Knife Attack Triggers Another “Shelter in Place” Order. Shouldn’t That Be “Time to Tool Up”?

 "Authorities were searching for a man who stabbed a 9-year-old girl in the Calaveras County community of Valley Springs on Saturday, April 27, 2013." (caption and photo courtesy

I was not well pleased with the government’s decision to advise Boston-area residents to “shelter in place” in the immediate aftermath of the marathon bombing. Even if you agree that shutting down an entire city was an appropriate response to a terrorist threat of indeterminate size and scope, what up with the term “shelter in place”? Isn’t that PC speak for “we’re declaring martial law only not completely”? Well, it’s happened again. In the wake of a knife attack in Northern California, wherein persons unknown stabbed 8-year-old Leila Fowler to death, police advised residents of the tiny community of Valley Springs in Calaveras County California to “shelter in place” or, as I like to call it . . .

“cower in fear.” What happened to a call to residents to “be on alert” and “do not approach” someone “armed and extremely dangerous”? Are we such a nation of wimps that we’re now told to hide from the bad guys?

In my world, authorities chasing bad guys would tell citizens to “take sensible precautions for their own self-defense.” In other words, they’d give their employers a heads-up to arm themselves with a blade (our Question of the Day over at the Truth About Knives) and/or a gun. Which they should be carrying anyway. Am I wrong?


  1. avatar MArty the lett says:

    Most Californians don’t know whether to shelter or wind their watches.

    1. avatar JMS says:

      Calaveras is a county in which people can and do carry concealed, and in which the Sheriff is relatively likely to actually tell people to “take precautions.”

      The ‘shelter in place’ suggestion seems prudent, maybe, as a CYA kind of a thing. I highly doubt that it was anywhere near as strong of a “suggestion” as it was in Boston (which enforced that suggestion at gunpoint in many cases), nor do I expect that many people really paid heed to it. One, because it’s just a nut w/ a knife and two, because it’s a rural county and these folks take responsibility for their own safety from various things (from bears to men to coyotes to manbearpigs).

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Agreed. There aren’t enough California Highway Patrol officers or sheriff deputies in the area to even attempt a Boston-style lockdown, even if they wanted to. That CHP officer is not tooled up SWAT style, and looks relatively casual.

        We do actually have some pro-gun sheriffs in California who do support concealed carry, and I believe the Calveras County SO is one of them. Orange County, which is mostly Republican, allows concealed carry. That is one of the reasons why I live there.

        But I digress. The free(er) counties in CA will say shelter in place because it is reassuring. Very liberal counties in LA, San Fran, etc. are much more likely to go police state style.

        1. avatar Werewolf1021 says:

          In regards to the Calaveras Sheriff, he is pro-gun in that he will issue a CPL for stating self defense as your good cause. However, the he still has the asinine requirement that you must be 25 to get one.

      2. avatar neres says:

        Absolutely agree on the CYA thing. For liability reasons the govt doesn’t want to be seen as encouraging any potentially risky behavior. You know, like going outside.

        1. avatar Brian says:

          Since when is the government liable? If you choose to go out and get stabbed by the guy good luck suing them. If it wasn’t for the publicity the two ladies shot up by the Dorner cops wouldn’t have gotten squat yet.

      3. avatar Totenglocke says:

        The ‘shelter in place’ suggestion seems prudent, maybe, as a CYA kind of a thing.

        You’re joking, right? This was over ONE PERSON being stabbed. If they keep this up, we’ll live under perpetual martial law because someone is always being murdered somewhere in the country.

    2. avatar terry f says:

      Comments on the character or characteristics of “most people” from any demographic are simply bigotry and serve no useful purpose.

      1. avatar Cliff says:

        You, sir, are obviously unfamiliar with the concept of a “bell curve”.

    3. avatar Roy Wanton says:

      Guess I’ll shelter on my watch 😉

  2. avatar Silver says:

    “Are we such a nation of wimps that we’re now told to hide from the bad guys?”

    Short answer, yes.
    Though, it’s likely just more of the police-militarization brainwashing. “Get out of the way, peasants, your overlords will handle this.”

    1. avatar JMS says:

      As a popular radio talk show in Northern California would say, “We’re turning into a nation of veal calves.”

      Armstrong and Getty — HIGHLY recommended irrespective of where you are in the country. They’re hilarious, conservative, and talk everything from politics to pop culture. It’s a great show. Great to listen to while you’re working, driving, whatever. You can listen live on this site and also listen to archives (which usually lag only a couple hours behind the live broadcast):

    2. avatar KnowWhatIamTalkingAbout says:

      Well, if it is in California, then you can hide OR you can run the risk that you will look like a suspect or have a vehicle that looks like a suspects and get shot for your trouble.

      I wouldn’t want to be viewed as a wimp, but I will take that over a mistaken identity shooting by police any day of the week.

      Thank you very much.

  3. avatar jwm says:

    If you have to be told to tool up, you probably don’t have the right tools anyway.

    1. avatar Accur81 says:

      Word. Hope you’ve got plenty o’ fixin’s for that new shotgun.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        I got plenty of fodder for it. I’ll figure a sling and light for it when I take delivery on it. Gotta wait 10 days.

  4. avatar janizary says:

    If this keeps up it could get out of hand in short order.

    “Oh look, they did it (Boston) so we can too.”

