I suspect that this video is of Eastern European extraction, where drivers routinely mount cameras on their dashboards to record the demolition derby that typifies their roadways. It’s a particularly good example of what to do should someone engage in road rage here in The Land of the Free and the Home of the Second Amendment. Initially, of course, do nothing to encourage road rage. Be polite on the roads. If someone cuts you off, so be it. Lay on, Macduff, and damn’d be him that first cries, ‘Hold, enough!’ (i.e., chill). If however, you find yourself stopped with someone preparing to verbally or physically assault you, leave. Driving away requires some space; whenever possible . . .

leave enough space for egress when you’re driving (“tarmac and tires”). Do not leave your vehicle to engage in a “discussion” with a road rager. Unless you’re running away. Don’t forget: you can push vehicles out of your way – which will certainly enervate your attacker. Drive to the nearest police station. Call ahead. Worst case, you’re trapped. Run over the person posing an imminent threat of death or grievous bodily harm. If you missed that chance, you’re in deep trouble.

Legally, morally and practically, shooting a road rage attacker should be your last resort. If not, things can get VERY messy. Like ten years in jail messy. Like this [via arkansasonline.com] . . .

A 30-year-old man who said at his trial over a fatal downtown Little Rock road-rage encounter that he only fired his gun to protect himself was sentenced to 10 years in prison for manslaughter Thursday night . . .

Prosecutors said witness testimony and police video from the immediate aftermath of the May 2013 shooting proved that not only was Schnarr never in serious danger from Aldridge but that he also could have easily driven away or just rolled up his car window.

But the defendant decided to end the men’s quarrel over who had been responsible for a near collision by using his gun because he was too angry to back down, deputy prosecutor Kelly Ward told jurors in closing arguments. Deadly force for self-defense can be used only as a last resort, not to settle a shouting match, she said.

“He didn’t want to leave because he wanted to show Mr. Aldridge, ‘I have a gun. I win.’ Rather than back his car up, he uses his gun to kill Arista Aldridge,” she said. “He did not stop shooting until Mr. Aldridge suffered that fatal wound … until he collapsed. That’s how you know his purpose.”

Hello? You shoot – and keep shooting – to stop a threat. Or, if you’re a cop, just ’cause (couldn’t resist). Anyway, back in advice land, once you’ve exhausted your options and fired in self-defense, you’re under no obligation to remain on the scene, lest the attacker’s passengers attack. CALL THE POLICE. That is all. [h/t FC]

49 Responses to Self-Defense Tip: Do Not Engage the Rage. Unless You Have To. [Video]

  1. It’s dudes like that in the video that makes normal people want to carry a gun.

    Whattaya wanna bet dude with the hatchet and gun is a left wing pro gun control guy?

    • I’d feel safe taking that bet, it’s all about the projection of their own unstable, violent feeeeeeeeeelings on rational gun owners.

    • YOU DO NOT HAVE TO LEAVE THE SCENE.
      That i part of the Stand Your Ground Doctrine.

      If a Road Rager approaches your car with a weapon AND
      you feel your life is in jepardy, you are free to eliminate the threat.

      If the Road Rager pulls out a gun, SHOOT HIM THROUGH THE WINDSHIELD.

      • RF didn’t say you HAVE to leave the scene, but that after push comes to ballistic shove you could and perhaps should leave the scene, to remove yourself from the danger.

        That is the end goal after all. Self defense isn’t about shooting people, it’s about keeping yourself safe.

        • The guy got out and came at the vehicle with a hatchet in rage. He can break the side window with it easily gaining access to the vehicle with his deadly weapon. Ability, opportunity, and jeopardy are all present to use deadly force in self defense.

          Now the question becomes one of preclusion vs Stand Your Ground. Preclusion or retreat is only required if it can be done in complete safety. That is a somewhat large tactical/legal hurdle given the word complete. Also in Texas, SYG is immediately allowed if you have a right to be where your at, havent instigated the confrontation, and are not committing a crime higher than a class c misdemeanor (eg traffic ticket).

          I assume SYG was ok. Preclusion was not in play given the proximity and immediacy when hatchetman initially engaged. The victim retreated because he likely wasn’t armed and had no other choice. This left him exposed for a few seconds with the bad guy right at his side window/door.

