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Old February 2, 2018, 08:33 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Lohman446 View Post
Every gas station I have been in lately has a tall enough counter that getting over it (or around it at the ends) is not an instant thing. The clerk handed over the money and the threat ended.

Handing over the money does not preclude taking further defensive action should the threat continue. I'm sorry but if I can hand over the money, take a couple steps back from the counter, and have the threat end without having to escalate violence its a win for all involved. Let those trained, prepared, and using the advantage of numbers handle the violence if needed at a later time on grounds of their choosing to deal with the robbery.

For the record this is not new. Even Wells Fargo in the "wild" west encouraged its agents to hand over the funds if robbed. It allowed the company to move appropriate resources into the area to deal with the threat.

There is a lesson here. A gun is not a hammer and every problem faced while armed is not a nail. Yes a knife is lethal force but complying with the demands, especially when there is a counter between you and the aggressor, is by far the most likely way for everyone involved to escape without injury.



I understand the story as told by the clerk, probably with a bit of tunnel vision, holds the man with the knife was alone. What if he wasn't? What if he was the "point guy" and had "back-up" either in the store or watching through the window. I know that we think we are always going to surprise an individual by pulling our gun and instantly command the situation. In reality we have escalated it and the response may be an escalation we did not count on.

To be critical of the clerk to a degree is one thing. What if things had escalated and she had not been able to get to the gun when she needed it. But to critique, in this case, compliance when it created a desirable outcome seems to be to take all the advantages of 20/20 hindsight and ignore them.

The whole premise "it would have prevented me from being stabbed" ignores the fact that the clerk WAS NOT STABBED and indeed no-one suffered life changing injuries. What different outcome are you hoping for?
Hear, hear.

People who weren't present should be very hesitant to criticize a 'win' based on what they *think* happened. This was a win.

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Old February 2, 2018, 12:23 PM   #27
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Well, This should be fun to watch---

We all know the clerk was right, because we're able see the past. REMOVE THAT FROM YOUR MIND and operate from the premise that you can only base you judgment on the facts KNOWN TO THE CLERK AT THE TIME OF THE INCIDENT. She had moments to make a decision that we get to talk about forever, should we choose.

I'm just paying devil's advocate for the OP here. I am also totally miffed by some of the statements.

Quote:
From the other side of the counter, with the knife up his sleeve, he posed little immediate threat
That's the way SHE indicated SHE felt. Not everyone is the same. His actions indicate/imply the use of deadly force. It most certainly is an immediate threat. He didn't ask her pass the stuffing at the dinner table....... He demanded the money or else, from what could be viewed as "arms length" with a deadly weapon he implied he would use.

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Believe me, there is a lot more to it, including the very real possibility that circumstances or an overzealous prosecutor may lead to conviction on a murder charge.
Quote:
Who could afford to be canned because the robbery was resisted?
If these are real worries in the place you live or work, then leave your gun at home or move. If that's your thought during a deadly force encounter, you aren't thinking clearly. I can see that being a real AFTERTHOUGHT, maybe. That should NOT BE A FACTOR in deciding, in the heat of the moment, how your going to get out of a deadly force encounter alive.

Quote:
Drawing your gun in this situation would have accomplished what?
Well, my first thought, and rational thought, is it would have gone to great lengths to ensure my safety. We've already established the robber has displayed a weapon, which implies the use of deadly force in his mission. Should he choose to proceed with his threat, a gun in my hand is FAR BETTER that a gun under the counter. Action beats reaction every time. I'd like to try to curb the deficit of reaction time.

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Yet, just handing over the cash accomplished the same thing.
Tell that to the literally HUNDREDS of folks who complied with robberies, only to be killed anyway......... oh, wait............

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People are not well versed in defense of self, or what constitutes a threat
Folks KNOW WHEN THEY FEEL THREATENED and in FEAR. Folks know that someone with a knife CAN kill you. What else is required? There is no definition, or "verse" in feeling like you may be killed maimed.

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The whole premise "it would have prevented me from being stabbed" ignores the fact that the clerk WAS NOT STABBED
You only know that because we are looking BACK at it. That COULD NOT have been known at the time. That fact SHOULD be ignored. We can ONLY TAKE INTO ACCOUNT what the person knew WHILE the incident unfolded. In this case it appears SHE didn't feel threatened, but the fact she WAS NOT STABBED has no bearing.

