View Full Version : The Way Of Street (Street 101)

Darren Laur
July 28, 2002, 01:16 PM
Street 101:


In preparing this post, I have attempted to put into writing some of the information that I have gleaned over the years specific to self protection and the “way of the street” In doing so , I had the opportunity to integrate a number of ideas and concepts from others in the field. To say that all of the information in this post was totally mine, would only ignore those people who have made this work possible.

I believe that there is no such thing as the “ultimate” fighting form. Every combative system has its own set of strengths and weaknesses. I believe the secret is to recognize and acknowledge those weaknesses and then go elsewhere to strengthen them. In doing so, there are a number of people who I must thank for the content of this post. Some of the below noted instructors/coaches/teachers I know personally and have trained with, others I only known through their own published works. It is because of these people that I have been able to strengthen my weaknesses and make this post possible:

Albert Carty

Gil Puder

Tony Blauer

Bradley Steiner

Marc McYoung

Peyton Quinn

Sammy Franco

Richard Dimitri

Geoff Thompson

Jim Grover

Jerry Van Cook

Taking It To The Streets:

The Police:

First of all, I am a police officer and have some knowledge in this topic. Most people believe that the police are the first line of defense. In a perfect world this may be true, but the fact is “YOU” are going to be the first line of defense. It is a fact that most police department are far more “reactive” to crime than “proactive.” Although I would love to see a police officer on every corner, the fact remains that this will never happen. In our world, there are more criminals that there are police officers, this is why we call what we do the “thin blue line”. Police officers understand that if the criminal element was to ban together as one cohesive entity, such as what happened in the L.A. riots after the Rodney King incident, there would be little police could do to regain control in the short term.

It is also a sad fact that unlike 30-40 years ago when most of the criminal element feared the police, today most do not and only see us as an “annoyance” to their criminal activity. Most of the experienced criminals know how not to get caught as well. We in policing usually catch the inexperienced, why?, because the experienced criminals have learned from their mistakes. The next sad thing is that even if the police do catch the criminal, many are soon released.

The Courts:

Even if the criminal is caught red handed committing the crime, the next step is court and the Criminal Justice system, or should I say “The Criminal’s Justice System.” Many criminals see the justice system as an advantage rather than a disadvantage. Why?, because most, including their lawyers, know the ins and outs of the judicial jungle, especially when it comes to a legal technicality or plea bargan. The fact remains that in some countries the criminal has nothing to loose but everything to gain by going to court. In some cases the punishment from the courts, if found guilty, does not deter the criminal from continuing on with their actions. The term “let the punishment fit the crime” seldom exists, but even if convicted to jail, there is a very real chance that the criminal will only have to serve 1/3 of their sentence anyways.

Who is the Street Predator:

So who is the Street Predator? The answer is “anyone”, but the average inmate housed in the Canadian Correctional system for violent crimes is:

- male between the ages of 15-24 years

- 5’9” - 6’0” tall

- 175 – 190 lbs

Most street predators can be split up into two categories; “The Amateur” and “The Professional”

The Amateur:

The amateur is an “ego” based animal who is looking for a fight “just because.” To be preyed upon by the amateur you do not have to be doing anything wrong, you just have to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. This beast is usually very identifiable;

- usually walks with attitude
- elbows pushed away from body
- verbally aggressive and rude to people within a few feet
- confrontations are usually triggered by eye contact

Some of the “Ritualized” combative signs that are apparent from the amateur prior to contact, but not limited to, include:

- splaying arms to express exclamation
- beckoning with finger
- nodding of head, usually accompanies finger beckoning
- bulging eyes
- acquires innate fighting stance
- will close distance during confrontation

The Professional:

The professional street predator is someone who I like to identify as the serial mugger, serial rapist, serial killer. These beasts usually attack for profit and not because they want to fight. These animals are a little harder to identify as they merge into society quite well and usually prey upon targets that have “no” situational awareness. When the professional strikes a target they usually follow a seven step process of target acquisition:

