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Old March 28, 2002, 01:27 PM   #1
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Scenario - You have been shot

I posted this thread at GlockTalk while TFL was down. It got some good responses, so I decided to try it here.

For whatever reason, you were surprised by a BG and you find youself with a small caliber pistol (.25 or .32) pointed at you. Before you can react, the BG shoots you in the chest area. Out of surprise (or any other reason) you fall down on your back, still conscious. Once you realize what has happened the BG has turned around and is slowly walking away (his back is to you). You don't think that your wound is going to be fatal and the BG doesn't seem to be a threat to you any longer and even seems to be unaware that your are still alive and breathing. For the sake of the senario, let's say that there are no other people around (no one else in danger). You have a cell phone and a CCW. Do you shoot the BG or let him go and call the police?

If you shoot him, was it "legally" justified?
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Old March 28, 2002, 03:38 PM   #2
Christopher II
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Rational answer - I would probably draw and cover the twit, just in case he decides to turn around and finish the job. Bigger priority is to get my cellphone out and call the paramedics.

Real-world answer - Dunno. I'd suspect that even if you did backshoot the BG, the courts might be biased in your favor (having been shot and all.)

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Old March 28, 2002, 03:55 PM   #3
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If you shoot the BG in the back most states will NOT call it legally justified. No matter what story you make up it won't hide the fact that the BG had an entry wound in the back.

What do you do? Most states want you to call 911 and get yourself patched up. Being a responsible mature individual that would also be my advice.

But it would most definately NOT be what I'd do. I draw my gun, I call him a few names specially reserved for just such an occasion, and the instant I'm not a back-shooter I unload on him and start thinking of a great story for 911.

Hint: Most people will turn there head before they turn their body.
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Old March 28, 2002, 04:27 PM   #4
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Don't know if I would describe on a public forum how I would go about trying to create a legal shoot situation out of an illegal shoot situation.


"Those who live by the sword are probably pretty f***ing good at it."

"Instructions for a successful gunfight: Front Sight, Press Trigger, repeat
as necessary." - B. Braxton
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Old March 28, 2002, 05:03 PM   #5
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Legality of shootin him varies with laws of locality.

He who carries should know the law as it pertains to himself and his actions.

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Old March 28, 2002, 05:09 PM   #6
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The threat has stop and left the area,if you shoot him as he is leaving,you can bet in just about all the East Coast states you will be tried for Murder-1
"I am always willing to learn,but not always willing to be taught"
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Old March 28, 2002, 05:38 PM   #7
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Call 911 and let him walk away. If your medics and your ED have the slightest idea of what they are doing, your chances of dieing are so low that this should probably be considered assault 1 rather than attempted murder anyway.

On a more serious note, I would let this guy walk away while I readied myself and relayed an extremely detailed description to dispatch. My priority is to get home to my family. Letting the guy walk has two large advantages for me. In scenario 1 the BG doesn't choose to reengage- I have a 100% chance of not catching any more bullets. My survival is maximized. In scenario 2 the BG does decide to send some more fire my way. Every step away that he takes is a little bit more advantage conceded to me. Every person on this board is likely a much better shooter than this BG. Every little bit of distance probably takes a big chunk out of his hit percentage but only affords him a small reduction in my accuracy. I would much rather try to pick him off from outside his effective range while he just made a lot of noise in return than stand toe to toe slugging it out with him at ranges where dumb luck has far too much say in the matter.
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Old March 28, 2002, 08:27 PM   #8
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Violent Fleeing Felon

Shoot him. If he shot you and gets away, the likelihood of him doing it again is pretty good, especially if he still has the gun.
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Old March 28, 2002, 09:48 PM   #9
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Only that force which is deemed to be reasonable may be used to stop a threat. After a threat has ceased to be a threat a shot to the back could be considered excessive use of force which could then land you in a world of legal hurt. However, if you can articulate why you needed to shoot the BG you will stand a better chance. The question is somewhat flawed in that you can not reasonably determine if the threat has truly ceased, maybe you fired a round right as the guy was turning striking him in the is possible. So you need to have the verbal ability to explain yourself to the police as well as the gun skills to put the BG down if you choose to fire.

