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I do my best to be aware of my situation to keep me safe but I have often thought of a scenario that I have no answer for, I'm hoping someone here may be able to help.

Lets say that your walking alone down an alley in the early morning (legally carrying a loaded gun) that seems empty of any people (my job frequently calls for a situation such as this). From behind an obstacle (dumpster, car, bush, etc...) someone jumps out with a gun in your face. Your safety is in immediate danger but you have no time to draw your weapon. What do you do?? Should you totally submit to your assailant, leaving your safety in his hands or would you try to draw your weapon, knowing that it may cause your assailant to open fire? I just can't come up with a good way to get out of this situation safely. Maybe there is no good way out. I would like to hear from anyone who may be able to shed some light on my thoughts.
 

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When you say "gun in your face" do you really mean in your face. As in, within easy reach?
YMMV but I've seen that most people, if they are committed to this course of action in advance, can disarm an attacker. Most
self defense instructors seem to agree that you can not draw and fire in the face of a gun in your face. Basically he has the drop
on you you will be shot. The suggested course, assuming the above commitment to action, is to try and control the assailant's
gun if not take it away from him/her. (BTW don't try to kick it out of the bgs hand, only works in the movies.)

I've seem scenarios where the victim brushes aside the assailant's gun to buy time to draw and fire (one combined motion, left
arm block with right side draw and almost body contact firing of would be victim's weapon). I've also seen and participated in self defense courses and was amazed at how easy it was to both disarm and be disarmed. One of the reasons why a knife is considered by some to be a superior close quarters weapon. A knife cuts and stabs in multiple directions a gun only goes one way and itself is relatively harmless. Grab a blade, ouch, bleeding, fingers on the floor, tendons cut, loss of blood and you're no better off. Now grab a gun, nothing, maybe a small cut or bruise but nothing serious and the muzzle is no longer pointed at you, maybe its pointed at the bg. This is why one never ever makes contact with anyone one is holding at gun point, even from behind. Keep your distance.
Now, hopefully, the would be robber hasn't thought this through and is expecting fear and compliance from his victim so you have the element of surprise working for you. The bgs rarely expect to be attacked.

So what do you do? Depends on: mental preparation, physical ability, distance and a modicum of luck. If you act act aggressively and decisively. Your firearm is probably your last choice of options in this scenario. Run of go for his gun.

or, give him your money etc... and hope he doesn't shoot you anyway. Ultimately your choice.

btw: I put almost no faith in chemical sprays (let's say you have CS or Pepper spray in your hand) as the bg will probably shoot you even if he is really really uncomfortable.
 

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I agree with rse2, with just about everything he said. Especially this line: "So what do you do? Depends on: mental preparation, physical ability, distance and a modicum of luck. If you act act aggressively and decisively. Your firearm is probably your last choice of options in this scenario."

rse2's options are also good too. You can go for the disarm even if the pistol is a couple feet away, again depending on how fast you can close the gap, if you have the training and the reps in also.

One other option that wasn't mentioned was feining compliance. It's your life and I see that you have questions about the disadvantage it puts you in when you asked if you, "Should totally submit to your assailant, leaving your safety in his hands". That would be kinda tough for me, or I think anyone to do. Why? He has already proven that your safety and well being aren't very high on his priority list by putting you in this situation in the first place.

There has to be a reason he hadn't shot you already. He want's you alive for the time being, for some reason. Maybe not for long but he had the drop on you and could have easily pulled the trigger but didn't. Could be he wants a robbey where he doesn't want to make it messy and draw attention because of the noise, or maybe it isn't a robbery but could be a kidnapping or rape.

I believe feining <sp?> compliance at this point would buy you some time. He has the scenario in his head already played out. "I stick gun to this guys head he gets scared, and I get what I want" is a good estimation of what's playing out in his head at the moment. If you get him to think he is succeeding and getting further into his loop and suddenly and decisively put a stop to it, it'll destroy his momentum. He may need a little time for him to react to your action or he just may pull the trigger. So first off you gotta move if you're gonna try to pull something.

You have a real scared look in your face and slowly bring the hands up to motion your complying and saying, "Whatever ya want, I don't want any trouble" but in reality it's bringing your hands closer to his gun. Or you can look scared and offer him your wallet in your back pocket and try for the draw while stepping off the line of force, and move and continue to shoot.

Anyways, there are a number of options you have available to you. Disarm, feining compliance, submitting to him, and or going for your tools such as a knife or drawing your pistol. If you do any of these, don't forget your main objective is not to get shot or hurt. So move off the line of force while commiting to an defensive action.

Ross T.
 

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There is no easy answer for this; there are just too many variables - between which there may be a great deal of different actions to take. Mindset, theorizing, formulating courses of action, practice and drills. But for an answer to a particular scenario, many questions....

What kind of gun is it? A semi-auto? Revolver? Can you see the bullets in the chambers of the cylinder - is it loaded? Is it cocked? Is his finger on the trigger? Is it pointed at your face? Your chest? Is he close enough to you to reach his gun without having to step forward? Is he tall? Short? Does he appear very strong (sometimes even very "small" people can very strong)? Does he seem "sure of himself", confident? Is his stance steady - how are his feet positioned. Is he stationary? Moving his feet around? Does he appear intoxicated (with anything)?

