Self-Defense Tip: When You Hear Shots Fired, Take Cover

Thanks to the miracle of modern communications the internet’s lousy with videos of shootings. Self-defense shootings, drive-by shootings, bar room brawl shootings and plenty o’ police dashcam recorded shootings. In many if not most of these vids you can see people just kinda wandering through the scene. Or standing around watching the action as it unfolds. Big mistake. While this feature normally talks about dealing with a violent attack coming atcha, it’s entirely possible to get shot without having anything to do with what’s going on—save physical proximity. In the case above, I’d hate to be down range of the Manitowoc police officer firing at the fleeing truck thief. So as soon as you hear gunfire, take cover and/or go for concealment. Do NOT draw your firearm unless you’ve identified a specific threat aimed at you or your loved ones. If you clear leather in front of a cop you ARE the threat. And unless you’ve seen the entire story you could be defending the wrong person. That would suck, too.

comments

  1. avatar Chuck Pelto says:

    TO: All
    RE: Take Cover?

    As we say in the Army, it all depends on the situation.

    If the gunshots sound far away, as happens occasionally where I live, I don’t duck….unless there was the sound of an impact nearby. I just call 911 and report.

    Regards,

    Chuck(le)
    P.S. If there IS the sound of a nearby impact, THEN I get into the hallway of this 3-wyth brick structure. It would take a 105mm tank main gun round to do serious injury to the house and me. And I think I’d hear that vehicle coming from a mile away.

  2. avatar J- says:

    I’m wondering what part of procedure makes it a good idea for a cop to shoot at a moving vehicle, at least 25-30 yds away, with HOUSES in the background.

    1. avatar Jake says:

      Um, he’s a cop, it’s perfectly fine. Everyone knows their magic law enforcing bullets have no effect on those who do not break the law. Why would they ever worry about petty gun safety rules when they are only capable of shooting bad guys?

      1. avatar Travis says:

        Close!

        I’m not sure about the bullets having no effect. I believe they post-humously turn someone into a criminal. Almost like the reverse of Zimmerman’s bullet, which happened to turn a criminal into an innocent young youth about to turn his life around.

        1. avatar William says:

          Well said.

      2. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        Two hispanic ladies in SoCal would agree that cops can damage only innocent property, not people.

        1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

          Yuuuuuuuupppppppp

    2. avatar DJ says:

      I was thinking the same thing, J.

    3. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      I also had this question. What reason did he shoot at the truck. He made multiple longer range pistol shots that had a high chance to go inaccurately beyond the truck. The thief was not firing and there was nobody really no danger to the officers as the guy drove on. Now on the the driver. Do these idiots really think they are going to get away?

      1. avatar gloomhound says:

        Well he did just try and kill that cop by wrecking him out. The driver of that truck was clearly a desperate character and a clear threat to the public. I’d call it a good shoot.

        1. avatar B says:

          Guy was driving like 60 through a town and then a residential neighborhood. Ran into the police car and a telephone pole and kept going. Dude was a clear threat.

        2. avatar Chris Mallory says:

          Which is why the cops should have backed off and followed without the lights flashing. The truck has to stop or run out of gas sometime. The cops are getting paid if they are following a stolen truck or sitting on their asses sexually harassing waitresses. So let them do something useful for once in their careers.

          The cop should be charged with at least 7 counts of reckless endangerment, more if you want to give him one count for each citizen downrange at the time he shoot his wad.

        3. avatar tdiinva says:

          It may have been a good shoot, but it wasn’t a wise shoot. Rule #3: “Know your target and what’s beyond it.” Just because you have your target in sight doesn’t mean you are free to fire. You have to ask yourself “where does that round go if I miss?” You can tell me that is all fine and good but with all that adrenaline flowing it’s hard to make the right decision. Interestingly enough two armed citizens cleared leather in the Giffords shooting yet when interviewed they indicated that they could not clearly identify their target or were afraid of hitting an innocent bystander and held their fire. Same with Nick Melli at the Clackamas mall shooting. If untrained citizens can make the right choice under pressure so can a “trained” LEO.

        4. avatar William says:

          Yeah! Let’s get out and shoot ANYBODY! HAW HAW HAW.

        5. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

          Yup

      2. avatar TexanHawk says:

        You can call this a good shoot. Fine. But good shoot and best decision are often widely separated. Truck had just had a hard head on collision with a utility pole. I’ll bet a cold beer that the coolant was rapidly leaving that engine and said engine was about to over heat and seize within a minute and that is likely the exact thing that ended that chase less than 30 seconds later.

        The shooting officer in this video placed 8 poorly placed shots which endangered the public.

    4. avatar OneReason says:

      +1, I’m also wondering if the cop was charged with reckless endangerment as a regular citizen undoubtedly would have been?

