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Officer Involved Shooting Shows How Quickly a Gunfight Develops

The reality is that you may have time to decide if you need to use your firearm, but in many cases such as this officer involved shooting, you’ll have to use whatever Active Self Protection you have to choose in a literal split second what your decision will be. When is deadly force warranted? Could you have protected yourself in this instance?

Original video: http://get-asp.com/z6tm

News story with details of the incident: http://get-asp.com/mgdj

What does this officer involved shooting teach LEO and CCW alike?

1. In the moment of need, the old saying goes that you will not rise to the occasion but fall to the level of your training. Usually, you’ll fall to the level of your WORST DAY in training. That means you want to train hard, train regularly, and make no excuses (to paraphrase one of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock) so that your worst day is good enough for the fight you’re in. These officers were ready for the fight and in the moment of need there was no hesitation. That’s what it takes.

2. Capacity matters. My rule of thumb is that I want a minimum of 5 rounds for each bad guy I might face, which accounts for 2 misses and 3 shots on target for each. (of course, you never want to miss…I am just accommodating me on my worst day) These officers hit with 5 shots and we can see several misses. How many do you want on your person when the balloon goes up?

3. 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. After being shot 5 times this man was still alive, and could still have posed a threat.

4. 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.

5. 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 officers used their skills after the fight was over to save this man’s life (it was clearly a case of suicide by cop), and for that they should be commended.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

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

Officer Involved Shooting In Missouri

Whenever there is an Officer Involved Shooting (OIS) caught on video we should work hard to see what Active Self Protection lessons we can glean from it. I think this officer did a fine job! Could you have won this fight?

Original video from the Columbia, MO POA: http://get-asp.com/8kom

News story with details of the incident and what led up to it: http://get-asp.com/wc9m

What does this Officer Involved Shooting teach LEO and CCW alike?

1. Even in a gunfight, empty-handed skills are important because many gunfights close to “extreme close quarters” or “bad breath distances.” Knowing how to protect your firearm from being taken, and how to win the fight that you’re actually in rather than the fight you want to be in, is crucial. This officer knew that he had no time initially to draw his gun; he had to win the fight he was in and earn his draw. That’s an important skill to drill again and again in a fight. Whether an Officer Involved Shooting or an armed robbery, empty-handed skills are key.

2. To defend against this kind of 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. 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. This officer was on his back, with a man trying to kill him, in a fight for his life. In that situation you need to be mentally strong first before physical skill takes any effect!

3. 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. If you read this story, the second officer (who didn’t get on camera) shot this attacker multiple times eventually, and he kept fighting and kept resisting. Those shots, in the back, were not incapacitating! In many an Officer Involved Shooting we see the same.

4. The Five Ds are a tool that we use at ASP to organize our training and preparation for defending ourselves against an armed attacker 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. We couldn’t see them on the camera in all their details, but we certainly saw deflect and disarm and disable.

5. Fights are physically demanding. Sure, a pure gunfight might last 10 seconds and not place a huge burden on you physically, but the vast majority of encounters we see here at ASP involve physical self-defense as well. Getting into a honest-to-goodness fight with someone is incredibly physically demanding, so being physically fit is an important part of maximizing your chances to protect yourself. Fit people are harder to beat and harder to kill! Get on the mat and spend 30 seconds brawling with someone trying to dominate you and see how winded you are!

6. 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!

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

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

Clerk Shoots Armed Robber With His Own Gun

Facing an armed robber is no joke; facing THREE is a tall order, with or without Active Self Protection to help. This guy fought as hard as he could, but there are plenty of lessons to learn for self-defenders from this valiant but futile effort. What do you take away from his experience?

News story and original video: http://get-asp.com/piuo

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. Convenience stores are certainly places that qualify as transitional spaces, so we must be ready and vigilant when in them!

2. 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 clerk absolutely needed to be able to fight in an enclosed space.

3. 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. This clerk shot the armed robber with his own gun, but it had little effect on him.

4. Keep your firearm on your person! Plenty of people keep a firearm stationed near them under the counter or on a desk, but in the moment of need you can’t ever be sure that you can get to it if it’s not on your person. Even if this clerk had a firearm in the store, it was useless to him. Keep your gun on you!

5. The Five Ds are a tool that we use at ASP to organize our training and preparation for defending ourselves against an armed attacker 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.

