Thursday, October 27, 2011

Have a gun. It's a good start.

We're all familiar with the news story:
Mrs. Edna J. Blascowicz, 64, of Walla Walla, was pushing her shopping cart through the parking lot of the local Grocery Mart last Tuesday night when a man in a striped shirt and a black mask jumped out from behind a car right in front of her.
"Ha! Ha!" he said "I am a bad guy, and I am going to rob and rape you!"
Mrs. Blascowicz then produced her deceased husband's service revolver from her purse and said "I refuse to be a victim!"
"Oh, no!" exclaimed the bad guy, and ran off, to be later apprehended by police.
This incident happens often enough that the NRA manages to round up five or eight of them every month to put in the "Armed Citizen" column in their American Rifleman house organ.

Then there's the other kind of self-defense with a firearm; the kind that doesn't make the magazine. You need to think about that kind, too.


perlhaqr said...

Holy crap. That is one lucky dude.

Still more evidence that handguns suck. Also, that you can choose to stay in the fight. (And a good thing for this guy that he did.)

Tam said...

Yup. Imagining yourself in that situation is just frickin' scary.

What I like are the respondents who read that, puff up, and say "Well, I woulda..." Yeah, you hope you woulda, GI Joe.

SpeakerTweaker said...

I hope and pray that I can at the very least do what that guy did. Sure, I'd love to draw, squeeze a few times, and watch the bad guy fall down. If I can have any part in making sure my family/friends don't end up at room temp, I'll take what I can get.

That's a great read. Thanks for posting it.


Anonymous said...

Lots of interesting points in that post. One that got my attention was that the OP admitted to a very low level of training and that afterwards took several classes. Food for thought.

Anonymous said...

Game it out in your head beforehand. Any plan is better than no plan.

I wonder, if it had been possible, to draw before being in such a position of disadvantage, proned out next to a table. Maybe draw on your knees?

St Paul

fast richard said...

That's some scary stuff. He did well, considering how far behind the curve he was at the beginning of the incident. Any gunfight is a gamble. The other guy already having a gun out and ready to fire is very badly stacked odds.

Tam said...

fast richard,

The scary thing to me about the story is how far, for lack of a better term, inside their decision cycle the bad guy got before they realized "Hey, this shit is for real."

Be honest. Some guy walks into your backyard cookout as nonchalant as you please and announces a stickup, how many heartbeats does it take for you to go from casually standing there, sipping a beer, to "Okay, this is Fred from the office setting us up as a prank" to "Oh, man, we're boned"?

That's the part that grabbed me most.

It's a good reminder that you don't get to pick the time or the place.

Anonymous said...

I took a force and force class taught by Karl Rehn with a scenario very similar to this case. I was the bad guy and ended up shooting the good guys down pretty quickly.

The best way out of the situation was for the armed good guy to be the first victim into the room and use the couple of seconds to draw and shoot the bad guy in the face as soon he entered the room.

Force on force training certainly makes you realize you may get winged even when you do everything right.

I would recommend Karl as an instructor.


TheCabinetMan said...

It sounds like (maybe) the BG was tipped-off by the sound of the 1911's thumb safety being clicked off. Any thoughts on how this could made quieter? Lube?


Anonymous said...

Camouflage it with a cough maybe?


Tam said...


I mean no disrespect but, dude, seriously, that's about 97th on the list of "100 Important Things To Note From This AAR"...

Divemedic said...

The main lesson that I take from this, is that when you see a weapon, react.

The CCW carrier saw the weapon wielded by the bad guy and waited for the perfect scenario. This is likely not going to happen, as the bad guy is in control of the situation. The only reason that the CCW was not killed is pure luck. It is hard to imagine this going any worse if he had simply drawn and shot as soon as the entered the conference room.

This isn't an "I woulda" post, simply a lesson learned for me: When you see a weapon, you are now in mortal danger. The person who is the most ruthless, the fastest, the most willing to kill, the most skilled, and even the luckiest will prevail.

Laughingdog said...

"Okay, this is Fred from the office setting us up as a prank"

I'm at least fortunate enough that my co-workers and friends are all smart enough to not set up a prank like that if they think I may be around.

Boat Guy said...

Thanks for the link, Tam. VERY interesting reading.
While I think DiveMedic's takeaway is an important one, perhaps even THE important one, I'll not second-guess this guy; it played out far better than it could have for him and his friends.
Perhaps the "Caleb-technique" with the cocktail glass would have been a way to initiate sooner?

cj said...

And yet, over and over again, I hear claims that firearms are rarely used for self defense because they don't see it on the evening news, but look at all the BAD guns that get all the media attention!

That's one lucky guy, and I hope I'm never in anything remotely similar to that situation. And for all you 'I'll just fire a single shot at his head' types...see the round count at touching distance vs. the number of hits.

NotClauswitz said...

I probably wouldda pee'd my pants and gone all knee-wobbly while my heart over-clocked.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Nothing good ever happens to the good guys when the bad guys move the show to the secondary crime scene. Always try to avoid making that trip.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

That's my standard opening move for this scenario, too, DirtCrashr.

TheCabinetMan said...

Tam says,

"I mean no disrespect but, dude, seriously, that's about 97th on the list of "100 Important Things To Note From This AAR"..."

I don't feel dissed at all and you'll get no argument from me on that point. There is muy to be gleaned from that post.

