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Thread: Shoot, don't shoot scenario

  1. #1
    Regular Member fire suppressor's Avatar
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    Shoot, don't shoot scenario

    Excuse me everyone but I've been thinking again...

    Scenario:
    You are inside a gas station pre-paying for your tank of gas, you, the station attendant and two other people are inside the gas station. As you walk up to the counter to pay for your gas just as you start to reach for your wallet a young male comes running into the gas station wearing a bandana over his face and holding a 1911. The man orders everyone to the ground and tells the cashier to open his drawer or he will kill him.

    Do you attempt to draw your weapon and shoot the idiot or do you lay down and wait hoping that once he has his money he will run off?

    2nd Do you think being inside the gas station and open carrying will make you a target and force you into a situation or do you think the sight of your gun would convince the robber to find another gas station?

    I do not have a answer or am trying to pick sides just something I have debated in my own head ever since I started carrying
    "Fight like you train, train like you fight"

  2. #2
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    First, criminals go for the weakest target they can find (generally). There was a document encounter of a couple criminals waiting for a few patrons to leave a restraunt who had visible sidearms. I have only read about one documented incident, however I would believe this does happen on occasion and most times, no one never knows a crime was about to happen.

    Now for the scenario where a robbery is in progress. If I can draw my sidearm without him seeing it, then I would absolutely shoot him given the opportunity to do it with as little risk to myself and others in the area as possible. The criteria I need to meet to draw my sidearm, is that I feel that myself or someone in the immediate vicinity is in danger of life or limb. I do not carry my pistol as a bluff, I have trained and am willing to use it to save my life or the lives of others.

  3. #3
    Regular Member Metalhead47's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayd1981 View Post
    First, criminals go for the weakest target they can find (generally). There was a document encounter of a couple criminals waiting for a few patrons to leave a restraunt who had visible sidearms. I have only read about one documented incident, however I would believe this does happen on occasion and most times, no one never knows a crime was about to happen.

    Now for the scenario where a robbery is in progress. If I can draw my sidearm without him seeing it, then I would absolutely shoot him given the opportunity to do it with as little risk to myself and others in the area as possible. The criteria I need to meet to draw my sidearm, is that I feel that myself or someone in the immediate vicinity is in danger of life or limb. I do not carry my pistol as a bluff, I have trained and am willing to use it to save my life or the lives of others.
    +1 What's to say the perp isn't going to shoot everyone anyway after the fact? How many folks are dead today because they did exactly what the bad guy wanted and he killed them any way? A guy with a bandanna & gun in-hand making threats pretty much fits everyone's personal definition of a clear & present danger to self & others (except maybe the brady's).

    Drop him. Or at least try to drop him. If I don't get him, my wife will.

    Or, simply avoid the situation entirely by paying at the pump and being a good witness after the fact.
    It is very wise to not take a watermelon lightly.

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    I'd say lay down. That will take his attention off you since you are no longer a threat in his eye. Once on the ground, draw and fire from the prone.

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    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    First off, what criminals carry 1911s? Second, if it is a 1911 I would check to see if the hammer is back. If the hammer wasn't back and all of the other conditions (clean shot, etc) were right I would probably draw and fire. If the hammer was back, I would probably follow the advice from the post above and fire from the prone. I would only fire if I felt I was in imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm. The problem with these scenarios is that there are so many variables it is hard to come up with a right or wrong answer.
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    The Real Answer is:

    You really don't know what you'd do until you experience it. There are lots of "I would", "I should", and "I might" answers but in reality you don't know what you "Would" do. You may be standing there with your hands in the air crying "don't shoot, don't shoot" with a big wet spot in the crotch of your pants for all you know.

    Actual situations vary so much and any actual actions will probably be far different than what you envision in an imaginary scenario. Even those who train regularly to deal with this kind of situation don't react the way they trained.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Regular Member OrangeIsTrouble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    You really don't know what you'd do until you experience it. There are lots of "I would", "I should", and "I might" answers but in reality you don't know what you "Would" do. You may be standing there with your hands in the air crying "don't shoot, don't shoot" with a big wet spot in the crotch of your pants for all you know.

