Answering the Tough Questions: What Do I Do Until the Police Arrive?

By Eddie Devir

Undercover citizens can pose difficult questions to unsuspecting police officers. Especially in – surprise! – New York and New Jersey. “Um, officer? What happens between dialing 911 and the time the first cruiser pulls up?” When pressed, the cops admit that, to no one’s surprise, “You’re on your own.” This, despite predicted response times ranging up to 30 minutes or more . . .

Here are a few of the helpful suggestions offered by officers to enquiring citizens:

  1. Get a Dog
  2. Hope nothing happens
  3. Use a baseball bat
  4. lock yourself in the room
  5. make noise
  6. yell and scream
  7. use bleach
  8. Put your cell phone to your ear
  9. Flee the house
  10. Put 2 x 4 on the windows
  11. Eliminate shrubbery

Some of the cops are even caught on tape advising citizens in fear of their lives that guns really aren’t the way to go. All of which raises a question: Why do many police officers — who have guns on their hips for their own protection every day — advise their fellow citizens against doing the very same thing?

comments

  1. avatar anonymous says:

    > Get a Dog
    > Use a baseball bat
    > use bleach

    According to Evie Hudak, statistics are against you if you use a dog, a bat, or bleach.

    Millions of dog-owning women are murdered every year by crazed NRApists, and almost every woman who was murdered has used bleach at least once in her life.

    I’m not sure about a bat, because I’ve never seen a fledermaus play baseball.

    1. avatar UnapologeticallyAmerican says:

      Dogs do work. If nothing else they bark and serve as a warning. But unless you own a couple of fighting pit bulls, you can’t absolutely depend on them to protect you from a rapist

      As far as bleach? What is the plan there??? use a squirt gun. I guess if you had nothing else (bleach in the eyes cant feel that to good) its something besides lying there and playing dead or peeing/menstrating on yourself.

      A bat. I’ve seen a few softball players that I wouldn’t want to try to take them on if they had a bat. It takes luck, a stupid rapist (thankfully there aren’t to many smart ones) and a good swing. Better than lying there.

      BUT a Glock 23 does work. Statics show that guns are used on their owners <2% of the time (which is in contrast to urban myth).

      AND Two .40cal rounds center mass if nothing else drops the blood pressure enough to prevent an erection…

      1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        Don’t get friendly lap dogs like pit bulls. They’re pushovers and sweethearts. I have never met a pit bull that ever worried me. They’re love sponges. I love them, but they’re not guard dogs.

        Get flock guardian dogs – big ones. Over 120lbs. The friendliest of them might by a Great Pyr. If you’re ready for the varsity league of guard dogs, you should look at an Anatolian Shepherd. Want something smaller, look at a Kuvasz, or Akbash/Pyr cross. The smallest I would go would be a Komondor.

        If you’re dealing with very serious security problems, then look at a Caucasian Ovcharka.

        Yes, all of these dogs have a lot of fur. Yes, they’re too big for most apartments. But once they bond with your wife, she’s no longer “your girl.” She’s their girl. Your kids are now owned by the dog. Your cats are now owned by the dog. Your house is now owned by the dog. If you’re a hard man, you’ll likely be largely ignored by your dog, as it dotes on your wife, kids and other pets.

        People who enter must be approved… or else things are going to get messy. And they must be approved every single time. Just because your mother-in-law was over last week doesn’t mean that she’s on the ‘approved’ list for the dog. Unless your mother-in-law starts living with you… she’ll never be “on the list.” Even if she stays a week, she won’t be “on the list.” So there is a real upside to these dogs…

        And they do all of this without any training. It’s bred into them.. for hundreds to at least a thousand years. They’re wonderful security systems.

        1. avatar Front Sight 357 says:

          Those all look like great dogs, although perhaps hard to find. I like the flock guardian role.

          What about:
          Bullmastiffs, Rottweilers, or Dobermans?

          I own a couple of German Sherpherds. They are great watchdogs (watching and letting me know if something is up), but mine at least, are not “hard” guard dogs.

