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Thread: Drew today. I hope that's my last time ever.

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    Regular Member BUBB4H's Avatar
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    Coming home from work today. Leesburg Pike, right there in McLean, VA.I was driving like an idiot, talking on my cell phone with my fiance. Very long day.I cut off a guy and I shouldn't have. But anyway...

    Stop light. He jumps out of his car, right behind me. I'm on the phone with her and in my rearview I see his door fly open and a flash of his shirt as he runs to my car.He's yelling, "ok mother@#$%er, what's up now!" I dropped my phone, drew my Kimber and held it against the steering wheel, not pointing at him,and started yelling at him to get away from me. He stopped and started backing up yelling, "what the f-?? bring that piece out here motherf-er! bring it out here!"

    Well, no. I started driving away.

    He followed me. I called the cops. Apparently he did too. They all came. Fairfax's finest. Disarmed me, after asking politely yet brusquely. According to them, no reasonable person would agree that I was in fear for my life. What I did was a classic by-the-book case of brandishing, etc. etc.

    They brought out the big book. I felt like puking.

    The responding officers were very polite. Not condescending or patronizing at all, which I was very greatful for. Once I gave my story they huddled for a very very very long 55 minutes. In the end, the man in the yellow shirt was facing just as serious a charge and both of us just wanted to go home.So it was a wash, no charges pressed.Turns out HE had a concealed carry permit as well. There's so much I could say about that...but later.

    Gents, I know what brandishing is. I feel like such an ass because I know better than that. But, damn it was so reactionary! Never before has the awesome responsibility of carrying a firearm felt so heavy and made so real. They returned my firearm to me, putting it in my backseat.

    I don't think this will keep me from carrying. But I will never look at it the same. I could've lost my future career, my freedom, and so much more in the blink of an eye. I sincerely hope and pray I will never draw again. You can flame me all you want. No more than I've flamed myself today. And those that know me, know better.

    I hope this will help others who may be eager for the day they clear leather to think again. And for all of us who carry, be very careful. Threat does not equal draw, and your hand may not always remember. Stay safe guys.


  2. #2
    State Researcher HankT's Avatar
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    BUBB4H wrote:
    Coming home from work today. Leesburg Pike, right there in McLean, VA.I was driving like an idiot, talking on my cell phone with my fiance. Very long day.I cut off a guy and I shouldn't have. But anyway...

    Stop light. He jumps out of his car, right behind me. I'm on the phone with her and in my rearview I see his door fly open and a flash of his shirt as he runs to my car.He's yelling, "ok mother@#$%er, what's up now!" I dropped my phone, drew my Kimber and held it against the steering wheel, not pointing at him,and started yelling at him to get away from me. He stopped and started backing up yelling, "what the f-?? bring that piece out here motherf-er! bring it out here!"

    Well, no. I started driving away.

    He followed me. I called the cops. Apparently he did too. They all came. Fairfax's finest. Disarmed me, after asking politely yet brusquely. According to them, no reasonable person would agree that I was in fear for my life. What I did was a classic by-the-book case of brandishing, etc. etc.

    They brought out the big book. I felt like puking.

    The responding officers were very polite. Not condescending or patronizing at all, which I was very greatful for. Once I gave my story they huddled for a very very very long 55 minutes. In the end, the man in the yellow shirt was facing just as serious a charge and both of us just wanted to go home.So it was a wash, no charges pressed.Turns out HE had a concealed carry permit as well. There's so much I could say about that...but later.

    Gents, I know what brandishing is. I feel like such an ass because I know better than that. But, damn it was so reactionary! Never before has the awesome responsibility of carrying a firearm felt so heavy and made so real. They returned my firearm to me, putting it in my backseat.

    I don't think this will keep me from carrying. But I will never look at it the same. I could've lost my future career, my freedom, and so much more in the blink of an eye. I sincerely hope and pray I will never draw again. You can flame me all you want. No more than I've flamed myself today. And those that know me, know better.

    I hope this will help others who may be eager for the day they clear leather to think again. And for all of us who carry, be very careful. Threat does not equal draw, and your hand may not always remember. Stay safe guys.
    You panicked.

    Happens.

    Sounds like you caught a break from the po-po, though.

    Did the other driver have a gun? Or just a CCP? If he had a gun, where was it?







  3. #3
    Regular Member VAopencarry's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting your story. Glad you made out ok from your mistake.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

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    The other person bears at least most of the blame for starting the scene. While posession of a CC permit is not a sign of sainthood, anybody who has a permit should have thought aboutsituations like that and should have a strong resolve to exercise self-control.