    Actual situations vary so much and any actual actions will probably be far different than what you envision in an imaginary scenario. Even those who train regularly to deal with this kind of situation don't react the way they trained.

    Very good contribution to this thread!!!! Absolutely genius!!!!!!








    If we talk about this now, imagine and run thru scenarios in our minds and discuss with others, our judgement at the time of need will be a little bit more educated. For example, thebigsd mentioned looking for a cocked hammer. I never really thought of that, but that's because I'd consider all guns loaded. Maybe somebody else will find themselves in a better position and all of a sudden, they'll look for the hammer on a 1911 and they'll be able to make an informed decision.


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    Regular Member SFCRetired's Avatar
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    1. Draw and fire immediately. Reason: The gunman's attention is initially going to be focused on the clerk. This will give you precious seconds if you use them.
    2. Don't worry about whether or not the weapon is loaded or cocked or is, in fact, real. You're faced with a criminal holding what looks like a weapon.
    3. From having worked in convenience stores and having lost friends who also worked in those stores, I will tell you that the criminal nowadays does not want to leave witnesses. In the instance given, you should consider your life to be in imminent danger.
    4. Keep in mind that, should you shoot, you will be both hailed as a hero and vilified for shooting that little "angel who was just turning his life around."
    5. After the fact and before the police arrive, make sure you remember what we have said about talking to anyone immediately after a SD shooting. The very most you might want to do is get the names of any witnesses and be sure the perp's weapon doesn't disappear.

  9. #9
    Activist Member SigGuy23's Avatar
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    I noticed in all theses responses no one talked getting out of the line of fire. If you see a guy coming in the store as described above, the first thing should be to find cover/concealment to reduce your chances of getting hit if he does fire first. It also gives you time to draw your weapon if need be. All of those other ideas are great ideas. I'm just saying Why would you just stand there in front of the counter when You see a guy like that coming into the store?

    my $.02

  10. #10
    Regular Member SFCRetired's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SigGuy23 View Post
    I noticed in all theses responses no one talked getting out of the line of fire. If you see a guy coming in the store as described above, the first thing should be to find cover/concealment to reduce your chances of getting hit if he does fire first. It also gives you time to draw your weapon if need be. All of those other ideas are great ideas. I'm just saying Why would you just stand there in front of the counter when You see a guy like that coming into the store?

    my $.02
    My reasoning is this: If you start looking for cover and trying to move out of the line of fire, you have refocused the gunman's attention from the clerk to you. Whereas, if you immediately draw and fire while the gunman's attention is fixed on the clerk, you have, hopefully, both eliminated the threat and acted to keep yourself and others safe.

    Really, we are talking fractions of a second from the time the gunman runs in until the time it is all over.

  11. #11
    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    As with an scenario, if you like you chances, act if not wait and there is no doubt in this described scenario lethal force would be appropriate.


    Responses vary from each situation with many factors involved some of those are;

    • Your Ability, Health and Strength
    • Your Location, Cover or Concealment
    • Location of Perp to You.
    • Backstop? are there others that may be hit if you do miss?
    • Are you close enough and Capable to disarm the Perp?
    • Your ability to draw and fire, it takes approximately .25 seconds to acknowledge a threat and how long does it take you to draw and shoot on target? 2 to 3 seconds?
    • If you do engage are you able to shoot on the move to cover or concealment?


    As Clint Eastwood said, "Feel Lucky Punk? Well Do Ya?"
    Last edited by BigDave; 11-15-2011 at 02:52 PM.
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    • I am not your Mommy or Daddy and do not sugar coat it but I will tell you simply as how I see it, it is up to you on how you will or will not use it.
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  12. #12
    Regular Member Whitney's Avatar
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    Dont put yourself in that position to begin with

    Quote Originally Posted by fire suppressor View Post
    Excuse me everyone but I've been thinking again...