          Shoot him right through the glass because he is showing deadly threat with a deadly weapon that can breach the vehicle. Ears ouch, but thats the way it goes. If you are cool enough in the moment, put down the back windows to release more overpressure.

          If you draw down and avoid shooting, he knows your armed, goes back to his car, gets his gun, and will engage you rather than trying to shoot your tires. This is the huge risk of any road rage shooting – guy goes back to get handgun/long gun.

          I will get out of my vehicle if I have to draw down in defensive display and take the perp at gunpoint until police arrive. This gets me out of my seatbelt and bullet trap vehicle.

          If the guy drives away, win and get plate #. If guy freezes, submits, and waits for calvalry/police -win.

          If the guy goes back to vehicle, bends into it and begins reaching/looking for something (not leaving), I have a deadly escalation problem. Note hatchetman’s actions in the above video. Nothing good comes from what he looks like bent over in his back seat.

          It is reasonable to assume he is intending to get something ballistic and use it illegally. How long you want to wait is up to you, but know your risk. Close distance, watch hands and expect a gun. It’s your tactical call how much risk you want to assume before stopping his likely escalation.

          If you want to be sure before using deadly force, wait until you see the gun.

          Lastly, note hatchetmans sideways shooting stance above. Do you use targets that look like this (sideways stance) at your range?

        • But, if you are in your car, you are likely headed somewhere that isn’t where you are stopped with the rager. Sure, you may be allowed to SYG, but, why not just keep heading to your destination if you can do so safely?

          Driving in out vanpool on Friday, a homeless guy blew up when we said we didn’t have any cash (I certainly didn’t). He started banging on the hood and yelling. You get wary, especially since both the employer and the van lessor prohibit weapons, but you know you have a several thousand pound bludgeon available (and I wouldn’t be surprised if one or two of our riders carry anyway). if he had reached for something, I get the van moving and the hit is sufficient to disrupt his draw. Instead, he moves, and we keep going.

          If you can walk away from the stupid people, do it. SYG doesn’t mean you are going to win a firefight.

        • Katy

          If a road rager forces you off the road, he forces you off the road.

          If the road rager in his car acts so dangerous with his vehicle at speed, pulling over may be the “safer” option given the totality of circumstance.

          A homeless person pounding on your hood is not a physical threat to your person, so I agree.

          If you can drive away, then do so. If you cannot, then you cannot.

        • Fair point.

          Just wanted to be clear that SYG should be a last option – leaving the area, if reasonable (I.e., you are not at your destination) and possible (I.e., not trapped), should come first.

    • > It’s dudes like that in the video that makes normal people want to carry a gun.

      Not in Russia, Belorussia, Ukraine, where law abiding citizens are barred from owning and carrying firearms for self defense.

  2. Dash cams are not that expensive, typically a good one will run about $100. It is a very good insurance policy in the case of a road rage incident. It also can help keep you accountable for your actions, because the footage could be used against you if you were reckless.
    In my case, I always pay attention and am a courteous driver, so I know that if there are any road rage incidents, I will have plenty of evidence that I am a responsible driver, and that I did not do anything to escalate the situation.

  3. People in Eastern bloc countries have started using dash cams in recent years as a deterrent to rampant police extortion and false arrests.

    Something Farago says about things that happen to a disarmed populace? Probably not important…

      • Considering the person is IN HIS CAR and was SHOT AT, I would have ran his ass over PERIOD.
        He would be dead or severely crushed. Need I make that any clearer?

  4. It is Russia, and the gun is almost certainly of the “non-lethal” variety (i.e. the one that shoots rubber bullets at significantly lower velocities).

    And yes, dash cam is handy for accidents. You don’t always have the other party stop and let you get their info for that claim, and there are cases where they are not even aware that anything is wrong. Two years ago, I was driving behind a truck (at a very respectable distance), and something big dropped off his bed and landed right in front of me; the car drove right over it, and it tore up the underside very bad (~$8K in repair costs). He didn’t even see it and didn’t stop.

    Luckily I had good insurance, so I didn’t end up paying most of it, but there are still deductibles, and the cost of renting a car (which was also covered by insurance, but only partially). If I had a dash cam then, I’d have the plate of the guy and the recording proving him to be at fault, and wouldn’t have to pay a dime. I do have a dash cam now.

    • That would still be considered ‘following too close’.

