View Full Version : Rough Night

February 8, 2007, 02:20 PM
Hey everybody, I have a situation that I need your input on.

As you either know or can figure from my name I am a bouncer at a night club. Last night I had a confrontation with a Hispanic male. The guy was very muscular and it ended up taking several bouncers to remove him from the club. Obviously he didn't want to be removed. After we gave him several chances to stop and calm down we ended up literally throwing him out/ At that point he stood on the street outside the club yelling about how he was going to F*#% us up and all of that kind of stuff.

Anyway after we got him out he kept tryin to charge the three of us. So we called the police they came and at our request we had a no trespass warrant issued. However after the police had taken the statements from all three bouncers and the club owner on scene he pulled us away from the crowd and told us that he subject had several convictions for aggravated assault and battery. And was known to illegally carry weapons. And that we were at that point in serious danger of him tryin to come back and make good on his threats.

I am a concealed carry licence holder but as you all know you can not carry into a bar. So does anyone have any suggestions on how to better defend ourselves against someone like this. I mean I know the obvious about situational awareness but are there any other pointers out there.

Thanks guy.


February 8, 2007, 02:50 PM
Good question.

Wish I had a good answer for you.

My thoughts are based around the consequences of ignoring the "no carry in bar rule" as opposed to ignoring the iminent threat.

I.e...would you rather be cited/fined/fired for being prepared or beaten/stabbed/killed for not being prepared.

As I said...not a good answer...but my thoughts nevertheless. Are you allowed to carry any type of less-than-lethal weapon? Taser? Spray?

Good luck in Dan vs Big hairy Latino Part II.

February 8, 2007, 03:04 PM
You play with fire you get burned, carry illegally and you go to jail and lose your RTBA. Easy for a member here to tell you to .e...would you rather be cited/fined/fired for being prepared or beaten/stabbed/killed for not being prepared.
But they are not paying the fine or doing the time. By the way, what difference does it make that it was a Hispanic male? Just curious why you mentioned that.

February 8, 2007, 03:12 PM
how to better defend ourselves against someone like this.

Many years ago when I did your job :) I had a sap, it is a leather "sock" filled with lead birdshot. One hit almost anywhere and they left real fast.

One nite I took a sawed off shotgun off of a guy, he had it under his coat and was going to shoot one person that was in there. He came down from a rival biker bar. anyway, I was alerted to this dangerous situation so I came up on him asked him to open his coat, he said heck no, one hit to his head down he went, yep a sawed off 12 ga. Cops called he was arrested and taken away, gun confiscated. Cops said I had no worries about them arresting me for the sap, I got it from my cousin a cop :)

Another time I "escourted" a guy out the door, when I turned my back on him he shot me. Ouchie momma that hurt. In the left shoulder blade. The bullet fragged and there is still a piece of it in there. .25 auto. I think he meant to head shoot me and missed lucky me.

February 8, 2007, 03:15 PM
Invite some really good martial artists to hang around for a while. Texas walker types can be good as a gun in this case. Put a permanent restraining order on him first. Keep aware of him, so he can't track you home. Cameras will help.

February 8, 2007, 03:41 PM
Easy for a member here to tell you to


In my defense...I did admit it was probably a lousy answer. :D :p

February 8, 2007, 04:00 PM
Haha, I stand corrected tydephan, you were just the closest example handy.

February 8, 2007, 04:10 PM
you were just the closest example handy.

LOL. And deservedly so. No worries! :D

Capt. Charlie
February 8, 2007, 04:12 PM
Dan, if so permitted, you might want to consider a ballistic vest while you're working.

I don't know the physical layout of your establishment, but would it be possible to install small gun lockers like those used in courthouses at the entrance? I'm thinking a confrontation is most likely to occur outside. A locker would allow you to arm yourself before you leave.

The only thing I'm not sure of is where, near the entrance, you could do so and still be legal as far as carrying in a bar.

February 8, 2007, 04:26 PM
I don't know if this is a good idea logistically. But if there is a need for armed security, and you're unable to carry inside establishments that serve alcohol, then this might be one option:

Speak to the owner about having one (or more) armed staffed stationed outside. You do not go into the bar - you are strictly outside. Other inside staff can take care of getting people to the door, where you can then assist them outside.

This way you can carry. But your primary purpose will be for outside security (i.e., keeping people out and dealing with the drama that goes on out front of busy clubs.

Can the owner carry inside since it's his property? That may be another option.

Can the owner authorize you as his staff to carry inside? Meaning it would be completely separate from carrying inside under authority of a concealed carry permit. Maybe worth looking into.

