Again, you don’t really need to stay connected to the 911 operator in the middle of a defensive gun use. Once you’ve provided the basic deets, once the cavalry’s on its way, maintaining situational awareness is job one. How you gonna do that with an operator jabbering away in your ear? Doing something—running, hiding, fighting, shooting—is job two. How you gonna do that with an operator jabbering away in your ear? If you want to record the unholy event—which is no a bad idea for a legal defense—just throw down the ‘phone. If you can (i.e. you’re not hiding) shout things like “I’ve got a gun!” “The police are on their way!” and/or “Don’t make me kill you!” I wonder: has any 911 operator ever advised a caller to hang up the ‘phone and take care of business?

 

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14 Responses to Self-Defense Tip: The 911 Operator Can’t Help You

  1. A dose of reality about using deadly force. The woman’s prayer after shooting was a powerful reminder of the consequences of our defensive gun use. She was forced into an act of violence that she abhorred and will live the rest of her life with the memory of that horrible night.

  2. My sister was a 911 operator for the state police for 10 years. Points that she made herself were that she had no tactical training or experience. She had never arressted or confronted a bad guy and hated guns.

    She also pointed out that the only information she had in any given situation was the verbal discription given by the person on the phone. Information that was sketchy at best.

    911 operators are there first and foremost to dispatch the appropriate, fire, medics, police to your location. They aren’t legal advisors and they don’t have the power to authorize any of your actions.

    You are the person on the spot at that moment. You must make and live with your decisions. My advice is to take a moment now before you ever see a need for 911 and talk to a lawyer and Know what your rights and limits are.

    My sister is a strong woman. Do not ask her about the calls involving children. Those are the heart breakers.

    • Jwm,

      Well said, sir. Give your sister my best for her service (I know I’m a random guy on the Internet, but you actually know where I stand on quite a few things).

      911 dispatchers have a mission, and part of that mission is to get appropriate resources to your location. I’ve worked with them for a dozen years, and I have personal knowledge that most of them experience high levels of stress in situations like these.

      However, dispatchers must also answer to city and or state policies which are put in place to minimize civil and legal liability. That may not bode well for your personal safety.

      I’m glad this worked out for the homeowner, and my prayers are with her. As far as I’m concerned, this is another happy ending courtesy of 2A rights and personal accountability.

  3. As a Christian, I understand the remorse of taking a life that God has created but this man had evil in his hart. I’m not one to quote the Bible but from my studies I believe we’re not just allowed to protect ourselves it’s our responsibility.

    I pry that this Lady heals from her DGU experience and is able to sleep well at night knowing that at least this GB will do no more evil.

    • He said to them, “But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one.”
      —Luke 22:36, NIV

      There’s a lot of quibbling about context and non-literal meanings. I would hope that Jesus was as at least smart enough to follow an obvious rule about weapons: if you carry a weapon you need to know how and when, and be willing, to use it.

  4. man, i so wish they would tell which caliber and gun when they report these events. We could setup a good database of data for the age old caliber wars. Too bad.

  5. I don’t think a 911 dispatcher would ever advise the caller to hang up the phone while “events are underway.” Maybe after the police have arrived, but certainly not beforehand. They might advise putting the phone down and staying connected, but not to hang up.

  6. Truly horrifying. The lady G-d bless her did the right thing. It is never an easy decision. Those that say it is are lying because they have never been faced with taking a human life.

    Her and her family are in our prayers. It will take time to recover, and heal the wounds, but she is alive to live another day with her family and friends. A DGU where shots are fired and someone dies is the ultimate and last resort.

    She certainly on tape sounded like she did not want to use deadly force to protect herself and waited until she had no choice. I would be surprised if any legal action will be taken. Without sounding callous this was a clean shoot plane and simple. This was a person with a criminal record, or at least someone known to police for having issues in the past.

    He was making verbal threats and continued to force his way into her room where she had fled.
    My hope is her family and friends will be by her side to provide support, and healing. She was very brave. I can say that because you could hear the fear in her voice. She had to face her fear, and overcome it. That is a brave action in and of itself.

    So in recap she did not confront the intruder, she tried to retreat. She called 911 and let them know she was armed. He continued to advance and left her no choice.

  7. This is obviously a bogus story. Truly defensive uses of firearms don’t happen. Just ask MikeNumbers. This lady must have been a drug dealer who must have ripped the guy off and he was just coming back for satisfaction.
    (sarcasm off)

    Good for her!!

  8. “under state law she was in the right…”

    I’m glad the media did say the above for other viewers and I hope it always stays that way. If Obama has his way, all handguns will be banned and if people are lucky, in Obama’s world, they will be able to own a home defense pump shotgun. For some people a traditional shotgun or long gun isn’t a practical defense tool because of physical limitations, layout of their home, children to control, and other possible reasons.

    • What is lame is the need to even mention that it is legal to defend yourself, in your house, from a violent intruder. The other lameness was the operator stating someone should never be put into the situation of taking action. Evidently she subscribes to the MikeB fairyland view. Reality is; the homeowner was in a situation and she took action. Her life was more important to her than the intruder’s, or MikeB’s opinion.

  9. She sounded remarkably calm probably knowing she could handle the situation. She would rather have the police show up and possibly take him away.

  10. My best wishes and prayers go out to the woman that had to shoot the bad guy. I have never been in that kind of situation, but in my 56 years, I have had to call 911 many times, maybe 15 or more times. Mostly for medical reasons needing an ambulance, but also for police to break up domestic abuse at one of my neighbor’s homes and a couple of robberies. Just like the clerk you get at the grocery store, the dispatcher you get is totally the luck of the draw. Some are totally competant, some get emotional and excited, and ocassionally you get a dunce. I generally have found that calmly and slowly giving my name, my location and the reason I am calling is all the info I need to relay. There is usually other more important things to do right away than continuing to chat with the dispatcher. Because I have had the need to call 911 several times, I’ve gotten more experience at it than most folks. Be calm, talk clearly so you don’t have to repeat stuff and then get off and take care of the injured person, the intruder, the pregnant lady or whatever reason you had for calling 911.

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