      1. avatar Bob says:

        Not a chance. A cop has to do something extremely horrific and even then has a great chance of getting away with it with nothing other than an obscene amount of extra paid vacation.

    5. avatar Bob says:

      Obviously, he wanted extra paid vacation.

  3. avatar hmmmmmmmm says:

    “Thanks to the miracle of modern communications the internet’s lousy with videos of shootings. Self-defense shootings, drive-by shootings, bar room brawl shootings and plenty o’ police dashcam recorded shootings”

    Yup – and how many of them are filmed in terrible communist ****holes like England? None of them, you say? Yet the very obvious point why is completely lost on the “Armed Intelligentsia” (I LOL every time I say that), isn’t it?

    1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      No, you have people being hit by a car and then beheaded on camera with everyone standing around helpless and providing no aid to the guy on the ground. Also, go do some research on crime in those gun free utopias before you crawl back under your bridge.

      1. avatar Mediocrates says:

        The OP just thinks he’s a smart guy. How cute.

    2. avatar JeffR says:

      I don’t know why I bother and it is way too early in the morning for this stuff, but try searching for videos of shootings in Mexico or Russia. You’ll find plenty. You want to ban guns in the hope we become the UK? Fine. But I think you are missing the distinct possibility that we could just as easily become Mexico or Russia. Our gang problems are a lot closer to those countries than the UK. And I don’t know how great becoming the UK would be. It’s homicide rate purports to be one-quarter of ours, but its overall violent crime rate is four times ours.

    3. avatar jwm says:

      England’s not a communist sh!thole of a country. It’s the flyover trailer park portion of europe. Inbreds there aren’t smart enough to run a complicated scam like communism.

    4. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

      Good Morning Mayor Bloomberg. How are things in hell this fine Sunday morning??

    5. avatar Accur81 says:

      Didn’t you just have a soldier stabbed to death in front of everyone? Someone could’ve certainly used a gun in your “crime free utopia” now couldn’t they?

      1. avatar O.E says:

        Look, those ‘Angels of woolwitch’ are the same cabal of feminists who have made it next to impossible for White men such as myself to defuse this invasion by the continent of the apes. They taped an interview with the murderer and like rag picking witches are making money from the advert revenue via Youtube etc.

        Can someone help me acquire a concealable & portable “fire that kills” for self defense? “The five finger man law” in this ‘EngIsland of Moreau’ has prohibited these tools from being circulated.

        1. avatar Swarf says:

          Delete this bullshit too then, if you want to be thorough about pretending things didn’t happen.

        2. avatar O.E says:

          http://socialmediaseo.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/miami-zombie-lesson.jpg

          You cant breed in the civilization without depriving the ayran racial group of its racial purity and territorial peace.

          Genetic engineering has done much harm thus far. A whining coon throwing the ‘racist’ card at me is sign that I am right and the debate has expired.

          Hammer them all back into irons & chains and deport them back where they were found.

        3. avatar Ascrod says:

          When you advocate the forcible deportation and exile of citizens and residents, many of them 5th and 6th generation, based not on their own individual actions but solely on their ethnicity, throwing the “racism” card is pretty justified.

        4. avatar O.E says:

          If you had a cancer, you’d probably seek out an African bushmonkey witchdoctor to help cure you with JuJu before coming to terms with the fact that surgical extraction of your cancer maybe your only REAL hope.

          I personally couldnt care less how settled the welfare leaching crime breeding demon race of ApeFreaka are. Illegal Occupations and Racial colonial conquest bent invasions maybe resisted and ultimately destroyed when the victims finally say “enough is enough”. All it takes is for the victim to come to terms with the issue rather than tough it out like a curious virgin homosexual.

        5. avatar jwm says:

          O.E., You live in England, right? Just look at this as doing penance for all that rape murder and looting you folks did through out africa and India. Besides, judging from the in breds that post here claiming to be English, you guys can use an infusion of new blood.

        6. avatar TheDabbo says:

          Feeding Ye Old Troll (aka O.E).

          Dude, you’re off your f’ing rocker. Conspiracy theories are one thing, but you incoherently take it to the next level. It is hard to take someone seriously when they write like you write.
          And also, did you really ask for help to (illegally) acquire a gun? Even though I think England’s draconian gun laws violate subjects rights, no way I (or hopefully anybody else here) would help you skirt those laws. I wouldn’t even loan you a blunt object!

        7. avatar Swarf says:

          That guy is made of blunt objects.

          Why did you delete some of the posts in this thread and not others, Robert?

          Either delete everything or let it all stand.

          I like this site, but you seriously need to get your shit together when it comes to having a cohesive moderation strategy.

          And yes, I’m aware that daring to talk about this problem will get THIS post deleted long before some of the other bullshit in this thread.

        8. avatar Russ Bixby says:

          Or not.