    2. avatar Jeff the Griz says:

      Quality Wasp spray with a 30 foot reach, is much more effective if you don’t have a firearm.

      1. avatar UnapologeticallyAmerican says:

        THATS AWESOME DUDE…..

  2. avatar Chas says:

    People who gamble with their lives are STUPID.

    When they want to gamble with mine, that makes them TYRANTS.

    RESIST TYRANNY.

  3. avatar إبليس says:

    A crossbow might work. At least you don’t have to wait a year.

    1. avatar Jim Barrett says:

      just nearly that long to reload it if you miss…

      1. avatar إبليس says:

        Still better than Biden’s advice…

        1. avatar scottlac says:

          Crossbows don’t make all that nifty noise when you shoot one off the balcony or through the door.

  4. avatar jwm says:

    If it can take 20-30 minutes for the cops to show up do this. Run out onto your balcony and fire 2 blasts from your 12 ga double biden shotgun into the air. Reload and if you still feel threatened fire 2 more thru your door. Problems solved.

    1. avatar Thomas Paine says:

      win.

      1. avatar Spoons Make You Fat says:

        Ima love me some 12 gauge. But do you think Double Barrel Joe trusts his wife with some Hexolit32 rounds?

    2. avatar Leo338 says:

      Buy a shotgun……… buy a shotgun.

    3. avatar Lemming says:

      The Georgia Patrol was making it’s rounds . . .

    4. avatar Mark says:

      That will make more cops come faster but you’ll go to a jail full of more criminals.

    5. avatar Totenglocke says:

      No, no, no. Just call 911 and tell them that you are in possession of an unregistered gun with a magazine over 5 rounds. They’ll be there in less than 5 minutes.

  5. avatar Bo Jangles says:

    I’m going to tie my rape whistle to my Glock 19 and douse it in bleach. That way I’m covered all the way around

    1. avatar ensitu says:

      How about a rape whistle, containing bleach, seated in a charged 9mm casing that sits inside the chamber of your gat?

  6. avatar ensitu says:

    Where I live I could make a ThanksGiving Dinner, invite the family over, watch the NFL, fall asleep, wake up, eat left-overs and freeze what’s left!

  7. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    What if the criminal won’t let you call the cops? I asked a respected instructor around here how much time does a person have till the perp is in the house, typically. He said 4 seconds, Randy

  8. avatar TeutonicTenifer says:

    I expect this kind of ignorance from politicians, but police?

    1. avatar Sammy says:

      The top cops are usually either politicians or political appointees.

  9. avatar J says:

    Curiously, of all the inane “suggestions” (basically blowing off legitimate questions), they didn’t mention the one thing that might actually work and that is because it is deadly; Sevin.

    I found out some years ago that Sevin and other bug sprays are actually nerve agents and the antidote is the same as we use in the auto-injectors to counter Sarin Gas; Atropine and Two Pam Chloride. BTW; neither of these two counter measures are readily available to a civilian and may not even exist on an EMT truck.

    Using one of these bug “nerve agent” – especially one that delivers a hose like flood of the material would not only disorient the invader, it would render him “inoperable” in short order, eventually killing him if not treated in a short amount of time.

    Will I be replacing my sidearm with a can of nerve agent? No, but in light of the remarkably callous “helpful suggestions” these LEO’s and the rest of the left-leaning idiots are making, it troubles me that they would leave these off the list.

    Apparently the lives of, a burglar, rapist and murder are of greater value than a government mandated unarmed Mother and her children….

    1. avatar JoshinGA says:

      I wouldnt exactly sign up to inhale some insecticides…but they arent going to incapacitate an attacker like you seem to be claiming. The commercially available insecticides dont have the concentration required to act on humans that way. Not a good suggestion, and I would group this in with the bleach recommendation.

  10. avatar William says:

    It’s not ignorance. Cops tell themselves we’re “civilians”, while they are not. Deluded, but true. In their minds, this puts them in a superior position to us. If they wanted us armed, they’d have to see us as equals.

