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Old October 24, 2001, 07:37 AM   #1
Norman Bates
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Scenario: Bank robbery, caught in the middle

This might be and old scenario but forgive me for being new here.

I live in Argentina so what i´m hipothetically about to present here is pretty much what could happen to me any day.

You´re waiting in line for the cashier when 3 or 4 BGs enter the bank and try to make an express hold up (1 to 3 minutes tops) and a fast exit. There are about 10 people in the bank with you.

1) will you try to position yourself to have a clear shot on the BGs if possible?
2) will you stay totally out of it, not your money after all, or will you try to fight?
3) will you try for an early counter attack when the BGs less expect it or wait for an opportunity?
4) If you totally stay out of it, what will you tell the cops when they find you there, armed, after the BGs are long gone?

The BG have no fear to shoot a cop in these parts, most express robberies happen in a 2 minute span and sometimes they start by shooting the cop guarding the bank.

Thanks for your opinion.

NB
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Old October 24, 2001, 09:34 AM   #2
David Scott
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Even though the law here allows a CCW holder to use deadly force to stop a violent felony in progress, I decided when I got my permit that I would never draw a gun to defend someone else's money. That bank is insured, and the money's not worth starting a firefight with a lot of innocent bystanders to catch bullets or become hostages.

I would watch. If they just take the money and go, fine. I'd report every detail I noticed to the police. If they acted as if they were planning to hurt someone, though, I'd have to be ready. That means constantly re-evaluating the scenario for the best sequence to interdict the injury to innocents, and get at least one bullet in each of them quickly. Once that's done, re-evaluate and apply more Gold Dots as required.

If I do stay out of it and they just leave with the money, I would not be obligated by Florida law to disclose to the police that I am carying, but I would anyway. I think it's prudent, since there will be immediate suspicion if your weapon is noticed and you haven't said anything. I'd be legal, and since I did not take any action there would be nothing to indict me for. Our local LEO's are pretty cool with the whole CCW thing, so I wouldn't be paranoid about unjustified harrassment because I was carrying.
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Old October 24, 2001, 11:08 AM   #3
C.R.Sam
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Nearly all of the bank robberies in my area are done without harm to anybody. My bank is a little strange, local and everybody knows everybody else. Most of the bank workers are packin too. Strange, they haven't been robbed either.

Soooo.....I would probably just observe. If the bad guys started shootin I would probably not be an early target......old, stooped and usin either a walker or a cane.......not an appearant threat to them. If bad guy fires at anything, I would do my best to drop the shooter and whoever is with him.

Also, most of the bank heists in our area are done by single person inside and maby a driver outside. Not nearly as bad as it sounds like in your area. Ours are amateurs.

Lot more likely to find oneself in the middle of a robbery at a convience store than a bank in our area.

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Old October 24, 2001, 12:24 PM   #4
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OOPS!!!!
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Last edited by Ben Shepherd; October 24, 2001 at 05:27 PM.
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Old October 24, 2001, 12:38 PM   #5
Ben Shepherd
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Around my area that would be really rare. But if they really are as violent as you say, I would make sure I ALWAYS went armed. In your case I would see if they offer courses open to civilians in shoot/don't shoot situations.

10 years ago I had a gun pulled on me. This was before I was of legal age to carry. Let me tell you, looking down the barrel and realizing you're dead if he wants to pull the trigger and you can do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about it is NOT my definition of fun.
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Old October 24, 2001, 02:57 PM   #6
Brian Killing Tangos
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Hey Norman,

I would not take on 4 dudes with guns and spending money, unless:

1. They were autistic and had BB guns.

2. They left their guns in the car and came back for an encore.

3. They come in killing everybody in sight or leave the same way.

4. They were American bank robbers and I somehow remind them of Osama Bin Laden, in which case, I would already have a level III vest and 4 guns.

5. They made an insulting comment forcing me to defend my mother or my sister's honor.


And everything all the other guys just said!
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Old October 24, 2001, 03:35 PM   #7
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One against 4 are the odds. First off those odds suck. Second, how can you be sure they don't have any one else acting as a customer watching for off duty cops or CHL holders. You're best to make a good witness and not start a gunfight. That's what I would do. I would only come out blasting if they started killing people or started robbing all the bank customers too and I was for sure they were fixing to find my gun and badge. Actually I use ATM's all the time now, when I'm on duty, to avoid a situation like that. I work nights so no banks are open during my shift.
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Old October 24, 2001, 06:23 PM   #8
LASur5r+P
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What he said

What David Scott said.

Money is replaceable, your life and your health is not. What if you got wounded? and you cannot work in your profession again or you can't function 100%?

