Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Save the Princess!



We all have our Dark Knight fantasies.  Even before CCW was legal in Ohio or in your state, it wasn’t uncommon to hope that we would somehow get involved and save the “princess.”  It’s a common game and story ploy.  We save the victim, they are grateful, the papers get hold of it, cue your ticker tape parade ….

man in black assult a woman in a dark alley
We know what's happening here, right?    Or do we?
 

The trouble is we don’t know who’s who when we pull up on the scene.  We make assumptions and we could get the following:

PLAINFIELD, N.J. (AP) — Police say a thief got away after two good Samaritans grabbed the wrong person (my emphasis) on a northern New Jersey street.
The Samaritans were driving down a street in Plainfield when they saw what appeared to be a man assaulting a woman early Monday.

But it turns out the man was walking down the street when he said the woman robbed him of about $400 in cash and a gold chain.

Public Safety Director Martin Hellwig tells the Courier News of Bridgewater (http://mycj.co/PA5muX ) the suspect ran off when the passing motorists intervened.

Investigators are using videotape to try to identify the suspect.
Information from: Courier News (Bridgewater, N.J.) , http://www.mycentraljersey.com

Oops!

CCW means there is always a gun present.  Yours.  Make a mistake and what was an embarrassing moment becomes ruined lives and jail time.

But ... how could I not get involved?  I asked myself that when I decided to carry. 

No simple answer will suffice.  Here are some guiding principles. 

No visible weapon:
I will take cover as best as possible and make my weapon available for self-defense.  Typically I’ll establish a grip on the weapon for a possible draw.  I’ll call the police and tell actors that the police have been called and are on the way. 

Visible weapon:
I take cover as best as possible and draw my weapon for self-defense.  I’ll call the police (911)  if I have the time and start shouting “Police! Drop the weapon! Someone call the police!” 

There are three possible responses.  Two are almost cookbook in nature.

One: Criminal runs away.  I wave bye-bye and give the police the best descriptions I can.

Two: Criminal assaults me.  I defend myself.  You know what that entails and what the aftermath looks like.

Three: Criminal ignores me and continues to assault the victim.  This is the tough call.  Me?  I’m still giving this a lot of thought.  But, even a victim who has turned the tables on assailant does not have the right to take life and needs to stop when the lethal threat has ended.  If they continue, they become the aggressor.

I told you it wasn’t easy.

So far, my best answer because I don’t truly know what’s happening, is I do nothing but verbal intervention. 

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