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Muggers Beat and Rob Woman in Elevator

How would practicing Active Self Protection have helped this woman? Certainly, she is not to blame for them attacking her. But how could she have prevented this attack or defended herself against it?

UPDATE: This video is from Kuala Lumpur; news story here: https://get-asp.com/itu1

 

Original video of the muggers: https://get-asp.com/rt0k

 

How do I protect myself against muggers?

 

  1. If you can win “the fight before the fight,” you win. That means you minimize your risk for selection by muggers as a potential victim in the first place! That means making smart decisions and living a life of awareness and readiness so that you don’t take unnecessary risks. Here the woman took a risk by not acknowledging the men in the elevator, perhaps to avoid being hit on or harassed, but which gave them signals that they could victimize her. Train and practice victim avoidance so that you’re less likely to be chosen.

 

  1. Since muggers are looking for victims and not fights, they tend to look for vulnerable people to target. Think about a pride of lions chasing wildebeest in Africa and you get the picture. They target the elderly, the young, and the sick for easier attack and greater success. Likewise, muggers pick victims who they think will not effectively resist them, or that the muggers can quickly overwhelm. This includes the elderly, the young (kids and early teens), the sick, and the distracted. Men (the overwhelming majority of attackers) also target women because women tend to be physically weaker than men.

 

  1. Your mobile phone is a useful tool but a dangerous one, especially when we’re talking about muggers. It can be used to communicate, to get emergency help to you, and to avoid problems altogether in numerous ways. It can also be a very dangerous distraction, because it is designed purposefully to grasp our undivided attention and hold it. When in public, use your mobile sparingly and correctly. Don’t allow it to hold your attention for more than 20-30 seconds at a time, and hold it high so that your head is up and you can see past it to what is going on around you. Don’t use it to hide behind!

 

  1. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. These muggers certainly used their advantage! 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. This woman never had a chance to survive the ambush because the attack came from obscurity (and a purposeful obscurity on her part, it seems) and was devastating.

 

  1. 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 (muggers or anyone else). 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.

 

  1. 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!

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

Female Tourist Defends Herself Against Muggers in Italy

She gave these muggers more than they could handle! That said, they didn’t look particularly motivated to me. Still, I think she practiced decent Active Self Protection.

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!

 

I can’t find the original video of the muggers getting nothing for their efforts; I know it’s from Polizia Di Stato (Italian State Police) and Blog Sicilia, but can’t find the original of this one. If you can find it (I don’t speak Italian so my Google Fu in Italian is nonexistent), please send it to me!

 

What do we learn here about fighting off muggers?

 

  1. Do not stay in the danger zone where there are muggers if you can possibly help it. So many times people get decision paralysis and freeze, but you cannot stay in a place where a threat exists! Either act to leave the area, or act to protect yourself. Every second you give muggers 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.

 

  1. Regular people really battle Normalcy Bias. Normalcy Bias is a mental state that causes people not to react to disaster, or to underestimate the ability of that disaster to affect them personally. In defensive encounters, Normalcy Bias makes people stand around in the danger zone and not take defensive action like the woman who stands there and watches her friend get beat up by muggers. Don’t let Normalcy Bias happen to you.

 

  1. You must be able to fight and defend yourself from all different stages of action when confronted by muggers or other attackers. One of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, likes to say that we must be able to fight wherever the fight happens to be! So whether we are at contact stage (just able to come in physical contact with our attacker), penetration stage (where attacks can contact and penetrate significantly), or manipulation stage (a clinch or similar where joint and body manipulations are possible), we must be able to use effective technique to protect ourselves.

 

  1. On body carry is the preferred method of keeping your force multipliers, whether a firearm or another tool. Purse carry is shown repeatedly to be less effective at retention, less effective at draw and accuracy, and much more likely to be a target in an attack. (for more on purse carry, read this: https://get-asp.com/s0gk ) In this video there is no telling if the woman had any force multipliers in her purse, but even if she did the work of the muggers would have made sure she couldn’t access it! If at all possible, carry on body rather than in a purse.

 

  1. 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! Muggers like to work together to overwhelm their intended victim, so working against multiple attackers in training is wise so that we’re ready for them in real life.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

Muggers beat, shoot, and rob victim

Would you have fought or just given up the jewelry? This is the reality of the way that muggers act, everyone. Don’t think for a moment that you don’t need every bit of Active Self Protection you can muster in the moment that muggers attack you.

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 of the muggers: https://get-asp.com/5qad

 

What do we learn here about fighting off muggers?