Step #1: victim selection:

- looking for subjects with no situational awareness
- attacks usually occur in sparsely populated locations out the view of witnesses and therefore reduces the chances of being seen heard or caught

Step #2: Victim Stalking:

- Once a target has been identified the professional will usually stalk first
- They are waiting for the time and place that suits their need for privacy and control

Step #3: Victim/Predator Positioning:

- the professional must place themselves in position to either attack by surprise or engage in a “street Interview”
- remember this beast is a lazy animal and does not want to fight but totally overwhelm

The professional will usually use one of five “relative” positioning tactics to set their intended victim up for attack:

1) Closing:

- Most common, walks directly up to target to get as close as they can
- the closer they get the more success he will have in his abilities to overwhelm and control
- this is why the “reaction gap” is so important once you have identified a person as a threat. If the threat has breached the gap when you have told him not to, he has clearly announced that his intentions are not good

2) Cornering/ Trapping:

- this is the second most commonly used tactic
- will want to corner you between himself, you, and any safe exit point

3) Surprise

- Surprise is the primary tactic that an attacker depends upon for full advantage

4) Pincer:

- usually used by two or more criminals
- one circles while the other distracts you
- one attacker follows from behind and while you are focused on them, there is a second attacker just up ahead
- things to be aware of, two people standing across from one another in a narrow space such as a hallway, staircase, or alley

5) Surround:

- most common in “packs” or “swarms”
- one in the pack will distract while the others surround
- instead of a fast swarm, the pack will usually drift towards you so as not to alert you to their intentions

Step #4: Testing the Waters:

- only used if the element of surprise is not available
- here the predator will use one or more “street interviewing tactics” to see if you are a low risk high gain target

A) reasonable request interview:

- will ask you for the time, match, cigarette, spare change, directions
- as you are complying with their request, the attacker moves into a surprise attack position.
- This is a classic “distraction technique”

B) The Distant Interview:

- takes place from a distance
- attacker is assessing your body language and awareness level
- the professional uses this method regularly to identify targets of opportunity
- most criminals are in plain view but because of no “situational awareness” the intended victim fails to recognize the fact that they are there

C) The Escalating Interview:

- usually takes place in a pack situation
- starts off small but builds to the boiling point
- weapons are usually involved
- men are really bad for this because of “ego”

D) the Bully Interview:

- will say things to you such as “ what the **** are you looking at”
- the attacker hopes that by saying this to you, you will respond in kind thus giving them the reason that they were looking for to engage you either verbally and or physically
- this interview usually starts with the eye glare which then moves to the bully question which then leads to an escalating interview and then goes physical

E) the Bully Interview:

- Continual eye contact made (non-verbal challenge)
- The bully interview: what the **** are you looking at
- The approach towards you
- The bully question reiterated
- The response from you; usually a verbal challenge
- Escalating interview back and forth
- Actual physical challenge: let’s ****ing go right now
- Single syllable replies back and forth
- The actual attack; usually a hooking sucker punch
- During the last few stages prior to actual physical attack, not uncommon to have finger pointing, arm flailing, and slight one or two hand pushes. These are done as an intelligence gathering technique to ascertain your intentions and abilities to fight back

Darren Laur
July 28, 2002, 01:18 PM
Step #5: The Assesment Stage:

- if after steps 1-4 there is a positive assessment by the professional, they will usually attack using the element of surprise. If there is a negative assessment and the victim appears to be ware of what is going on, the attacker will usually abort their attack and move onto another safe target

Step #6: Using Threats Of Violence:

- If a positive threat assessment has been made by the professional in step #5, it is usually followed by verbl threats which are sometimes aided by a weapon or an accomplice or both
- These threats are very direct and extremely violent in nature using very course language
- The professionals “goal” here is to create a state of “hyper vigilance” to cause you to go into “brain fart” mode. Why ? because the professional understands that the mind guides the body. If they can get you into brain fart mode their in control.
- It is also very common that the attacker will promise not to hurt you if you comply with their requests. Why? They don’t want you to make a scene that increases the risks of them being seen, heard, or caught.