Now that I have played devil's advocate:

Quote:
"...I didn't feel threatened..." Says it all.
Quote:
the thing that she did, handing over the money was the right thing. it shut down the incident
These are totally true, and I agree with the outcome, but to say it would have been wrong of her to pull a gun is hogwash.
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Old February 2, 2018, 12:37 PM   #28
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You only know that because we are looking BACK at it. That COULD NOT have been known at the time. That fact SHOULD be ignored. We can ONLY TAKE INTO ACCOUNT what the person knew WHILE the incident unfolded. In this case it appears SHE didn't feel threatened, but the fact she WAS NOT STABBED has no bearing.
Compliance or defiance is not mutually exclusive if one attempts to comply first. One can comply to see if it defuses the threat and still act if it does not. Handing over the cash does not mystically remove the counter and only in some odd circumstances would prevent you from still backing up.

One can hand over the cash, take two steps back, and still be in the same defensive position he or she was prior to handing over the cash.

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but to say it would have been wrong of her to pull a gun is hogwash.
Drawing a gun when there are other viable methods to diffuse the situation without violence and without sacrificing a tactical position IS wrong. You escalate a situation and escalate the chances of violence occurring.

Handing over the cash does not magically nullify your defensive position nor does it advocate your right to take further action, including drawing a firearm, if handing over the cash does not work.
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Old February 2, 2018, 01:04 PM   #29
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Drawing a gun when there are other viable methods to diffuse the situation without violence and without sacrificing a tactical position IS wrong.
It may be possible to prevent the actual use of deadly force without drawing, bu that will depend on the situation, and only the defender can make that judgment.

That judgment would best hinge upon whether the defender can realistically employ deadly force without being seriously harmed

When one is being robbed by an armed person, the time to "diffuse the situation" has passed.
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Old February 2, 2018, 01:24 PM   #30
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When one is bing robbed by an armed person, the time to "diffuse the situation" has passed
Considering the outcome of the situation (which did not involve violence against either party but specifically against the victim) I question if this is 100% accurate. Any time the victim was able to buy was likely to help her to overcome the surprise of being robbed and respond in a more appropriate manner. Giving the cash to the robber did in fact diffuse the situation at hand from escalating. What if it hadn't? She had not put herself in any weaker of a tactical position as she still had the counter between herself and the robber. Ideally she had also taken a step or two back from that counter (and in her case perhaps towards the gun that was not on her person). Further the robber had lost at least some of the element of surprise. Remember we are talking a brandished knife with a gas station counter between the victim and the aggressor. Her attempt to comply and end the dangerous situation was successful. Had it not been she was in no weaker of a position then when it started.
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Old February 2, 2018, 02:44 PM   #31
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My position on this, based on what we've been told, is it sounds like the woman at the counter made the correct judgement that the cash would end the encounter. It did with no one hurt, the criminal in custody and the money recovered.

Would arming herself been a better choice? We don't know. Since the gun was in the register and not on her it may be a moot point. Did she have the skills necessary? Had the robber come over or around the counter could she have successfully used her handgun? Again we don't know.

If I was in the clerk's position would I have drawn my weapon? How much distance was between me and the knife? We're there others in the store? What was my assessment of the idiot with the knife? Being situationally aware is not as simple as some would like to believe. I know my skills and trust my instincts. If handing over the cash ends the threat I'm good with that, if not so be it.

There are no one size fits all answers to self-defense and the use of deadly force. Threaten me with a knife when I have my family to protect and my response will likely be very different than if I'm behind the counter at the 7-11.

And for the record, inaction is sometimes the right choice.
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Old February 2, 2018, 03:44 PM   #32
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There are no one size fits all answers to self-defense and the use of deadly force
Quote:
only the defender can make that judgment.
Exactly my point to all of those who are implying that she shouldn't have. In this case, it all worked out, but to say it wouldn't have if she had pulled her own weapon is entirely inaccurate.

Quote:
One can hand over the cash, take two steps back, and still be in the same defensive position he or she was prior to handing over the cash.
Quote:
Drawing a gun when there are other viable methods to diffuse the situation without violence and without sacrificing a tactical position IS wrong
And one can make the determination that they are involved in a deadly force encounter (which they certainly are if being threatened with a knife), and draw their weapon. How does that make them anymore wrong? You get to read this story with clear thoughts, time to carefully analyze your answers, and presumably have normal blood pressure, adrenaline levels, and no fear of being stabbed. It's easy for you to make that call from your keyboard. You assertion that drawing a gun in that situation is wrong is, in and of itself wrong.