In regards to SDForce's post he is correct if you are a lawman and following the rule that allows L.E. to take down a "fleeing felon," however, I have never seen that statute applied in a civillian case, but you could certainly make the argument for it.
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Old March 28, 2002, 10:40 PM   #10
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citizen's arrest

As a cop, I will not allow a violent felon to escape and shoot others or others trying to arrest him "face to face." As a citizen, if your particular state's arrest statutes allow a citizen's arrest for a felony, arrest him. How do you arrest him? What is the minimum force needed to arrest someone who just shot someone? I don't think the law expects you to take him on hand to hand.
Not in Texas, anyway.
Note on cops taking down fleeing felons: As you may be aware, not all fleeing felons are fair game. See Garner vs. Tennessee. It better be a violent felon, and you better have no rational other choice. Some departmental rules may also bar this, believe it or not.
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Old March 29, 2002, 01:45 AM   #11
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Personally I don't use cell phones (oh the sacrilege!) which makes survival more questionable but I believe the odds are good that the sound of my 45 emptying out will bring help PDQ. I'm summoning help!!!

How long does it take a badguy to turn around? About the same as to carefully aim and sqeeze off a shot? Nobody can prove the BG didn't turn around in mid step as he was advancing to finish you off. You can't shoot behind you while fleeing? Try holding your gun ghetto style.

The only thing I can see that a fatal bullet in his back and one in your front proves for a fact is who fired the first shot. I see that as a good thing since that is going to make the WHY you shot much more important than HOW you shot.
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Old March 29, 2002, 02:31 AM   #12
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The long and short of it is that I am going to do whatever it takes at the time to protect myself from further harm. My tiny little monkey mind is very unsophisticated. It knows that if someone was willing to shoot me once, then 2,3,4,5..... aren't far behind. That the shooter has changed position from where he first shot me is totally meaningless to my survival. If I shoot him in his current position I may survive. If I don't, I have far more reason to believe that he will shoot me again and that I will die.

I know that the Million Momala March bliss-ninnys would have me believe that I was just shot in the chest because the perp "didn't mean it" or "he couldn't help it; it just went off." In their bizzaro world, the perp is just going to wander off and start helping little old ladies to cross the street. But I don't live in their world, I live in the real world, where people that shoot you in the chest, arm or little toe for that matter, mean to kill you.

If I still lived in NJ or MA or any of the other pinko states, I would use this hypothetical to ask myself if I wanted to live in a place that would burn me at the stake for stopping someone that shot me. More importantly I would ask myself if I wanted to breathe the same air as my peers in those places that would, almost to the last man/woman, condemn me.

I did about 8 years ago, and decided that the east coast was not the place for me. For whatever reason, there is a propensity in the northeast to be able to find a moral equivalance between the perp that attacks and the victim that fights to save their own life. In MA where I grew up, the state prosecutes those who fight back far more vigorously than they do any criminal. I'm no Webster, but I can only find one word to describe that kind of society:SICK!

In the final analysis, I would "Rather be judged by twelve, than carried by six."
"This started out as a documentary on gun violence in America, but the largest mass murder in our history was just committed -- without the use of a single gun! Not a single bullet fired! No bomb was set off, no missile was fired, no weapon (i.e., a device that was solely and specifically manufactured to kill humans) was used. A boxcutter! -- I can't stop thinking about this. A thousand gun control laws would not have prevented this massacre. What am I doing?"

Michael Moore
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Old March 29, 2002, 09:20 AM   #13
David Scott
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The proper procedure in this scenario is:

* Draw your weapon and take a good bead on the perp.

* Shout "My people will hunt you down, you $*$__)*#[email protected]#$ $%#&&^(% _($^#^&**)!"

