wielding suspects in foriegn countries, the police/military always seem to treat the situation as if it is way less dangerous than it really is. I would never close distance with any kind of weapon, and a knife wielding suspect gets gun faced immediately. Surrounding him is a very bad idea for a number of reasons. Unless you incapacitate with a CNS shot, you are in extreme danger from a motivated subject. A taser could have worked early on before it hit the fan, but is an inappropriate use of force once the guy went on the offensive
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Old May 10, 2011, 12:59 PM   #15
2damnold4this
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I wonder what ammunition the officers used. 9mm ball perhaps? All the more reason not to get close to the knife wielder.
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Old May 10, 2011, 01:37 PM   #16
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That said, if somebody pulls a knife on me, I will most likely just shoot them (assuming they don't immediately cease and desist when the gun is drawn). I may be better than the average civilian at taking away a blade, but there is still a high percentage likelihood of getting cut in the process.
Most practitioners won't admit this. Thank you for telling it like it is.
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Old May 10, 2011, 01:54 PM   #17
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I was unable to view the utube vidio. But was in a system of Kenpo Karate and heard of a 5th degree black belt in Hawaii who had a high enough rank to start his own system. He got into a bar fight, and turned to run, and while doing so, he was stabbed in ths kidney, and died the next day.

Good lesson here. No matter how skilled you are, knives are deadly.
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Old May 10, 2011, 01:56 PM   #18
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Aaron, I understood you, and was referring to the DA learning from the academy's Tueller drill, and then withdrawing the charges instead of proceeding. I may not have been clear.

Threegun, if I weren't carrying, I might consider a disarm. But I have been trained by instructors who all have carry permits, too. If the BG has a weapon, we should not use bare hands if other options exist.

Last edited by MLeake; May 10, 2011 at 03:30 PM.
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Old May 10, 2011, 02:13 PM   #19
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Looks like the officers took the guy for granted and got owned big time. A determined man with a knife is no joke. The pile of bodies and pools of blood agrees
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Old May 10, 2011, 04:36 PM   #20
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Just before the attack the cops look extremely casual. "Hey, toss me that stick", etc. Sigh.

A much less important factor: cops outside the US (esp. 3rd world countries) usually use hardball pistol ammo instead of JHPs. That could have contributed to the failure-to-stop issues.
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Old May 10, 2011, 05:11 PM   #21
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If the BG has a weapon, we should not use bare hands if other options exist.
Plus if the bad guy is trained in how to properly use a knife, particularly offensive use, many of the disarm and defense techniques wouldn't be as easy as in the dojo. A miss would indeed be problematic. A couple misses and it could be over.

In theory each cut should disable an appendage.
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Old May 10, 2011, 05:29 PM   #22
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a person with a knife is a very serious lethal threat that you cannot simply dismiss because you've got a gun.
I really do not know anyone that would not treat a threat from a knife the same as they would a threat from a gun.

I may not be able to dismiss him, but I would sure dispatch him unless good sense overcame him.

I have no more to fear from a knife than I do a gun.
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Old May 10, 2011, 07:12 PM   #23
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The people who come up with rules of engagement rarely ever have tried to implement them.
If they ever did they quickly forgot how KEYED up EVERYONE is when something like this happens. Every time it got to the point of having to use a weapon to subdue a fighter, I was always scared to death, as I really did not want to hurt anyone NOR was I going to let someone hurt me or my partner.

I remember seeing a video, years ago, of the White House police deal with a man with a knife who had gotten on the grounds. There were 6 - 7 of them they surrounded the guy, each one of them had what looked like a baton that was 4 - 5 feet long, every time he moved one of them hit or poked the poor guy with their stick. It only took about 30 seconds for him to give it up. That was a very professional response to a dangerous situation.
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Old May 10, 2011, 08:14 PM   #24
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"That was a very professional response to a dangerous situation."

You can bet that someone was pointing something else at him, in the event he was able to break the cordon and endanger one of the officer's. I would add that in that situation, if he needed to be shot, it should also be thought of as a professional response. Looking back at the video, it amazes me that it took this guy repeatedly stabbing multiple victims before someone started shooting. The guy with the AK should have hosed him and ended it before he ever got started.
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Old May 10, 2011, 08:17 PM   #25
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This video illustrates the need for distancing yourself from a threat. If you are armed with a missile weapon and confronted by a determined assailant, who is only armed with a hand held weapon, then by all means make distance your ally and do what you have to do. The officers here were either absolutely unprepared for their duty assignment or they simply did not take this threat seriously. When I was in San Diego I got drunk and passed out in a gutterwhen base security were called about it(it was directly across the street from the base) I got a bit surly with them so they put me down with their sticks. The moral of the story is: you use sticks against a dumbass drunken sailor who is UNARMED not against an angry man with a knife! Mleake ain't kidding about the hand, mine never did heal after the last time I broke it and it was well tended to.
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