This mugger got what he paid for! When victims are armed and ready with their Active Self Protection strong, they make a mugger’s day go as badly as this guy’s did.
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Original video of the mugger is available in our Instructor Development Portal.
What do these intended victims teach us about effective defense against a mugger?
- 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. The ease of entrance and exit is what makes places apt targets for a mugger, so when you’re in a transitional space, be more aware of your surroundings! The mugger chose where he could easily walk up and easily get lost in darkness.
- Situational awareness is your best friend. It doesn’t mean that you always are paranoid or living in “condition orange,” but it does mean that you know Col. Cooper’s color code of awareness and you live by it. Pay attention to your surroundings, and recognize that when you’re in public places you need to be more aware of your surroundings than when you’re in private. In this incident the mugger got the jump, but clearly the intended victim was aware enough to do what needed to be done!
- There is a significant difference between territorial and predatorial violence. (I learned these terms from Marc MacYoung) Territorial violence occurs when an aggressor wants something from you; they put a line in the sand and tell you that you will give it to them, or they will hurt you. A mugger or rapist fall in this category among others. Predatorial violence occurs when the attacker wants you dead and there is no ability to comply with demands to live. In territorial violence compliance might get you out alive, but a predatory attacker will not be stopped short of your death or you having the attitude, skills, and plan to stop them. A mugger is a perpetrator of territorial violence, which gives intended victims a bit more time to respond.
- In the moment a mugger attacks you, you must look for your opportunity to protect yourself. You have to wait your turn to act! It is strongly possible that the moment of the attack is not that moment. You want to wait for the time that the mugger is not focusing on you to act with decisiveness to protect yourself.
- In most instances that we see on surveillance video, the first person to put shots on target wins the gunfight, whether the mugger or the victim. That’s not 100% because injured people can stay in the fight a long time, but it is a good “rule of thumb” because once someone gets shot they usually stop thinking about whatever it is they were doing and start thinking about the pain they’re in and how not to get shot again. The lesson in that is clear: be the first to put shots on target. (this is the corollary to Joe Frick’s Rules for a Gunfight #3, “Only hits count. The only thing worse than a miss is a slow miss.”)
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
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