 

  1. The Five Ds are a tool that we use at ASP to organize our training and preparation for defending ourselves against armed attackers (like muggers) when we are not armed ourselves. (or if we are armed but outdrawn such that we must deal with the problem with our hands) 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. 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.

 

  1. 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, as this armed robber drives home, 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. You might need to take his gun and use it!

 

  1. We must never settle for being able to protect ourselves against a lone attacker because of how common multiple attacker engagements are. Muggers travel in packs, so we must always be prepared to face multiple attackers!

 

  1. 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. Thankfully these muggers didn’t kill their victim, but it wasn’t for lack of trying.

 

  1. 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. These muggers used a transitional space to prey on their victims, so beware when you’re in one.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

Uber Driver Uses Pepper Spray on Belligerent Drunk Who Attacked Him

Is it just me, or does it seem that driving for Uber or Lyft is just too dangerous to be worth it? This driver practiced Active Self Protection enough to keep himself from serious harm, and eventually used his pepper spray well to protect himself, but man it seems like a dangerous way to make extra money!

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 and news story of this idiot eating a face of pepper spray: https://get-asp.com/w2d6

 

What does this pepper spray video teach us about defending ourselves from harm?

 

  1. Pepper spray (also called OC or OC spray) can be a very useful defensive tool for non-lethal threats. I carry this one, and it’s nasty stuff: http://amzn.to/20ywVen. It can also be used against you in a fight, so you should know how to defend yourself if you’re sprayed! Take a good course on pepper spray and how to employ it, and as part of that course take a dose yourself so that you know the effect it will have on you and how to fight through it to continue to protect yourself. In this fight that exposure beforehand would be important because no doubt the driver got a dose himself while inside the car.

 

  1. I think that the Rules of Stupid come into play in this pepper spray incident, though the driver isn’t one of them. The Rules of Stupid state that you should never (1) go to Stupid places, (2) with Stupid people, (3) at Stupid times, and (4) do Stupid things. You can usually get away with breaking one Rule of Stupid, but two or more really increase the odds of bad things happening. Driving for one of these services will definitely expose you to a lot of Stupid people, which is breaking one rule. It was only 8PM so it wasn’t a Stupid time. To me, picking strangers up in your car who sit behind you borders right on doing Stupid things. I do not know if they were in a Stupid place. So here we have 1 to 1 ½ Rules of Stupids broken, which increases the odds of bad things happening. I think anyone who drives for one of these “transportation networking” companies should seriously consider whether the juice is worth the squeeze.

 

  1. 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. Remember, your car becomes a transitional space at stops and whenever someone is entering or exiting. Don’t be lulled into complacency! Thankfully this driver had his pepper spray handy and knew that something bad might happen.

 

  1. 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. The pepper spray wasn’t useful until the driver had already been attacked pretty significantly. You’ve got to survive the ambush!

 

  1. You must be able to fight and defend yourself from all different stages of action. One of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, likes to say that we must be able to fight wherever the fight happens to be! So whether we are at contact stage (just able to come in physical contact with our attacker), penetration stage (where attacks can contact and penetrate significantly), or manipulation stage (a clinch or similar where joint and body manipulations are possible), we must be able to use effective technique to protect ourselves. The pepper spray might be effective at longer range, but this fight was a manipulation stage fight. Don’t neglect to learn defensive skills at every range!

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

Clerk Knocks Armed Robber Out Cold

I must say that I enjoy it when an armed robber gets what he has coming. Don’t you? Practicing Active Self Protection gives you the attitude, skills, and plan to deal with an armed robber like this if the situation ever comes your way!

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 of justice being dealt the armed robber here: https://get-asp.com/d63d

 

How do I protect myself from an armed robber?

 

  1. 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. All convenience stores are transitional spaces by definition, and an armed robber will use these kinds of spaces to attack people. Be aware.

 

  1. 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. The armed robber used the door to launch his attack from ambush, which is not uncommon at all. Don’t expect much notice of the attack!

 

  1. You must know the range of your force multiplier and the range of various force multipliers that might be used against you. Knives are short-range, fast moving force multipliers. Firearms are extremely long-range, fast moving force multipliers. Sticks are fast moving, medium-range force multipliers, unless it’s the long one used against the armed robber in which case it’s a medium moving, long-range force multiplier. If you know the speed and distance of the tools you have and the tools that can be used against you, you’re in a better spot!

 

  1. 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!

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Elderly Store Owner Fights Off Armed Robbers Who Pepper Sprayed Him

Have you ever been pepper sprayed? It’s a ride to hell for a half hour, but this man fights off two armed robbers while fighting off the effects. What a stud! Great Active Self Protection from him, and great lessons for all of us to think about in our own training.