Step #6: the Attack:

- after step #6 the professional now engages
- some of these attacks may be minimal, intended only to freeze you allowing them to take what they want. Most, however, will be frenzied and severe with onw intent, to totally disable or even kill you before you can launch an effective counter attack

Although both the amateur and professional attacker are two different beasts, both will exhibit one or more pre-assaultive signs (Ritualized Combat) that if you know what to look for are real good indicators ( warning bells) to let you know what may be happening.

Ritualized Combat:

Ritualized Combat was termed by a police trainer by the name of Roland Ouellette. Basically, these "body language signs" are rituals that the human body will, in most cases, go through just prior, during, and after a physical confrontation ( not so different from the animal kingdom). These signs are important, why?, because they are really good warning signals to let you know what your potential attacker may be contemplating, even though he may not be “verbally” communicating this fact to you. Ritualized Combative signs have been both scientifically and empirically researched in such fields as “Human Performance” and “Neuro Linguistic Psychology.” Here in Canada, I have used “Ritualized Combative Signs” successfully in the Courts during expert testimony in Self-Defense cases. I also possess hundreds of hours of videotape of actual street fights, and when reviewed both in real time and in slow motion, everyone of the Ritualized Combative signs that I share in my articles and training, are seen prior, during, and after these fights. This is why I believe that all in the self-protection field should know about “Ritualized Combat”. So what are these signs?

Assault Not Imminent But Possible:

- Head, neck, shoulders go back (person making themselves look bigger)
- Face is red, twitching, jerking
- Lips pushed forward bearing teeth (you see the same things in dogs before attack)
- Breathing is fast and shallow (oxygenating the body preparing for fight, flight, hyper vigilance)
- Beads of sweat appear about the face/neck
- Thousand mile glare
- Exaggerated movements
- Finger pointing/ head pecking
- Totally ignores you
- Gives you excessive attention during normal conversation such as direct uninterrupted eye contact
- Goes from totally un-cooperative to totally cooperative ( people do not go from hot to cold they de-escalate over time)
- Acts stoned or drunk
- Directs anger towards other inanimate items such as tables, chairs, walls

If you find yourself confronted by a subject presenting these signs, awareness/self protection strategies should go up, and distance should be created. Your body language should be assertive but not threatening and don’t be afraid to allow the person to vent verbally.

Assault Is Imminent:

- face goes from red to white ( during a physical confrontation the blood will leave the surface of the body and pool to the big muscles and internal organs of the body needed for survival) In my job as a police officer I see this all the time and when I do one of two things are going to happen, the suspect is either going to fight or run
- Lips tighten over teeth
- Breathing is fast and deep
- Change of stance, their body blades and shoulder drops
- Hands closed into a fist (not uncommon to see the whites of knuckles due to hands being so tight)
- Bobbing up and down or rocking back and forth on feet (this is the bodies way to hide/ mask the initial movement of a first strike)
- Target glace (here you will see your opponent look to where he is going to hit, or where he is going to run/escape)
- Putting head and shin down (body wants to protect the airway, this action does so to a degree)
- Eye brows brought forward into a frown( again the body wants to naturally protect the visual system, this action does so to a degree)
- Stops all movements/ freezes in place
- Dropping center or lowering of body (no different that a cat or dog getting ready to pounce)
- Shedding cloths ( very common, you will see your attacker take his hat, coat, shirt, or bag off just prior to the assault)
- One syllable replies ( go from full sentences to one syllable replies….. reptilian brain is clicking in)

In this group of signs, you have about 1-1.5 seconds to act before your attacker either attacks or runs. If walking and talking your way out is inappropriate or unreasonable, then I teach “First Strike” philosophy, and continue on with a compound attack until your attacker is no longer a risk.