    What was the traffic situation like while you were at the stoplight? The thought has occured to me more than oncethat in such a situation like you experienced, I would likely drive through the red light (traffic permitting, of course) as the most effective means of ending the confrontation.

    It's quitepossible that you were justified in drawing. However, there are times when leaving the scene by any reasonable means possible might be better than drawing.

    Another element of this is the way in which you held it. It's clear that he could see your gun. Now of course some vehicles are better suited for this than others, but I think--I don't want to try tosay for sure whatI would have done--but I think that if I drew, I probably would have either held it on my lap or else possibly by the door, but down where it wouldn't be visible. That way I could bring it into firing position, if that were necessary,quicker and easier than if it were holstered, but without unduly alarming anybody.

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    Definitely a good reminder to everyone to keep playing those "What if" games. Glad it turned out ok for you! As my CCW instructor kept saying "Be the first to call the cops", so in any situation, unless its a definite life or death situation, call the cops first. Remember, the first caller is the "victim"!

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    Glad you are OK, at least you can learn from this with no legal consequences. IANAL but I'm not sure you were in the wrong despite what the LEO said. Just goes to show the dangers of being in condition white.

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    Thanks for posting this. I happen to know that it is not an easy thing to do.

    IANAL either, but I suspect there's a very good chance that the FCPD (a relatively professional lot in my experience) weren't just blowing smoke about the brandishing charge. I have been a juror, and though I'd want to know more, it doesn't sound entirely unreasonable from that perspective.

    The following comments are not directed at the OP personally, but are intended as general observations on this kind of situation.

    Massad Ayoob has written that carrying a firearm means that one has to take more crap from people, not less. His argument is that using or threatening deadly force (which a firearm always is) without a felonious threat to one's own* life or limb puts you in the wrong, at least in the sense that it escalates the conflict without need. This is worth remembering. It might also be worthwhile to review your jurisdiction's laws on what is called "mutual combat" (the usual legal term).

    By my own upbringing, the thing to do when one has done something wrong is to apologize and make it right. This can sting, as I myself well know, but it's still the Right Thing. Apologizing does not make one some kind of p0nk b1tch if it is done properly. If, as here, the person who is owed the apology seems to be a bit out of control, one may have to deescalate carefully, but that doesn't change what the Right Thing is. (It might work to tell some kind of white (or maybe grey) lie if that will calm things down ("Sorry man, my wife/mom/gf is in the hospital, and my head's not where it should be ...") Whatever calms things down.

    I would also be wary of apologizing if there's actual property damage or injury, such as at an accident. Then it becomes legally admitting fault, and needs to be done, if at all, only after calm deliberation.

    Finally, it may be worth remembering some of our side's arguments in the Great American Gun Debate. Is an armed society a polite society, or was that just some throw-away line in a science fiction novel**? We argue that expanded carry, whether open or concealed, won't result in some Brady wild-West fantasy. Let's make sure that we live that as well as talking it.

    Again, kudos to the OP for stepping forward like this. I do know what it feels like, but it was the Right Thing.

    regards,

    GR

    ================================================== =
    * or some other innocent party's life/limb, depending on local/state law.

    ** You do know where that line came from, don't you?

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    Regular Member BUBB4H's Avatar
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    No, I don't know if he was carrying or not, and traffic was thick as always during the evening commute. It's definitely been an eye-opener, and for sure I'd do things differently.

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    Just curious, what charges was the other fellow facing? I had a teen-ager driving along with his radio blasting and talking on his phone run me off the road moving over into my lane. With my horn blowing full blast he just kept coming and I slammed on brakes to miss him. At the red light I got out and ran up to his door yelling. Was I facing charges for doing that?

    Appears to me you got very lucky that the cops were in a hurry to get to the doughnut shop and not carry you to jail. Must not have been regular Fairfax LEO.

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    HankT wrote: after ten months.

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    Regular Member IanB's Avatar
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    Doug Huffman wrote:
    HankT wrote: after ten months.
    Oh c'mon Doug...

    Did you really think he was gone? He's like Golum, always watching in the shadows... waiting for just the right thread to make an appearance in.

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    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    Doug.
    He's like Golum, always watching in the shadows
    Ignore and there he shall stay.

    [line]
    Thanks for posting your incident.
    Glad it ended there.