    Scenario:
    You are inside a gas station pre-paying for your tank of gas, you, the station attendant and two other people are inside the gas station. As you walk up to the counter to pay for your gas just as you start to reach for your wallet a young male comes running into the gas station wearing a bandana over his face and holding a 1911. The man orders everyone to the ground and tells the cashier to open his drawer or he will kill him.

    Do you attempt to draw your weapon and shoot the idiot or do you lay down and wait hoping that once he has his money he will run off?

    2nd Do you think being inside the gas station and open carrying will make you a target and force you into a situation or do you think the sight of your gun would convince the robber to find another gas station?

    I do not have a answer or am trying to pick sides just something I have debated in my own head ever since I started carrying
    Understand all, and agree with the reason for rolling these scenarios around in your head.
    I would suggest trying to keep yourself out of this situation to begin with. For example, I pay at the pump with a card because of this exact type of scenario. I have routine places (favorite pump) to conduct all my business that preclude these types of things from happening. I acknowledge this wont keep me out of trouble in every case but it goes a long way to help.

    ~Whitney
    The problem with America is stupidity.
    I'm not saying there should be capital punishment for stupidity, but why don't we just take the safety labels off of everything and let the problem solve itself?

  13. #13
    Regular Member 911Grunt's Avatar
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    It's also possible that the suspect may have other associates inside the store as a customer or waiting outside. Like the group of subject's who where robbing gas station/convenience stores earlier this year. There is nothing wrong with being a good witness.

  14. #14
    Campaign Veteran MSG Laigaie's Avatar
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    A couple of you had the right idea (sig). The perp said get down,eh? Cover and return fire. Get down like he asked. Noone notices my weapon anyway, I think it would go unnoticed in this case.
    "Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the people's liberty teeth (and) keystone... the rifle and the pistol are equally indispensable... more than 99% of them by their silence indicate that they are in safe and sane hands. The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference .When firearms go, all goes, we need them every hour." -- George Washington

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    Regular Member MilProGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whitney View Post
    Understand all, and agree with the reason for rolling these scenarios around in your head.
    I would suggest trying to keep yourself out of this situation to begin with. For example, I pay at the pump with a card because of this exact type of scenario. I have routine places (favorite pump) to conduct all my business that preclude these types of things from happening. I acknowledge this wont keep me out of trouble in every case but it goes a long way to help.

    ~Whitney
    I'm with you.

    I never go into a convenience store to pay for gas, as I pay at the pump.

    Avoidance is my #1 priority, and if I were to find myself in the situation you described, I'd agree with SigGuy23 and try to seek cover before doing anything. If the gunman was not an immediate threat to my life, I'd be hesitant to pull my handgun and start firing in a crowded store.
    Last edited by MilProGuy; 11-15-2011 at 05:27 PM. Reason: corrected spelling
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  16. #16
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Look on the Ohio and GA forum, two instances where the supposed BG saw the OC and left. Another instance is where the writer is talking to a felon, don't remember which state, should be easy to find. the gist is,,,,

    If you are OC and BG sees you, the probabilities are, BG wll not even try rob that store, but will rather go find an easier victim.

    That said, I am the same as some others have already stated, it is very rare for me to enter a convience store. I normally pay at the pump, and as I do not have my local tribal permission slip, and the tribal gas station has the best prices around here, I do not like to disarm.

    Personally, I would rather be a good witness...I've been shot at before, (in Vietnam) not pleasant.

  17. #17
    Regular Member Difdi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fire suppressor View Post
    Excuse me everyone but I've been thinking again...

    Scenario:
    You are inside a gas station pre-paying for your tank of gas, you, the station attendant and two other people are inside the gas station. As you walk up to the counter to pay for your gas just as you start to reach for your wallet a young male comes running into the gas station wearing a bandana over his face and holding a 1911. The man orders everyone to the ground and tells the cashier to open his drawer or he will kill him.

