Honestly, I think there was more luck than skill in surviving this armed robbery. But sometimes, guts is enough! There are plenty of lessons here as well.
If you value what we do at ASP, would you consider becoming an ASP Patron Member to support the work it takes to make the narrated videos like this armed robbery? https://get-asp.com/patron gives the details.
News story on this armed robbery: https://get-asp.com/05z0
What does this video teach us about defending ourselves against an armed robbery?
- Many times an attacker will give pre-attack cues during the “warmup” phase of an armed robbery that defenders can use to anticipate what is coming. One of the most common is looking around, either for witnesses or for escape routes. If you’re interviewing/being interviewed, and in your talk notice someone who exhibits other danger signs looking left and right away from you, consider that a significant clue that something is wrong and place yourself in the best possible place to avert or deal with the potential attack.
- The eyes may be the windows to the soul, but the hands are the windows to the intent of a person. If you’re in a potential conflict (and the warmup of this armed robbery was a great incident to use this), ALWAYS pay attention to what the aggressor is doing with their hands. They might have a force multiplier in their hand, or they might be hiding their hand so that you can’t see what is in it or using their hand to conceal something. If their hands are empty, there is a difference between someone with fists and someone whose hands are open and relaxed. As a self-defender your situational awareness must include seeing the hands of any potential threat in your vicinity, so watch the hands!
- In a deadly force encounter like this armed robbery, 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!
- In any armed robbery the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.
- The “Five Ds Plus 1” are a tool that we use at ASP to organize our training and preparation for defending ourselves against an armed attacker when we are not armed ourselves. (or if we are armed but outdrawn such that we must deal with the problem with our hands) First, before the others, we need to control Distance. (it’s the plus 1…it stands by itself and is the gateway to the others working) Then Deflect, Dominate, Distract, Disarm, Disable. We pursue them from first to last, in order, to give us the best chance of successfully defending ourselves against an armed opponent. Close the Distance to the place where we can effectively use our empty-handed skills. Deflect their force multiplier, Dominate as much as possible (best is the whole person, second is the arm with the tool, last is the tool itself), Distract the attacker (usually using pain, redirection, movement, etc.), Disarm the attacker, and Disable the attacker.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
Copyright Disclaimer. Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.