Category Archives: decision making

Chasing Criminals -Serious Mistake

This past Sunday a man decided to commit an armed robbery of clerk working in a California convenience store. When the robber fled with the stolen goods, the clerk retrieved his own gun and pursued, firing at the fleeing robber. The robber then used his own gun to shoot and kill the clerk.

Branca – Law of Self Defense

Both tactically and legally, this is a problem. Although it usually doesn’t result in getting killed, I have numerous incidents in my database where the victim was then charged with a crime for various aspects of the pursuit. Like it or not, it is what it is.

Many were surprised when Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton then decided that she would not press a murder charge against the armed robber, on the grounds that the robber was acting in lawful self-defense when he killed the clerk.

Branca – LOSD

I’ll let Andrew comment on the idiosyncrasies of the decision but this would be the ultimate indignity to me personally. My sympathies to the victim’s family.

AAR – Reactionary Zones

#mindsetmonday

I recently had the opportunity to attend REACTIONARY ZONES, a 3 Hour Online Session with Shelley Hill. This is an online class conducted via Zoom. This is my After Action Review of the class.

http://www.thecompletecombatant.com/online-reactionary-zones.html

One of the glaring holes in Personal Protection training is accessible training that goes beyond the gun itself. While there are various Force on Force exercises available, some good and some not so much, they still require travel to a training site, involve a significant time commitment, cost more than most people want to pay, and are intimidating to those new to the concept of training. Reactionary Zones is designed to address these issues.

As the saying goes, this class can be taken “in the comfort of your own home.” The cost is nominal ($39.95) for a highly interactive experience. Images are heavily used in the class as training props to introduce the clients to the idea that situations will require some degree of reaction for a successful outcome. Images are a part of the class but the emphasis is more on understanding timing aspects of Personal Protection.

A major benefit of the class is that it introduces the concept of spatial relationships and time requirements into Personal Protection thinking. This can be a difficult aspect of self-defense for many people, not just beginners, to grasp in a concrete manner.

Shelley has a very interactive style in the class despite it being Zoom based. It is definitely NOT a boring Zoom lecture. She engages the clients, poses a progression of situations, and requires the clients to learn problem solving. It was obvious a lot of learning was going on by those who attended. This is a thinking and reacting class not just note taking.

For those who are just beginning the journey into understanding Personal Protection concepts, whether armed or not, this is a great starting point. Even for experienced practitioners, there’s a good deal to be learned in the class.

FTC disclaimer: I had significant input into the content of this course. Shelley is a good friend of mine and invited me to take the course gratis. However, I receive no compensation for this review nor commission for anyone who signs up because of my review.

Shooting in the leg

Investigators say Marquez claimed the shooting was self-defense and that he only intended to shoot his brother in the leg after his brother assaulted him during a fight. Instead, Marquez shot his brother in the stomach.

https://www.fox10phoenix.com/news/man-claims-self-defense-in-deadly-shooting-of-his-brother-in-avondale

Bad decision. The brother died.

Marquez was arrested and booked into jail. He is accused of multiple charges, including second-degree murder.

This was a Serious Mistake that resulted in a Negative Outcome. To purchase my book about Serious Mistakes Gunowners Make, click the link below.

https://store.payloadz.com/details/2617872-ebooks-true-crime-serious-mistakes-gunowners-make.html

Decision and Determination

“The document details how [Michaela aka Micky] Shunick fought back against her attacker by spraying him with Mace, stabbing him several times and fighting relentlessly until he ultimately shot her in the head.”

ABC News

https://abcnews.go.com/US/mickey-shunick-killer-pleads-guilty-court-document-reveals/story?id=17029059&fbclid=IwAR3LyrMSs8m5SEQDrtyOsK9bgIxLWoFdwSVmI-OdqFAbaFN8AddaShIyp9k

Synopsis of the incident

  • The Culprit intentionally hit Shunick’s bicycle
  • Insisted that she enter his truck
  • He put her bike in the bed of his truck
  • The Culprit was in possession of a knife and a semi-automatic handgun
  • When Shunick attempted to grab her cellphone to call for help, the Culprit threatened her with his knife
  • She sprayed Mace [or some other chemical weapon] into the Defendant’s face
  • Micky fought off the Defendant who succeeded in wrestling the chemical weapon from her
  • She grabbed the Defendant’s knife and proceeded to stab the Defendant several times in what would later be called life threatening wounds
  • The Culprit tried to grab the knife from Shunick, which caused him to cut tendons in his hands
  • Micky struggled with the much larger and stronger Culprit
  • He succeeded in taking the knife from her
  • The Culprit then stabbed her at least 4 times and she fell over
  • Micky lay motionless and the Culprit was unable to detect a pulse
  • The Culprit then drove her motionless body to a secluded area 40 minutes away
  • He planned to dump her body there