I dunno -- these are just a few random ideas, and I really don't know the law in your area so take my comments with that in mind. Either way, good luck. That's one job where you'll make enemies. Mix morons with alcohol, add a dose of testosterone, and no matter how rational and fair you treat others, you're bound to make an enemy.

I did it in a country music bar with live bands (and it was more agonizing because I hate country music). Made a lot of good friends, and a few enemies.

February 8, 2007, 06:24 PM
Those are some good answers trip. I would also be willing to bet that the owner of the bar, being an owner of a bar, has a lawyer. You could ask the owner to ask the lawyer about some of this stuff as well.

February 8, 2007, 07:22 PM
Check the laws regarding less than lethal weapons like Taser. That may be a viable option. Also armed staff outside and body armor are well advised. I once took a punch in the kidneys and even with a vest on, it almost brought me to my knees. I shudder to think what would've happened had I not been wearing it.

February 8, 2007, 09:18 PM
Has anyone here considered pepper spray?????? It may not be as macho as a firearm, but it is something that can be carried concealed and doesn't take much training to employ. It won't be as effective against a firearm, however since you cannot carry a firearm into a bar then it's not that big of a deal. You also can also use spray with dye to identify people afterwards (think barfight).;)

February 8, 2007, 09:50 PM
It may not be as macho as a firearm...

What's so macho about a firearm? Does having a firearm make you a tough guy?

February 8, 2007, 09:54 PM
Shotgun behind the bar? With the owner's consent.

February 8, 2007, 11:08 PM
First I would make sure your state law PROHIBITS you as an employee from carrying in the bar. I know that it prohibits patrons, but employees are often covered differently, the same as hiring armed security.

I used to bounce, in the old days, I carried a sap all the time, and used it a lot. At that time it was common use. Then state law changed and it was added to the same category as a slung shot or switchblade. If your state allows a sap, I believe they are the tops in non lethal close defense. However, I have also been threatened by patrons and customers who have really left me worried. Hispanics, without being a racial profiler, seem to be very hung up on the "respect" issue and "Macho" originated in the culture. I have had more trouble with hispanics who felt some degree of disrespect and feel a need to seek some sort of retribution than any other group.

I would suggest you take some appropriate action as far as seeking some way to carry at work, or at least carry to the non public areas of the facility.

February 9, 2007, 04:18 AM
Hey guys thanks for all the ideas and please keep them coming.

However I can rule out some things.

A) Weapon lockers (according to local police they are illegal)
B) Pepper Spray (owners don't want it employed on a crowded dance floor because some may splash or even miss and hit someone else)
C) Armed Security is also a No Go since according to police they would have to have a special security license
D) Shotgun behind the bar/and employees carrying it is illegal in the state of fl to have a weapon in a business who's primary source of income is alcohol.
E) Since it is illegal to have a weapon inside the owner can't carry.

A vest is a great idea I will start lookin for one immediately

February 9, 2007, 08:17 AM
I am a concealed carry licence holder but as you all know you can not carry into a bar.

In your State maybe, but not in mine. I see that as one place any law abiding CCW holder should always carry within - damn shame your State don't allow it...

February 9, 2007, 11:26 AM
Kevlar for everyone!

February 9, 2007, 03:48 PM
That is one tough job I could never deal with, you are between a rock and a hard place. But I think getting the vest would be the best protection from a revenge attack, get the best one you can afford, and good luck.

The Real Wyatt
February 9, 2007, 04:22 PM
Not being allowed to carry in a bar is a law that makes no sense at all, especially for the ladies. I wonder what percentage of attacks on women happen late at night whilst walking from the bar to their parked car? My guess is that it'd be significant.

Not that I want drunks wandering around packing heat, mind you. I think the vast majority of permit holders are more responsible than that.

February 9, 2007, 11:13 PM
A lot of bars around here hire off duty LEO's. They are in uniform, a radio, and have full arresting power. The bouncers handle the small problems, and the LEO handles the bigger ones.

February 10, 2007, 11:59 AM
How about an ASP, or other expanding baton? Or, since most bouncers need/use flashlights to check ID, etc, get the biggest Maglight you can find.

I have a flashlight I bought many years ago called "the Brute." It is a 6 AA cell flashlight that the tubing walls are over 1/2 inch thick! Makes for a less intimidating visual, but is as strong as you can imagine!

I haven't found this flashlight available for years, and there are no markings on it as to maker. If anyone else has seen such a thing, I'd like to get another.

