Holy ****, man. Glad you're all okay!
Hope your sister heals quickly, and I'm not just talking physically.
I have two recurring nightmares, being surrounded by spiders and being in a life or death situation needing to pull my gun and call the police, being unable to do either. It's never the same situation but always the same thing. Either my trigger wont pull, my gun wont fire or it's missing. Trying to call the police either the phone is dead, can't get the numbers dialed or the phone is dead.
This story is a long one as it is not about what happened or that I would prefer to do things differently. Rather it's about my thought process, what I saw, what I heard, what I felt. What I experienced right there in the moment it was happening.
It started Friday morning when my brother and his fiancee were in town for the weekend. I wasn't expecting company and I'm a night person, I'd been up all night and hadn't had a chance to charge my phone. We spent all day running around and by the end of the night, my phone was dead. We all decided to head to the bar to shoot some pool, spend some quality time together as a family. Pool is one of our favorite hobbies, we used to all play together all the time.
So we load up and head out, the bar is a 51% bar. So, even though I wont be drinking, for the first time in a very long time I made a decision I don't like making. I decided to lock my gun in my the car.
We go in, shoot some pool, I meet some of my sisters friends, they all seem cool enough and we're having a good time. The night goes by, no problems everyone is laughing and having a great time. But we have to get up around 10am because we all have plans. So my brother and his fiancee call it a night and go back to their motel. I haven't slept in two days, so I'm pretty exhausted, but I still have plenty of energy and my sister wants to stay. So I decide to stay with her. I'm meeting all kinds of new people and having a lot of fun. It's a pretty good night so far. It's getting late and people are leaving, the bar is getting quiet and my sister starts playing darts with one of her female friends(Amanda). They are behind me and I am joking around with some drunk guy. He's pretty cool, the mellow chill drunk type that just wants to laugh and enjoy the night. At some point during the night, my sister wanted to grab something out of her purse in the car, so I gave her my keys.
But the peace doesn't last. Suddenly out of nowhere, I hear an argument starting. I turn around and see a bunch of girls and a guy arguing with people. There's about 4 girls in this group with the guy, the owner, and well everyone, is telling them to leave. The guy chimes in something about calling some bikers to attack the bar and threatening to not let anyone leave the bar. In what must have been only seconds, Amanda darts behind my back and the crowd of thugs rushes towards her. I throw up my arms blocking their path and I hear Amanda pleading with them to leave her be, to just leave. She doesn't have beef with them and doesn't want a fight. Before I can get a full grasp on the situation however, the girls in the the aggressive group start clawing at Amanda, I try to push them back to break up the fight before it has a change to really get started and out of the corner of my eye, I see my sister. She's bent over and one of the aggressors has her by the hair pulling her into the middle of the group while viciously punching her head. At that moment I forget about Amanda(sorry Amanda) and rush in to get them off my sister. As my instincts were going into overdrive and without thinking I landed a punch on one of the girls, but I was looking to fight, so I started grabbing their arms trying to make them let go. I'm yelling "let go of my sister!" when suddenly I hear the guy threaten to kill me. Didn't really hear the whole threat, only "I'm going to kill you blah blah blah."
His voice trails off in the chaos and time slows down to a crawl. This guy is about a couple inches or so shorter than I am, he's almost as big and pretty muscular. He is a serious threat to me. There's no way I can fight him and get my sister free at the same time. There are at least three girls punching my sister in the head, thus making it a life threatening situation for my sister. The male is now threatening me, if I continue to help my sister, I may have to fight him. If I have to fight him, I wont be able to help my sister and there's a pretty decent chance he could best me in a fist fight, nevermind what he can do if he has a weapon of somekind.
This is it, this is that moment we all fear. The moment we feel the need to pull our sidearm. I begin to reach for mine only to recall with horror that my gun is locked up tight.
I have no choice now but to continue doing what I've been doing and pray for the best. I don't really know what happened between that moment when my sister got free. I don't know how she got free. All I remember was that I continued to help her until she was free, then acted as a shield and wouldn't let them get passed me. Once she did though, I kept telling her to give me her phone so I could call the police, but she just stood there with a thousand yard stare, clearly in shock. I turned back to the crowd and at this point they kept trying to hit me, I honestly think they were trying to provoke me as they kept shouting "let me go" "stop hitting me" and "stop grabbing us" even though I was doing none of that and had my hands open and in the air. they wanted the male to get involved in the fight. But I wasn't having it. One of them grabbed a bottle and threatened me with it. Just as I thought it was about to get ugly again, someone managed to get her disarmed. I think the bar owner saw her going for the bottle and grabbed it from her hand, not sure though.