6. 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! It’s not rare for an armed robber to work with a partner or two, so we must be ready for multiples.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

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

Guard Murdered During Armed Robbery

You certainly can’t win every fight, but practicing Active Self Protection can help you to have the best chance to survive. This is as true in an armed robbery as any other situation. How much training have you done against multiple attackers?

Original video: http://get-asp.com/oira

News story with some scant details: http://get-asp.com/2pif

How do I protect myself during an armed robbery?

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. Especially when you encounter danger, you’ve got to recognize that there is likely MORE danger that you haven’t seen yet, and keep your head on a swivel! When you are involved in an armed robbery there is always more danger around than you are ready for.

2. 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. Here the third part is most important, because this guard never had a chance to get to his gun. He needed to know how to end this fight immediately, using his hands, so that more danger didn’t come his way before he could respond to it.

3. 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. There will by bystanders in almost every armed robbery, but you and only you can be counted on to protect yourself.

4. 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. I have no idea of this guard’s fitness in this area, but his lesson for all of us is valid.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of www.bensound.com)

Officer Involved Shooting Caught On Video

This officer involved shooting in Costa Rica goes down in a hurry, but also contains some significant lessons for all of us, LEO and CCW alike. Could you have prevailed in this instance?

Original video: http://get-asp.com/tc7e

News story (Google Translate required): http://get-asp.com/c2xh

What does an officer involved shooting teach all of us about self-defense?

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. Thankfully, the armed robber’s first shot missed and the officer’s didn’t.

2. In a gunfight, movement is your friend. You must be ready not only to draw and fire, but to draw and fire while moving laterally, back, and diagonally. You simply will not stand still in a gunfight because it is against every instinct you have when in mortal danger! People who focus too much on stance or isosceles vs. Weaver forget this fact, but as self-defenders we must know that we will be moving. So practice and train movement on the draw and fire. This is a great reason to have airsoft trainers and practice draw and move in your dry-fire regimen as well. In this instance we can see from the officer that the second the shooting started, he started running. You need to train to move while you shoot so that in the real thing you do so smartly.

3. 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. I am guessing that this cop wasn’t looking to be involved in an officer involved shooting that day, but as he came through the door of the establishment he walked right into one! When you’re approaching a transitional space, be aware of what is going on inside and outside so that you’re ready for what might come.

4. 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. In this instance the mortally wounded attacker was still able to chase the officer down for perhaps 5 or 6 seconds after being shot. Lesson: shoot until the threat stops!

5. Capacity matters. My rule of thumb is that I want a minimum of 5 rounds for each bad guy I might face, which accounts for 2 misses and 3 shots on target for each. (of course, you never want to miss…I am just accommodating me on my worst day) This officer involved shooting shows this principle as well, in that the officer took 8 shots just at this one suspect. If he was shooting a 1911, he was out. If he was shooting a neutered 10 round pistol, he had 3 left (considering he loaded a full mag plus one in the chamber). The lesson: carry the highest capacity firearm you can reasonably conceal, and keep a spare magazine with you if at all possible.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of www.bensound.com)

Terrifying Knife Attack Caught On Video

A real-life knife attack is a terrifying ordeal. This officer-involved confrontation out of the UK provides some interesting lessons in Active Self Protection for fighting off a knife attack. How would you have dealt with this attack?

Original video: http://get-asp.com/8bvk

News report of the attack: http://get-asp.com/1txg

How do I protect myself against a knife attack?

1. You just don’t see a knife attack happen like you’ve seen in Hollywood. A real knife attack is 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. In this instance the attacker was clearly not really intending to harm the officers because he easily could have.

2. 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. A baton is a medium-range, medium speed force multiplier. A pepper spray or CS gas canister is a long-range, medium speed force multiplier. To fight against an attack you want to have a force multiplier that is longer range, faster, or ideally both!

3. To defend against this kind of 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. 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. The officers in this video both were emotionally fit and handled their business quite well!

4. If you have a partner with you when you’re attacked (be it a LEO partner if you work on a team, or your spouse or martial artist buddy), you want to do everything you can to work as a team. Knowing each other well and communicating clearly will help you protect yourself from danger. This takes training and practice and commitment, but two partners working together present a formidable challenge to any attacker. In this instance the partners worked together well, and it paid off for sure.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of www.bensound.com)

Grandma Fights Off Armed Robber

Do you think this grandmother did the right thing by not pulling the trigger on this armed robber? We talk a lot at Active Self Protection about stopping the threat, and Mrs. Aldana certainly accomplished that!

