Many of us are very attached to our vehicles, but at Active Self Protection we like to talk about winning “the fight before the fight” so that the fight never materializes. I hope you think about winning a carjacking before it ever happens!
This video is sponsored by CCWSafe, who I use to help me win the fight after the fight: https://get-asp.com/ccwsafe. I am a member and I recommend them highly; please go check them out and thank them for being a sponsor of our daily lessons!
Original video and news story on the incident: http://get-asp.com/xt7m
How do I protect myself from a carjacking?
1. If you can win “the fight before the fight,” you win. You win that fight by minimizing your potential for being attacked in the first place! That means making smart decisions and living a life of awareness and readiness so that you don’t take unnecessary risks. In this carjacking the fight before the fight could have been won simply by taking the keys with you and locking the doors of the car as he exited.
2. Never leave your keys in your car or the car running if you are away from it. Period, end of subject. The only time you can leave a car running is if your car is equipped with a remote starter that can leave it running while you take the keys and lock the car on the way out. And of course, never leave vulnerable people like children or elderly parents in a car without someone to protect them. If you’re all they have, take them with you. This carjacking would never have happened if he had just followed that simple rule. Take your keys with you and lock your doors. Simple!
3. Transitional spaces are places where we MUST be more careful of potential attack. A transitional space is any location that (1) allows attackers to prey on potential victims with an element of surprise and (2) provides ready escape for the attackers. Carjackings all happen in transitional spaces, by definition. A carjacking can’t happen where people can’t get in and out of it, so when you’re in a place where you’re entering or exiting your car, be more careful!
4. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training! This carjacking victim had only a split second to decide whether to protect his car or not.
5. We must never settle for being able to protect ourselves against a lone attacker because of how common multiple attacker engagements are. Rats travel in packs, so we must always be prepared to face multiple attackers! In this carjacking the other person thankfully bugged out, but if he hadn’t, our victim would have been in trouble!
6. We must each decide what is worth protecting. Life is always worth protecting because it is of inestimable worth; as unique bearers of the image of God, people are the most valuable “thing” imaginable. Property is something else, though. With property we always have to balance the benefit against the risk to ourselves and our families. Even where it’s legally allowed, you should consider whether it’s wise or prudent to defend your property, because doing so puts you at risk and not just the bad guy. In a carjacking, for instance, we recognize that most cars are insured. If there’s a chance that you could be killed or seriously injured defending your car, is it worth it? For a $500 or $1000 deductible are you willing to risk a hospital visit, time off work, or God forbid your death in a situation like this? If there are people in the car, defend away. But if it’s just a car, decide how far you’re willing to go. I will confront someone who is looking like they might try to take my car because the chances of a huge problem are small, but once they have it and are in motion, the odds shift considerably and I think the wise thing to do is just let it go and call 911.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
(music in the intro and outro courtesy of http://www.bensound.com)