“Suddenly, Micky jumped up [after having been initially rendered unconscious], with the Defendant’s knife she had regained possession of and lunged at the Defendant stabbing him again in the chest, the court document said The Defendant pulled his semi-automatic handgun, which he had armed himself with, and shot Micky in the head, killing her instantly.”

That was one tough and courageous woman. She decided to make the crime as hard as possible for the Culprit. She had the determination to fight as long as she could, even after initially being rendered unconscious. I give her a lot of credit. We can all learn something from her example.

The Culprit pleaded guilty to her murder and to the 1999 murder of another woman, Lisa Pate. He was sentenced to life in prison, where he has proven to be a less than model prisoner. https://www.katc.com/news/around-acadiana/2018/10/25/convicted-murder-brandon-scott-lavergne-disciplined-often-in-jail/

Don’t Get Tied Up

“When they get the duct tape [or zip ties] out, it’s time to make your move, ready or not.”

The Most Dangerous Man in the World

A tragic story from California. An entire family kidnapped and murdered. Even their 8 month old baby was not spared.

https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/worst-fears-kidnapped-baby-parents-uncle-found-dead-91088353

“Surveillance video showed the suspect — later identified as Salgado — leading the Singh brothers, who had their hands zip-tied behind their backs, into the back seat of Amandeep Singh’s pickup truck. He drove the brothers away and returned several minutes later.”

Back in the 1980’s, Evan Marshall, a now retired DEEtroit POlice sergeant, laid out his plan if he got caught up in a store robbery while off-duty.

“As long as all they’re doing is taking money from the register, I’m going to act like a CPA from Akron and be a good witness. But if they start searching people, making customers get on the ground, or herding people into a back room, my wife knows to get away from me because I’m going to start shooting.”

While I know of a few incidents where a kidnappee didn’t come to physical harm, they’re few and far between. When a criminal intends to tie you up, they’re not after stuff, they’re after YOU. Nothing good is likely to come of that. Whether you’re armed or not, it’s time to start fighting. Even if you get killed in the process, the chances your baby won’t be left outside to die of exposure become much better.

Have that decision made ahead of time and act on it without hesitation if the need arises.

RIP Singh family.

Some things take time

I’ve always accepted that some things take time. In some cases, ideas are like time bombs and take a while to go off.

Many many people, not just gun people either, would greatly benefit from it.

An outline of the principles, called Dale Carnegie’s Secrets of Success, is available as a free download. I have a hard copy and refer to it regularly.

https://www.dalecarnegie.com/en/resources/dale-carnegies-secrets-of-success?

I receive no commission or other remuneration from recommending it, it’s just a wonderful resource for me that I like to share.

Gun Training from Friends and Relatives

This is a good example of why “My uncle is a veteran and he taught me to shoot” isn’t the hot ticket.

Watching the video in slow motion and looking at the track of the hits, it’s fairly clear that every hit on the roof and back of his car was created by the homeowner. Negative Outcome. There’s a hit on the side glass that probably came from the criminals and started it all.

This story was sent to me by a friend from the original tip on Gun Free Zone https://gunfreezone.net/thats-a-lot-of-dumb-luck-and-spent-brass/. I agree with this commentary.

He is very lucky to have survived and to have not been charged with a crime for filling a neighborhood with bullets.

Suppressive fire has its place in a combat zone but not in your own neighborhood.

Duel at the Dumbster (Part VI)

#throwbackthursday

“Another delay is expected this month in the murder trial of an Abilene father and son accused of killing their neighbor over a dispute about a mattress in 2018, a court official said this week.”

Read more at: https://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/crime/article264129071.html#storylink=cpy

“A new date has not been scheduled, but the Millers are expected to go on trial in early 2023, court officials said.”

They’re probably happy that they’re out on bond. It appears that they had to spend from September of 2018 until April 2019 in the can (jail). Whether they had their Man Locks during their jail stay is unknown.