\\\\\\\\\remember,it's not even your money.

I saw a study by an LEO that they tried that same scenario and every officer that tried for a shootout got it with quite a few dead or wounded bank personnel...often including the LEO.

Only if you feel that they are about to plug everyone in the bank.
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Old October 24, 2001, 08:10 PM   #9
yorec
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I would offer the same advice to everyone, be a good witness. It IS what I would TRY to do.

However, I find myself in a situation similar to C.R.Sam's - everyone who works at the bank knows who I am very well. But I don't get the luxury of the camoflauge of apparent harmlessness because everyone in my little town also knows what I do for a living. I'm a police officer. In case of a robbery, I don't trust the stressed out tellers to stand quietly by and be as good a witness as I'd be trying to be. I fear that the robbery will only have just begun when I would hear the fatal words, "Hey, you're a cop, DO something!" That might as well be the range command, "Fire." At that point I will try to draw faster than ever before in my life and put as many holes in those guys as fast as I possibly can, all the while running/diving for cover and hopefully before bleeding out all over the carpet myself. Not one of my more favorite scenarios to dream about...
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Old October 24, 2001, 08:32 PM   #10
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The money is ensured, let them take the money. If it comes down to them starting to shoot people or harm them in other ways, then yes, it might be time to shoot. But 4 against 1 is a bit much to ask anybody. If you do decide to start shooting, then be prepared to take some hits, die, get others killed, etc...
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Old October 24, 2001, 09:59 PM   #11
Norman Bates
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Nobody said it would be easy.

As Jadam951 said, there's always the suspicion there might be someone on the inside already posing as a customer. Since these robberies do go south every once in a while, and our LEOs are mostly untrained, undepaid, and regularly used by the BGs for target practice.

They do tend to come in strong or just ignore the problem and be busy elsewhere. I would try definitely not to be caught after a robbery with a gun in a bank even if i'm inocent as baby Jesus.

One more nice detail is that our banks keep 10 grand tops in cash because that it's all that is covered by the insurance. No customers are covered, at all.

NB
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Old October 25, 2001, 04:05 AM   #12
magnum_force
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4 letters...FDIC

Money is insured up to $100,000 in u.s.a banks. No need to be a hero. There are video cameras. Try to be a hero and wound a bank robber and he/she might sue you for all your money. The courts are all screwed up here.
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Old October 25, 2001, 05:52 AM   #13
Norman Bates
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It does amaze me and also pains me to see that most of you are more concerned by the (legal) aftermath than by the actual fact that you might find yourselves cornered by 3+ BGs with guns drawn.

You're right to be concerned, by all means. That's how your system works.

Also, what if the BGs start going through your pockets once they got everybody hugging the deck? Will your guns be very exposed?
What then?

NB
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Old October 25, 2001, 07:39 AM   #14
David Scott
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Norman,

I doubt the robbers will waste time going through everyone's pockets. In robbing a bank, speed is of the essence. They want to grab a bag of money and get out before a silent alarm or some passerby with a cell phone brings police.

As for the 4 against one, you're right, no one said it would be easy. There are a couple of factors that work in your favor, though.

1. Surprise. Since they have cowed the bystanders from the start of the operation, they'll feel in control. If you shoot as well as the average IDPA competitor you should be able to get the first two before they are able to react.

2. Skill. You average street punk/bank robber doesn't expend 200+ practice rounds per month at the range. To them a gun is a magic talisman they wave around to hypnotize the sheep. "Real TV" showed a video last night of a guy trying to rob a jewelry store, and he could not get his gun to work! The store owner just slapped the gun aside, and the robber fled.

3. The time thing, mentioned above. They know they have to get in and out fast,so if there's resistance they may shoot back, but they'll be backing for the exits as they do it.

Any scenario involving a lot of bystanders is a nightmare, and you should only draw in the last extreme. If you do have to draw, you'll need thattraining and practice behind you to make you more effective than they are.
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Old October 25, 2001, 08:07 AM   #15
LASur5r+P
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Get busy

N.B.,
Please read my thread.
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Old October 25, 2001, 08:12 AM   #16
ehklei19
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Norman, is it even legal for you to carry in Argentina? Does B.A. issue permits for handguns?
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Old October 25, 2001, 09:09 AM   #17
Brian Killing Tangos
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Easy Norm or Mother, put the knife down!

The guys here obviously are pretty well versed in tactics as well as the law. I would take the time and read into their responses a little deeper. I sometimes will skim through a response that was posted to my question instead of really reading it.

