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Old November 19, 2011, 10:31 PM   #1
Steelers252006
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Really Dropped the Ball

Recently applied for my CCW license, recently purchased my CCW weapon, Glock 27. Been practicing with it around the house to get familiar and comfortable with the firearm and have taken it to the range, recently started carrying it in my vehicle.

Me and my wife went to Best Buy earlier today, were carrying several tvs back to my truck. I parked on the far side of the parking lot, and it was starting to get a little dark. I was thinking to myself we need to hurry and load the car for obvious reasons and said so to my wife when we got to the truck. Then we noticed two people, man and a woman, walking toward us, could tell it wasn't right. My wife asked me did I have the gun, and I did but in the car, not on me. So I go in the truck and have to dig it out of where I had it, which was in a compartment under the center console. Took me a minute, and I focused so hard on it that I lost track of where the two people approaching my vehicle were. So with my gun in my hand and not wanting anybody to see me with it exposed, I simply froze. I didn't know what to do. One of the tvs was still in the buggie as I simply went for my gun just in case, and then I just sat there. It was only a few seconds, but it felt like an eternity.

Luckily, they didn't steal the tv, just knocked on my window asking for some change. Still think of what could have happened. Had I had the gun in my pocket and didn't have to go digging for it, I would have never left my position and took my eyes off the possible bad guys. I'm so disapppointed in the way I reacted to this adverse situation. Honestly, I was more worried about the gun, what would happen if they saw me with it and had their own weapon, what if other people saw me pull it and it created a panic, that I lost track of the situation at hand. I would have been better off just standing out there continuing to load the tvs with my mace in my hand and just waited to see how it played out.

I'll learn from this and move forward, keep practicing and getting more and more familiar with my firearm, and wait until my CCW arrives. I made a mistake, but luckily it wasn't anything that led to me or my wife being harmed. I've been thinking about it steadily since it happened. Has anybody else experienced anything similar?
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Old November 19, 2011, 10:49 PM   #2
4runnerman
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Hey don't be so hard on yourself buddy.I read posts in here all day about how i would do this and i would do that. It just goes to show when sh## hits the fan ,,you react the way you react. This That and The other thing go out the window when the situation arrives. No one knows(they always say they do ) how they will react when it happens,but you really don't know till it does,and then they all would be in your shoes. Glad all was ok for you and the wife.
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Old November 19, 2011, 11:17 PM   #3
Onward Allusion
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Quote:
Steelers252006
Really Dropped the Ball
Don't be so hard on yourself. Everything turned out ok - this time. Just out of curiousity, did the Best Buy have a "no guns" sign?
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Old November 19, 2011, 11:28 PM   #4
orionengnr
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Do you have your CCW?
If not, I bet you will soon...
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Old November 20, 2011, 07:43 AM   #5
icedog88
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If you and the wife made it out safe use it as a lesson learned .
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Old November 20, 2011, 08:18 AM   #6
Steelers252006
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Just waiting for the CCW to come in the mail, already took class and applied. Didn't notice anything about a no guns sign at Best Buy.
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Old November 20, 2011, 11:21 AM   #7
bikerbill
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I'm guessing that your reaction fits with the amount of time you've been in the "gun culture" and how much training you've had. The more you practice, the more you listen to those who've come before you, the better your responses will be. Another thing to consider ... once you're able to carry your gun legally, you'll have it with you and your focus can shift from getting it out from under a bunch of junk in your console to dealing with whatever threat you perceive. You did ok; you learned a lesson. Good luck ...
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Old November 20, 2011, 11:50 AM   #8
357 Python
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I have trained security officers in the distant past and train police officers now. One therory is we react as we train. You most likely never trained for such a situation. Don't beat yourself up over it, we can't train for every possible situation even though we try. One aspect to watch out for is tunnel vision. In an actual life or death situation you may focus on the immediate threat so much that you don't see the BG's partner. That is why I train officers to physically turn their heads to scan the area to see if there is another threat. It is difficult at times but when done correctly you may just survive multiple assailants. You have learned that you should have your gun on you whenever possible and to try to keep track of possible threats. The main thing is that you and your wife are safe. Good luck, enjoy those TVs and stay safe.
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Old November 20, 2011, 12:04 PM   #9
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Nothing bad actually happened, so focus on taking away the positives. The best you can do is continually try to improve the way you do things.

