To be an armed robber, by definition you have to have something wrong with your brain. To protect yourself against an armed robbery, you have to practice Active Self Protection and keep your wits about you, so you know what kind of armed robber you’re up against.
Original video and news story: https://get-asp.com/2byc
What does this armed robber teach us about protecting ourselves against armed robbery?
- Situational awareness is useful for more than seeing the attack coming, but also for knowing what is happening during the attack. In particular, if your awareness is strong you might get to see an armed robber put their gun away to use both hands, or you might see that the robber’s gun malfunctions or is empty. That information can give you the cue to act definitively to defend yourself by running or by counter-attacking the armed robber. This is not only why awareness is important, but knowledge of firearms and tools is as well!
- 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 Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.
- Do not stay in the danger zone if you can possibly help it. So many times people get decision paralysis and freeze, but you cannot stay in a place where a deadly threat exists! Either act to leave the area, or act to protect yourself. Every second you give an attacker is another opportunity they have to do you and yours harm, so don’t allow that. If you can, get out of there immediately. If you can’t, then look for your opportunity to ensure your own safety by whatever means necessary. Before your Kung Fu, and before your Gun Fu, you should consider whether your best defense is Run Fu! This armed robber wasn’t keeping everyone stationary, so running away might have been the best solution!
- 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!
- 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. This armed robbery was over long before any police could have responded. You must be the primary agent in your own rescue!
- If you do not have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from an attacker, then your only option is to submit to their demands and hope it works out for the best. I would never suggest that a helpless person try to defend themselves against a carjacking or armed robbery, though of course if it’s a matter of life and death you must do whatever you can. The point, though, is not to be a helpless victim! This is the heart of Active Self Protection, to motivate you to train and help you develop the attitude, skills, and plan so that you can choose to protect yourself if it makes sense in the moment rather than being forced into compliance with a violent felon.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.