February 10, 2007, 12:22 PM
Maglight, tazer, pepper spray, vest, good size assisted open knife.

February 10, 2007, 06:43 PM
I got this from packing.org: 790.06(12) Cannot carry in. . .

any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which portion of the establishment is primarily devoted to such purpose;

I interpret that as you could carry a gun as long as you don't go to the bar. JMO.

February 10, 2007, 07:17 PM
C) Armed Security is also a No Go since according to police they would have to have a special security license

Yes they would have to be licensed security officers, you can't just get a little sticker that says SECURITY and go at it. All this means is that your boss cannot hire them directly unless he is licensed to do so, he would have to seek Security from an outside source, Wackenhut or some such, they are licensed to provide security.

And beware the Asp batons! A strike on any vital organ, the spine or above the shoulders has been ruled to be deadly force. It is the same as shooting someone. Not to say don't use it, just be careful where you whack 'em.

I think in your case, some type of Taser or something would be one of the most viable options.

February 12, 2007, 10:44 AM
any portion

if you walk in the door you are in violation.

February 13, 2007, 02:19 PM
All this means is that your boss cannot hire them directly unless he is licensed to do so

My cousin is a Omaha police man, he works nights at a bar doing outside security, he carries but doesnt go in to the bar area. He is allowed to wear his uniform too, have you asked your boss if he can hire off duty LEO? IOt may be a solution if he can do so.

Daniel BOON
February 14, 2007, 04:36 PM
if somebody like that was threatening me, I would carry a handgun, probably 2 handguns on my person, and one in the car/pick up.
711 stop and robs policy is no handguns on your person while you are working, or you will lose your job. A 14 yr old boy was shot here after he and his friends ran from 2 men who tried to rob them;
would I carry a gun into a bar under your circumstances? you bet I would.

February 17, 2007, 09:43 AM
First, file a restraining order against the guy. This will help you in a court case. Doctrine of competing harms might be a (weak) defense that would justify (but not allow) you to carrying in the bar. Usually the owner of a business can authorize carry in the establishment just as you can carry in your home without permit.

Unlawful possession of a handgun does not eliminate your right to use deadly force to defend yourself against death or great bodily harm as long as ability, opportunity, jeopardy and preclusion exist. Talk to a lawyer that has worked self defense cases. Their advice would be best.

Others suggested Kevlar and I like the idea. Weapons or defense products used in crowded bars is not the ideal setting in any case.

February 17, 2007, 09:51 AM
...And beware the Asp batons! A strike on any vital organ, the spine or above the shoulders has been ruled to be deadly force. It is the same as shooting someone. Not to say don't use it, just be careful where you whack 'em....


In many States a baton of any type is a "club" and classed as a deadly weapon same as a gun and only LEO that have been trained and certified in such devices i.e. PR24 baton, can carry and use them. Just because they sell them at wal-mart etc... does not mean you can carry or use them.

February 17, 2007, 10:04 PM
Vest and batons as previously mentioned are good options.If a baton is not permissible,a 6 D Cell Maglite could serve the purpose as to "checking ID's".A cane might be another option, particularly if you have had a leg injury in the past.You might also consider carrying pepper exclusively for outdoor use.You would want a pepper spray that also contains CS gas(tear gas) Sabre is good brand.How about a "Stun gun?

February 19, 2007, 06:02 PM
If anything you and the other guys need to sit down and hash out a plan about how to handle this guy or any others for that matter.
Walking around freely in the parking lot is not a good idea,you are open on all sides and alone.
Having a Doorman is a good idea to keep a look out,have him ready to retreat and lock the doors.
But like I said you guys need to talk!
You need to KNOW what everyone thinks and how you will act in every scenario you can come up with.
While no plan is going to hold up when action starts you do need to have a starting place.
Work as a team.
Another thing you might do is ask the police if they can do some extra drive bys till things cool down they are usually more than willing to do so.

Had a friend who with a few other bouncers had to eject a guy from the strip club they were working,the guy tried to fight them as they got him outside, of course he didnt fare too well.
As the guy got in his car and drove past them he fliped them off then floored it and ran over my friend.
He was airlifted and survived but is still not 100% and probably never will be.
The guy was never caught.
Keep your back to the wall always!
If you need to walk around do so as a team of at least 2.
Be carefull out there.
I worked a Biker bar for 2 years im still alive.:D

February 19, 2007, 06:41 PM
Dan, Gotta love them Gator's. I live in Boca Raton, It seems most of the replies are from outerstaters, thanks guys. Read the law's, sure you are not supposed to pack heat in a bar, the fine if I read it right, $25.00. In my opinon, you were theatened and now it's time to protect yourself. Oh by the way if you are just outside of the door what law are you breaking now?