I would especially take time for the LEO's in this forum. I myself spend a lot of time on the range and attend training all over the country. And I can tell you that we are always observing our surroundings and like yourself (which by the way is very good that you are thinking ahead!) rehearsing scenarios in our heads.
Things like; " if that guy pulls a gun and starts shooting, what will I do?" or " That pillar looks like decent cover" or " If I pull my gun out and return fire, will the uniformed cops coming in to save the day think I'm a bad guy?"

There is also a lot involved in a confrontation. There are 3 things that you will have to contend with:

1. You against you - "When faced with just one opponent and you oppose yourself........... you're outnumbered." - Dan Millman

2. You against him - What kind of training do you have? Do you have CQB experience? You're not going to be picking targets that don't shoot back at 50 yards with a rifle! It's going to be up close and personal. What if comes down to a 4 against 1 with some experienced streetfighters? They will clean your clock!

3. You against the law - contrary to popular belief, you will have to deal with the cops and perhaps a jury of your peers. Granted, it will help you if you happen to be buddies with a judge or two, you golf with the Buenos Aires chief of police or you have plenty of dough to throw at the situation. But you're still going to have to deal with it and you're intentions will not matter one bit.


So there's a lot to take into consideration. But I also want to give you the credit for looking into it and even preparing for it. People like yourself and a great deal of folks in this forum really are the ones that often make a difference. I hope that you will continue to research this and study all of your surroundings. Think about what you would do in your home, in your car, with your family, with anybody everywhere (like banks!). Stay in condition yellow and train whenever you can. Good advice for a cop, good advice for a good semaritan. Y recuerda que lo que te decimos es por tu bien y no para enojarte. Mantente fuerte y alerta.
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Old October 25, 2001, 04:53 PM   #18
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Even if it is your money, let them go. Try to get your back against something and let the robbery take place. They want the money, not your life. Think about the other people in the bank, worry as much if anyone in this group may do something drastic/stupid. Hope that they get out before any police show up and turn it into a hostage situation.

3-4 to one is bad odds. These guys may be paramilitary, they may be well trained. They may have automatic weapons. They may have murdered before and have nothing to lose.

You have everything to lose, even if you win the gunfight.
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Old October 26, 2001, 08:14 AM   #19
Hemicuda
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I watched an off-duty officer stop a bank robbery once...

he stopped me (and others) from entering, pistol-whipped the getaway driver (after telling him to "not move" and the idiot went for a gun)

then he just waited outside the door, with a pistol, and waited for them to come out... they all froze and dropped their weapons... after a little coaxing...

by then the driver had his wits about him again, and tried to leave, but some big dude removed him from the car, and put the smackdown on him... (driver had a hospital stay before his trial)

It was kinda cool for a 16 year old kid to observe...

I liked that cop's style... no rounds fired, BG's stopped... and a dumbass (the driver) subdued the RIGHT way...
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Old October 26, 2001, 08:24 AM   #20
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A few years ago, in my town, one case exactly like this scenario happenned. An off-duty cop was in a bank, when suddenly 4 BG's started an armed robbery. The cop draw his wheelgun, ran and jumped behind a table. The BG's started shooting, and so did the cop. He had to reload twice, but only hit one BG. Fortunately the BG's decided to run away, because the shooting attracted too much attention from people on the street. Miraculously our good guy only twisted his ankle. I was amazed he was still alive!!!!!!

IF I were in his situation I wouldn't react, unless they started shooting innocents. The risk is too high, and most of the time they just want to get the money and run away as fast as possible...
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Old October 26, 2001, 09:07 AM   #21
Norman Bates
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ehklei19

Sure we issue CCW permits, i do have one and carry an USP.40F or a Compact.

Brian Killing Tangos

Thanks for the advise. Sure , i´m just picking some ideas but am no fool. Even if i was one, i have a familly to think about.

I went to the Sigarms Academy last May for the CCW and Adv. CCW courses and was amazed to learn, on the last day and after shooting an incredible amount of ammo that you should NOT draw your gun unless you intend to defend your own life or the life of your cherished ones. This basic and fundamental rule was clearly stated and reinforced by a painful but effective simunition shot very close to the family jewels. No harm done but the lesson was learned and WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN!

BTW , I sincerely recommend the Academy, I will hopefully return there next year for the Advanced Pistol Class.


Thanks to all for the input, i will be posting more common scenarios soon

NB
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Old October 26, 2001, 10:09 AM   #22
Ben Shepherd
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A little clarification on my earlier post:
Yes I would always go armed. I would not take on 4 guys unless I was sure they were going to harm or kill a person. Money isn't worth my life. But if they decided to kill someone else, I would make sure it was at the risk of thier own life. A couple situations like that and maybe the BG's would start reconsidering thier actions.
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