    1. avatar Pwrserge says:

      Cops (for the most part) are just armed civilians with delusions of grandeur. Most of the donut brigade would last two seconds in the sandbox.

  11. avatar JPD says:

    It is called JOB SECURITY. Per the Supreme Court, the police are not there to “protect” us. They are to there to pursue the criminal AFTER the crime is committed. So, it is in their best interest to let the crime be committed. Then they can spend thousands of man hours, hunting down, capturing, and processing the criminal.

    If we, as private citizens, defend ourselves. The criminal is dead or injured. Leaving the police very little to do.

    Now, they can demand more men, equipment, bigger budgets. Walk around in their cute little uniforms and violate our rights when the mood strikes them.

  12. avatar JoshinGA says:

    The best part was Sheriff David Clarke at the end. That is a man that gets IT.

  13. avatar JR LORENCZ says:

    Void all functioning orifices.

  14. avatar dwb says:

    if it takes 3 months for a NJ cop to get a gun permit, citizens are screwed.

  15. avatar Hasdrubal says:

    I advise a few people every month to get guns and as much training as they can. I also make it clear that I will not be able to provide the training myself, especially if it’s a young woman I’m speaking to. Not worth even the chance of a complaint.

    Then I tell them my wife has guns and a clear plan of action if someone breaks in, and that my own home defense gun is more powerful than my duty gun.

    Lastly I tell them about the limits of police response time, and that they are legally and morally in the clear to defend their own lives with force.

    There are a few guys I work with who do the same, but then, we don’t work in NY.

  16. avatar Thomas Paine says:

    as you can see, disarmament destroys the natural right to private property and personal protection, and freedom in general.

  17. avatar Roll says:

    If you have a gun and are able to defend yourself then you LIVE!

  18. avatar Bo Jangles says:

    Sheriff David Clarke for President in 2016!

  19. avatar Nobody says:

    What happens between dialing 911 and the time the first cruiser pulls up?

    I don’t suppose that reload, remove earplugs, and make a ham sandwich is the right answer, is it?

  20. avatar Accur81 says:

    Here’s my LEO advice:

    1. Clearly identify lethal threat / target
    2. Align front and rear sights on lethal threat / target
    3. Pull trigger
    4. Repeat #3 as needed (reload if necessary)
    5. Repeat steps 1-4 for additional lethal threats / targets
    6. Wait for 5-0.
    7. Obey lawful orders from 5-0
    8. SHTF and call lawyer

    1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

      I think you meant STFU instead of SHTF….

      Otherwise, concise and clear, it’s got a good beat and it’s easy to dance to, I give it a 98.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Thanks. I did mean STFU, but my phone took a BHO on me…

        1. avatar Ben in UT says:

          Hahahaha well played, sir.

      2. avatar James says:

        That’s funny. It is also definitely SHTF. Both aptly apply.

    2. avatar 16V says:

      Doesn’t get more accurate that this.

  21. avatar In Memphis says:

    Bleach is a wonderful precision weapon and I always have a gallon on my person and in every room I may need to seek shelter. I never worry about splashing myself in the face when lobbing it at invaders. But I guess that would be better than getting raped right?

    Im a little confused by the 2×4 on the window. I assume they mean in leu of security bars but thats pretty tacky. Im interpriting it as, put them in your windows AS someone is trying to break in. It comes off as an afterthought not a pre-incident plan or security device.

    1. avatar John Rand says:

      “I’m sorry officer, I was putting up the 2×4 you recommended, and the nail gun safety missed the jam and got stuck on the guy’s head.”

    2. avatar Mark N. says:

      The 2 x 4 trick is for double hung windows. It prevents them from being fully opened. Doesn’t stop them from breaking the glass though, although double pane might slow then up a bit.

      The bleach idea is great. Stop a perp and clean your rugs at the same time.

  22. avatar Tom jones says:

    Soil your self??

    1. avatar In Memphis says:

      Its not unusual to be, suggested as a means of defense.

      Sorry Tom, I couldnt resist.