In both the Assault not Imminent and Assault Imminent phases, I do teach my students ( in some situations) to bring to the attention of the attacker what they are seeing why:

1) The attacker may not know what they are doing. A lot of these signs are autonomic in nature, meaning they happen without conscious thought.
2) The bigger reason, I believe, is for this purpose; most attackers will only attack you when they believe that they have the element of surprise. By sharing with them what you see, you take this primary tactic away from them.


If you have been able to deescalate the situation you have found yourself in, non-verbally, verbally or physically, also look for these Ritualized Combat signs that are good indicators to let you know that your opponent is no longer thinking about fighting:

Signs Of Submission:

- Putting hands up in front of body with palms facing out…. ( universal sign for stop stay back)
- Face returns to normal skin tone and color
- shaking hand. (almost as if the person has Alzheimer’s disease…. This shaking can be slight to extreme ….. bodies natural way to burn out the adrenalin, nor-adrenalin, epinephrine that it dumped into the body for fight,flight,hypervigilance but was not used)
- turning of back with their hands covering their head ( ensure you can see their hands if not create distance NOW)
- backing off
- bowing of head and lowering of eyes
- verbal tone, volume, rate, slows back to normal / full sentences once again
- falling to the ground almost in a fetal position
- grooming gestures ( this one is weird but you will see it time and time again… person will adjust their clothing, play with their hair/mustache/beard, pick lint of their body….. you see this in cat and dogs after they fight and then groom themselves)

In all of the above noted signs, don’t just look for one, but rather clusters of two or more. If you see one and know what to look for, you will see others guaranteed. As a police officer who has been involved in many physical encounters, I can share with you and others that “Ritualized Combat” is a tool that you can use to your advantage. Many of my students , who are not police officers, who have found themselves in ‘situations” have also echoed the tactical benefit of such knowledge. One should also remember that a skilled attacker “may” be able to mask some of these signs, so never drop you guard and fall into a false sense of confidence !!!!!! Also remember that if the voice and body don’t match, always believe the body because the voice can LIE !!!!!! If your attacker is verbalizing the fact that he doesn’t want to fight, but yet he is showing Ritualized Combative signs that show otherwise, he’s a LLPOF ( liar, liar pants on fire)

Some people who don’t know about Ritualized Combat, call it “gut instinct/intuition” They are right !!!!!! The reason it is a “gut instinct/intuition” rather than a known empirical thing, is because no one has explained to them what “Ritualized Combat” is. What is happening in the “gut/ instinct” group, is that their “sub-conscious/reptilian brain” is picking up on these signs (rather than the conscious critical mind), thus turning on the warning bells. Some listen (the more experience), but most do not

Darren Laur
July 28, 2002, 01:19 PM
Five tactical Advantages Of The Criminal:

Remember, most attackers have five very real advantages over most of their victims:

Advantage #1: Confidence

- will usually not attack unless he has full confidence in his abilities to win the physical encounter
- Confidence comes from ability to use the tactic of the sucker punch or the the ambush to his full advantage

Advantage #2: Experience

- Experience comes from actual street application rather than a training studio or martial arts school
- Experience comes from real lessons learned on the street. Both good and bad

Advantage #3: Competence:

- Most have one or two techniques that they have mastered to some degree
- This mastery comes from actual application in the real world
- Because of this fact, they know what works most of the time, and what does not
- Their combatives training is learned by doing under “real” street conditions

Advantage #4: Tactics:

- a criminal’s tactics are that of simplicity, the simpler it is the better it will work
- when they do physically attack, it is usually a continuous attack until the intended victim has been knocked out or grounded
- physical attacks are usually very brutal and violent
- usually the criminal uses the advantage of FIRST STRIKE

Advantage #5: Psychological:

- Most people believe that this **** will never happen to me and because of this fact when attacked, go into a state of hyper vigilance which is a huge advantage to the attacker


The experienced predator on the street, in most cases, has an advantage over you. Respect that !!!! he has things that many martial artists do not have. He has hit real people, in real fights under life threatening conditions many times. You are in his arena, playing his game, by his rules !!!!!!