      Follow the rules of the road.

      Here’s a good one: Get the F out of the left lane (don’t be a left lane a_ _hole). If you’re not doing the speed limit in the left lane but I have to do 85 in the right lane to pass you, you need to do road rage on your mom, then choke yourself. If don’t have a badge [from an appropriate jurisdiction] and you’re not a traffic light; traffic sign, traffic cone the rule is the same in all 50 states and every territory
      SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT
      GET THE F OUT OF THE LEFT LANE

      • I can assure you that it was not too close in the slightest. It was far enough that I could have stopped entirely if he hit the brakes, which is what it should be, and then some. The problem is that the thing that got blown off his bed (I think it was a tire, actually) slowed down much faster than a car can, on account of being nowhere near as heavy (and hence having less momentum). Furthermore, it took some time to even register as a danger and start braking, on account of it not being a car or a man or anything big, really.

        It definitely made me reconsider the distance for trucks, though.

        • He should have been at fault, unsecured load. Can’t drive around with crap falling off your truck. A retread blowing out and leaving a road gator in middle of the road is another thing, the driver could not know the moment of tire failure, not making sure what ever is in the back is secure is another.

        • A big problem with trying to leave enough space is the fact that others will crowd into that space fast, especially in heavy traffic. I spent 14 years driving 300+ miles a day all over So. Calif., and it was almost impossible to KEEP any reasonable distance behind other drivers, especially trucks.

          Thing is, driving about 7800 miles a year, I never had a “road rage” incident, nor an accident. It can be done.

        • >> A big problem with trying to leave enough space is the fact that others will crowd into that space fast, especially in heavy traffic.

          That, too. It was actually a “bug” they have discovered in those Google self-driving cars early on: the car would always strive to maintain the prescribed distance between itself and the car in front, but it would be large enough that other cars (with human drivers) would weave into it, causing the robot car to brake to increase the gap, prompting another car to fill it etc.

    • Um… I’m not gonna just assume a gun is low powered or whatever. After that first shot I would have driven right over him.

  5. Ya, let a judge tell you after the fact what the orher perp’s final intentions and extent of threat was.

    How many times do we have to hear that we’re not militia, we’re not cops, but we have to make even better decisions than those groups? Guns are “bad” but not even the cops can prevent their own susceptibility to people who will to do them immediate harm.

    Guess right, guess wrong, finish by gowing after the people who are going to guess about your guess, then the sh_t they cared about., rot on death row without having to hear their bs.

  6. Had that situation happen to me as depicted, and I had no way to back up further, the moment he raised that gun on me, I’d stomp HARD on the accelerator and aim the car right at him.

    And crush him between his car and mine.

  7. the second that moron came at me with the axe i would have floored it and made a nice car sandwich out of him…..jackass….(not you GeoffPR)

  8. The moral of the story? Never let anger dictate your actions…on the road or off…

    BTW, I drive a semi for a living…over 2 million miles without a DOT preventable accident…

    And most of you drive like sheet!

  9. Looked to me like a Road rager engaged the wrong victim,and deserve whatever consequences come their way..Whether it be a hatchet, or a handgun… you reap what you sow. Perhaps if the driver *Knew* the driver was armed, he would have been more polite?

  10. I don’t know Arkansas law, but in many states you do not have a duty to retreat. You still have to have a credible threat to your safety though.

  11. The guy probably rear-ended Hatchet Man. I would have stayed in my car and backed up upon seeing the hatchet, but once he came back with the gun, I would have crushed him with the car. Then backed up and driven over him again. 😉

    • >> Guy charges with an axe then shoots at the driver and all he does it go in reverse a few feet? Run the guys ass over!

      He’d likely be charged with “excessive use of force” if he did that, and end up in prison for a few years. This isn’t US.

  12. This was in Ukraine. Very difficult to legally own a firearm there.

    NOTE: The police did not and likely will not show up to address the road rage incident. No one stopped to help or confront either party.

    ALSO. Police in Ukraine are usually un-armed. If you are lucky you’ll be in a city in which a gun is shared between three officers. Or maybe that isn’t lucky–they are usually the most corrupt people in town.

  13. notice the stupid but hot girl. why is it that the prettier they are the dumber they seem to be? she just sits in here place, as a fuck hole, as her idiot boyfriend acts like a complete animal.

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