        9. avatar Swarf says:

          FFS.

        10. avatar Gyufygy says:

          Stormfront called.

          They don’t like you either.

        11. avatar Jeff says:

          good luck, our former-fellow subject of the crown. I think you may be on your own. I suppose that’s why they export baseball bats to the UK.

        12. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

          English please. While sober.

    6. avatar Milsurp Collector says:

      How nice of you to be so envious of a country that:

      1. Allows violent criminals to sue the people they attacked for bullshit reasons and win. Sends victims who defend themselves from said thugs within their own home to prison; because lord forbid someone wants to protect their family instead of waiting for the police to show up after their loved ones have been brutally murdered for their belongings.

      2. Guarantees freedom of speech so long as you agree with some flavor of european socialism and submit to the political correctness movement when you do speak. There are plenty of cases of people getting questioned and or arrested by the police for speaking their mind in public or on the internet. Lord forbid people are allowed to share unpopular viewpoints because they might be interpreted as “offensive”.

      3. Grants no right to remain silent to suspects.

      5. Puts SAM missiles on top of apartment buildings and flips residents the bird when they ask just what they’re supposed to do if one goes off and the back-blast torches their livelihood. I don’t care that it was for the olympics, the logic behind the placement proves my point. Anyone who isn’t wearing a politician’s suit or some government issued uniform is an expendable peasant in the name of unending progress.

      But that’s okay, you just pride yourself on the fact that a country with a violent crime rating higher than the US and the highest in oh so civilized Europe doesn’t have as many of those evil firearms possessing perfectly sane people and magically willing them to commit murder in the blink of an eye. After all, the peasants of today are the same as they were in medieval times, they’re just too blinded by their shiny electronic gizmos to see their centuries’ old chains.

    7. avatar Davis Thompson says:

      Funny how ever since banning guns, the murder rate in England has gone up, not down. Also funny how our murder rate is at a 50 year low even with all those nasty firearms in the hands of us rednecks.

    8. avatar GS650G says:

      Hmmmmmmmmmmm

      Interesting sounding name. Get it?

      1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

        We call guys like hummer “idjuts” around here.

  4. avatar DJ says:

    Find cover should be the first rule of a gunfight.

    1. avatar O.E says:

      First rule of the real world, make sure you wear bullet catching fibres even if they clash with your moms knitted sweater you got for christmas.

    2. avatar Chuck in IL says:

      The first rule of a gun fight is to have a gun.

      1. avatar JoshinGA says:

        Its also the second and third rule. Closely followed by “Bring all your friends with guns.”

      2. avatar DJ says:

        You may not always have a gun (thanks to our elected representatives and their gun free zones), but there is almost always available cover or concealment.

  5. avatar Ed Rogers says:

    Excellent points, ones that definitely bears repetition every now and then…

  6. avatar Mediocrates says:

    Really. What kind of idiot fires shots at a fleeing truck under no personal threat in a residential neighborhood?

    1. avatar Bob4 says:

      Someone who watched one too many episodes of TJ Hooker in the 80s. 🙂

  7. avatar Bastiat says:

    “It is like having two cocks. Only one of your cocks can kill somebody.”

    Officer Slater, Superbad

    Sounds about right.

  8. avatar Grasshopper says:

    And the unarmed driver is a 14-YEAR-OLD BOY. I think the real reason the po-po started blazing away was not for the auto theft, or for the wreck, but for the much more serious charge of Contempt of Cop.

    1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

      Adrenaline bitchez.

  9. avatar OneReason says:

    Slightly off topic, but WHY do police agencies still do high speed chases? Is it for the thrill? It’s a freaking vehicle theft.

    How often do we hear of people getting seriously injured or killed not because of whatever the criminal did to start the chase, but because of the chase itself (one bad guy and several cop cars going way above the speed limit, running red lights and stop signs, etc.)?

    It’s 2013, fire a tracking device onto the vehicle or something.

    1. avatar Chris Mallory says:

      Exactly. They should have stayed a few cars behind, shadowing the truck. Called in one of the cars they have stolen from citizens through forfeiture and let the unmarked car follow the truck. But we all know government employment means never using common sense.

      1. avatar Hasdrubal says:

        I don’t know how it is where you live, but where I work we usually have about one officer on duty per 10,000 residents, and no unmarked cars unless some of the detectives come in to try and do surveillance on a guy.

        We could try and send a marked unit back to the station to pick up one of the detective cars, but that would take about ten extra minutes. I’ve seen one pursuit that lasted that long, and when it was over, the suspect car had crashed on its own three cities away.