The street predator keeps his attacks simple and direct. He masters one attack, instead of knowing 100 techniques that he can do in the air, and he knows one or two that he can really land against someone fighting back. And these techniques work in his game plan. Do not play his game; change the rules or you will loose !!!!

So Why Do Street Fights Occur:

Pride and Ego reasons are most common. Why?

- a person perceives that their ego has been challenged
- need to save face by fighting the person who they see as their challenger
- this is especially true if the person who’s ego was challenges is with a peer group/gang. It is important when dealing with groups, a challenge to one, is a challenge to all

Alcohol and Drugs:

- The number one contributing factor as to why fights occur is alcohol and or drugs
- I like to call alcohol “liquid courage”
- Both alcohol and drugs override a person’s thought process to the point where reality and fantasy are one in the same. Both remove a person’s common sense factor

Property, Body, Life:

Here the attacker could want specific things from you including:


money, wallet, credit cards, jewelry, clothing


Pride and ego assaults, Sexual Assaults, Enjoyment Of A Violent Act


Self explanatory

Real Fights Are Not Pretty:

- not choreographed like you see on T.V. or in some martial arts schools
- Most are very sloppy, fast, and gross in appearance
- Most are not back and forth occurrences. The first person who gets in the first good neutralizing blow usually wins the fight
- Even a well trained combatant’s technique will usually get very sloppy after the first or second shots are thrown
- This is why in a street fight, “functionality of technique” is far more important that “perfect technique”. If what you do is pretty and perfect but not functional, what good is it going to be in the real world

Most Street Fights Are Over Very Quickly:

- most fights are usually over within the first 5-10 seconds
- Very rare to see a street fight last longer that 10-15 seconds

Most Street Fights Are Decided By A Strike to The Head:

- most street fighters are head hunters
- they understand that the brain is the computer of the body. You knock it out and the body will follow
- this is why in a street fight you “MUST” protect your head and neck

Most Street Fights If Not Over Quickly, Can Involve Grappling And Ground Fighting:

- if the fight is not over quickly, it can end up in a grapple and then go to ground
- Why?, if a person is getting the **** pounded out of them, they will usually want to close the distance in an attempt to smother/control the punches that they are being hit with
- Once grounded, you will usually be **** kicked “curbed” by the attacker, if he is standing, and his friends if any. These kicks are usually targeted for the head and upper body.
- This is why “ballistic” ground fighting techniques are essential for getting back onto your feet as quickly as possible. Unlike the UFC we can NOT spend a lot of time on the ground
- Remember, once someone starts taking blows, they will smother and grapple to escape the flying fists. Then it goes to the ground where your opponent and/or his friends will start shinning their shoes on your head while you are rolling around. Know how to be a ballistic ground fighter get back up on your feet as quick as you can

The Multiple Opponent Factor:

- Most attackers will not attack unless they believe they have an advantage ( or is psychotic)
- Most attackers will have some kind of back up ( friends or weapons) to help them out if they find themselves in trouble
- If you fall into the trap that you are only fighting one person, you will become tunnel locked, and the next thing you will find out is someone is on your back
- Always be aware of the second or third opponent in a street fight
- MUST always be thinking multiples on the street

The Weapon Reality:

- There are more and more fights taking place where a weapon was brought to use before, during, or after the confrontation. Especially knives
- Always be aware and prepared for a weapon in a street fight at anytime

The Unwanted Friend Factor:

- most fights usually have friends and acquaintances looking on from both sides
- these friends will often attempt to separate combatants in an effort to stop the fight
- this is very dangerous to you due to the fact that as your friend is pulling you away, they are tying you up giving an advantage to your attacker
- this can take place before, during, and after a fight as well
- Although your friends may be trying to help you, unless on the same page tactically, they are in fact placing you at a disadvantage

The Offensive Mindset:

- more often than not, the combatant who strikes first and maintains the offensive mindset, usually win the fight
- in a street fight do not go defensive, attack the attack, go offensive, you deploy FIRST STRIKE and continue with a compound attack. If he gets the first strike in, you want to counterattack the aggressor so viciously that he realizes that now he is the one being attacked and not you
- This is not a cat and mouse game like you see in the movies, no fancy moves and then a theme song as you gaze at your fallen opponent; you have to attack like a banshee and keep on attacking until your safety is assured by the fact that your attacker has no interest in contacting you again

Knowledge and the understanding and application of that knowledge is power !!!!!!!!

