Monday, May 15, 2017

Shadow Shooting

Ohio Castle law seems to suggest that you can legally shoot anyone who doesn’t belong in your house.  I say “seems” because one, I’m not a lawyer and two, I think the state is waiting for case law to be generated.  Don’t become the poster child for this.

The law is, as the Ohio CCW manual says, rebuttable or not absolute.  If the prosecutor can prove you lured the person in, or they had a right to be present, or that you weren’t in danger, you may be in for an extended vacation at the graybar hotel.

With this in mind, always identify your target.  A gun light is a useful tool, but so is a hand held light.  Other lighting arrangements can be wired so as to illuminate any intruder while you stay in the inky shadows.

Unidentified Target
Is it your son, daughter's boyfriend sneaking out, confused neighbor or VCA?


The Akron Beacon Journal 12 May 2017:  “A 22-year-old woman is expected to survive after her father mistook her for a burglar and shot her, Akron police said.”

The article continues  “...heard someone breaking into his kitchen ... he yelled … no one responded … could see a shadowy figure … assumed it was an intruder … aimed and fired … hit the daughter.”

The daughter was house sitting somewhere else and returned home unexpectedly.  She was transported to Summa’s Akron City Hospital.  No charges have been filed as of press time.  In any case, family get-togethers and holidays will be strained.

All this could have been prevented if Dad had a light.

Forget what your buddies say, what the talk radio guy mumbled on the air, what the internet told you with the following exception:

Always identify the intruder in your house.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Senseless

Drs. Field and Bolanos were in love.  He was anesthesiologist who built-up a pain management practice and she was a pediatric anesthesiologist in Boston.  Together they bought a 1.9 million dollar condo in the prestigious Macallen Building, a posh luxurious building that features a doorman and security card access to the building and elevator.  Being on the 11th floor they thought they would be safe.  Wouldn’t you?

Well, you would dead wrong.  Just like Drs. Field and Bolanos.

At this point we only know about the crime, not the how or why.  At some point Field sent his buddy a text saying a gunman was in the house.  The police received two calls about this, one from the front desk and the other from his friend.  Would you expect your friend to rush over if they received a text that an armed man was in your house?

When the police arrived at the apartment they found Dickless Wonder (No, I’m not going to tell you his name. This blog doesn’t give criminals publicity.) and the two doctors.  They were bound by the hands and had their throats slit.  DW appears to have smeared the walls with blood and ransacked the place for jewelry.

Some reports indicate he had a realistic airsoft gun and the police shot him.  He survived and was arraigned in a hospital bed.

DW in hospital bed.  That's a pretty good eye-fuck he's giving someone.

There’s a lot of unanswered questions.
  • How did he get in?
  • Why did he select these victims?
  • How/why did Richard Field text his friend and not the police?
  • How did the doorman get involved?

There’s a lot of speculation and if it were an episode of Law and Order we’d find out by the end of the hour that one of them hired the DW and it went bad, somehow. 

But here’s the tactical side:
  • Being wealthy doesn’t make you safe.
  • Never assume that doormen and mechanical/electronic locks and safeguards will keep you safe.
  • Know the police will never arrive on time. 
  • If we assume Field was hiding and unable to speak, why not text 911?  It may not be possible in his area.  From the FCC website:

The FCC encourages emergency call centers to begin accepting texts as text providers develop text-to-911 capability, but it is up to each call center to decide the particular method in which to implement and deploy text-to-911 technology

Is it possible from your location?  Will you remember to include your address?  Will you also remember to turn off the keystroke sound? 
  • Never let anyone in your house, apartment, condo, etc. until you’ve identified them and you understand what they want.
  • Never allow yourself to be tied up, taken to another location, or held hostage. 
  • We are tool bearing mammals.  Have the tool you need to fight with on you.  Never give up.



I’m sure as this case develops more will be revealed, but take it as an object lesion.  Be prepared to defend yourself and your loved ones.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Dead Man's Gun

By now you’ve seen the store security tape of Heriberto Aceves trying to draw and load his semi auto against a criminal with a loaded gun. (Oct 2016)

This is what it's like carrying an empty gun
This is what it is like when you carry an empty gun for protection.

Heriberto didn’t make it and died trying.  His son Juan, also present, is killed as well.

What happened?  Did gun have a feeding jam?  Was the magazine seated properly?  Did he fail to properly sling-shot the slide?  I’ve seen various attempts to explain what was happening, but I suspect only Heriberto really knows.  In any case it took him too long to bring his force multiplier into action.