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Remember we are talking a brandished knife with a gas station counter between the victim and the aggressor
Everyone wants to keep talking about this counter.........Unless that counter was an impenetrable barrier, it's moot. I'm 45, 6 foot, 235 and not a tremendous athlete, but it wouldn't take me but a second to get across a gas station counter. It's certainly not a game changer in this scenario, unless it's it is the type of counter that has the bullet proof glass and "cages" the employee. To quote you with emphasis in the proper places, "remember, we ARE talking about a brandished knife".
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Old February 2, 2018, 03:52 PM   #33
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I also get to make these decisions where I work, prior to an incident, with clear thoughts. Should someone demand the money in the drawer while holding a knife I am setting the money on the counter, leaving the drawer open, and taking a few steps back.

Doing so does not preclude me from drawing a weapon if the aggressor does not leave.

My point is handing the cash over does not make the situation worse. If it fails to appease the robber you can STILL escalate from there.

There seems to be some type of argument that handing over the cash precludes me from escalating the response later should it be unsuccessful in ending the situation. It does not.
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Old February 2, 2018, 04:05 PM   #34
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There seems to be some type of argument that handing over the cash precludes me from escalating the response later should it be unsuccessful in ending the situation.
That's certainly not my argument. My argument is that the idea of arming yourself INSTEAD of handing over the cash is wrong, is in fact wrong.

In THIS particular story, her stating she wasn't in fear makes it the wrong move for HER, but not in general. Folks here are talking about how wrong it would be based on facts that have already unfolded. That's cheating. If you give me the answers to the test a day early, I'll get a perfect score too. The fact remains that that IF she would have been in fear of being injured or killed, arming herself would not have been wrong. If we could all see 5 minutes into the future and KNOW ahead of time that we were making the right choices, the world would be a different place. If you could see that turning over the money would guarantee the safe passage of the incident, and you chose a different path, you're a fool. But alas, you CAN'T see that, so you don't know which path to take, so you can't possibly say it's wrong.
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Old February 2, 2018, 04:14 PM   #35
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I think I am getting confused as to what the argument is. I guess my flow chart goes like this

You have been presented with the threat of force and compliance is demanded

Does compliance worsen your tactical situation? If no comply. If yes reevaluate

If it is possible to strengthen your tactical position while complying without escalation do so.

Did compliance work to alleviate the threat? If yes report to the proper authorities. If no reevaluate.

Now if I'm the only person there and ten feet behind the counter compliance would weaken my position by bringing me closer to the threat. Not gonna do that.
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Old February 2, 2018, 04:23 PM   #36
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I think I am getting confused as to what the argument is. I guess my flow chart goes like this

You have been presented with the threat of force and compliance is demanded

Does compliance worsen your tactical situation? If no comply. If yes reevaluate

If it is possible to strengthen your tactical position while complying without escalation do so.

Did compliance work to alleviate the threat? If yes report to the proper authorities. If no reevaluate.

Now if I'm the only person there and ten feet behind the counter compliance would weaken my position by bringing me closer to the threat. Not gonna do that.
I can agree with your flow chart if that's what YOU'RE comfortable with. That's YOUR comfort zone, but to say:

Quote:
Drawing a gun when there are other viable methods to diffuse the situation without violence and without sacrificing a tactical position IS wrong
is not everyone's comfort level. Maybe it's wrong for YOU, but you can't speak for everyone.
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Old February 2, 2018, 04:42 PM   #37
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Should someone demand the money in the drawer while holding a knife I am setting the money on the counter, leaving the drawer open, and taking a few steps back.
If your perception of the situation is that doing so would represent your best chance of not being seriously injured, that would be a prudent strategy.

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My point is handing the cash over does not make the situation worse.
Nor does it address the danger. It may result in the robber's not harming you, or it may not.

Of course, the same thing applies to drawing a weapon.

Quote:
Doing so does not preclude me from drawing a weapon if the aggressor does not leave.
What makes you think he would allow you to do that?

Quote:
If it fails to appease the robber....
You may be able to take further action. Or not.

Quote:
...you can STILL escalate from there.
I would not refer to defending oneself against someone who has the ability and opportunity to kill or seriously harms you, and who has threatened to do so, as "escalation".

Compliance may be the thing to do, if trying to stop the robber with force would be too risky under the circumstances.
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Old February 3, 2018, 08:33 PM   #38
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Wow, for once my reply has increased forum replies! This might be a good forum to be on....

