Lack of Training Can Get You Killed
Last week a security guard at a bar was shot and killed by the police. The reports indicate the guard had stopped a shooting, and he had the shooter on the ground, holding his (the guard’s) gun on the bad guy while holding him down with his knee. When the police rolled up on a call of a shooting, they saw a guy on top of another guy, holding a gun on him.
They shot and killed the security guard. A tragic mistake. And yet … We have always used mistakes to learn from and to change our behavior, our training, and our tactics. In this case, it’s a reminder of something I’ve said for many years, echoing all the trainers I’ve worked with.
Two things: 1. You aren’t a cop. You don’t carry handcuffs. It is really difficult to detain anyone. It’s also dangerous. Your firearm is to protect yourself and others, but not to apprehend a criminal. 2. You absolutely don’t want to be holding a gun in your hand when the police arrive on a call of a shooter of a “man with a gun.” You very likely will be shot. When you hear the sirens coming, put your gun back in the holster, or put it on the ground. Keep the dispatcher on your phone and describe yourself so that info gets relayed to the responding officers. Get your hands into the air and do exactly what they tell you to do. Don’t try to explain. There’s time for that later. Live though the first 60 seconds.
We can talk all day about police training, and what they should do, and what they should know, but talking about what should be won’t keep you alive. We deal in what is, and that’s the reality that you should not be holding a gun when the cops arrive. Think it through. Play it out in your mind. Have a plan. ~ Tom
Author, outdoorsman, gun rights activist, and firearms enthusiast for more than five decades, Tom Gresham hosts Tom Gresham's Gun Talk, the first nationally-syndicated radio show about guns and the shooting sports, and is also the producer and co-host of the Guns & Gear and First Person Defender television series.
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