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 of the armed robbers here: https://get-asp.com/0j2y

 

News story from local news here: https://get-asp.com/skg6

 

What do these armed robbers teach us about self-defense?

 

  1. Pepper spray (also called OC or OC spray) can be a very useful defensive tool for non-lethal threats. I carry this one, and it’s nasty stuff: http://amzn.to/20ywVen. It can also be used against you in a fight, so you should know how to defend yourself if you’re sprayed! Take a good course on pepper spray and how to employ it, and as part of that course take a dose yourself so that you know the effect it will have on you and how to fight through it to continue to protect yourself. These armed robbers were expecting the elderly man to wilt when they sprayed him, but he has more grit than that, and kudos to him!

 

  1. Since criminals are looking for victims and not fights, they tend to look for vulnerable people to target. These armed robbers certainly did! Think about a pride of lions chasing wildebeest in Africa and you get the picture. They target the elderly, the young, and the sick for easier attack and greater success. Likewise, criminals pick victims who they think will not effectively resist them, or that the criminal can quickly overwhelm. This includes the elderly, the young (kids and early teens), the sick, and the distracted. Men (the overwhelming majority of attackers) also target women because women tend to be physically weaker than men. If you’re in those populations, be aware that you are at extra risk of attack and prepare accordingly.

 

  1. 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. These armed robbers launched the ambush by posing as customers, so the ambush can come from a lot of ways.

 

  1. To defend against a pepper spray attack you need emotional fitness. Emotional fitness is defined as the ability to internally represent a situation or predicament to yourself in such a way as to make you strong and able to successfully defend yourself against it. These armed robbers expected the elderly man to be overwhelmed by the pepper spray, but he had the emotional fitness to fight through it and defend himself. Repeated practice and thousands of reps of sparring and self-defense absolutely build your emotional fitness to be able to handle whatever comes your way.

 

  1. 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. These armed robbers were a threat for a full five minutes or more.

 

  1. If you have a firearm out, distance is your friend. A firearm has a functionally infinite range in a deadly force encounter. (yes, I know, that’s not 100% true…for the purposes of a self-defense fight, it is functionally true) If you are at contact distance to someone you have a firearm aimed at, you give them the ability to fight you for your firearm and negate the advantage you have. Therefore, if you have a gun on someone, stay out of range of their hands if at all possible! These armed robbers could conceivably overwhelmed their victim when he brought the firearm to contact range.

 

  1. Marksmanship matters! The old saying is quite true: you can’t miss fast enough to win a gunfight. As a self-defender you need to practice and train to put your first shot on target as fast as you can, but the key is to put as many shots on target as possible.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

Good Samaritan Stops Robbery, Brawls With Robber

Would you have attacked the robber like this Good Samaritan did? At Active Self Protection we always want to think about the consequences of acting and of not acting, so this robbery caught on camera helps us think through our own responses to situations.

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 with some details from the Good Samaritan: https://get-asp.com/sqi7 (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)

 

How do I protect myself in a robbery?

 

  1. 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. This robbery took place in a transitional space (fast food restaurants are transitional spaces by definition!) and they are always places where robbers like to hit.

 

  1. This robbery reminds us that every person gets to decide who they are willing to protect. For some, their “flock” is only themselves and their immediate family. That’s an acceptable answer. For others, they are willing to protect their friends, coworkers, and extended family. For a few, it might mean being willing to protect anyone who is weak, powerless, and in need. Each of us must decide the size of our flock and have that decision firmly in mind when it is time to act. This man decided to step in to try to protect the employees of the restaurant which is laudable!

 

  1. As each of us considers whether to be a Good Samaritan and step into encounters that do not directly involve us, we must consider the implications on our lives and families. Does your desire to step in and stop a robbery override your duty to your spouse and children and loved ones? Or is it part of your care for your family to protect others wherever you can? We must also all realize that when we come across an incident in progress that it can be VERY difficult to determine who is the aggressor and who is the defender, who are the good guys and who are the bad guys, and that must give us pause as well. Obviously this robbery is pretty clear-cut on that end, but it’s still worth considering in general.

 

  1. This robbery shows us that we must be able to fight and defend ourselves from all different stages of action. One of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, likes to say that we must be able to fight wherever the fight happens to be! So whether we are at contact stage (just able to come in physical contact with our attacker), penetration stage (where attacks can contact and penetrate significantly), or manipulation stage (a clinch or similar where joint and body manipulations are possible), we must be able to use effective technique to protect ourselves. This fight went from contact to out of contact to penetration to manipulation.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

Two Women Ambush and Mug Man in New Orleans

Where did your danger alarm start going off in this ambush? An ambush like this is almost certainly preventable, friends. Practicing Active Self Protection probably prevents the ambush to begin with, or win it if you have to!