Some background I might should have added:

*Her counter is unusual, it's not against a wall, it's in the center of the store with two registers opposite each other separated by 6 to 8 feet. The counter is only broken at the back wall and the counter forms a bulged "U" shape with the bottom of the U towards the front door and registers at the 3 and 9 O'Clock positions. The counter is slightly less than waist high or as high as a kitchen counter. There is no glass, wall, cage, etc. *Such things are unknown here, even at the pharmacy.

I got the impression the firearm was at the other register, just an impression, she was not specific. Something in her body language suggested that to me. That's assuming there was a firearm....she might have just said that.

My thinking and training when it comes to facing a serious threat:

If an assailant has the ability, motive, and opportunity to cause grave or lethal harm, the time for discussion has ended. In this case, that ended the moment the knife was shown.

The sooner an attacker is resisted the more likely the encounter will end favorably. Resistance is most likely to be successful when it's overwhelming.

Why should we trust the man to behave himself? He's already shown a lack of rational thinking by committing armed robbery and threatening to kill the clerk.

849ASCO hit upon that and this point very well, a lot of people can get over a kitchen counter. The clerk did not describe the assailant's body type. I will assume "meth-head skinny." I don't think there are many obese robbers around here....if so they must be very good at their craft.

With this in mind, I'm interested why no one has mentioned the Tueller Drill. Anyone familiar with that is going to want to put as much distance as possible between themselves and the threat, not move closer, distract themselves by opening drawers and grabbing cash (which would also occupy the gun hand), etc.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tueller_Drill

I also tried to look at this event without knowing outcome, anything else defeats the purpose of the discussion. Further, I'm a very alert person by design and when I worked stop and robs I was even more so. I would know if he had a friend along or not. I incorporated multiple assailants into my "rules of engagement" planning as well. My reload was the "New York" variety.

I don't know if this has been mentioned or not, but there are many "right" answers to this situation but we can't test any, only discuss it.

Last edited by In The Ten Ring; February 3, 2018 at 09:01 PM.
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Old February 4, 2018, 11:56 AM   #39
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Compliance may be the thing to do, if trying to stop the robber with force would be too risky under the circumstances.
I certainly agree with that. I don't think that is the only time compliance is an acceptable option though. I also believe there can be circumstances where noncompliance is required, even if the risk of failure is high. Going to a secondary crime scene, e.g. a stock room, is never an option.

I am not going to draw on a strung out kid with a knife under his sleeve, who is separated from me by a physical barrier, unless I have to. I am also not going to play cop and try to disarm and hold him until police arrive. If he gives me no choice I will draw and use my weapon until he stops his attack. If he takes the money and leaves that is a successful encounter in my opinion.
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Old February 4, 2018, 02:12 PM   #40
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I'm confused. Where in the clerk's story was the assailant described as "strung out" or a "kid?"

I don't consider a countertop as a "barrier." Walls and fences are "barriers" while countertops are "obstacles." I cannot consider myself "fit" at the moment but I know for a fact I can still hop over a countertop in less than a second, perhaps faster if I was upset over something.

There are many cases and youtube videos, of attackers being shot and still managing to stab their victims. See Tueller Drill.

Now, one could have opened the drawer, said "have at it" and backed away towards the back wall, ready to draw.....one could advocate that option, in this particular case. If the robber hopped the counter, now being on the same side as the clerk.......the clerk is going to get a bit more nervous.
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Old February 4, 2018, 03:12 PM   #41
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I am not going to draw on a strung out kid with a knife under his sleeve, who is separated from me by a physical barrier, unless I have to.
How do you know when you "have to?".

Quote:
I am also not going to play cop and try to disarm and hold him until police arrive.
Good thinking!

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If he gives me no choice I will draw and use my weapon until he stops his attack.
What sign would you look for? Without a barrier, the presence of the contact weapon, the demand, and a proximity of a few yards would define the time as now. And we do not know much about that "physical barrier", do we?

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If he takes the money and leaves that is a successful encounter in my opinion.
Yep.
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Old February 4, 2018, 03:17 PM   #42
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Ten ring your confusion is that in spite of your great experience and exceptional alertness, I disagree with your preconceived action plan.

I'm familiar with Tueller and how fast things happen in an encounter and you may be right that the robber wasn't a strung out kid. Neither of which change my view of using lethal force unless it is required.
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Old February 4, 2018, 03:34 PM   #43
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I'm familiar with Tueller and how fast things happen in an encounter...
Then you understand that you will have a very sort time in which to try t odors and fire.