  23. avatar Lance says:

    Buy a gun is my answer but its this New York and new England idiocy you see and how helpless these idiots want you to be.

  24. avatar John Rand says:

    I stand by what Sheriff Clark had to say, but I think ya’ll are bit too harsh on LE. Yes, there are some bad ones. There’s also good ones and indifferent ones. LE are just people.

    There is one thing consistent for most LE, it’s that they get paid crap and really all they have to hold on to is their pensions. Their bosses are politicians, not LEOs. Anything one of their officers says that causes them political fallback is going to go badly for them. So they do nothing, say nothing, beyond what is law. If you ask them a direct question, where the truthful answer is going to go against them, they can either shut up, or say something flippant. The later is just much easier. I’m sure that if a friend, off-camera, had interviewed those same people they would have had completely different answers.

    Jobs are jobs. It’s their job to enforce (and sometimes explain) the law. If the law is dumb, it’s not their job as an officer to deal with it. As a citizen, they may or may not do the same things the rest of us do to protest unjust law.

    1. avatar Bobtrumpet says:

      These were “hidden camera” interviews (done by James O’Keefe at Project Veritas, he of the hidden camera at ACORN fame), so I think you can assume these are pretty much their “off camera” responses.

  25. avatar Jack says:

    I called 911 a few months ago and was put directly on hold. That kind of experience will make you stop relying on the police very quickly.

    1. avatar In Memphis says:

      Jack, if you spend any ammount of time working in emergency services or even go in youtube and listen to “funny 9-1-1 calls” or any other variation, that can be explained.

      The 9-1-1 system is heavily taxed by false and prank calls and unnesecarry calls. One woman called 9-1-1 because she ordered a 10 piece chicken nugget and they were sold out. True story.

      In my home town two 9-1-1 dispatchers are responsible for almost half a county during one shift.

      Sorry but the police really cant be blamed for that.

      1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

        He’s not blaming the police Memphis. He is advocating taking care of oneself without casting blame.

      2. avatar Jack says:

        I understand that the 911 system can sometimes be flooded with calls, and I don’t blame the police. I’m just saying that I learned not to rely on a quick response.

        1. avatar In Memphis says:

          Gatcha, I honestly overlooked the “very quickly” part. Sorry.

      3. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        Um, yes, the police can be blamed for that.

        Who has promulgated the fiction that you can rely on 911 in emergencies?

        The police.

        Who have been shopping the myth that the police are there “to protect you” (down to the slogans on the side of their donut wagons)?

        The police.

        Who have been peddling the notion that you’re too stupid to protect yourself and solve your own problems?

        The police.

        So now we have a nation of thumb-sucking welfare dependents who call 911 for every conceivable slight, inconvenience and temper tantrum they have. And it is, in part, because the police propaganda has created the idea in the heads of many people that they’re too stupid and too incompetent to solve their own problems.

  26. avatar mike2588 says:

    Your personal safety begins and ends with you, the individual. Some people find that to be too harsh of a reality to accept and find solace in denial.

  27. avatar DaveL says:

    I have a serious legal question. Let’s say you get involved in a defensive shooting on the street somewhere where the estimated 911 response time is approximately “your call is important to us, and will be answered in the order it was received” if not “we don’t go to that neighborhood” (in the interests of anonymity, let’s call this place “Deetroyt”). What do you do in the aftermath? Do you have any legal obligation to wait there until the police arrive, even if that’s likely to be some time after the arrival of the would-be perp’s criminal associates? Do you have an obligation to stay on the line waiting for a 911 operator? Should you leave a note?

    1. avatar Hasdrubal says:

      In WA, there is no obligation to do anything on a 911 call except not provide false information or engage in behavior that is a clear waste of time, like reporting order problems at McDonalds. Even the people who do these things don’t usually get prosecuted, to keep others from being afraid to call.

      I have twice been sent to a call of “there’s two dogs.” Not biting anyone, not making puppies, not even barking. Just two dogs on the sidewalk. Because someone was afraid they were cold. Not even a call back to yell at them, much less any legal action.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Ducks. I’ve had a call of Mom ducks with ducklings following. Police work is stressful – I had no bread crumbs with me. I have lured and snare some dogs with a cheeseburger, though.