    Do you attempt to draw your weapon and shoot the idiot or do you lay down and wait hoping that once he has his money he will run off?

    2nd Do you think being inside the gas station and open carrying will make you a target and force you into a situation or do you think the sight of your gun would convince the robber to find another gas station?

    I do not have a answer or am trying to pick sides just something I have debated in my own head ever since I started carrying
    Well, first off, is he looking at me? Trying to draw while the center of attention is a good way to get shot. Second, is the gun aimed in my direction even if his head isn't? Third, if I lie down, or just start to, will it remove me from his line of sight?

    Getting out of the line of fire, or at least the line of sight is generally a good idea. Once out of it, I would indeed draw, but I would not fire - I am not the police, and I lack qualified immunity to a wrongful death lawsuit. On the other hand, I've often been (quite accurately) accused of having a paladin complex many times before, and I would try to make a citizen's arrest once I've drawn.

    If possible, I would move so the clerk (and other customers) are not my backstop nor the robber's backstop. I would wait until he is distracted, stand back up, aim, and while my inner John Wayne would be inclined towards "Drop the weapon NOW!" or "You're under citizen's arrest! Drop it!", I'm more likely, being honest with how past experience tells me I talk under stress, to just yell "Hey!".

    At that point, my reaction depends on whether he drops it or tries to turn. For his sake and mine, I hope he drops it. Because I will shoot. If he drops it, I'd hold him at gunpoint until the police arrive, unless someone is able to restrain him somehow.

    With any luck, the cops wouldn't shoot the armed man on sight.

  18. #18
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Difdi View Post
    Well, first off, is he looking at me? Trying to draw while the center of attention is a good way to get shot. Second, is the gun aimed in my direction even if his head isn't? Third, if I lie down, or just start to, will it remove me from his line of sight?

    Getting out of the line of fire, or at least the line of sight is generally a good idea. Once out of it, I would indeed draw, but I would not fire - I am not the police, and I lack qualified immunity to a wrongful death lawsuit. On the other hand, I've often been (quite accurately) accused of having a paladin complex many times before, and I would try to make a citizen's arrest once I've drawn.

    If possible, I would move so the clerk (and other customers) are not my backstop nor the robber's backstop. I would wait until he is distracted, stand back up, aim, and while my inner John Wayne would be inclined towards "Drop the weapon NOW!" or "You're under citizen's arrest! Drop it!", I'm more likely, being honest with how past experience tells me I talk under stress, to just yell "Hey!".

    At that point, my reaction depends on whether he drops it or tries to turn. For his sake and mine, I hope he drops it. Because I will shoot. If he drops it, I'd hold him at gunpoint until the police arrive, unless someone is able to restrain him somehow.

    With any luck, the cops wouldn't shoot the armed man on sight.
    I wouldn't say a word before shooting. Doing so announces your presence and gives the criminal time to react. Why let the criminal know your intentions? If you are in fear for our life then you should be shooting, no warning necessary. The criminal has made his choice, make yours.
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

  19. #19
    Regular Member FMCDH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigDave View Post
    As with an scenario, if you like you chances, act if not wait and there is no doubt in this described scenario lethal force would be appropriate.


    Responses vary from each situation with many factors involved some of those are;

    • Your Ability, Health and Strength
    • Your Location, Cover or Concealment
    • Location of Perp to You.
    • Backstop? are there others that may be hit if you do miss?
    • Are you close enough and Capable to disarm the Perp?
    • Your ability to draw and fire, it takes approximately .25 seconds to acknowledge a threat and how long does it take you to draw and shoot on target? 2 to 3 seconds?
    • If you do engage are you able to shoot on the move to cover or concealment?


    As Clint Eastwood said, "Feel Lucky Punk? Well Do Ya?"
    +1

    Every time we have a thread like this, we get a string of "I would" answers as if the angles, distances, obstructions, focus of attentions, and just generally the totality of the circumstances are somehow fixed in a way that would allow such speculation to be useful, or even slightly accurate to reality.