    2. avatar Accur81 says:

      The pursuit is used when the officer cannot positively ID the suspect at a later time in my agency. LAPD can’t (allegedly) pursue anyone for anything less than a felony violation, mostly because they have had so many issue with their pursuits. Good pursuit policy uses a risk vs. gain metric. I can tell you from experience that many of the folks I’ve chased need to be behind bars. Some are just stupid. Of course, it isn’t possible to tell who you are chasing until you catch them.

      As for the tracking device gun – we literally don’t have them. On Star can kill the engine upon request, and government kill switches may be a required 2014 safety standard for all newly manufacutd vehicles. I can’t imagine the government ever a using such a thing (note epic sarcasm).

      I’d rather have good old fashioned police chases than additional government tech that can tag and track people, to be used whenever the establishment deems *necessary.* By the way your cell phone my already be hacked as a homing beacon.

      1. avatar TT says:

        I’m curious Accur81, what do you think about the decision to fire on the driver? I can see both sides of the argument. The guy in the truck was definitely endangering the police and public to a degree that seems to justify deadly force. But there does seem to be a serious danger from shots missing the truck. As a police officer, how would you weigh those factors in deciding wh

      2. avatar TT says:

        I’m curious Accur81, what do you think about the decision to fire on the driver? I can see both sides of the argument. The guy in the truck was definitely endangering the police and public to a degree that seems to justify deadly force. But there does seem to be a serious danger from shots missing the truck. As a police officer, how would you weigh those factors in deciding when to shoot?

        1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

          Deadly force??? You are out of your mind. That was a dumb kid in a truck.

        2. avatar jwm says:

          And nobody has ever been killed by an improperly used motor vehicle, Bitchez.

        3. avatar TT says:

          Joke,

          The way that kid was using his car definitely justified deadly force. The fact that no one died was just pure luck. While I’m glad the cop shooting at him missed and the kids survived without hurting anyone, his actions put everyone along that road in danger and I certainly wouldn’t condemn the cop for shooting.

          Some folks on this board look for reasons to attack the police because they don’t like cops. They’d have more credibility if they went after the bad cops that truly do make bad decisions and not try to spin everything to make them look bad.

          I really am glad the kid wasn’t shot. As a former 14 year old kid, I can remember some epically bad decisions I made and kids that age make some pretty dumb decisions.

  10. avatar Smaj says:

    I thought only cops in TV or movie crime dramas fired at fleeing suspects. Wow.

  11. avatar Out_Fang_Thief says:

    Here in Central Florida, at the Citrus Bowl, a UCF(University of Central Florida) plain clothes officer working with ATF to curb underage drinking at tail-gate parties, was shot and killed by an Orlando officer responding to gun shots. He sees the armed man as a civilian, pointing a gun at another man, so he shoots him DRT.
    http://www.wftv.com/news/news/officer-cleared-in-fatal-shooting-of-undercover-co/nJmGM/

    I’ll bet those are 3 bullets that the OPD officer wishes he could take back.
    It only goes to show, that you can be right, and wrong, at the same time.
    Which is, I think, the real point of this story. How many times out of 10,
    will a uniformed police officer mistake an armed civilian legally using his
    gun in self-defense, as a threat, and shoot him? How many LEO’s expect
    that any armed civilian they encounter is doing good deeds with a gun?
    Would that number be somewhere between “few” and “none?” Anybody?

    1. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      First; We’re busting underage drinkers at gunpoint now?

      Second; I’m not a LEO, but I simply can’t imagine pulling the trigger without barking out a command to drop the weapon unless shots had been fired and I was pretty damn sure I had the felon in my sights.

    2. avatar DJ says:

      A non-LEO citizen would be in jail for that shooting.

  12. avatar Hasdrubal says:

    http://www.fox11online.com/dpp/news/local/lakeshore/manitowoc-police-fire-shots-during-chase-june-12-2012

    Looks like the crash was caused by a patrol car trying to get in front of the truck and force it to slow down. This is not best practice and it’s not how I was trained. Spike strips, PIT, sure, but why anyone outside of the UK would want to get in front of someone they were pursuing is beyond me (at least, they did it on Top Gear, with about six total police cars).

    Some of you may not take this seriously after the comments on yesterday’s police shooting article, but I would not have fired if I had been there. The only way it would fit with my department’s training and policy would be if the driver had committed some serious violent felony and there was a credible reason to think he would do something that puts the public in immediate danger.

    Classic example of that would be if an armed guy takes hostages, bolts and somehow gets through the perimeter and starts running into a residential area. Good chance he will duck into a house and take more hostages, so there is a specific threat. I don’t see that here.

    1. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

      Thanks for your post. Seems very reasonable position.

  13. avatar racer88 says:

    One commonality among news interviews with bystanders at shootings is, “I came out thinking it was firecrackers.”

    They always think it’s fireworks, and instead of taking cover, they all start prairie-dogging. It then becomes a matter of luck whether they get shot or not.

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email