Let’s concentrate on how long it takes to bring a person to weapon ready status.  I’m not talking about how fast you draw but how fast you go from no weapon visible to being ready to squeeze the first round off.

It took Heriberto too long.  If you were at home, how long would it take you to get a loaded, functioning weapon ready?

Is it on you or is it unloaded under the sofa?  Or bedroom?  Is it in a safe/lockbox, hidden and where do you have to go to get it?  Spare magazine next to it or high capacity available?  Maybe you have to use a normal magazine for concealed carry, but nobody says your reload can’t be high capacity or your home gun can’t be loaded with an extended magazine.

Imagine the sound of a cinder block going through the glass sliding door in the back of the house.  You need to:
  1. Recognize what the noise is and what it means;
  2. Get the occupants, children, spouse somewhere safe;
  3. Get your weapon ready;
  4. Get yourself to a point of advantage and dominance.




If the gun is up the flight of stairs and in the back bedroom or is unloaded under the sofa with the magazine or speed loader in the end-table drawer, how long will it take you?

Even a gun carried on you in condition three* is essentially unloaded. You need to rack the slide which loads the gun and cocks the action.  How long does it take?  I saw a video of two men load a 1911 .45 acp under the influence of a hugh skin pop of adrenaline.  Each of the trained shooters fumbled the load.  No surprise there, with racing heart and cold numb fingers, I’m impressed it took only two attempts to get the gun loaded.  Imagine the difficulty of drawing from concealment and needing to frack the slide!

Even in condition two, (hammer down on a loaded chamber), a single action firearm requires you to cock the hammer.  If you rack the slide to cock your weapon, a round will be ejected.  Now you’re one round down in a gunfight for your life.

Clearly the better answer seems to be a loaded gun on your person.  Nervous about carrying locked and cocked?  I’d suggest a wheel gun, double action first round or a double action every shot.  (As I type this I’m wearing a Glock which can be considered a double action.)  Pick one that fits you.

What about the AR rifle?  There are advantages to using a rifle for home defense.  (You should be aware I’m lumping all domiciles, even temporary ones like hotel rooms in to “home”.)  Better accuracy, better stopping power, larger capacity are just a few of the pluses.

But assuming you’re not walking around with a slung, loaded AR while making eggs in the morning, where’s the rifle?  In a case?  Is the scope turned off or are you using iron sights?  Where’s the magazine?  Is it loaded?  How loaded, or are you planning to top it off from a stash?   Is the adjustable stock set or are you prepared to shoot with a collapsed stock and your dot as a giant ghost ring?  Is the sling set or simply flopping around and do you really need a sling in your own house?  It’s all doable, if you have it planned and practiced.

Remember the Seven P’s.

Prior planning/practice prevents piss poor performance.

Let’s grind away a little on the terrorist fantasy.  Here’s a version of it that I share with others, even though I suspect its pure fantasy.

You see the action unfolding and retrieve the rifle and prepare to help save the day.

Once again where’s the rifle?  In a case or mounted in the trunk?  Let’s dismiss carrying it in the passenger compartment unless you’re 007 or the police.  Is the dot turned on?  Some dots run for years, others a month.  So it should be obvious that the scope gets turned on as soon as the rifle gets in your hands, if not left on all the time.  Maybe a 3X fixed optical scope is what you really need and not the tacti-cool scope the Navy Seals use.

Where’s the magazine? Is it loaded?  Is the stock adjusted?  Sling adjusted and rubber-banded out of the way?  Gun light installed or laying in the case? 

So how long?  How long will it be from first indication of trouble to weapon ready?

Why don’t you find out?  Go to the range and set it up like to carry or how you keep it at home.  Use a timer and on the buzz, get the gun out, load, adjust, futz with it and get a shot off to stop the timer.

How long?  Too long?  Well, you can change that.
Can you shave stuff to make it faster?  Magazine with the rifle instead of located in external pouch or a separate location.  Preset the collapsible stock or simply mark it so you just have to pull it to position. Zipper pulls on the case to assist you in opening it.

What about safety glasses and ear protection.  Can you do without?  At home a suppressor could be the ticket.  Maybe you’re willing to trade minor ear damage today for having a tomorrow.  That’s not a bad trade in my opinion.


*Condition One:  Loaded gun, single actions cocked, safety on, double actions decocked and off safe;
Condition Two:  Chamber loaded, hammer down with single action, double action has the safety on;

Condition three:  Loaded magazine, but chamber empty, safety set any damn way you want;
Condition Four:  unloaded, empty gun.