    I would warn everyone against getting specific responses to these kinds of scenarios locked in your head, as it may impede your ability to act fluidly when the scenario doesn't play out the way you have imagined it, because the chances are, it wont.

    I would suggest, speculate less, train mind and muscle memory more, and don't rule out anything as a possible response.

    As Bruce Lee said when it came to combat.... "Flow like water, be like water."
    In which he meant, do not pre-mold yourself by attempting to imagine the outcome of a fight, but prepare yourself in every way you can, and be prepared to do whatever may be necessary to survive whatever circumstances you find yourself in.
    Last edited by FMCDH; 11-16-2011 at 02:14 AM.

  20. #20
    Regular Member Difdi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thebigsd View Post
    I wouldn't say a word before shooting. Doing so announces your presence and gives the criminal time to react. Why let the criminal know your intentions? If you are in fear for our life then you should be shooting, no warning necessary. The criminal has made his choice, make yours.
    I have. I'll do what is morally right, not necessarily what makes me safest physically. A verbal warning gives him the chance not to die for his mistakes, and gives me the option not to shoot him. Both are worth the effort.

  21. #21
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    My understanding, from those who have been shot at more than I, roughly in the order of relevance.....

    1. Mindset
    2. Situational Awareness
    3. Train
    4. Have a weapon
    5. Train
    6. Have a plan
    7. Train
    8. Have a back up weapon
    9. Train
    10.Have a back up plan

    etc

    Without the Mindset, the rest don't much matter. Without Mindset and Situational Awareness, you may make do without a ready weapon at hand. And so on.
    Prioritize. Get good info, from proven sources. Quality training, literature and video from places like Gunsite, Thunder Ranch, Jeff Cooper, Gabe Suarez, and so on.

    As for the OP's scenario; I am mentally and physically preparing to apply the above precepts. Only hits count, and when I fight, I fight to prevail. Since this is the internet, and it's a postulated scenario.....once I've determined a legitimate threat exists, fire and movement, nothing too fancy. Don't hit anyone else. Make sure you are aware of who/whats around you, as you can count on tunnel vision coming on as fast as the adrenalin dump and ensuing pucker factor. I would be very wary of complying with anyone who wasn't focusing directly on me with a weapon. And even if they were, fast draw may be your last chance. I rolled those dice once, and won. That is, a weapon was pointed at me, I decided not to draw as I thought there was a good enough chance of defusing the situation. Fortunately, I was right. In the future, I really don't think I will put that much trust in someone who has decided to point a gun at me in anger. Your results may vary.

    Oh yeah- I second the idea, keep your damn mouth shut afterwards, until your lawyer is present. I'm not aware of anyone successfully talking their way out of self-incrimination or prosecution.

  22. #22
    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aktion View Post
    Oh yeah- I second the idea, keep your damn mouth shut afterwards, until your lawyer is present. I'm not aware of anyone successfully talking their way out of self-incrimination or prosecution.
    How in the world all those people that did talk to the Police after a Self Defense Action did not go to jail or charged?
    I think it happens more often then not though I do not suggest just rambling on.

    There are those granted who stand by say nothing along with those to give the basic information to those who ever rattle on, get training.
    Last edited by BigDave; 11-20-2011 at 09:12 PM.
    • Being prepared is to prepare, this is our responsibility.
    • I am not your Mommy or Daddy and do not sugar coat it but I will tell you simply as how I see it, it is up to you on how you will or will not use it.
    • IANAL, all information I present is for your review, do your own homework.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigDave View Post
    How in the world all those people that did talk to the Police after a Self Defense Action did not go to jail or charged?
    I think it happens more often then not though I do not suggest just rambling on.
    How in the world, indeed.

    To put a finer point on it, BigDave- To not speak, you avoid self-incrimination. To speak does not necessarily equal self-incrimination and/or prosecution. To speak invites the possibility, however great or small, of self-incrimination. I didn't expect that would need to be explained.

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