Strength and Honor

Darren Laur
Integrated Street Combatives
[email protected]

July 28, 2002, 01:51 PM
On tactics, body language and situational awareness, great stuff!

I hope the acronym LLPOF does not prevail. Not nearly as tactical as most of the others.:cool:

July 28, 2002, 02:49 PM
Thanks, Darren. I'm making an indexed folder of all your posts in this series in case something happens to TFL. Don't want to lose them...! :D

July 28, 2002, 09:06 PM
Good stuff, Darren. Thanks for the post.

- Gabe

Darren Laur
July 28, 2002, 09:22 PM
As a trainer/coach/instructor of combatives, I believe that information to be useful must be shared. I know that my posts are sometimes long, but I refuse to tease readers (with only providing some information) in the hopes of further selling a product such as a video, CD, or a book. As always, if you enjoy what I have written, please use it and pass it onto others, but please give credit where credit is due.

Knowledge and the understanding and application of that knowledge is power !!!!

Strength and Honor

Darren Laur
Integrated Street Combatives

July 29, 2002, 10:31 AM
Well done Darren. Thank you.

Sam. One can neither schedule nor script their next encounter.

July 29, 2002, 01:36 PM
Excellent post.

As I was reading your checklist, I kept thinking to myself: "Yep seen that, seen that before, yep, wow didn't know that." :)

Good information.

July 31, 2002, 02:00 PM
darren........once again, very well organized information. I (along with Don, shared the other information you posted here and i plan to do so (with your permission) with this information as well. growing up in a very bad place, a lot of this stuff I know first-hand, it embarrasses me to say that much of it I learned by being of the 'criminal" element....ie: street gangs. thugs and your basic bad boys.
I am always struggling to communicate the material within to my students and your wide range of knowledge and plain language approach makes that much easier for me to do. naturally, any of this information that I pass out or allowed to be passsed around to my students will include your name. I would be interested in any other writings you may have written through your research. You are doing us all a great service by being so open and willing to share your knowledge.

The Amateur:

The amateur is an “ego” based animal who is looking for a fight “just because.” To be preyed upon by the amateur you do not have to be doing anything wrong, you just have to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. This beast is usually very identifiable;

- usually walks with attitude
- elbows pushed away from body
- verbally aggressive and rude to people within a few feet
- confrontations are usually triggered by eye contact

May I add to this information based on my personal experiences and observations?

I have also found that the amateur is usually no more than a bully, and as such, usues tactics that a professional would never use.
IS loud, almost always from the start....(he wants to scare you with erratic behavior)

Often times the amateur will also stand very close to his intended victim. Sometimes even chest to chest if allowed to do so. Once again he is using bravado to intimidate. Of course, this is stupid, but then many bullies don't rate very high in IQ.

Many times they will even use one or both hands to grab a victim and pull them close or hold them with one hand as they hold their other hand as a fist in the victims face. Once again, they are trying to scare their victim. Again, this is an incredibly naive and stupid position for them to place themselves in.

Most amatuers will not produce a weapon. If they do it is by and large used simply to further intimidate or to bolster their own courage. Many times when a weapon is produced it will be displayed prominently. They do this because they are not so much willing to injure with a weaopn as a professional would. I have seen bricks held high over their heads in throwing position even though they appear relunctant to actually throw the brick. I believe this is because they truly do not wish to elevate the confrontaion beyond their control, and the brick represents control.