*As soon as he turns, shoot.
"As I looked at my two young sons, each with his gun, and considered how much the safety of the party depended on these little fellows, I felt grateful to you, dear husband, for having acquainted them in childhood with the use of firearms."

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Old March 29, 2002, 10:34 AM   #14
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Shooting him will only be justified if you need to do it to save yourself from death or further bodily harm. With that said:

You don't know if the BG is going away for good or if he's coming back after he does something else. You do know that if he finds that you're alive he'll probably kill you. You may be dying for real but not know due to shock. You need to use the cellphone to make sure you live. If he hears you make a call he'll know you're alive.


Draw and call 911. If he does anything except move away, shoot.

- pdmoderator
Give up no state. Give up no ground.

Last edited by pdmoderator; March 29, 2002 at 04:45 PM.
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Old March 29, 2002, 11:33 AM   #15
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I wouldn't do either one. Instead of calling the police or shooting I would be real interested in getting to the nearest trauma center. There is no way that you can be shot in the chest an realistically think the wound is not going to be fatal unless you could actually see the bullet sticking out of the wound. The fact that it was small caliber means absolutely nothing.
The purpose of CCW is to protect your life. In this senario the way to protect your life is to get to a trauma center. Forget about revenge.
You know the rest. In the books you have read
How the British Regulars fired and fled,
How the farmers gave them ball for ball,
From behind each fence and farmyard wall,
Chasing the redcoats down the lane,
Then crossing the fields to emerge again
Under the trees at the turn of the road,
And only pausing to fire and load.
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Old March 29, 2002, 12:01 PM   #16
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JHP147, You may want to go back and re-read Tennesee v. Garner. Also read: Graham v. Connor, 490 US 386, particularly p.396. Different requirement for law enfocement versus a citizen. Every Federal Circuit in the Nation would justify and support a LEO in shooting this dude in the back. Case law would classify him as a "Present threat". Garner: "...if the suspect threatens the officer with a weapon, or if there is probable cause to believe that he has committed a crime involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious physical harm, deadly force may be used if necessary to prevent escape, and if, where feasible, some warning has been given" (Garner at 10).

"Reasonableness does not require the officer to select the least intrusive alternative, only a REASONABLE" one (supporting cites from every Fed District available upon request).

Standard is to look at the totality of the circumstances. Realizing that LEO and a citizen have different roles, I would feel justified in shooting this dude if I thought there was a chance he may realize he hadn't killed me and pump a few more bullets into me. Shouldn't be a problem unless you are in a state such as Massachusetts or Kalifornia. Again, I may be talking smack and might get myself charged, but I wouldn't give the guy a chance to get another round into me.
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Old March 29, 2002, 01:12 PM   #17
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Here in Utah, I would shoot him as fast as I could. Repeat as neccesary.


1. I am in fear grevious bodily harm. (He just shot me, what is to stop him from doing it again?)

2. The perpetrator has the means to cause me grevious bodily harm. (He has a gun).

3. The perpetrator has shown intent to cause me harm. (obviously).

Under Utah (and most other sane states) I would shoot him. Then I would get myself to a hospital. His walking away is pretty much irrelivant. He is still in shooting range. What is to stop him from turning around and plugging me when he hears me calling 911?

For those of you who live in states where you are second class citizens to the criminals. I feel sorry for you. That has to suck.
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Old March 29, 2002, 03:57 PM   #18
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Here's my reply on this topic from Glock Talk - I'm posting it here as well as one guy flamed me hard for being "irresponsible".

Screw that... He shoots me, I've got my gun, he's taking some lead home with him. If they patch me up and haul my carcass into the court room, just get there early so you'll have a good seat as I will surely be entertaining! I'll take my chances with the jury on this one.

Here's my response to the flame:

My point is this - if someone shoots me and they are still close enough for me to shoot them then that's exactly what is going to happen. And I'm not sure I'd simply shoot them once, either. They are a threat and I will shoot until the threat is no longer so.