        1. avatar Hasdrubal says:

          I onviewed a mother duck with ducklings once on the road. Found a bucket to hold the ducklings and got them across the jersey barrier and to a stream.

          A state trooper did the same thing about two weeks later but there was a guy there with a camera. He made all the local news sites, and I didn’t.

        2. avatar 16V says:

          Both of you are proof that no matter the misbehavior of your coworkers, some are truly decent mother duckers.

          (Sorry, but Accur81 opened the door and Hasdrubal was flagging me in. I had to drive through…)

      2. avatar DaveL says:

        Seriously, guys, I understand you should call 911, but if you’re on hold for a long time is there a point where you can hang up and say you made every reasonable effort? Do you have to remain on the scene until police arrive? Should you just go home, call a lawyer, and let them explain it all to the police?

        1. avatar Accur81 says:

          It’s totally OK to hang up on 911. In fact, it could very well be beneficial.

  28. avatar DB says:

    One of those was filmed in my town, I know the officer who gives the rather lame responses. But our cops can respond in “a few minutes” because our town is one square mile. Yes, ONE square mile. And we usually have 2-3 crusiers on the streets per shift. Everywhere else in America, you’re looking at 20 minutes minimum as Sheriff Ramsey says.

  29. avatar Bob says:

    I don’t suppose this plan is approved:

    1) don’t call police
    2) shoot intruder until dead
    3) put corpse into chipper shredder or firepit
    4) fertilize garden
    5) Clean house
    6) go back to normal

    Going on the idea that most criminals are human flotsam and won’t be missed by anyone.

    Also I hear ADT is going to change it’s policy and when the perp trips your alarm, rather than letting loose with a siren and ringing ADT, the alarm just lets loose 2 shotgun blasts into the air….cause that stops crime, dontcha know. Maybe if we just go around and loose shotgun blasts into the air, everywhere we go, we can eliminate crime?

    1. avatar ChuckN says:

      I’m sure a lot of LEOs think your plan is not only
      likely but becoming more widespread. There are
      many reasons but I’d argue that dwindling trust
      and respect for law enforcement and the judicial
      system is the largest factor.

  30. avatar crndl says:

    the inmates are running the asylum

  31. avatar Chas says:

    Nevada Senator Hudak says the statistics are not on our side…

    1. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

      Colorado Senator…

  32. avatar Mark says:

    “Law enforcement” is not crime prevention.

    1. avatar DB says:

      yup. also…

      “… a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen.”
      Warren v. District of Columbia
      444 A.2d. 1, D.C. Ct. of Ap. 1981

  33. avatar Joel says:

    I guess in many rural and some suburban areas police response times are long. I don’t know what they’re like here in Sarasota and I hope I never have to find out. However, I can tell you that where I’m originally from, Jersey City, NJ, police response times on hot calls like shots fired, holdup in progress, etc are extremely fast, anywhere from seconds to less than 2 minutes. Fire department response is typically within 3 minutes. But, I live in Sarasota, Fl now, so I’ll just keep the guns loaded and keep training because here I figure I’m more on my own then I ever was in good ol’ Jersey City

    1. avatar LongPurple says:

      Many years ago, when I was a young boy in Jersey City, the cops came around and “asked” the candy store owners to stop selling caps. They were considered to be “fireworks” and outlawed. Cap pistols were still legal.
      For a while, I was a “gunrunner”, smuggling in ammo for those cap pistols in Jersey City from the Shore, where caps were still legal.
      I hate to think what kind of “gun control” exists in JCNJ today. I spend as much time as I can in Vermont.

  34. avatar The Angry Chimp says:

    So let me get this straight…I’m supposed to put my phone to my ear after putting up 2x4s on the windows, then grab bleach go into my room, close the door and do my laundry while singing????