If he is too far away for a grab add things like... How far is your nearest cover? How far away is he - far enough that you may be able to throw a shot at him and take a dive behind something that will stop (or seriously hinder!) a bullet or two?

These are just scratching the surface of many questions I would have. And depending on the answers there might be many courses of action I might take.

For instance; if he has a revolver, and it isn't cocked, and is close enough for a grab without stepping forward - if he turns his head or gets distracted for a second - say a noise or something else - I might elect to grab it tightly over the cylinder (in which case he will not be able to fire it) - and hit him very hard in the adams apple. If successful thus far I would then probably give him another for good measure - depending on his stance and reaction, disarm him, and/or exit fast at this point.

If he is outside the distance for a grab, but still very close; I might say something like "I've got plenty of money - here's my wallet.." And let him have it - a bullet that is - in the face - or alternately stitch a magazine full right up his shirt or jacket button line starting at belt level on up.

Whatever the case, I think practicing some drills - whatever tactics you might plan on employing - is in order. That is, if you have a firing range that'll let you practice any appropriate firing drills. The other tactics, such as the hands on stuff can be at least addressed mentally, or better yet a good school if you have the time and money.

A couple of key points. Whatever you decide, or if an opportunity presents itself, it is generally sooner in a confrontation rather than later that your success chances are highest. Usually the last thing a thug expects right into a such a confrontation is a sudden, fast and pressing attack. And of course once you act - you must "fight to win", and as long as you can fight. Any way you can. Not exactly, but something like 50% of handgun wounds are fatal. Even if the thug gets one (or more) in you - keep fighting. And unless you find yourself with a good margin of physical advantage, if you have to engage someone with your hands who has a gun (or knife) on you, hit him where it'll be sure to put him out. The eyes are another good primary target - the usual reaction to a good poke, or swipe, in even one eye is to "forget about everything else", grab the eye(s) affected - and at least momentary disorientation. This buys a second (or three) of valuable time for a more decisive blow elsewhere, or other action. Finally, never give up your gun. If it gets spotted, or you otherwise find yourself being told to hand it over - don't do it. Distract, bluff, anything; and first opportunity try and take him out.

Oh - and good luck!
 

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In my view, the correct response is always to fight back. Putting oneself at the mercy of the merciless is a sucker bet. One may have a situation arise wherein one can gain an advantage by waiting for the assailant(s) to be distracted, but one ought to either be striking or waiting to strike from the outset.

As Cooper observes, respond with disconcerting alacrity.

Rosco
 

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The best thing you can do is get some training in how to respond and counter this threat.
Thinking about what to do is worthless.
You need to find an instructor in your area that teaches you how to disarm an attacker.
You need to find a school or instructor who teaches tacticle handgun fighting. How to draw and move to cover at the same time and do it damn quick. In the split second the bad guy is taking in your sudden movement, you have time to draw your weapon and shoot him several times. All while moving out of the direct line of fire. I've been trained to do just that. And, every time you move through possibly hostile terrain, you should be looking for ambush sites. Looking for where to take cover in an instant.
 

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Why walk in an alley?

Early morning dark? Large flashlight in off hand, gun in jacket pocket with hand on gun, walk wide around things like dumpsters. GLV
 

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Originally posted by Soujurn:
The best thing you can do is get some training in how to respond and counter this threat.
Thinking about what to do is worthless.
You need to find an instructor in your area that teaches you how to disarm an attacker.
You need to find a school or instructor who teaches tacticle handgun fighting. How to draw and move to cover at the same time and do it damn quick. In the split second the bad guy is taking in your sudden movement, you have time to draw your weapon and shoot him several times. All while moving out of the direct line of fire. I've been trained to do just that. And, every time you move through possibly hostile terrain, you should be looking for ambush sites. Looking for where to take cover in an instant.
Agree on your comments about finding an instructor and getting some training. But I don't think thinking about it is worthless. Visualization is a very good tool to use when thinking of tactics. Also visualization of you being behind the curve is good too. Because you're not alway going to ready or prepared and could easily be taken by surprised. Thinking about different situations helps you see options and different approaches that can be used.

Originally posted by ROSANGHAL:Anyways, there are a number of options you have available to you. Disarm, feining compliance, submitting to him, and or going for your tools such as a knife or drawing your pistol. If you do any of these, don't forget your main objective is not to get shot or hurt. So move off the line of force while commiting to an defensive action.
I'd also like to go on further with what I wrote in the post above. I said the main objective is not to get shot or hurt. But don't fall into the mindset that if you're shot you are out of the picture. Continue the fight to escape further harm.

I have heard some ER doctors, that worked in high crime areas, say what gunshot wounds they have treated and that the victims and sometimes not victims, but people deserving the bullets in them, do fine.

You'll see police reports where bad guys are shot multiple times and still continue on or continue to run.