I have also seen many times when an amateur will produce a knife and hold it very close to their victim or at the least, keep the knife between themselves and their intended victim. A professional will keep the weapon out of the reach of their victim until they actually move in to use it.....for instance a professional who employs the use of a knife will often hold the knife completely out of view until he actually brings it into play.

In short, as you say, bullies pick their victims, but may not be nearly so smart as the professional about it. Bullies count more on intimidation to give them their edge than on any smart tried and true fighting techniques, hence they may well do stupid things that actually place themselves in a more vulnerable position than they are placing their intended victims in!

As I said, I am speaking from personal experience and observation. From what you have related previously, I would deeply appreciate your feedback on what I have added as to it's accuracy and relevency to the subject at hand. No matter how critical, I thank you in advance.

Darren Laur
July 31, 2002, 09:43 PM

Again, thank you

I agree with almost everything you have said, and "well said" it was.

There is one issue that I disagree slightly with, in which you stated:

Most amatuers will not produce a weapon. If they do it is by and large used simply to further intimidate or to bolster their own courage. Many times when a weapon is produced it will be displayed prominently. They do this because they are not so much willing to injure with a weaopn as a professional would. I have seen bricks held high over their heads in throwing position even though they appear relunctant to actually throw the brick. I believe this is because they truly do not wish to elevate the confrontaion beyond their control, and the brick represents control.

Most amatuers that I deal with and see on a daily basis are now carrying weapons and "WILL" and "ARE" producing them. The weapon of choice here are knives. Having said this, and as you stated so well, most do not know how to use it, and depend upon them as intimidation. This fact alone makes them a deadly force threat, and should be treated and dealt with accordingly

Other than this small issue, well said. You are right, the amatuer is a "BULLY"

Strength and Honor

Darren Laur

August 1, 2002, 02:11 AM
*clap clap*

that was a good one

August 1, 2002, 11:29 AM
Darren......thank you so much for your feedback. Though I am speaking from personal experience, my "bad boy" days were three decades ago and I should have realized that times have changed. Back when i was a teen, most "hoods" did not carry firearms and very few even carried knives. (there being strength in numbers) But I have an uncle who still lives in East Saint Louis, (Illinois) and told me of a 12 year old (at most) who tried to sell him a handgun. Thank you for updating my knowledge base. If you should ever find yourself coming to the heartland, you would be a welcome speaker at my dojang during adult class.........in any case, please keep posting the information you have researched.....it is benefitting all who take the time to read it.

August 1, 2002, 11:40 AM
I do tell all my students that even a complete idiot is very dangerous when weilding a knife or other lethal weapons, and if confronted by a knife attacker their best chance is to flee. Barring that they should expect to be cut in the confrontation and prepared to fight on in the event they were to be cut.
I also suggest that if time and space permit it (and fleeing is not an option) to quickly take off their jacket or shirt and wrap it around their weaker arm as a possible shield to use if attacked.

I recall a night long ago when I was living in jaurez, mexico. A friend of mine was faced off by an attacker who pulled out a switchblade knife. My friend easily slid out of his 3/4 length leather coat and managed to drape it over the attackers head as he lunged in. A kick to the groin and another to the face put the attacker flat on his back still holding the knife. My friend very quickly stomped hard on the attacker's hand that held the knife, crushing several bones in his hand as he did so.

However, in spite of the fact that my friend was able to keep his cool and prevail I believe it was a rare instance and that he was indeed very lucky.

Darren Laur
August 1, 2002, 10:11 PM

Where exactly is the heartland, what do you teach, and how many students do you have. Send me an e-mail

[email protected]

August 2, 2002, 06:55 PM
- If you fall into the trap that you are only fighting one person, you will become tunnel locked, and the next thing you will find out is someone is on your back

Or, the next thing you know the perp's girlfriend swings her 10-lb purse like a baseball bat right into the side of your head and drops you like a sack of potatoes.

August 6, 2006, 07:38 PM
The professional will usually use one of five “relative” positioning tactics to set their intended victim up for attack:

I've experienced each of these types. This information is great for teaching situation awareness.