February 24, 2007, 12:52 PM
Thanks again for all your helpful advice, It has not fallen on deaf hears. However the male that was originally spoke of has not made an apparence anywhere near our night club since the original even.

However last night something that seemed simple enough took a horrible turn. And now threats us again.

Last night we had a fight so of course several bouncers including myself responded. We of course separated the two people fighting and than proceeded to separate their friends. However once we got one of the two fighters to the door he turned and started swinging on a bouncer (who already has a short fuse). The next thing I know I am standing in the middle of two people both throwing of fist. Anyway we finally get the BG out however the other bouncer didn't stop and to make a long story short he ended up beating the BG unconscious on the street.

Of course the bouncer was arrested for assault and battery. Which mean he immediately got fired. However have you ever tried to tell a crack head and his friends that the bouncer has been punished? If you haven't trust me it is a useless gesture.

So to sum things up after a while of all the bouncers kind of laying low to get off of peoples radar we are right back where we started.

I just wanted to give everyone an update. Any more suggestions on how to mount a defense against the new threat I am all ears. Thanks everyone.

February 24, 2007, 05:26 PM
You just have to get a new line of work or you'll forever be looking over your shoulder. Unless you are hooked on the "jazz" of the job in which case, good luck.

February 24, 2007, 06:04 PM
Write to the state attorney general... some states have provisions for owners or employees of bars and similiar establishments allowing firearms for the safety of the staff and patrons... If not, perhaps its time to let the state legislature know you don't like their rules..

February 24, 2007, 07:05 PM
OC spray is not an option for were he works, first off OC spray should not be used indoors because more than just the person who it was used upon will likely be affected including the bouncer, so not only are patrons affected but u could be blinded if it is ineffective against the person your using it on and it may get you hurt due to the fact you may become incapacitated. Plus you shouldnt use it in in wet weather or in windy conditions.

A baton of some sort is a decent option if its legal. How about a small folding knife, not a swiss army knife but something that folds and locks into place that can be kept in a poket. Even in the PRK were allowed to have small knives on our persons in most places. A small knife is really a useful tool just to have and in a worst case scenario it gives you a slight advantage in a fight.

In the case of your ex fellow employee, you need to be careful in that sort of situation in some places you can be held liable for his actions, if you dont attempt to stop his attack on the person. I am not sure if you tried to get him away but you need to try.

You may also look into working a diffent bar if you feel the situation is becoming a problem, life to short as it is, just my .02

February 24, 2007, 10:53 PM
Hi all just joined this evening althou I periodically visit the forum and I myself work the rest/bar scene, I have never experienced the troubles Danthebouncer has experienced althou this is Gainesville and alot does happen on Campus so I sympathize with you Dan and I don't envy your job seeing the bounces at the club I work for don't have to deal with to much. So chin up Dan and good luck and please don't send them BG's to my club....lol :D

February 25, 2007, 12:14 AM
Ahh, Gainesville, my ole stomping grounds. Man I loved that place.

Good luck Dan. It seems to me that the younger crowd gets more and more rowdy with each passing year. Look at the NBA all stars weekend here in Vegas last weekend...two bouncers SHOT at a local strip club, plus one patron. Another patron at another club (Cheetah's) shot and killed.

I don't envy your job.

February 25, 2007, 08:17 PM
First mistake:dont lose your temper.
2nd mistake:It became personal.
Once you take it outside and continue the fight when the chance for it to be ended, it then becomes assault.
While I dont know the laws of your state I think most would be on the same line as he was.
Be a PRO not a BULLY.
Most patrons are just wanting to have a good time with drama left to the outside world.
Its the Bouncers job to not escalate confrontation.
Of course that is more easy said than done,always ask yourself if you could have handled it better.

Personally I dont think the Owner knows how to deal with situations and has given poor direction to his staff.
In the end all he will get is a too rowdy s**thole,and then the cops are gona get tired of it and will be on his butt to close down.

February 26, 2007, 04:30 PM
the other bouncer didn't stop and to make a long story short he ended up beating the BG unconscious on the street

Never and I mean never ever go outside, not for any reason at all. Not until it is closing time and everyone leaves at the same time in a group and you all park in the same area. If this guy worked my bar he would have a bad headache from a certain sap hitting him reapeatdly, now the bar may be sued by the guy that got beat up. Bad bad thing. Glad I dont work it any more.