I'm not saying if you get shot you will do fine. What I am saying is be sure to say to yourself that, "If I get shot I still gotta keep on doing what I'm doing." Weither it's going for a weapon, fighting or fleeing.


Ross T.
 

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I've actually been in this situation three times. I made the wrong decision the first time, and got hurt for it. The other two times I was prepared for what I had to do, and walked away unhurt with the BG's getting arrested (And let go 6 months later, but thats another story)

Sounds like the BG made a poor tactical decision. First of all, the face/head is a small target and is easily moved.

Secondly, and I'll rephrase a movie, "Never bring a gun to a knife fight!". A handgun is a projectile weapon, and is never the best choice in close quarters combat. Its only dangerous in a straight line from the muzzle, and is only dangerous for a millisecond after the trigger pull. Since one, or maybe both hands are tied up in using his weapon, he is less able to block attacks! Step diagonally towards and strike! Strike with everything you have, hands, elbows, knees, head, and feet. Keep striking until he is out! You'll probably be able to hit him 3 or 4 times before he figures out that he has to let go of the gun to defend himself.

I hate to generalize, but chances are the BG is just using the gun for intimidation purposes, and may not have even thought of using it. He won't be a Brian Enos behind the trigger, and he may even be completely unprepared to defend himself against attack. Once he is struck, he will probably have a death-grip on the trigger, not realizing in the stress of the situation that he has to relax the trigger to reset.

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-Electric Armadillo-
"You're basically killing each other to see who's got the better imaginary friend." - Yasir Arrafat (On going to war over religion)
 

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Rosanghal said:
"Agree on your comments about finding an instructor and getting some training. But I don't think thinking about it is worthless."

What I meant was thinking about what to do is worthless because when TSHTF, you react instinctively, NOT according to what you have imagined you will do.
You will react with whatever training you have recieved and PRACTICED. You won't retain what you have thought about any more than just reading a magazine about shooting makes you a good shot.

"Visualization is a very good tool to use when thinking of tactics."

Only to a very limited extent. As a starting point in which to assemble a plan of action. BUT, you must practice that plan physically.
You can't just think about it and expect to utilize it in an emergency.

"Also visualization of you being behind the curve is good too. Because you're not alway going to ready or prepared and could easily be taken by surprised. Thinking about different situations helps you see options and different approaches that can be used."

Again yes, as a starting point upon which to base a plan of action that you physically practice executing.
 

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Let him have the money by throwing it on the ground. From an experience of being mugged in front of the University of Texas @ Austin 5 years ago and in downtown Houston, I found that throwing the wallet on the gound will often distract the attack as he/she has to look down to get the wallet/money clip (preferred with about $50.00). If distracted sufficienctly enough, if you can go for cover and draw and fire.

Kenneth Lew

[This message has been edited by Kenneth Lew (edited 11-18-2001).]
 

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I kinda decided along time ago if somone had a gun pointed at me or drawing a gun on me (provided its not a police officer which has unfortunately happened to me twice) within a pace or two i would go for it right there. Kinda twisted logic, but i figure that a person prepared to shoot me in the amount of time it takes me to step off line and in and get control of his weapon arm was gonna shoot me anyways, and if he hesitates in shooting me i will succeed. its kind of anagolous to a hostage situation with me being the hostage. the threat of killing the hostage only works until you KILL the hostage, and if you dont kill the hostage its not much of a viable threat. works the same way with the use of force i think.

couple more things i didnt see posted. alot of gun designs have flaws that you can turn to your advantage in a grappling situation. guns that have triggers with substantial space behind the trigger you can stick your finger behind the trigger while holding the top of the slide or barrel and then pull the trigger the wrong way. find out who has stronger trigger finger you or the BG. guns with exposed hammers you can jam the webbing of your hand between the hammer and the slide making it impossible to drop. you could also drop the mag and fire the bgs gun intentionally at something other then yourself turning it into a club

[This message has been edited by Mus (edited 11-18-2001).]
 

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Originally posted by Mus:
couple more things i didnt see posted. alot of gun designs have flaws that you can turn to your advantage in a grappling situation. guns that have triggers with substantial space behind the trigger you can stick your finger behind the trigger while holding the top of the slide or barrel and then pull the trigger the wrong way. find out who has stronger trigger finger you or the BG.
Ixnay, thats high precision work in a high stress situation. Keep it simple.
guns with exposed hammers you can jam the webbing of your hand between the hammer and the slide making it impossible to drop. you could also drop the mag and fire the bgs gun intentionally at something other then yourself turning it into a club
This is a good idea if you plan for it. I'd prefer keeping my reactions the same to all handguns. If this happens in low light, and you mistake a revolver for a semi-auto, or exposed hammer for an other, well... you get the picture.

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-Electric Armadillo-
"You're basically killing each other to see who's got the better imaginary friend." - Yasir Arrafat (On going to war over religion)
 

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Dark enough to confuse a revolver for a semiauto at contact range? where is this fight taking place a blacked out closet? since my hands are already on the weapon and weapon hand for a good disarm anyways ill give these tricks a try if the disarm goes badly. the web of the hand trick was used in the lee harvey oswald disarming
 
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