Interesting story at defensive driving seminar today

Discussion in 'Firearm Related' started by GFLinTX, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. GFLinTX

    GFLinTX New Member

    181
    0
    0
    So, having PCSed to Fort Bliss, I learned that all soldiers 26 and under have to attend a course on defensive driving. Just a class that's about two hours long. As dumb as I thought this was, I went this afternoon.

    At one point, the instructor, this gruff old ex-NCO type, tells us this story from a few years ago.

    Some retired CSM was driving down the highway in the left lane in a sedan, when a large SUV driven by some woman came flying up behind him. Got right on his butt, started honking, flipping him off, just showing crazy amounts of road rage. Well, the soldier drives on, taking several miles to pass all the people he feels like passing before getting into the right lane. The lady then pulls up next to him and continues flipping him off and yelling at him and so on. Then she starts SWERVING at him, deliberately trying to run him off the road.

    At this point, I nudge my friend and say "If that was me, that :censored: would be about ready to get shot." I figure, the swerving constitutes a deadly threat to his life, and a corresponding amount of force is now authorized to protect his life. At the very least, a gun could be drawn to persuade the lunatic to stand down.

    The instructor continues on with his story, telling us that the CSM then pulled out a 1911 (especially eerie since I often carry a 1911) and immediately fired a shot through the passenger side door, hitting the crazy woman in the abdomen. Turns out she was pregnant, unbeknownst to the soldier, and the bullet performed an on-spot abortion. The soldier went before the judge and said that in all his SF combat experience, he'd never been as terrified by anyone as he was by this woman (hey, I'm just telling this story as it was related to me). It didn't work, and he got 15 years for manslaughter while the lady got 90 days for being a whackjob.

    I just thought it was kinda spooky because after my smart-alec remark to my friend, that turned out to not be such a good idea. But, I mean, if any person is pulling maneuvers like that in a vehicle that is so much larger than what you're driving, wouldn't self defense have a valid argument? Trying to run someone off the road with a Suburban is just as threatening as holding a gun or a knife on someone as far as I'm concerned. And if there were witnesses to testify as to what the whacky woman was doing, I just don't see how this wouldn't stand.

    And on another note, I think we can all agree that someone with those sorts of mental issues shouldn't be having children. Not that her kid deserved to get popped by a .45 ACP, or that loony people should be sterilized...I'm just imagining how things would be in a more ideal world (i.e. the lunatics and the morons keep their legs shut).

    Flame on.
     
  2. Adam5

    Adam5 Atlanta Overwatch

    13,602
    155
    63
    He got what he deserved.
     

  3. 175FO

    175FO Member

    908
    17
    18
    all i can say is, Darwin was right
     
  4. HydroAuto

    HydroAuto GPDO Commonlaw Spouse

    5,514
    0
    36
    Not saying one way or the other, but the court/jury is going to look at what other options the person had as an alternative to drawing and firing on the whacko. Could one have slowed down? Could one have sped up? Pulled over and waited a couple minutes?
     
  5. I think that if she was attempting to run him over while he was out of a car, with no protection, then popping the b**** through the car while she attempted to kill you would be justifiable.

    I feel he was justified in what he did because he was defending himself against a crazed individual, and had she not been pregnant, I doubt he'd have gotten that kind of judgment. I do understand that a judge, depending on their views of fetus-protection, will instantly condemn whoever harms the unborn, even if the woman was attempting to kill this man with a chainsaw and he shot her in the stomach, terminating the pregnancy, but not fatally wounding her.

    Good point, though if he had tried slowing down or speeding up, and she still wanted to cause a confrontation by using her 3+ ton Suburban as a weapon, do you think the jury would have changed their mind? I personally don't think so.
     
  6. GFLinTX

    GFLinTX New Member

    181
    0
    0
    I see your point, but just to play devil's advocate for a minute, aren't there are other ways to deal with an armed robbery?

    If I'm walking down the street one night, and a passerby, even a pregnant woman perhaps, pulls out a pistol and says, "Gimme yo wallet, punk", my thought process is going to be that while he certainly poses a danger to me, his intention is not to kill me, and he really just wants to support his lifestyle (be it by buying crack or by feeding his family). Yet, if I draw my weapon on him and blow him away, the jury is almost certainly going to side with me (if it even gets that far).

    I don't think whoever is judging me will claim that there were other options, such as simply giving him my wallet and allowing him to run off into the night with a few soon-to-be worthless ATM cards.

