What Would You Do

Discussion in 'In the News' started by gunsmoker, Sep 28, 2006.

  1. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    What would you do in this situation:

    You are a legally armed person. You stop at a convenience store for gas. You pump gas and go in to pay for it. You had not noticed a couple of teenagers off to the side of the parking lot, but they were there. They had guns. After you enter the store, they walk toward the front door a few paces behind you, and when you see the look on the clerk's face you turn toward the glass door and see what she sees... these two punks with guns in their hands approaching the the store's glass doors. You can see them clearly through the windows which make up the entire front wall of the store. There is another fellow at the gas pumps, behind the teenagers, but not directly behind them, and you do not want to wait for the youths to actually enter the store before you take action...

    ... so what do you do?

    Oh, and if it matters, you are are a middle-aged white (Caucasian) male, trained in gun safety and a good shot. The youths are black (African-American). This takes place in a county in the metro Atlanta area that is mostly white, but with a significant hispanic population and a smaller number of African-Americans. These guys are not wearing masks, and they are not wearing any body armor-- it's a hot summer afternoon.

    I do not know what kind of guns they have. Semi-auto pistols, revolvers, long guns, etc. Does it matter? If it would matter to you, please explain why. Let's say that it looks like one of them has a large-caliber revolver, maybe a .357 or .44 with a 6" barrell, and the other has a medium-sized semi-automatic, of a make and model that you do not immediately recognize.

    After a few of us have commented about what we may have done under such circumstances, I will cite a court case involving the guy who WAS faced with exactly this situation, and we will see the choice he made and the result of it.
     
  2. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Piss myself. I am scared of punks with guns.
     

  3. kkennett

    kkennett New Member

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    This sounds like more of a tactical decision than a legal one. Assuming, arguendo, that you have more than a step or two on these fellows, I'd probably seek some cover and a better tactical position than standing right in front of the doors facing two opponents who have weapons drawn while yours is not. While the post certainly sounds like one could well be in imminent danger of great bodily harm, we still don't know much about where they are pointing these guns, if they are saying anything, etc. If, on the other hand, these guys are one or two steps away with their guns drawn, you will certainly not beat them to a draw of your presumably concealed weapon. Then, the best option seems to be compliance and humility until you can buy yourself some more space and time, or the shooting starts, whichever occurs first.
     
  4. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Must be Gwinnett.
     
  5. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    My decision

    I think that if I were caught carrying my mousegun, as I occasionally do, I'd also piss myself, but I'd draw it, hold it behind by back, step behind something that offers the most cover and concealment available in the store, and wait to see what happens. If they come for me, I'd have to just shoot the nearest one, probably starting with two in the face, and then dive for HIS gun and turn it on his buddy. Ever see the scene in Die Hard where the bad guys find one of their own, bloody and dead, in an elevator, with his weapon missing, and a nearby message written in blood-- NOW I HAVE A MACHINEGUN? That's what I'd try to do.

    If I had my primary CCW with me, I'd be inclined to immediatly draw (not taking cover unless it was right next to me by chance), aim at the front doors which the robbers are about to enter, and yell "BACK OFF!" or "STAY OUT-- I'LL SHOOT" or something to that effect.

    Then, if they tried to enter the store still openly carrying weapons (not holstered, not slug over their shoulders, but in their hands), I would probably presume that they were homicidal / suicidal and just open up on them right at the door, even before they could fully enter the store.

    My goal would be to have their bullet-riddled bodies stacked on top of one another half-in and half-out of the door. That way if there's a third one running a few seconds behind them, he'll have to climb over the corpses of his friends to get to me, unless he wants to just shoot through the glass from some distance away, which I suppose he could do. After he gets the glass out of my way, and assuming he doesn't get a lucky hit on me, I'll use the hole in the thick tempered glass that he just created to pop his 10-ring a few times until he also begins to assume thermal equillibrium with his environment.


    At least, that's what I might do, or might have done. But that's not exactly what the armed good guy did when confronted with this situation, in the late 1990s in Hall County.... (isn't that considered the metro Atlanta area? I think it is now, and probably was then, too)
     
  6. brett30030

    brett30030 New Member

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    i know one thing for sure. I would never post my opinion on the internet, where it could be used against me by an aggressive defense attorney. It happens, that is why many forums forbid "what if" situations like you posted. Plan for the situation, don't publicize it. :!:
     
  7. johnpeace

    johnpeace New Member

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    Can you cite the reference to the case in which the defense (is that what you meant? Or did you mean district attorney...who would be the prosecutor?) attorney used internet forum posts as evidence in a self-defense case?

    I'd like to read about some of those cases...
     
  8. Molon Labe

    Molon Labe New Member

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    Planning is good. Running scenarios in your mind is good. I've posted this here before but I will post it again. I took a class called "the test" from David Blinder (personaldefensetraingin.com - I'm not affiliated and receive no money. I haven't even spoken to David since I took his class) and in this class we ran through scenarios like the one you post. One of David's points was that if you know what you would do before hand then when you are confronted with the situation you will react that much faster.
     
  9. johnpeace

    johnpeace New Member

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    I can see the potential for it being the wrong decision...but in all honesty, if I saw thugs with guns drawn approaching a convenience store I was in, I would be inclined to get my gun out and into play as soon as possible (as in, before I'm dead).