Original video, along with an interview with this brave woman: http://get-asp.com/9286

How do I protect myself against 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. Mrs. Aldana owns a convenience store, and because people come in and out quickly it’s always a transitional space where an armed robber is more likely to strike. When you’re in transitional spaces, be sure to be extra alert!

2. Keep your firearm on your person! Plenty of people keep a firearm stationed near them under the counter or on a desk, but in the moment of need you can’t ever be sure that you can get to it if it’s not on your person. In this case it worked out just fine against this armed robber, but if he had decided to come over the counter she might not have been so lucky. Keep your gun on you!

3. 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. In this instance, the counter kept the knife from being immediately deliverable and so as a defender you can know that you have the upper hand.

4. This incident required emotional fitness to be able to successfully defend yourself. 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. 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. Train against situations like this so that if they ever happen in real life, you’re ready!

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

Armed Self-Defender Stops Carjacking

Could you have protected yourself as well as this self-defender did? We love posting videos of the good guy winning at Active Self Protection, and the lessons in this carjacking (or perhaps armed robbery) are many! What do you take away from this incident?

Original video: http://get-asp.com/wa06 (if you find any back story on this one, please send it to me so I can update!)

How do I protect myself from a carjacking?

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. This man clearly was paying attention to what was going on around him, and it likely saved him death or serious bodily harm!

2. 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. This self-defender was able to stop the carjacking because when it was time, he put shots on target quickly which caused the bad guy to stop his attack. The carjacking failed because the carjacker didn’t want to continue once he was getting ventilated!

3. In a gunfight, movement is your friend. You must be ready not only to draw and fire, but to draw and fire while moving laterally, back, and diagonally. You simply will not stand still in a gunfight because it is against every instinct you have when in mortal danger! People who focus too much on stance or isosceles vs. Weaver forget this fact, but as self-defenders we must know that we will be moving. So practice and train movement on the draw and fire. This is a great reason to have airsoft trainers and practice draw and move in your dry-fire regimen as well.

4. 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 car is always a transitional space when entering or exiting because it is always a place where an attacker can sneak up on you and get away quickly.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

Brutal Stabbing Over Car Accident Caught On Video

Would you have stepped in if you saw this stabbing happening, or stayed out of it? At Active Self Protection we talk a lot about making these decisions beforehand. Also, there are many lessons here for the victim in this!

Original video and news story of the incident: http://get-asp.com/dry5

How do we protect ourselves from stabbing?

1. You must always assume that you are on your own in a fight. Even in crowded places, you must assume that you and you alone are your defensive solution, and you must be the primary participant in your own rescue! The police can’t possibly get to you in time to protect you in a stabbing, and so you must be your own protector. You must have the attitude, skills, and plan to win the fight you’re in. This man kept trying to run to help, but there was no help to run to. You must decide to protect yourself in the moment!

2. You must accept that danger exists and that it can happen to you. This is the foundational core of spiritual fitness and the first step in taking proactive steps to protect yourself and your loved ones. If you live in a fantasyland that nothing bad can happen because nothing bad has happened in the past, you’re setting yourself up for a terrible letdown.

3. 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. The attacker here switched between slaps, punches, and stabs but the stabbing came fast and furious.

4. 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.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

Good Samaritan Bravely Stops Murderer

Does your Active Self Protection extend to the defense of others, or do you keep to yourself? I think each person has to make that determination on their own and live with their reasoning, but this Good Samaritan is to be commended in my book!

Original video: http://get-asp.com/3d3z

News story (Google Translate required): http://get-asp.com/hjhr

What do we learn from this Good Samaritan?

1. There are really two reactions to these kinds of scenarios: those who run TO danger and those who run AWAY from it. Neither is inherently wrong, because the man who ran away wasn’t required by any moral code to get involved. However, the man who risked himself to stop the gunman certainly deserves our admiration for looking out for people and for stopping murder. That’s commendable. We must all make these determinations in advance.

2. The woman in this video knew the murderer was problematic, and that her boyfriend had problems with the murderer before this. If you know that you have problems with someone, be aware and be careful in their presence!

3. Breaking the Bystander Effect takes one determined person. Once someone breaks through to help stop the threat, others often jump in to help as well. Once the hero stepped in, others stepped in to help him subdue the gunman and end the threat.

4. That said, you must be ready and willing to stop the threat on your own! Don’t assume others will help you. The hero here might have thought his friend who had the other end of the mattress would aid him in stopping the murderer, but that doesn’t appear to have happened. You’ve got to have the attitude, skills, and plan to do it on your own.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.