This just in from a member of TTAG’s Armed Intelligentsia:
“As I begin to write this, not 20 minutes beforehand, I pulled my gun in self defense. For the second time in 4 months. In the gun free city of Chicago. I already know what you’re thinking, I’m not allowed to carry a gun in Chicago. Let’s get this out of the way, I have made the decision to conceal carry in Chicago. Yes this is stupid, but it has already been beneficial for me. Not once but twice.
A little background, I’m a FF/Paramedic that lives in the downtown Chicago area and works in the near suburbs. I work for a municipality on a paid department that I commute to using the CTA. I am a transplant from South Florida that is only here temporarily while my wife finishes school.
I’m not a large guy, but I’m not what would be considered a soft target. I participate in Crossfit and swim for health and strength. I’ve taken some force on force training and have taken self defense classes with my wife.
As most emergency service providers, I’ve learned to always be aware of my surroundings and situations that I’m entering. I’ve been first on scene for shootings, highway accidents, domestic disputes, drug overdoses and other terrible incidents. My main focus is the safety of myself and my partner first, above and before everyone else. We are trained this way.
All this being said, I have been part of many situations that have been defused with nothing more than words.
This morning I was running late to the “L” and ran the 1/4 mile to the station. Just as I made the platform, the train left. No big deal, I give myself leeway for this very reason. As I’m waiting for the next train, three men step on to the platform on the opposite side of the tracks. They say some words to each other that I’m way too far away to hear and step off the platform and out of sight.
Not a minute later these three same men step onto my side of the platform from the near by staircase. They quickly look around and start walking toward me with fists clenched, I scan around me and I’m the only one on the platform except them. I’m standing about half way down the platform, with both staircases behind these guys.
The man closest to me asked me for a smoke, he was standing still about 5 feet from me. I told him I don’t smoke with a firm voice well above normal volume but not a yell while making eye contact with him.
He then said, “I’ll take your fucking wallet then dick” while reaching out to me.
I smacked his forearm away with my left hand as I took 3 steps farther down the platform and drew my gun from its five o’clock spot on the right side of my body. As I drew I yelled ‘back off’ very loudly. They all turned tail and ran while cursing their lungs off after giving me saucer eyed unbelieving looks. I thank God that they had the sense to not even move in my direction.
If they had, there’s no question I wouldn’t be typing this right now. It felt like I stood there for a solid 10 minutes before the train arrived but it couldn’t have been more than 2-3. I re-holstered just before the train pulled into the station.
I boarded and spent the ride attempting to calm down. I’m writing this as a way to vent and direct my anger in a positive way. I’m hoping for some sort of an assessment or some feedback from someone. I hope I can get it from you guys here, as I will not be telling anyone around Chicago about this for obvious reasons.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.”
[Click here to read an off-the-record response from a Chicago cop]