Your learning and the way you do things will continue to evolve, even more so after you have the permit in hand.

Your mind is in the right place. You're better prepared than you were before, and that's never a bad thing.
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Old November 20, 2011, 12:42 PM   #10
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Glad all was ok. But is it just me if people approached my car the last thing on my mind would be a gun. I would be thinking more where is my map in-case they needed directions.

Maybe its an American thing as i have asked before is it that bad that when someone approaches your car or house ect the first thing is where is my gun.

I live in N Ireland which is much better now. But in the past could be a very dangerous place to live. But even at the height of the terrorist murder campaign. If someone approached my car i would be more likely to go for my map than a gun.
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Old November 20, 2011, 02:06 PM   #11
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manta49

In some places, yes it can be that bad.

In places where such an incident is not a concern, most folks have enough respect for your personal space to stay clear of you.

I never had an issue with someone approaching me at my vehicle in Alaska, from Kodiak to Valdez, Fairbanks, Ketchikan, Juneau, to Los Anchorage and everywhere in between. Never one issue in 4 years.

After 4 months in Michigan, I have confronted people approaching me with apparent ill-intent 5 times. Most were gas stations, a couple in major retailer parking lots. All ended without incident after using my company-commander bellow and aiming a hard look towards them. Alert people are not easy targets, most would-be evil-doers will move on to a weaker, easier threat.

Regardless of anything else, I carry everywhere I go. I'm too young to die, too old to take a beating; I'll just shoot you and let my lawyer settle it.
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Old November 20, 2011, 04:31 PM   #12
Mobuck
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Some people aren't "hard wired" to go to the gun. It takes some time to become accustomed to having the resource and keeping it where it is accessible. I may not know where my cell phone is or which pocket it's in but I ALWAYS know where my pistol is(and it's usually within reach).
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Old November 20, 2011, 04:40 PM   #13
Crazy88Fingers
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Lessons Learned

1) Not everyone is out to kill you. In fact, most people aren't. I know it's easy to forget that these days.

2) Learn to avoid sketchy situations, instead of reacting to them. You might have been better off leaving your wife inside Best Buy while you pulled the truck up to the front of the store. This way you'd avoid hauling expensive TVs through a darkening parking lot.
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Old November 20, 2011, 04:52 PM   #14
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1) Not everyone is out to kill you. In fact, most people aren't. I know it's easy to forget that these days.

2) Learn to avoid sketchy situations, instead of reacting to them. You might have been better off leaving your wife inside Best Buy while you pulled the truck up to the front of the store. This way you'd avoid hauling expensive TVs through a darkening parking lot.


^this.

When I was stationed on the submarine, we drilled constantly for the worst-case scenarios. I left the military with the ability to keep my sh!t together in panic situations better than the average dude. But the training is what counts. Drill, drill, drill. Hope for the best, expect the worst.
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Old November 20, 2011, 07:05 PM   #15
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You got scared by a couple of mendicants?

What kind of dystopia do you live in?
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Old November 20, 2011, 08:11 PM   #16
Steelers252006
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Agreed, next time will leave the wife at the front of the store, go get the truck, pull it to the front, and load the merchandise. I thought of that immediately actually, even while we were walking to the truck with the merchandise...
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Old November 20, 2011, 08:14 PM   #17
Steelers252006
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How was I to know the difference between mendicant and armed assailant perhaps unitl they actually beat on my window asking for some change and even then???
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Old November 20, 2011, 08:36 PM   #18
Discern
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I commend you for acknowledging you did not handle the situation in the best way. That part is good.

If you do not yet have your concealed carry permit, did you violate any laws by having a firearm on you or in your vehicle in the manner you described?

Where was your wife when you went to get out your firearm? IMO, you are putting too much security/emphasis on the firearm vs. avoiding possible situations when possible. If you are walking to a dark area of a parking lot with as you said "several TV's", you are not in a good situation. IMO, it would be better for your wife to to have stayed inside Best Buy with your TV's while you went out and drove your vehicle up the the loading/unloading area in front of the store to load your purchases.