    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
    The easiest ex. but probably the most difficult to grasp for gun owners is that fool permission slip so many of you have, especially if you show it off with pride. You should recognize it as an embarrassment, an infringement, a travesty and an affront to a free person.


    ~Alan Korwin

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    Dear BUBB4H,

    I too am happy, not only that things worked out as best they could and they were not worse, but that you have given the situation much mature thought and reflection. I think reading your entry was an eye opener for all. It only confirms my mental practice that more is expected of me as a CC licensee, and that I am right in conditioning myself to be more tolerant and less reactive. Also, the cell phone lesson here is huge. May we all come away with a strong conviction to resist the temptation to use the phone while we are driving. With ourlives being so busy, we look for every opportunity to accomplish as much as we can. Cell phone use while driving has the potential to create a life-time of regret. I thank God that all involved in your situation are well and may we readers continue to learn from it.

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    Might be slightly off topic, but another reason why you should always lock your doors when you are in your car.

    Everytime my GF is driving I make sure she locks her door, and she hates it, says it annoys her, but if it should ever happen, you don't want the guy running up to your car to just be able to throw your door open.

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    nakedshoplifter wrote:
    Doug Huffman wrote:
    HankT wrote: after ten months.
    Oh c'mon Doug...

    Did you really think he was gone? He's like Golum, always watching in the shadows... waiting for just the right thread to make an appearance in.
    That was hillarious.
    -Unrequited

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    This brings up one of my biggest pet peaves, and shows why it's such a bad idea: talking on the phone while driving. DON'T DO IT!

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Slayer of Paper wrote:
    This brings up one of my biggest pet peaves, and shows why it's such a bad idea: talking on the phone while driving. DON'T DO IT!
    I shouldn't take on my cell phone while driving because some lunatic I might accidentally cut off might jump out of his car at a stoplight and start threatening me whereas if I was not talking on my cell phone when I accidentally cut him off he would just stay in his car and maybe yell an obscenity?

    There may be a relationship between "I was driving like an idiot" and "talking on my cell phone with my fiance" between the simultaneous occurrence or there may not be but certainly, the "driving like an idiot" unless caused by "talking on my cell phone with my fiance" was the real problem here.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Regular Member Prophet's Avatar
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    I do not know the laws very well in VA, but I would think that SHOOTING him would have been excessive because you're life was not clearly in danger. But using your firearm as a deterrent? How could that be wrong. Maybe he had a gun and was waiting for you to get out of your car to draw it...or a knife...or a blackjack.

    Maybe he just wanted to drag you from your car and beat you to death.

    I don't see anything wrong with your actions (save for the poor driving and cell phone use).

    Back in the army, often times bull$hit rules of engagement dictate that we have to actually be fired at before we can respond. Must Virginians have to wait to have a few heat rounds fly by your head before they can at least prepare to defend themselves?

    The more I think about it, the police are telling you that when some irate road raging maniac comes flying out of his car and runs up to your vehicle you must wait until be presents his gun (or weapon) before you can draw yours. That just seems ass backwards because at that point...its most likely too late.

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    sounds like a legitimate use of your weapon.

    ya you're brandishing but thats the ******* point. some ******** screams at you running up to your car saying stuff like he is going to fight you.

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    A guy get's out of his car, yelling and screaming, and rushing towards you.

    You drawing, is saying, "I'm not the one to mess with today buddy" !

    I see no issue IMO.

    For someon to have the balls to get out of their vehicle at a traffic light, and threaten someone else. That's the same balls it takes to break into someone's home and NOT expect to get shot.

    Driving off could have been better, but you can consider that next time, hoprfully there is no next time.

    Drive Safe and you'll more than likely never have that happen again

    It's all about situational awareness

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    Regular Member Prophet's Avatar
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    Even if that other guy didn't have a weapon, would the police prefer you to be dragged from your car and have a fistfight ensue in the middle of the road.

    Truth be told, your firearm mitigated a dangerous situation.

    My father always told me that I should be wary of picking fights because I never know who I'll be dealing with. Perhaps Johnny Road Rage there will think twice before getting out of his car before he gets himself shot.

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    Had you been on foot open-carrying and this guy saw your weapon, he likely would've backed off as related in the story.

    But because you were in a car with the pistol on your right hip where he wouldn't see it, there was no way to let him know you were armed without drawing.

    Brandishing? Maybe, but if brandishing prevents damage to your car and injury or death to either party, I think an argument can be made that you did the right thing.