I hear people shouting in the background, but I'm not really paying any attention to them, right now I'm focused on the group in front of me, finally they promise to leave and I let them go. I watch them as they head towards the door. At this moment I realize that after my sister got free, I lost track of her. My only concern at the moment was keeping those people away from her. I started to freak out, I'm worried about my sister. I run out the back door where we parked, hoping that someone had gotten her outside. She wasn't there. In the scuffle I managed to get my keys from her, so I retrieved my sidearm from the car and holstered it. A lot of people were clearing out, I asked everyone I saw if they had seen my sister, but no one had. I went back inside the bar and asked there, they hadn't seen her. I was really ******* scared. Someone said they saw her with some girl and that they went out the front door. The same door the mob left out of. I braced myself for a possible confrontation and went out the door, I was asking about her and the people out there said she left.
I finally found her, apparently the bar owner got her and the other girls into the bathroom while I held back the mob. She was crying, asked where I was. Wanted to know where are her friends were, why she got jumped like that. She was really shaken up. The cops asked if she wanted an ambulance, and she said no. I tried to get her to go to the hospital just to be safe, but she wouldn't have it.
She's still sore today, over 24 hours later. She had a terrible headache all day yesterday and she complained that her neck hurt pretty bad still today. Other than that, though, she seems to be okay.
In the end, I'm very happy it ended seemingly without any serious injuries. I personally feel like it was pure luck it ended this way. But even so, for at least a few moments, I faced one of my nightmares head on and it was terrifying
Last edited by Jack House; 04-20-2014 at 08:10 PM.
Holy ****, man. Glad you're all okay!
Hope your sister heals quickly, and I'm not just talking physically.
Glad to hear everyone got out alive and conscious, and I hope everyone heals up all right, as PistolPackingMomma said.
Your case is a great example of why we shouldn't be denied our RKBA on the whims of "representatives". Several crucial things seem to have gone wrong BEFORE the event itself occurred. I wasn't there; I didn't see how everything happened, but here is my take:
You had to disarm because some legislators, who in all likelihood enjoy taxpayer-funded protection, decided you couldn't be trusted to carry in a bar and not drink. Seems to happen all too often, yet these legislators aren't held responsible as accomplices to murder.
As you said, your phone was dead, and it happened despite your best intentions. It could have also died in the moment; either case prevented you from calling police. Murphy's Law at work, something the antis can't seem to wrap their head around every time they insist you should call the police BEFORE drawing your sidearm.
Amanda and your sister don't sound like they ever considered assault scenarios, a practice which could help mitigate the "freezing" in the moment. Freezing up during a mob attack could have proved fatal to your sister, Amanda, and yourself.
Given the circumstances, the only one you really have any control over (while still remaining a Law-Abiding Citizen) is #3. Goes to show that training and mental exercises aren't just paranoia-induced playthings, a charge we've heard time and time again from the antis.
Hopefully the assailants end up behind bars. Was there any surveillance on the premises?
Last edited by Rusty Young Man; 04-20-2014 at 10:26 PM.
I carry to defend my loved ones; Desensitizing and educating are secondary & tertiary reasons. Anything else is unintended.
“Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” - Frederic Bastiat
"When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle." - Edmund Burke
wise old man so many years ago.
As for surveillance cameras, I don't believe so.
Last edited by Jack House; 04-21-2014 at 03:38 AM.
I'm surprised that the bar owner couldn't defuse the situation, with a bat or with a shotgun.
It sounds like a terrible situation to be in, as almost anything, and the worst thing could have happened.
IMO, the anti-gun-in-a-bar laws aren't 100% enacted because of irresponsible gun owners. I'd say a dumba** looking to pick a fight might be more or less likely to start a fight with someone who is carrying just to prove a point, and with liquid courage involved it seems at that point that the no gun law would protect all parties involved. I'm no pro fighter, but as long as my opponent is also unarmed I would much rather settle differences with a swift right hook than to resort to pulling a handgun in a bar. Unlike outside the bar where an attacker is likely NOT drunk, the opposite is true inside a bar. I would hate to have to take a life because someone was too drunk to realize what they were doing.
