Sunday, February 26, 2012

Good advice on protecting yourself and your loved ones from criminals

Fellow blogger 'Officer Smith' has some cogent advice for anyone concerned about their safety and security, and that of their families. Here's an excerpt.

I'm going to say something here that is going to raise some hackles. Then I'm going to explain my statements and, hopefully, make everyone buy it. Here we go. Ready?

Buy a gun. Get a bat. Own some weapon and have enough skill to use it to save your own life and the lives of your family members. DO NOT RELY ON THE POLICE TO SAVE YOUR LIFE FOR YOU.

. . .

Suppose some bad guy comes into your driveway and starts to attack you. When you (or perhaps your hopefully observant neighbor) call 911, what happens? The phone rings in some dispatch center and hopefully gets answered immediately. Now, let's assume for simplicity's sake that you are calling from your own home phone and your call is actually going to your local police. Remember that if you call 911 from your cell phone the call is usually routed to a mobile 911 call center, not to mention they will have the added chore of figuring out where you are if you're unable to tell them yourself.

Anyway, your call in this scenario is answered by your local police and a call taker begins collecting information from you such as your location, the type of emergency and what response is required. Elapsed time so far while you're getting your ass kicked: 2 minutes.

Now the call goes to a dispatcher who has to read the call, decide which officer(s) to send, and dispatch the call. On a good day: probably another minute.

So now you've been fighting for your life, or more likely laying there being beaten upon, for three minutes. The police are on the way. If an officer is immediately in your neighborhood, you may get a response within a minute or two. With four officers covering your entire city, figure 5 minutes is more likely. So you've now been under attack for 8 minutes. And that is under ideal circumstances. Longer times are far more likely. If your attacker is using a weapon of some sort you are most likely already dead or dying if that was their intent. Otherwise, they have most likely made whatever point it was they were trying to make and they have probably fled the scene. At this point the police arrive and find your bloody, beaten carcass in your driveway.

There's more at the link. I highly recommend reading the whole article. It's worth it.

His article brought three previous references to mind. One 'Street Robberies And You - The Basics', was published on the forum, where it's deservedly become a classic. Here's a short excerpt.

No one wakes up in the morning one day and decides to become an armed robber. It is a gradual process that requires some experience and desensitizing. Before a man will pick up a gun and threaten to kill people who have done him no harm in order to get their usually meager possessions he has to get comfortable with some things.

He has to get used to seeing others as objects for him to exploit. He has to accept he may be killed while robbing. He has to accept the felony conviction for Robbery will haunt him all his life. He has to accept he may need to kill a completely innocent person to get away with his crime.

This is a process that starts with stealing candy at the corner store as a child. It progresses through bigger property crimes that may also involve violence. But one day [he] gets tired of selling his stolen property for nothing and decides it would be better to steal cash. Cut out all that tiresome sales stuff.

Keep in mind many petty thieves, auto burglars, residential and commercial burglars, paper thieves, and hustlers will get to that point and decide not to become armed robbers. Most will. It is a special group of outliers who decide threatening to kill people for a few dollars is the way to go.

Once a man starts armed robbing he has crossed a line most won't. Don't forget that when you are looking these bastards in the eye. Their decision to kill you is already made. Your life means nothing to him. Only his does. His sole motivation for not killing you is he doesn't want a murder case. He has already accepted he may pick one up though.

Again, more at the link. Please, for your own sake, go read the whole thing.

Finally, fellow blogger, fellow forum moderator and all-round good guy 'Xavier' wrote two excellent articles on personal defense back in 2006. The first was titled 'Surviving A Gunfight'.

Rule #1 Don't Get Shot! When people get shot, they get hurt. When people get hurt, their survivability dwindles. With each bullet that enters their body, their ability to survive another minute evaporates. Not getting shot is the crux of the matter. The witticisms seem to accept the idea that a gunfight is unavoidable. In fact, the opposite is true. Many conflicts that end in death are avoidable. Therefore:

Corollary #1 Don't get into gunfights! If you can avoid a gunfight, avoid it. People get killed in gunfights. They are not healthy environments to be in. The risk factors with lead flying past you are greater than the risk factors of most other endeavors. Compromise. Let the other guy win verbal challenges. Walk away with hoodlums heckling you. If you do not have to engage others in a lethal conflict, do not do so. It may be your last day on Earth, and you just don't know it yet. Luck plays a huge part in gunfights. A lifetime of building shooting skills of every type can be blown away with just a smidgen of luck, good or bad. Because you are right does not mean you will survive a gunfight. The goal in a gunfight is to survive, not to win, and not to prove you are right. People get the idea that being right is more important than being alive. It isn't. You can prove the veracity of your argument some other time, but not if you are dead. Avoid gunfights if at all possible.