You feel that I, "don't have enough respect for the power one wields in a ccw." I strongly disagree. I am not some Rambo wannabe running around hoping that I get to use my weapon. Nor am I a sheep who feels bad that the poor wolf is hungry.

Legal fallout? Give me a jury of twelve of my peers who will hear my story which will be of a reasonably prudent man whose life was threatened by a BG. The BG shot me without provocation and without concern for my life or the well being of my wife and daughters. The BG tried to take all I have away for no known reason. I then used my legally licensed Glock 19 and shot the POS (let's assume I shot him repeatedly). The Good Lord decided that medical attention would arrive in time to save my life and put me on the stand to tell this story. I will trust the members of that jury to put themselves in my place and decide if my actions were justified.

Moral fallout? What moral authority does some POS have to decide to take my life for no reason? However, if said POS shoots me, he has granted me the moral authority to defend myself. And I will. If I didn't think I would defend myself or others then I'd have no need for my CCW, would I?

I'm still happy with my original answer.
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Old March 29, 2002, 06:54 PM   #19
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An empty clip and 10 rounds in the center mass. The End.
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Old March 29, 2002, 07:42 PM   #20
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I concur with full mag in the back with no warning. He would probably turn his head around first, but I wouldn't count on it and couldn't take the chance since the hand is quicker than the eye. The idea is survival.

As for no longer being a threat, well...he very cooley just shot me, so its reasonable to assume that he would do the same thing the next day in the same community. Remember Saving Private Ryan when they let the german soldier go without shooting him (A known dangerous enemy), and some of them later lost thier lives for it. I like the people in my community, how could I let this man walk and endanger my community when I have the means to stop him here & now.

Anybody who shoots me is a known dangerous enemy and deserves no warning. Besides, as he turned away from me to walk away, I very plainly heard him say that he was on his way to my house to rape and murder my wife. You may not have heard it, but I did. No repeat offender there.

Of course this isn't how I'd react to any situation, but the senario said he just shot me...
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Old April 2, 2002, 03:27 PM   #21
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I would do something to get the BG's attention before sending several 230-Gr golden sabre hollowpoints his way. Supposing you make the 9-1-1 call, and the ambulance arrives first, some places will not let the EMT's enter untill the police have cleared the scene. Not quite as big a concern in the city, but in some rural areas, it can be a while before the sheriff arrives.
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Old April 2, 2002, 03:27 PM   #22
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I'm alive, shot, and scared.

I would
Draw weapon. Aim it. If DAO Keltec p-11, put about 6.5 lbs of pull on the trigger, if my SA V-10, flick the safety and lightly touch trigger.

Call 911 with cell phone, if he turns around, shoot him.

If he leaves, fine.....but, chances are he'll hear me talking on the phone and have to experience the Hydra-Shok expansion test on his chest cavity...just hope it hits his spine and drops him.......

If I call 911 and the operator hears me say I'm shot and hears me shooting the BG, then there's a witness for my defense.
"Yes officer it's loaded, wouldn't be very useful as a throwing weapon now would it?"
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Old April 2, 2002, 06:31 PM   #23
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All right. Im shot. Laying on the ground, hes walkin away........

Damn that would piss me off. Id draw my gun and yell at him "YOU FORGOT MY TURN A**HOLE!!
An armed society is a polite society.
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Old April 3, 2002, 09:47 AM   #24
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Honestly, I'd love to say I'd remain cool and dial 911, draw, and cover the BG from the comfort of the floor. I've never been shot...shot at, but not hit. I was pretty pissed off over being shot at so I imagine I'd lose my mind if I were hit. I'm not sure I'd draw and fire. I'd probably just lose control, tackle him and boot stomp a mudhole in his ass!!! Stupid move? Definately, but men do stupid things when they're angry.
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Old April 5, 2002, 02:57 PM   #25
Ben Swenson
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Hmmm ... might you have seen someone in the direction that our perp is walking that you thought was being placed in immediate danger by said perp? Perhaps you thought he was going to continue on to attack the lady and her child across the street or the patrons of a nearby business...
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