I would suggest more training on how and when to draw/use a firearm and learn how to avoid possible situations when possible. Drawing or using a firearm when not necessary can be a very costly move.
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Old November 20, 2011, 10:22 PM   #19
Deaf Smith
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Steelers,

Till your CCW comes in, carry pepper spray if it's legal. That and one of the new 'tactical' lights that are powerful enough to blind an assailant (like a Surefire G2X.)

And once your CCW is there, carry the weapon as much as you legally can. It's like a fire extinguisher or a first aid kit. Hope don't need it but it's there WHEN you need it.

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Old November 20, 2011, 11:11 PM   #20
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Steelers, everything you do is a learning experience. Take the lessons learned and carry on. You were in a situation that you felt could call for the need for self-defense, so you wanted your tool. When you found your tool, you realized the situation didn't call for you presenting it. Having your CCW and having the pistol concealed on your person would've automatically solved your situation. Then you could continue to load your TVs and "act cool", but have a plan to go to your self defense option if things went bad.

The most important thing to take away is this. Don't focus on the mistake you made. Look at it this way.

#1 I assume the gentlemen approaching you gave you a feeling that they could be up to no good. Turns out they were just trying to bum money, but you recognized that A: they were approaching you and B: they could have bad intention.

#2 I think this is by far the most important thing. You realized that you MAY be in a situation that would lead to you needing your firearm, but you recognized that it was inappropriate to present it or let anyone know that you had it at that time.

Carry that pistola everywhere you legally can when you get your permit. I wish every law abiding citizen in America CCW'd everywhere they went. My job would be much easier.
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Old November 21, 2011, 07:04 AM   #21
Steelers252006
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Yes, I can legally carry my firearm CONCEALED in my vehicle, i.e. glovebox, center console, at any time, CCW license or not, just cannot carry it on my person until it arrives. Since they were coming up to me at my car, I had the right to brandish my firearm should I have perceived my or my wife's lives to be in danger.
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Old November 21, 2011, 08:47 AM   #22
skoro
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Really Dropped the Ball

No, what you did was learn a little bit about situational awareness. And that's a good thing.
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Old November 21, 2011, 09:10 AM   #23
secret_agent_man
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Quote:
avoid hauling expensive TVs through a darkening parking lot.
LOL, I have a special government-issue pass to do just that, along with anything else I care to haul around, any place I want to haul it. I have no consideration for anybody's civil rights who attempts to interfere for the purpose of their own personal gain at my expense.


Quote:
Turns out they were just trying to bum money
Turns out that's frequently the way street robberies are initiated.They want money, and you have been targeted as a source. It's just one step away from going down.
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Old November 21, 2011, 11:13 AM   #24
AH.74
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Since they were coming up to me at my car, I had the right to brandish my firearm should I have perceived my or my wife's lives to be in danger.
Be very, very careful here.

This is not so in your case.

Merely walking toward you and doing nothing else, even though you may become alarmed, is not acting in a threatening or dangerous manner on their part. If you had brandished your weapon and they had seen it, you have now committed assault and used your handgun in an illegal manner. Your status as gun owner could very well be put in serious doubt.

Just because it doesn't seem right, doesn't mean they will absolutely be a danger. You have to do the right thing on your part as well.

You have many options before putting your hand on your gun. Use them. First and foremost is the ability to tell people to leave you alone, stay away, when they are at some distance from you.

In my opinion you really need to become better educated on your state's use of force laws. Some of your other posts strongly support my feeling.
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Old November 21, 2011, 04:51 PM   #25
Steelers252006
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I apologize for not being clear. I am not saying I was going to "pull" my gun just because people were walking towards me. In fact, the opposite was true. I was trying to hide my gun, and I was so paranoid about that fact alone that I took my eyes off of the subjects. I was replying to another poster who said something about having the gun in your car without a CCW. I spoke to the officer who did the class, as I still do from time to time with questions, and asked him that exact question. He said you can carry your gun concealed in a glovebox, and if you needed to use it, i.e. someone comes up to your vehicle to harm you, you're allowed to by law even without the CCW. It was important to me to be VERY clear on that point before having a gun in my car. Believe me, I don't want to EVER brandish the weapon under ANY circumstances, but I would have the right to do so there should the situation call for it. That's what I meant.
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