Spencer Stone, the hero of the French train attack incident earlier this year (details here: https://get-asp.com/4ucd ), was attacked by multiple attackers armed with knives. His struggle against them teaches some important Active Self Protection lessons from a man who we know has epic bravery.
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 here: https://get-asp.com/rnvm
News story of the incident here: https://get-asp.com/huq6
UPDATE: Police have arrested the attacker and this story has details: https://get-asp.com/cbmg
Follow-up with details of his injuries and pics of the amount of damage done (graphic): https://get-asp.com/5hfb
What does Mr. Stone’s ordeal teach us about facing multiple attackers?
- Spiritual fitness is an important part of Active Self Protection. You don’t often get any advance notice of the last day of your life, but we see over and over that self-defense isn’t a guarantee of winning every fight you might be placed in. You want to be at peace with your loved ones and with God, because you’ll need that peace on the day that you meet Him. Since you can’t guarantee advanced notice, make peace today. Multiple attackers almost ended Mr. Stone’s life, and he is VERY lucky to have made it.
- As well-meaning as police officers are, they cannot protect you from danger. As the old adage says, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away!” You—and ONLY you—can protect yourself from danger when it comes upon you. A police response time of 5 minutes is considered perfectly acceptable in most suburban departments, and times upwards of 30 minutes can be the norm in rural areas! You need to have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from harm because the police simply can’t. Against multiple attackers especially, you have to be ready to protect yourself as long as possible.
- Empty-handed skills are absolutely critical for self-defenders. First of all, more conflicts you will encounter as a self-defender will require empty-handed skills than will require firearms skills, simply because more self-defense encounters are physical than deadly. Second, since a firearm is a tool of last resort, self-defenders need to have non-lethal options that include empty-handed skills to protect themselves from likely incidents. Third, in the moment of the encounter you may not have the time to get to your gun before you can fight your way to it. Mr. Stone had several opportunities against multiple attackers to draw a force multiplier if he had one (it’s California so he probably didn’t), but he absolutely needed his empty-handed skills to get space and time to use them.
- Knife attacks do not happen like you’ve seen in Hollywood. They are brutal, fast, and mean. Stabbing attacks do not generally come from slashes or from any notice whatsoever, but tend to come from concealment and repeatedly stab at a rate of 2-3 stabs per second. He was stabbed four times in the video, and multiple attackers means it is even less likely in the moment that you will know that you’re stabbed.
- First aid skills are important. If you’re going to train and prepare to take a life to defend yourself (even against multiple attackers), you should also have skills, training, and equipment to save life should you need to. (I carry this at a minimum: https://get-asp.com/IPOK) Often that will not involve defensive encounters, and in a defensive encounter your primary responsibility is to yourself and your loved ones.
- Against multiple attackers every self-defender must know and train and practice that it’s death to focus on one too much. When every attacker is an equal threat, we practice the “Boarding House Rules” that everyone gets firsts before anyone gets seconds. If possible, stack the attackers one behind the other rather than getting between them, because if you get between them then one will have your back. It’s better if possible to work to the outside of the group and keep one between you and the others.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)