Corollary #2 If you are getting shot at, make it to where you are NOT getting shot at. This may involve running away. There is no shame in running away from things that might kill you. Ferocious animals do this all the time. It is the instinct that allows grizzly bear cubs to become big bad ass grizzly bears, who may still chose to run away rather than become injured in an unnecessary fight. Distance is a target's best friend. A shooter's skill is negated by distance. The more an opponent has to chase and hunt, the quicker he will lose interest.

His second article was 'Recognizing Threats'.

To recognize threats, one has to understand how the criminal mind works. The criminal is a predator. He (or she) sees the world as having two types of people . . . other predators, and prey. Many honest gun owners like to think of themselves as "sheepdogs" but to the criminal, the sheepdog is simply another brand of predator. Like other beasts, it is a matter of survival for the criminal to prey on those weaker than themselves. To select the wrong victim is to become prey. If you want to survive in the criminal's world, you must be seen as a superior predator. Once you understand the criminal's thought processes, most attacks can be avoided simply by removing oneself from the victim selection process. There are several steps to victimization.

Both his articles are well worth reading in full, and highly recommended.

There you are. Four articles and associated comments and responses, all of which will help to keep you safe if the worst happens and you're targeted by one or more criminals. I hope that never happens; but if it does, the information they contain will help you to prevail and survive.



Old NFO said...

Concur, and well worth the reading... thanks!

Anonymous said...

1 - When seconds count, the cops are only minutes away.
2 - It's possible, although quite rare, that cops may be at or near the scene of the crime when the crime occurs.
3 - The only people who can reliably be counted upon to be at the scene of the crime when the crime occurs are: a) the criminal, and; b) the victim.
4 - If you find yourself at the scene of the crime and you are not the criminal, then you are the victim.
5 - Not being at the scene of the crime, in any capacity, raises your survivability quotient. Learn and practice Situational Awareness (see: J.Cooper, 4 color codes).
6 - If you are the victim, that lump of metal and/or plastic on your hip - the one that makes loud noises when you press on certain parts of it - is your ticket to non-victim status.
7 - Just because you own that lump of metal and/or plastic does not mean you have sufficient skill to use it successfully, especially under stress. It is not possible to have too much skill with it; practice, practice, practice.
8 - Regardless of skill level, owning but not maintaining constant close-at-hand possession of that lump will not help you avoid victim status.
9 - Fearing, or avoiding for whatever reason, ownership, possession, and skill attainment of that lump is a signal that you accept, at least partially, victim status. If you object to yourself owning, possessing and developing skill with that lump, but do not object to cops owning, possessing and using similar lumps then you have a psychological problem requiring counseling: It means you have no problem with the administration of lethal force on your behalf, you just want to subcontract the job and avoid involvement. This is called "preparation to become a victim."
10 - Mother Nature is a heartless, cruel, vindictive bitch whose will cannot be ignored; if you believe you are exempt from the forces of reality because of any personal traits you may think you have, re-read this beginning with #1.

Shell said...

I'm throwing the bullshit flag on "Corollary #2". You make someone stop shooting at you by shooting back. I learned that lesson a long time ago as a young infantryman. The only thing running away and looking for something to hide behind does is let the other guy take his time while aiming. Look up Officer Patricia Cocciolone of the Atlanta Police Department for an example. All running away from a shooter got her and her partner was him shot dead and her shot in the head while she begged for her life, and now a lifetime of living with recovering from it.

Peter said...

Shell, note that Xavier said "This may involve running away". It doesn't necessarily do so.

I agree with you that shooting back is often the right thing to do; but what if you're accompanied by your partner and/or children, who aren't able to shoot back? You might order them to get to cover while you distract the attacker by shooting at him, holding his attention; but it might be quickest and fastest for you to lead them to cover before you return fire. Furthermore, if the attacker is at a distance, armed with a long gun, and you're armed only with a handgun, it'll be a very uneven match! Far better, under such circumstances, to get behind something solid and out of the line of fire.

I suppose it's a matter of "circumstances alter cases". I've returned fire when necessary. I've also run like a rabbit on other occasions!

Anonymous said...

great article on arfcom. If any of your friends read this, they would likely get a lot more response if their blogs had a softer background color- white on black is very hard to read.

trailbee said...

Great article. I live in the country, I mean the true sticks, and know that around me there are certain individuals who really aught not to be let loose in polite society. I do pay attention.
The Onion Field!

Stuart Garfath, Sydney. Australia. said...

There is a potentially LETHAL lack of S.A. in the current generation of teenagers, and their much younger siblings.
Recently, May, 2013, an outer Sydney suburb, broard daylight, a teenage girl suddenly had a pistol barrel put to her forehead, got robbed, (that's all-LUCKY!).
Her answer to "Did you see him" , "No, I did'nt see or hear anything".
My point, their S.A. is literally being bred out of their instincts.
If this continues, - I see no reason to convince me otherwise, they will become the ELOI, and the MORLOCKS their predators.
Don't think so?.
Take a walk and you'll see what I mean.It's coming...