That said...

One of the things I ponder-on is the mantra, "You can't out-draw the drawn gun." (YCODTDG) I fully realize that there may be no work-around to that specific problem, but I consider it an interesting philosophical/mental exercise. With that in mind, the little blurb about the noisy safety (possibly) being a tip-off piqued my YCODTDG interest as yet another variable I'd never considered.


Stingray said...

"how many heartbeats does it take for you to go from casually standing there, sipping a beer, to "Okay, this is Fred from the office setting us up as a prank" to "Oh, man, we're boned"?"

I've been asked a time or two regarding a ....certain event just what was going through my mind in the final seconds before launch. Coming around a parked car out of the darkness, that pretty well covers it. "Oh hell, I hope everybody is in a laughing mood..."

Things I Should Have Thought Of Earlier #467.

Robb Allen said...

Any member of Food-Court-Team-Six could clearly tell you that in this situation you lure the criminal into a false sense of security THEN you execute a Level-Four disarmament move that would leave Jackie Chan asking for the rights to use it in his next movie.

The only time I had to pull a gun in self defense, the thugs left toot-sweet. I drew faster than they did, but that's only because they were making a show of it (Note to criminals, telegraphing your draw is a bad idea).

Walking up to me with a gun drawn though? You're at a big advantage. However, asking me to move elsewhere is telegraphing that you're planning on killing me anyway. Never been in the situation, can't say what I'd do (urine would be involved, that part is for sure), but I hope I can at least keep my cool and do what I can to come out of it breathing and not leaking too much blood.

LabRat said...

"As soon as you see a weapon, that's the time to shoot the carrier" certainly creates an interesting wrinkle in open carry debates, as well as concealed carry failures.

There is always enough time to be wrong.

Laughingdog said...

"The main lesson that I take from this, is that when you see a weapon, react. "

I think that seeing a WIELDED weapon might be a better threshold for taking action.

Anonymous said...

The sound of the 1911's thumb safety being clicked off was followed a split second later by the sound of the first of several shots.

There, fixed it for you.

Al T.

WilhelmDurand said...

This is a very compelling account, and I'm quite pleased the scumbag got what he deserved.

I think the author is an example for all of us. I've had a few tests of my readiness, but nothing within three magnitudes of this event.

Larry said...

My first thought (besides "what is that warm liquid leaking down my leg") would likely have been "Damn I wish I wasn't drinking this beer because in NC I can't have my hardware as long as I have even a little bit of alcohol in my system."

Alan J. said...

For me, the scariest part of this story is when, "Once we were inside, he told us to get on the floor face down,..." and I was instantly reminded of the five women murdered in the Chicago clothing store. In this situation, no matter what happens I would go for my gun and shoot the bad guy, even if I was absolutely certain that I'd be shot as well. I'd try to use my best judgement and timing to not put any innocent lives in danger, but in this situation I'd be worried that the bad guy is just lining up the sheep for the slaughter. Thankfully some luck, training, and preparation prevented that from happening this time.

elmo iscariot said...

1st Degree Assault - GUILTY
1st Degree Robbery - GUILTY
1st Degree Armed Criminal Action - GUILTY
Unlawful Possession of a Firearm (Felon in Possession) - GUILTY
5-4-11 Update
First count- Life (30) years
Second count - 25 years
Third count - 10 years
Fourth count - 10 years

Sooo... Two months probation, then?

[I've had it out with myself and decided that if I'm ever confronted with a gunfight, I'm going to get shot, so my only concern is stopping the bad guy; any wounds I get are the paramedics' problem. I hope never to have to see whether that plan survives contact with the enemy, or I stand around blinking.]

Alan J. said...

Oh, and Tam before you repeat your comment about, "Yeah, you hope you woulda, GI Joe," I agree with you. Preparation, some training, luck, and hope are all that most of us have in this kind of situation. That's also why we're all such big fans of the 2nd Amendment as well.

Justthisguy said...

I am proud to say that I have been instrumental in assisting two women to arm themselves, so that they might prevail in such a situation.

It was a woman, a neighbor at the time, whose counsels eventually persuaded me to arm myself. She is a Mississippi gal, and thus heart-breakingly good-looking, and therefore I had no option but to obey her suggestions.

WV: cable. Some of you guys may have that, but I'm doing this on the old-fashioned phone wires.

DaveFla said...

If I read that correctly, it was 3 1/2 hits out of six for the bad guy. My takeaway is that even if I decide to follow orders to go elsewhere with the already-brandishing criminal, I'd best initiate whatever other action I've decided upon BEFORE he closes to immediate contact distance. Also, surprise regained has a finite shelf life...

Anonymous said...

Any one of those bullets could've put finito to his story. Yes, he needs more training, and his buddies need to get their CCW's.

I like the sentence: 70 years CONSECUTIVELY!!! :-) By the time the perp's up for parole, he'll need diapers & Preparation H.

Side note, a parent at my daughter's school just survived a home-invasion robbery. Gotta oil my equipment!

Ulises from CA

Anonymous said...

"Gotta oil my equipment!"

That's a little personal, I'm just sayin....

Tango Juliet said...

Accepting the threat is there, right in front of me is my biggest concern. I wonder how much of my brain would lock up in utter disbelief, no matter how much I have coached myself to realize bad things can happen anywhere.