    I have been in the position of having somebody much bigger than me approach me in a threatening manner before, and when you're sitting in your car trying to not get into trouble, you are in a vulnerable position. I can certainly understand the fear of harm you must have felt. Were I on a jury and the story was related exactly as I read it here, I would aquit.

    There are two things to take away, here. First, avoid road rage nonsense at all times. I don't think we need to beat that to death, here. It's just common sense to avoid trouble and heated emotional situations, especially when carrying.

    Two, and this is the one applicable to all of us, is what to do when 1) fails.You must consider the scenario when it looks like someone is about to kick your ass, you cannot retreat or run,and you have to decide whether to draw or not. You are cornered, and don't have much time to decide.

    I'm not going to state exactly what I would've done here, of course, but I think staying out of jail is more important than my truck, but not getting my head bashed in is more important than worrying about a brandishing charge. I think using your vehicle as both an escape method and, if that's not possible, as a barrier to physical harm, is a good idea. Stuff to think about.

    Right, Hank?

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    While obviously I wasn't there and can only hear your story, here is how I would analyze it:

    1. First, it is always best to practice good driving habits to avoid irritating others but mistakes do happen.

    2. He had a right to be angry due to your potentially dangerous driving manuver. However, a simple honk of the horn and maybe a few choice words from the driver's window on his part should have been where it ended.

    3. In most states, getting out of the car in the middle of traffic is a violation of traffic laws. Obviously his behavior was out of control, potentially threatening, and likely illegal although probably just a misdemeanor "disorderly conduct" and a traffic infraction.

    4. The way I see it is that you had probable cause to believe you were in imminent physical danger but certainly not in clear and present danger of serious bodily injury or death. Someone running up to you and yelling a verbal threat in most jurisdictions is seen as a threat of physical force but not deadly force and in most jurisdictions deadly force is not justified although physical force may be. He had no weapons visible, never actually assaulted you, nor did he try to damage the vehicle.

    5. In such a case, I would have locked the doors and rolled up the windows if not done so already. At your discretion, you may have decided to partially roll the window down just far enough to order him to back off but that is it. If the individual started kicking or hitting the car or window or tried to reach his hand it, at that point it may have been reasonable to display the unholstered firearm but still without the barrel actually pointing at him. In the case of reaching the hand in the window, that is an opportunity to roll the window up trapping his hand in and forcing him to quickly release it. Until the individual reaches into his pocket and pulls a weapon or actually smashes the window and starts to pull you out of the car, you have no justification to point or fire the deadly weapon. That is the way I see it and I believe most jurisdictions see it. Now if the person is actually doing those things, a threatof deadly force followed by actually deadly force may be necessary.

    6. It is a tricky situation because it all happens so fast and you only have so much time to think. Not only is it a lesson to yourself but the rest of us as well because we could always use more self-defense training most of which involves mentally sorting out possible scenarios and how we would respond.

    7. This is an individual decision to make but I believe that if you are going to carry a deadly weapon, you should also carry a non-deadly or not-as-deadly weapon. It looks a lot better in the eyes of the law if you tried non-lethal means first before wasting a guy. I have recently adapted my carry habits to include a semi-automatic pistol, small switchblade knife, taser gun, pepperspray, and oneextra magazine. It is a lot to carry and not very comfortable but each tool has its purpose. In the vehicle, I also have a baton. That way if I am being threatened by someone and there is a"gray area" on whether or not deadly force is justified, if I use the pepperspray or the taser instead of or before shooting the hell out of someone, there are far less questions to answer. A police officer told me that it is important to know proper escalation and de-escalation levels of force. It is a good idea to have a tool that falls somewhere in-between your fist and 15 rounds of hot lead.

    Just my two cents.



  24. #24
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    My guess as to the police officers' attitude on the situation was that while what you did was illegal, the otherguy basically "asked for it" and therefore the cops let both of you go assuming that both of you learned your lesson for different reasons. In other words, you will think twice before drawing the gun and he will think twice before acting that way on the road.



  25. #25
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    I really wonder if that guy learned anything. Had I been in his position, I would've been too chastised to call the cops on the OP. I would've driven off and thanked my lucky stars my stupidity didn't get me shot for my troubles.

    Of course, I don't know, because I'm not stupid enough to get out of my vehicle and start a fight in the first place. Who knows how a clown like that thinks.

    As for carrying all that extra battle rattle, pepper spray, taser, etc., no thanks. I don't have room on my waist for all that junk, and if something happens I don't want to have to sit and think about which gadget to pull off my batman belt. Either I can walk/run away or I can fight to win.Preferably walk.

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