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... and you may be right that the robber wasn't a strung out kid.
Irrelevant. He was an armed robber.

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Neither of which change my view of using lethal force unless it is required.
The whole point of Dennis Tueller's demonstrations was to illustrate that one who is threatened by a person armed with a contact weapon within, say, 21 feet woud not be able to respond effectively if he waits.
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Old February 4, 2018, 05:33 PM   #44
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Neither of which change my view of using lethal force unless it is required.


Where have I typed "I would have shot," based on what the clerk told me, and I stated in my first reply? Drawing and pointing is not the same as "using lethal force."

It hasn't been mentioned but maybe this is where some confusion lies---much CCW training includes "if you have to draw you have to fire" based on the assumption that the only reason to draw is to counter an immediate lethal force threat.

I don't believe that is good advice as many threats can be stopped without firing.....I realize we get into legal areas of "brandishing" and whether or not pointing is "lethal force" itself but if I can prevent my own injury or demise without harming the assailant I will do so, and worry about that silliness later (and charging the victim with brandishing in such a case would be silly).

I think drawing and pointing would prevent the assailant making good on his threat to kill the clerk....it's the only thing realistically guaranteed to do so. Criminals should never be taken at their word. They are already untrustworthy, else, they wouldn't be criminals.
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Old February 4, 2018, 07:59 PM   #45
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...much CCW training includes "if you have to draw you have to fire" based on the assumption that the only reason to draw is to counter an immediate lethal force threat.
That is NOT true. I don't know who you trained with or trainers you know - but no quality person and I've been at this for many years - says this.

If one of the licensed trainers in TX said this, they would be removed.
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Old February 4, 2018, 08:00 PM   #46
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Ten ring I am not one who believes that drawing a weapon means that it must, or even should be used. Drawing and pointing a handgun is using lethal force by definition though, whether you believe it or not. You have brought into play force that "is readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury."

OldMarksman I'm not advocating hesitation or delay in a lethal attack. I clearly understand that the speed at which things can happen in a fight is shocking. I'm simply saying that what is the correct response in one situation may not be in another. I'm also saying that given the opportunity, I will avoid using lethal force even if a case can be made that it is, or would have been, justified.
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Old February 4, 2018, 08:43 PM   #47
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If that counter does not represent some type of obstacle (the point that calling it a barrier was incvorrect stands) then compliance may be even more called for. See the reference to the Tueller drill above. I’m not certain what compliance with the demand to hand over the cash costs the victim. He or she can tactically benefit his or her position by handing over the cash and backing up. It also gives the victim a moment to overcome the surprise of the threat. No drawing your gun does not mean you have to fire. Not drawing your gun also does not mean you cannot later. I’m not suggesting compliance such as moving to a secondary location, laying down, or even kneeling when confronted with a knife.
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Old February 4, 2018, 09:47 PM   #48
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I’m not certain what compliance with the demand to hand over the cash costs the victim.
It just might cost the victim his life, or serious bodily harm.

Quote:
Not drawing your gun also does not mean you cannot later.
It just might mean exactly that.

A decision to not draw, and fire if necessary, would be appropriate if (1) the victim might be unlikely to prevail under the circumstances, or (2) indications are that drawing may result in increased risk to others,
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Old February 5, 2018, 10:23 AM   #49
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It just might cost the victim his life, or serious bodily harm.
The scenario could have cost the victim his or her life or serious bodily harm. What tactical advantage would have been lost by handing over the cash and stepping back a couple steps? The victim in this case already started at a tremendous disadvantage. Buying a couple seconds seems to me to only be able to lessen that disadvantage.
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Old February 5, 2018, 11:33 AM   #50
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The scenario could have cost the victim his or her life or serious bodily harm.
Yes indeed!

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What tactical advantage would have been lost by handing over the cash and stepping back a couple steps?
Come now! The ability to step back unharmed, or the ability to do anything else, for that matter, would be lost, should the robber opt to use the bladed weapon at short range.

Quote:
The victim in this case already started at a tremendous disadvantage.
Yep.

Quote:
Buying a couple seconds seems to me to only be able to lessen that disadvantage.
"Buying a couple of seconds"? Such a "sale" would require the agreement of both parties.

There are times when compliance may be more prudent than resistance, but only when it appears likely that resistance might not represent a successful strategy.

In such a circumstance, compliance just might prevent bodily harm...but there is absolutely no guarantee.

I think you would likely benefit from a few session of quality FoF training in various scenarios.
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