That being said, I'm pretty neutral on the gun-in-a-bar law. I don't think I'd ever argue with anyone who was strictly against it.
Those that grrr stupid and violent when they're drunk, aren't just finding out for the first time they get stupid and violent when they get drunk.
And if someone gets themselves killed because of it, they ain't gonna get no sympathy from me.
Everybody made it out and home without major injuries. That's a Good ThingTM.
Lots of lessons presented, and I imagine you will learn from a large number of them. I have much less hope that your sister will learn anything of value. Why? For one reason, she expected her friend to have her back but there does not seem to have been any discussion between her and the friend about that.
Let me get this out of the way so I can get to other stuff: the gun is not a magic talisman. From what you describe I'm not sure you would have been excused/justified in using deadly force. (Maybe Texas law is that much different from what I have to operate under.)
With all that you said was going on, when did you think youu could have gotten your phone out, turned on, dialed 911 and given the address of the bar, let alone tell the dispatcher/operator what was going on? Quite often calling 911 is what you do after everything else is over except for the shakes.
This is not a criticism of how you handled things - just a suggestion for any possible next time. Check out how bodyguards protect their principle when thigs go south at close quarters. Losing track of your sister sounds like it was really traumatic for you and for her. From what you did not say it sounds like Amanda was well able to keep out of the fracass (bailing ASAP was a Good MoveTM even if it did make your sister upset to find out that's what happened. But Amanda was not your principle.
Unless you train with someone the best you can hope for is that they do not freeze up and will follow basic one-step instructions ("Get behind me!" "Hold on to my belt!" "Walk backwards!"). I would not expect your sister to develop a desire to train on how to defend herself in a brawl so geting her to the point of doing what you say would be a big step forward.
As you noted, things went from loud voices to hands-on very quickly. I'm willing to bet there was something that should have been a signal to get out before voices were raised, but I have to admit that at times I wilfully ignored the early warning signs or jusat did not trust my "spider sense" that trouble was brewing. You might try finding out your sister's version of what led up to things going south but I'd suggest not placing blame anywhere - either she did something and you will have to chew her out or your saying others were to blame will, in her mind, totally exonerate her behavior.
Agai - everybody came home without major injuries.
"He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man
Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.
"No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
Just for reference, in Texas (not a lawyer, yada yada) a CHL holder carrying a concealed handgun can display the handgun when the use of force is justified, short of lethal force being justified. (penal code Sec. 46.035) (edit: not to say that it would have been a good idea in this particular situation to draw and not fire, and not to say it wouldn't have been, just thought it was relevant)
Regarding the incident, WOW, I'm glad everyone made it out ok. It is definitely a testimony to many things: how quickly things can escalate, the need to go over how to hand situations with loved ones, the need to remain vigilant even in casual, happy settings, etc. I just the other day went to a bar for the first time and reluctantly left my firearm behind. It's almost unnerving reading about this, I actually considered the chances of this particular sort of thing happening while deciding whether or not to go. While I'd not even go to a bar that was known for fights breaking out, the truth is that you never know what will happen whether you're at a bar, or grocery store, or wherever. Again, I am very glad that you all made it out of the situation, and I'm glad you posted your experience here...
Last edited by stealthyeliminator; 08-04-2014 at 06:44 PM.
Righteous government, or the righteous lack thereof, is the product of a righteous society, not the producer of it.
Me personally, if I know I'm going to be drinking "more than the legal limit to drive," I leave my pistol in the truck. I won't go to a bar where I don't feel safe without my sidearm.
I never drink more than the legal limit to drive at a bar, which now means 0 drinks for me. I go to bars as the designated driver and shoot pool.
Well, Jack, I am glad to hear that you are alive and at least mostly well after this encounter.
I would not want to ever be in that situation. I am a bigger guy and I have absorbed a few blows before, it's not fun.
I hope this does not happen to anyone ever, but it's a reality that we all have to be aware of.
Last edited by Freedom1Man; 08-04-2014 at 10:47 PM.
Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)
Haven't played pool since college. Around Dallas just view them in same light as bars - places w a higher probability of trouble than about any restaurant.
“Men live without other security than what their own strength and their own invention shall furnish them"
-Thomas Hobbes 1651