Killing someone, no matter how obnoxious the person is, over a mattress is a Serious Mistake.

“Court documents said police reviewed the video and determined the Millers were likely tired of Howard acting out and threatening them verbally.”

https://www.reporternews.com/story/news/crime/2021/09/12/abilene-alley-shooting-murder-trial-father-son-michael-johnnie-dee-miller/8274926002/

As anyone who has been involved in the court process can tell you, it’s a living Hell, even before you go to trial. It will be around four and a half years for them, assuming they get to trial in early 2023. My colleague John Murphy https://www.fpftraining.com/ commented:

“The process is the punishment.”

This incident was so ridiculous and avoidable that I have written a series of articles about it.

Unjustified Killings

https://thetacticalprofessor.net/2018/09/20/serious-mistakes-unjustified-killings/

Lessons from the Duel at the Dumpster (Part I) https://tacticalprofessor.wordpress.com/2018/09/21/lessons-from-the-duel-at-the-dumpster-part-i/

Lessons from the Duel at the Dumpster (Part II) https://tacticalprofessor.wordpress.com/2018/09/22/lessons-from-the-duel-at-the-dumpster-part-ii/

Lessons from the Duel at the Dumpster (Part III)

https://thetacticalprofessor.net/2018/09/28/lessons-from-the-duel-at-the-dumpster-part-iii/

Duel Site Visit (Part IV)

Duel Site Visit (Part V)

Be dedicated to Stanford’s Paradigm.

  • Avoidance
  • Deterrence
  • De-escalation
  • Disengagement

SSS Summit – Mindset

#mindsetmonday

The Surgical Speed Shooting Summit Surgical Speed Shooting Summit 2022 – An Overview was largely about pistol shooting technique. Nonetheless, the first thing Andy spoke about on Thursday was mindset. Several items he mentioned are like leadership and land navigation, they bear regular study and periodic review.

  • Ayoob’s Priorities
    • Mindset
    • Tactics
    • Skill
    • Equipment
  • Cooper’s key contributions
    • Fundamental safety rules
    • Private sector combat competition and shooting schools
    • The Modern Technique
  • Stanford’s Strategy
    • “Private citizens have no law enforcement duty to control and arrest criminals nor military objectives such as killing people and breaking things.”
    • Your number one option for personal security is a commitment to:
      • Avoidance
      • Deterrence
      • De-escalation
      • Disengagement

Keeping those in mind at all times is a good formula for avoiding Serious Mistakes and Negative Outcomes.

The Oscar Slap

The timeline of the Oscar Slap has much value in the study of Personal Protection and Self-Defense. It has been preserved for posterity and study on video. The Guardian provides a short clip that shows it.

  • Chris Rock makes his joke about “GI Jane 2.” = O second
  • Will Smith laughs  = +1 second
  • Jada Pickett Smyth rolls her eyes = +3 seconds
  • Chris Rock says, “Uh oh,” meaning Will Smith was already on his feet = +10 seconds
  • Will Smith slaps Rock = +15 seconds

From the first indication something was going to happen, five or at most six seconds transpired.

Note the distances involved. Smith and Rock were no more than 25 feet (Near Phase of Public Space) apart.

Note also that Smith didn’t do a “Tueller Drill” on Rock. He walked purposefully but not even at a rapid pace to cover the 20 to 25 feet of ground.

Dr. Phil says “What bothers me? No one – no security or anybody came on the stage to protect Chris, and no one in Will’s camp – nobody stepped up to save him from himself.”

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/dr-phil-reveals-bothers-him-080152453.html

Dr. Phil’s guest Exavier Pope, an attorney, legal analyst, and host of the podcast SuitUp, common tated, “He had a whole runway. That’s a lot of cooling time, not just for Will Smith but for anyone to have stopped him.”

Five seconds is NOT “a lot of time,” especially for something as unexpected as a Battery (Cal. Penal Code § § 242, 243) during a high profile televised Black Tie event.

https://www.imagebaseddecisionaldrills.com/

Also observe that it took less than 10 seconds for Will Smith’s laughter at the joke to turn into violent action. The term “trigger” is appropriate.

When it’s least expected, you’re elected.

–John Farnam

For anyone who thinks this was staged, look at Will Smith’s face when he shouts “Keep my wife’s name out your f**king mouth” near the end of the clip. That’s genuine anger. BOLO for it and keep your distance.