The human body is remarkably resilient, but most people stop fighting because of the psychological effects of their injuries long before their body gives out. At Active Self Protection we want good people to be able to defend themselves to their last breath from armed robbers, so let’s learn from this officer’s death.
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: http://get-asp.com/rbif (WARNING: this site is very, very NSFW and filled with adult content…strongest warning possible…I get videos from it when I can’t find it anywhere else but do NOT endorse anything about it)
News story here (Google Translate from Portuguese required): http://get-asp.com/9pr5 thankfully the murderer is in custody
How do I protect myself from armed robbers?
- 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 walkup to this business provided an easy way for the armed robbers to sneak up in plain sight and then get away in a hurry, which was pivotal in this robbery. When you’re in transitional spaces, be aware!
- In any territorial or predatorial violence, 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 Kenpo, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself. These armed robbers clearly got to determine the time and circumstances of the attack, which is an important pattern we see in armed robberies of all kinds.
- 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. This officer couldn’t have gotten to his gun immediately against these armed robbers. He had to earn his draw, and unfortunately he couldn’t do it in time.
- The Bystander Effect is real. There were lots of people around here, but no one stepped in. You cannot count on anyone breaking the Bystander Effect to help you, especially if the attacker is armed and any help would be at a force deficit from it. Usually the best way to break the Bystander Effect is to have a force multiplication advantage, which is a great reason to keep your force multiplier on you at all times.
- The human body is designed to take a ridiculous amount of punishment and still function. You can shoot someone multiple times and they can still pose a deadly threat! Even mortally wounded people can continue to pose a threat for several seconds to even minutes after being shot, so don’t think for a moment that shooting someone will necessarily immediately incapacitate them. That is Hollywood myth. The corollary is that these armed robbers shot the defender multiple times and he still lived for quite some time. You’re still in the fight if you’re alive, so keep fighting!
- 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 God, because you’ll need that peace on the day that you meet Him. Since you can’t guarantee advanced notice, make peace today.
- 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! Not only that, but these armed robbers showed up at different times in the fight, what many trainers call a “trailing bad guy.” Multiple attackers are the norm, so expect it.
- As one of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, is fond of saying, the ground must be your friend and not your enemy. You must know how to fight on the ground and not panic if the fight goes to the ground! You must have skills from bottom position, from top position, and in the scramble. You must be able to regain your feet and fight from wherever you find yourself. Too many fights require this skill to ignore it!
- First aid skills are important. If you’re going to train and prepare to take a life to defend yourself, you should also have skills, training, and equipment to save life should you need to. Often that will not involve defensive encounters, and in a defensive encounter your primary responsibility is to yourself and your loved ones. These armed robbers did a number on this defender, but perhaps with a stout IFAK and good skills, he might have made it to the hospital to get help.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
(music in the intro and outro courtesy of http://www.bensound.com)