    Seeking cover is good. Waiting to be absolutely sure they're bad guys could get you killed. On the other hand, walking across a parking lot with a gun in your hand is not (that I know of) a crime...and certainly not a forcible felony. One might be wise to wait until they point the gun at someone or make some overtly threatening gesture, statement or movement before defending oneself.

    I want to take that 'The Test' class...
     
  10. johnpeace

    johnpeace New Member

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    Actually, rereading the scenario brought up a few points:
    No, I don't. I pay at the pump. On the rare occaision that I go inside a convenience store, my awareness level is through the roof...it gives me a really vulnerable feeling just being there.

    That's not possible. If I'm in a convenience store, my awareness level and threat assessment is at it's highest level.

    Not that it would really matter that much, except for giving me a few more seconds to think. I am, after all, cornered in a store.
     
  11. thebugman

    thebugman New Member

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    Unfortunately, that was my very first thought. :(
     
  12. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Re: My decision

    That is exactly the county I was thinking of, until I saw it described as "metro Atlanta area."

    That is when I switched to Gwinnett.
     
  13. Sharky

    Sharky New Member

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    I live in gwinnett and maaaaaaan it sure sounds as if it is gwinnett! I do as mentioned and pay at the pump. I hate going inside, partially lazy and I can accomplish the same task rith at the pump!

    I have thought of that scenario however more from the pumping and being approached like that, say in an attempteed car jacking. I always lock my doors when I pump gas and just be aware. I dont lke living in fear, but as mentioned try to prepare for something I have only had happen once.
     
  14. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    Added detail

    Okay, here's a detail that I left out, which may be important from a tactical standpoint.

    The armed youths had been standing off to one side of the convenience store building, not really in front of it, so that nobody in the store would have seen them by looking out the windows, up until they approached the door. When they approached the door, they did so from the side, at a perpendicular angle to the imaginary path that would be straight in/out of the door. Thus, they were traveling right next to the windows, as they crossed by each of the glass panels, heading across the front of the store.

    What would you do?
     
  15. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Re: Added detail

    I would not go to no gas station with no "imaginary path," for one thing, senor!
     
  16. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    One response?

    So one person besides myself has an answer to the question? ("I'm too smart to put myself in such a situation in the first place" is not a helpful response, and I doubt it is even truthful.) ANYBODY can find themselves inside a store when something bad like this goes down.

    If you don't have enough information to even guess what you think probably would be your response, what other information would you want before deciding how to act? In real-life, how much more information than this would you have available? You're not going to know the criminal history reports on the teenagers with guns, Etc.
     
  17. Sharky

    Sharky New Member

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    I would do whatever it took to make sure I walked out of that store alive
     
  18. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Re: One response?

    Well, it is a tough one to answer. A shoot/no shoot decision is tough to call sometimes if you are not there in person to read everything.

    Two perps? I would probably feel (overly) confident in taking them, but hesitant to issue a verbal warning if weapons are already in their hands.

    Do they look like they might be pulling a prank? If there is any indication of that, I would hesitate.

    I would want to find cover and concealment, first and foremost. How much time do I have? I would direct the clerk to dial 911 as I sought concealment. Hopefully my place of cover would take the man at the gas pumps and the clerk out of my line of fire. Most convenience stores do not have good cover, though. I doubt I would think fast enough to get behind the counter, so I would probably end up scooting around the corner of the aisle and realizing to late that puffy bags of pork rinds will not stop bullets.

    How old do they look (yes, that would be a factor for me, as I have spared the life of more then one person due to age when I would have been legally justified in taking it - and even once had a judge in open court loudly tell the indignant mother she should be thankful to be in court rather than at her son's grave)?

    And the question of what arms matters as well. I would be much more likely to just "get out of the way" as best I could if they had longarms and I had a little pocket gun. I would be more likely to use force if I was carrying a larger pistol and they had handguns. I would go out of my way looking for trouble if I had access to a long gun and they had only little pocket gun pistols. :twisted:

    In short, assuming that I had a large pistol (as is my habit) and they were armed with handguns only, and assuming I was convinced they were coming in to rob the place, I would probably . . .

    Well, I dunno.

    If I had adequate cover I might be inclined to issue a verbal warning prior to engaging.

    I sincerely doubt I would engage through the glass, as I do not believe anything to quite be "imminent" at that point. Too much still up in the air for me to be convinced I need to fire. I am not saying there is no situation where I would do that, but I cannot see doing it just from what you have described.
     
  19. kkennett

    kkennett New Member

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    Gunsmoker, you're right. Not too many other detailed replies. With your added detail, it sounds as if they are definitely not right behind you, which makes the find cover and ready your weapon option even more attractive. With a 'mousegun', I'd be wanting to save my five shots for the one looking at me first. Probably would go ahead and get the hammer cocked, as SA mode is much more accurate with a snub nose. For me, I'd rather start off in SA even on the 9mm - that first shot should be your best. If the fellow starts pointing it at anybody, it's time to shoot.
     
  20. kkennett

    kkennett New Member

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    MP and I crossed in time. He's right about the long gun. Let's say I'm gassing up on the way back from the duck blind and these two go barging in the store waving pistols. At that time, the dog is out of the box and the 12 gauge is my choice. Big Lab at full speed is a great distraction. 3 1/2", 12 ga shells at short range will fix many problems, even with #2 or #4 birdshot.