Always treat the customer in a polite manner, dont hurt him at all, restrain him, walk him out of the bar. He may come back tomorrow and spend a thousand bucks. if not? what does it hurt. You wont ever be arrested for being nice to a guy. We used to use "come along" holds etc. or a sap if it got to that point.

Willy T
February 26, 2007, 07:53 PM
He probably doesn't remember what you look like anyway. If he had a habit of shooting like the LEOs said. He probably wont be on the streets. I would chalk it up as a feature of your chosen profession. I would be more worried had he not said anything. Drunks are cowards once they sober up. ;)

February 27, 2007, 12:18 PM
Get your boss to hire James Dalton, jk. Get a vest, keep your head on a swivel and you should be fine. 99.9% of these guys are all talk, so hopefully that's all you'll have to deal with.

February 27, 2007, 01:42 PM
Can't believe I missed this thread until now...

1. Buy a vest. Check ebay. I got mine in my exact size for $120. Its born on date was Jan 2006, so its not old, wasnt used much either. Get a trauma plate or the soft armor paks as well. Very cheap insurance.
When I started working at the bar last August, no one wore vests. My buddy bought one, I got one, and now three others are wearing vests. (Side benefit is that chicks get really turned on by them. hehe)

2. OC spray. Sabre Red is the best out there. Not for indoor use! Use it inside the bar and the whole bar will have to be emptied for at least an hour. It goes EVERYWHERE. But its effective. One guy used the stream stuff, an entire bottle, did nothing on a guy weilding a broken bottle. He ran back to my door, got my Sabre Red, and one blast had him down. We've used it to break up 6 person fights. Everyone wants to make nice after they get sprayed with it!

3. My bars policy is no asps/batons, guns, knives, or anything that can be used as a weapon. The form I signed threatened criminal charges. Yeah right. Worst they can do is fire me. With that said, I would never carry my gun while working at the bar. What are you going to do? Open fire into a crowd of a couple hundred people? Under that adrenalin dump where your motor skills are going haywire? I carry a knife, but its more utility than weapon in my mind.

4. We do patdowns on all male patrons. I have intercepted one gun, and countless knives. Patron can take the knife to their car or stash it somewhere outside. The gun carriers are turned away, we dont want them in the bar. We also intercept a lot of booze people try to bring into the bar. My personal policy is to toss thier alcohol and then refuse them entry. Insult to injury!

We are able to arrest patrons who refuse to leave or who resist. Warn them about the tresspass, and then place them in cuffs if they do not comply. If its an assault we are breaking up, we arrest all parties involved.

The relationship your bar has with the police must not be that great. The cops who patrol the downtown area where my bar is at are on very good terms with us doormen. We've been able to support and assist them, during arrests, fights, and when they get injured we step in to help as well. Most of us are on first name basis with the police, and they have been on hand many times while we are doing our job. The police trust us to do our job.

Not everyone is cut out to be a bouncer. Those who lose their cool are liabilities to the bar, not assets. Whatever anyone may say, bouncing is as much about good customer service and excellent people skills as it is being big and strong.
We get death threats all the time. People talk smack to us left and right. A good bouncer can let all that go.
Be Nice. When you escort someone out, Be Nice. When they tell you off, Be Nice. Be Nice until its time to Not Be Nice.


February 27, 2007, 01:47 PM
Listen to Spiffy he speaks truth


February 27, 2007, 01:54 PM
I would say to check the state law. Under some state laws there is a difference between a patron and a person employed by the bar performing certain duties. Then there is the matter of the owner agreeing. Just doesnt seem like a good place to have a firearm. I would consider a good quality protective vest also as it might help protect you from some knifes also. I might invest in a good heavy duty flashlight also. Spiffy sounds like he has the been there done that T shirt.

Of course once he had em cuffed he could sit on em to restrain the person.

The person would then have this look :eek:.

February 27, 2007, 05:34 PM
Oh please! Figure 4 the legs and have another put their knee on the skull, that baby aint going nowhere!!

We have to be really careful up here how we restrain people. No vascular chokes, no compression chokes. One patron at another bar up here died from having multiple bouncers sitting on him, a year or two ago.
Crossface holds are okay because they don't compress the airway, just the chin/jaw. Armbars get used a lot, and theres this funky 'hug' hold that is pretty tough to break if its deployed properly.

Big +1 on the flashlight. I've gone through three surefires already. Oh yeah, cut resistant gloves are a big help.