    1. avatar jwm says:

      Exactly. And when the guy with the crystal meth hardon joins you in the closet just go to your happy place til he’s done.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        Do you get a medical marijuana prescription to get to that happy place?

      2. avatar Mark N. says:

        Do you get a med maryjane scrip to get you to that happy place?

  35. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    OK, now allow me to fill everyone in to little-known or thought about laws which will also ensnare you should you see fit to use chemical deterrents or controlled chemicals for self-defense.

    When I used to hold a pesticide applicator’s license, I was told by the EPA (and state dep’t of “environmental protection”) that “use of registered chemicals with EPA numbers for off-label purposes is a violation of federal law.” The guy giving us this statement was a Very Serious Senior State Bureaucrat, and he was not be be trifled with, since he was the one administering and enforcing the licensed pesticide applicator’s regs in our state.

    Purely as a joke (being the newest guy in the room), I raised my hand (this was a meeting of farmers with the bureaucrats over pesticides and such) and semi-jokingly asked “So using a pesticide with an EPA number to spray down a burglar entering my house is an ‘off-label’ application?”

    The young lady from the EPA said (with a deadpan, serious face) “Yes, that is an off-label use.”

    Someone else asked “Would the EPA prosecute this sort of thing?”

    All she said was “We could.”

    Ladies and gentlemen, the stupidity of government employees knows no limits.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      I disagree with the EPA. You are merely trying to rid yourself of an unwanted pest.

    2. avatar LongPurple says:

      “Ladies and gentlemen, the stupidity of government employees knows no limits.”

      Congratulations. You have accomplished a great insight into the function of the bureaucratic Government mind.
      The sole purpose is to preserve and expand the authority and power of their particular sphere. Other departments of Gov’t must be subordinated, and any liberty of the “people” must be suppressed in the name of the “common good”.

  36. avatar MrGrimm says:

    Step 1. Shoot intruder.
    Step 2. Smoke a cigar while watching intruder bleed out out (if he survived step 1)
    Step 3. Call Sheriff

    1. avatar AlphaGeek says:

      In case anyone thinks this is actual advice, rather than the tongue-in-cheek comment I believe MrGrimm intended:

      Failing to call for medical assistance (ambulance/EMTs) promptly after the cessation of hostilities can turn a legit DGU into charges brought by the DA. Doesn’t mean you have any duty to provide aid yourself, but doing the whole “shot a man just to watch him die” thing is not advised.

      1. avatar 16V says:

        Unless you are the ‘tactical’ team that just shot ex-marine Jose Guerena in Tucson. Then, you can just let him bleed out and prevent the EMTs from coming in to work on him for 1 hour and 14 minutes.

        Don’t worry, they were cleared of any wrongdoing.

        1. avatar Derek says:

          To be fair, Jose had like 45 holes in him. He would’ve died if the EMT’s were there ahead of time. He probably would’ve died if they’d shot him on the operating table.

          Not that they didn’t outright murder the guy in his own home for daring to respond to sounds of a break-in with an AR in his hands, but the EMT’s were a little superfluous at that point.

  37. avatar Dave S says:

    obviously the author doesn’t have cats, who in my experience, own the dogs and do pretty much as they please anyway!

    If you do get a working dog (lots of choices out there) do take the time to thoroughly
    train it in obedience and basic training.

    The dog will naturally tend to protect its pack, so you need little in aggression training.

    But for your and your dog’s protection, it must be reliably trained to stop an attack and demonstrate that you can put it in a non threatening attitude, at YOUR command.

    As satisfying as it might seem, you cannot let your dog use annoying people as a chew toy.

  38. avatar pat says:

    Thats why I always say that if a law enforcement official endorses or promotes gun grabbing, they are a dirty, filthy, traitorous pig.

  39. avatar BobS says:

    … your call is important to us… Please cower in fear until the next 9-1-1 operator is available…
    If you want to call someone who cares; call your mother. If you want to call someone who doesn’t care; call the government. If you call the government and expect them to care, you really just set yourself up for disappointment.
    It takes seconds to call 911. Waiting for the police to arrive may take the rest of your life.

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