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 of the ambush: https://get-asp.com/lo77

 

News story of the ambush with details: https://get-asp.com/lkvw

UPDATE: More information on the attackers: https://get-asp.com/kkm3

How do I protect myself from ambush and mugging?

 

  1. If you can win “the fight before the fight,” you win. You win that fight by minimizing your potential for being attacked in the first place! That means making smart decisions and living a life of awareness and readiness so that you don’t take unnecessary risks. I am not blaming the ambush on the victim, but I am saying that we all should learn to make risk assessments of our choices to make sure that we are being wise with our decisions and making good choices.

 

  1. Most attacks are perpetrated by men (source: http://get-asp.com/821s for that) but that doesn’t mean that women are always safe or won’t ambush a man. It does mean that statistically women are much less of a threat than men for violence. However, each person is an individual, and each individual must be considered for their unique threat profile rather than lumped into a category. Just because women are less likely to commit violent crime doesn’t mean that they are unlikely in a given instance to commit violent crime.

 

  1. I think that the Rules of Stupid likely come into play in this ambush. The Rules of Stupid state that you should never (1) go to Stupid places, (2) with Stupid people, (3) at Stupid times, and (4) do Stupid things. You can usually get away with breaking one Rule of Stupid, but two or more really increase the odds of bad things happening. It is highly likely that 6AM on a Saturday in the French Quarter is really, really late on Friday night. If so, that’s one Stupid. He appears to be intoxicated in public (or really bad at fighting), and if so that’s two. Following two people you don’t know to what looks like an alley appears to be three at least, if not four. Follow the Rules!

 

  1. 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. This victim didn’t survive the ambush meaningfully, though he did continue to put up some resistance for some time. The farther away you can see the ambush coming, the better chance you can successfully defend against it!

 

  1. The Bystander Effect is real, as this ambush shows. The bystander in this video walks on by without even really considering stepping 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.

 

  1. 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 the ambush 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.

 

  1. 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! They were both part of the ambush here, so knowing how multiple attackers work is an important part of covering your ASP.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

Hero From French Train Attack Stabbed By Multiple Attackers

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?

 

  1. 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.

 

  1. 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.

 

  1. 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.

 

  1. 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.

 

  1. 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.

 

  1. 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)

Violent Purse Snatching Caught On Camera

Do you carry a purse or bag? If so, recognize that you have to account in your Active Self Protection for the fact that it’s a target for mugging and purse snatching. You must also be able to know how attacks like this happen so that you can defend yourself!

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 of the purse snatching from LAPD: https://get-asp.com/7kk5

 

More thoughts on this purse snatching and lessons learned from Greg Ellifritz: https://get-asp.com/blu1

 

How do I protect myself from purse snatching?

 

  1. Since criminals are looking for victims and not fights, they tend to look for vulnerable people to target for something like a purse snatching (or any violence, really). Think about a pride of lions chasing wildebeest in Africa and you get the picture. They target the elderly, the young, and the sick for easier attack and greater success. Likewise, criminals pick victims who they think will not effectively resist them, or that the criminal can quickly overwhelm. This includes the elderly, the young (kids and early teens), the sick, and the distracted. Men (the overwhelming majority of attackers) also target women because women tend to be physically weaker than men. If you’re in a vulnerable population you must train in self-defense and carry the most effective tools possible to even the odds against bigger, stronger, faster attackers.

 

  1. 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. At the beginning of this purse snatching the woman has a split second of notice where she senses the attack coming, and that gave her a moment to prepare. The more time you have to prepare, the better your odds of coming out ahead.

 

  1. 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. This purse snatching happened in a place where the mugger could easily ambush and easily escape. When you’re walking down the sidewalk, just be aware that you’re in a transitional space and stay alert accordingly! (that means no mobile surfing!)

 

  1. To defend against a purse snatching like this, you need emotional fitness. Emotional fitness is defined as the ability to internally represent a situation or predicament to yourself in such a way as to make you strong and able to successfully defend yourself against it. Repeated practice and thousands of reps of sparring and self-defense absolutely build your emotional fitness to be able to handle whatever comes your way. Being shaken like a rag doll is very disorienting, so having emotional fitness helps you stay in the fight.

 

  1. 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 as it did in this purse snatching! 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!

 

  1. On body carry is the preferred method of keeping your force multipliers, whether a firearm or another tool. Purse carry is shown repeatedly to be less effective at retention, less effective at draw and accuracy, and much more likely to be a target in an attack. (for more on purse carry, read this: https://get-asp.com/s0gk )

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)