Capt. Charlie
August 6, 2006, 08:10 PM
Well Atlctyslkr, ya finally went and done it :eek: !

You resurrected a thread well worth resurrecting ;) :D .

August 6, 2006, 08:34 PM
I have experienced several of the above situations. The last was a few weeks ago at a gas station. While pumping gas, I realized I was being surrounded and set up. Three poor, misunnerstood yoots approached me. One directly in front of me, one on either side of me. The truck was blocking my backside. At the first mumbled question about whether "I would let him hold a dollar"? I replied ***K YOU! Get away from me, *****R!!! This so upset and addled the poor boys that two of 'em broke off instantly. The third mumbled trash talk until he realized he was mumbling to a Portuguese from Brazil(Mr. Taurus).

I long ago gave up compassion and kind words for people who approach me in the middle of the night. I owe these animals nothing.

August 6, 2006, 08:38 PM
Well thank you!

Well Atlctyslkr, ya finally went and done it !

You resurrected a thread well worth resurrecting .

I have e-mailed this thread out to just about every gun owner I know. There is so much to learn here. This thread brought back alot of memories from the times I lived in not so great neighborhoods and was old enough to be on the streets but too young to be armed.

August 6, 2006, 09:15 PM
Darren Laur I loved that post, very long but EXTREMELY informative. Thank you so much for sharing that valuable information, I'm sure many here just like me will use this information and take it to heart! Definately worth passing on this knowledge to others! Just a question about being a ballistic ground fighter, what exactly is that? Does that mean keep trying to move out of the way until you can either get back on your feet or end up on top of your opponents in order to pound away? This post reminds me of when my friends and I sparred a lot in high school, since we couldn't exactly afford classes we would read books and practice what we could learn. However we quickly learned that when we sparred everything we learned kind of went out the window and 9 times out of 10 we either had to resort to sloppy punches and kicks that were effective yet looked funny, or it we had to resort to wrestling techniques and holds.


Capt. Charlie
August 6, 2006, 10:17 PM
I don't know if Darren will reply, Epyon. He hasn't posted here in almost a year, and I'm not sure of his status.

August 6, 2006, 10:19 PM
thanks for the heads up Capt Charlie.


August 7, 2006, 05:52 AM
I am also glad to see this thread resurrected.

However, I would have liked to see someone apply it's relevance to the US where CCW carrying is legal in most states because the original post applied to Canada where carrying a lethal defensive weapon is illegal.

I guess I would have liked to have seen some clear guidance (if possible) in all that to give us who have the means to defend ourselves a "decision point" during those behaviours where it would be appropriate (and legal) to draw and use our weapons.

I find that one of the most difficult things about having the right and ability to use lethal force is to determine what the "point of no return" is in defensive situations.
That's probably why so many people keep bringing up (sometimes silly) defensive scenarios because they are searching for such guidance.

The hardest part for me is if involved in a street conflict that is initiated by another, and if the (could be) attacker is in attack mode but does not produce a weapon, then I feel I still have to assume that he does have a weapon but I just haven't seen it yet.
I feel that it is reasonable to assume a would-be attacker is armed if he is acting aggressively and moving in but not yet showing a weapon... but where do you draw and shoot?

My concern is just as much from a defensive standpoint as it is from a legal standpoint because, first, I'd rather not kill anyone if I can help it (aren't I a sweety?!), but if it turned out that an attacker wasn't armed, I have to wonder of the difficulty of defending that in court.

So it would be great if a LE from the States could use the beginning post as a springboard but apply it to the potential use of lethal force... if that's even possible.


August 7, 2006, 03:40 PM
That's a really great article. But, it leaves one question unanswered in my mind...

Within the "amateur" and "professional" classifications, where do you classify the drug-addict mugger? It seems that the profile of the withdrawal-shaken drug addict looking for a victim to mug for fix-money would exhibit certain behaviors of both classifications. Are there any LE's or former LE's out there who can comment? Are these guys "amateurs" within the description provided above, or are they "professionals"?