    Basically, while being compliant in a robbery would work, I don't think anyone would blame you for not being compliant. So my question is, what is the difference with this case?
     
  7. groats

    groats New Member

    2,568
    0
    0
    Um.. most vehicles have these things called 'brakes'.

    If he had pulled over and stopped, either the SUV would have driven on - giving him an opportunity to get the tag# and report it, or they would have stopped and either fought hand to hand (not likely) or tried to back up and run him over. In that last event, shooting might be justified. IOW, there were other options available.
     
  8. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

    10,783
    312
    83
    I'm not a fan of ever brandishing a weapon that you don't have a need and intention to use, but if someone is threatening to hit my vehicle with theirs, I can legally threaten the use of force, so I would have been tempted to brandish my 1911 to put an end to the nonsense. Shooting at her, regardless of her reckless stupidity, is out of the question.
     
  9. groats

    groats New Member

    2,568
    0
    0
    And even though there is no 'brandishing' law in Ga, there's a guy here in my county that got several years in prison for doing exactly that to a car full of women who followed him for miles, just inches off his rear bumper. He didn't fire a shot, just showed the gun, and they backed off (and called the cops).

    Basically, if it's idiot women against armed men, the women win every time. A judge or jury are going to consider whether you had other options, such as: pull off the road, try to outrun them, or just stop suddenly, let them hit you, and sue for damages.
     
  10. martin_j001

    martin_j001 Active Member

    2,611
    0
    36
    I find it utterly :cantsay: :cantsay: dispicable that people in this country feel that cars can regularly be used to "get their way" in traffic. That action, in my opinion, is using your car as a weapon and nothing more. I'm very, very tired of hearing about and witnessing people swerve at eachother, tailgate eachother, honk and flash brights, swerving around, etc. Driving is a privledge, not a right--and its a privledge many people shouldn't have. 45,000+ people die a year in automobile related "accidents", and yet there is very little that anyone seems to want to do about it. Even the authorities and gov't would just prefer to use it as a way to collect revenue than actually make roads SAFER. Yes, there were other options in this story, but the woman got what she deserved, IMO--use of deadly force is use of deadly force. If only she were removed completely from the gene pool it would have been a better story. Its too bad the shooter ended up taking all the heat for this one.
     
  11. Agreed entirely!
     
  12. Hock25

    Hock25 New Member

    4,148
    0
    0
    And, the reveal is why the class is required for under age 26. You didn't think the class was a waste of time, did you?
     
  13. Hughduffel

    Hughduffel Member

    427
    0
    16
    I've pondered the scenario of another highway driver using their vehicle as a weapon against me (especially since I ride a motorcycle) and my first thought is that killing the driver of a car on a fast moving and crowded highway is likely to result in a lot of collateral damage, and likely additional loss of life. Which begs the question, how many lives may you endanger to protect your own? In the given scenario, they were driving side by side, could he not have just slowed down and allowed her to pass by instead of shooting and possibly getting other drivers killed?
     
  14. mrblah

    mrblah New Member

    20
    0
    0
    As many as it takes
     
  15. mountainman444

    mountainman444 Active Member

    1,454
    18
    38
    Going to agree with you. If he would have slowed or stopped completely and she still came after him then it would have been justified though he still may have been charged (big burley solider against frail pregnant woman). It would have looked a lot better to the eyes of the jury. IMO
     
  16. Aberk

    Aberk Custom User Title

    1,663
    5
    38

    Are you sure a jury will see it that way?
     
  17. mrblah

    mrblah New Member

    20
    0
    0
    if my life is truly in danger, the last thing I'm thinking about is what a jury thinks
     
  18. Aberk

    Aberk Custom User Title

    1,663
    5
    38

    Good luck with that. You may want to consider the consequences of your actions and really think about if your life truly is in danger.

    IMO this guys actions were not justified as his life was not truly in danger. There were other courses of action he could have taken without the use of deadly force...this is of course assuming he wasn't boxed in by other vehicles too.
     
  19. mrblah

    mrblah New Member

    20
    0
    0
    reread what I said, I specifically said "if my life was truly in danger"

    in a life or death situation who has time to think about the consequences of a jury? This guy was protected in his car, not in danger imo
     
  20. Aberk

    Aberk Custom User Title

    1,663
    5
    38

    The point I was trying to make was that will a jury think your life was truly in danger...I know YOU think your life was truly in danger, but you need to be able to see it from another person's view point.