    Pretty soon citizens start to get desensitized to being told to huddle in their homes and it becomes yet another ‘why are those crazy right-wingers complaining about the govt. wanting to keep people safe’ things….

  5. avatar Colt Magnum says:

    Does “shelter in place” mean you’ll be arrested if you take the dog for a walk? I’ve never heard of this term until recently. Perhaps someone can enlighten me.

    1. avatar matt says:

      Its really only used for large scale industrial accidents. According to wikipedia, the only other non-industrial accident it was used for besides the Boston Bombing was the North Hollywood Shootout.

  6. avatar Alan W. Rose says:

    Just another speedbump on the road to tyranny.

  7. avatar InBox485 says:

    You’re doing your own cause a disservice again with the hyper sensitivity. You really need an editor to censor you on stuff like this. Police advising a community that a nut job is on the loose and that the safest thing for them would be to go home and hole up a bit is perfectly reasonable, and legal. Nobody said don’t take defensive measures. Quite the contrary, going home puts up the first layer of defense, and in general if somebody in CA has a gun, the only place they can legally keep it handy is at home. The police can’t tell a community to get their guns and keep them on their persons as they go about unless they first either individually deputized them or if they… wait for it… declared martial law.

    1. avatar matt says:

      Do you know how often knife or gun attacks occur? Here in Chicago it happens once every couple hours, or even more frequently on the weekends or during the warm months. So you’re saying I should never leave my home because there is someone with a gun/knife out there?

      And yeah, cops can tell people to carry a gun without deputizing them, its called a CCW permit, the cops are the ones who issue them. Or what about states with constitutional carry, or no permit required for open carry? And WTF is up with you saying that would happen during martial law? If anything, they would be confiscating privately owned guns during martial law.

    2. avatar Pwrserge says:

      You seem to be unclear on how martial law works…

    3. avatar InBox485 says:

      No reading comprehension and a severely distorted view of reality. You two must be Robert’s people. Not even sure where to start. Maybe start with a dictionary and look up each of the key words then get back to me.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Thank god you’re here to straighten us out, InBox485. We all bask in your reflected glory.

      2. avatar Totenglocke says:

        Hey, MikeyB! I see you’ve added another alias to the list!

    4. avatar Cliff says:

      He’s the part I’m unclear about, Boston, California, or wherever:

      The police announce “shelter in place”, then they start a door-to-door search for the miscreants. What happens if they show up at your door and you deny them entry? They obviously will not have a warrant OR probable cause. What happens if you answer the door with a pistol on your hip or a slung AR on your shoulder? Inquiring minds want to know.

      1. avatar InBox485 says:

        As per usual when RF straps on his TFH he insinuates a lot of crap, and backs none of it up. In this case he posted not one link to the relevant story but instead rekindled his epic hard on for cops.

        Here are a few stories to skim:

        No mention of door to door jack bootery. The “lockdown” consists of restricting an area to resident access only. IOW, this whole thing is RF having one of his wet dreams about cops in jackboots, and going Walter Mitty about tooling up and hunting down the bad guy.

        As to your question, if I was in the area (the area in question being residential) I’d lock my doors vs mowing the lawn, and if I had somewhere to go, I’d go. If I was really worried, I’d have a rifle handy. Might even strap on some armor. If the cops wanted to barge in, I’d tell them to GTFO, and if they forced in, I’d differ to any lawyer worth their salt and settle it in court. If they were roughing people up or doing a door to door gun confiscation (neither of which happened in Boston), body bags might be involved depending on the details (IE a repeat of Katrina).

        1. avatar Cliff says:

          In the absence of a declaration of martial law I have serious concerns about the police taking upon themselves the authority to search private residences without a warrant or voluntarily provided permission of the owner/resident. Armed men appearing at the door and demanding entry to search is exactly the kind of police militarism overstepping that RF warns about and both Katrina and Boston show that this is not just a paranoid fantasy. Should these overzealous officers decide that their weapons, manpower and the situation allows them to ignore your constitutional rights and the resident wants to question that on the spot I don’t think you will be given the option to “differ” [sic] (probably meant defer) to your attorney. You probably wouldn’t even make it to the phone to call him.

          Which leaves open the question: If they tell you to stay in your house (hypothetical) and then want to come in and search, what are your options other than to submit to the search and try to file suit after? What if in the course of that search they find something that incriminates you in some way in some other legal issue?

          There is NO WAY short of a valid declaration of martial law that these things should happen in a free country and the fact that they even need to be discussed is IMO what RF and some others of us are concerned about.

        2. avatar InBox485 says:

          Insert reply here. I have better shit to deal with. I might be back. Might not.

        3. avatar Ralph says:

          I might be back. Might not.

          Let’s have a vote.

        4. avatar pwrserge says:


          Don’t let the door hit you on your way out.

        5. avatar matt says:

          Locking down a area to residents only is jack bootery. It violates nonresidents freedom of movement, and freedom of association.

      2. avatar Totenglocke says:

        Best case scenario, you’re brutally beaten, tazed, and maced, then arrested on false charges. Worst case scenario, they turn you into swiss cheese.

    5. avatar Cleophus says:

      InBox485 says:

      “You’re doing your own cause a disservice again with the hyper sensitivity. You really need an editor to censor you on stuff like this. Police advising a community that a nut job is on the loose and that the safest thing for them would be to go home and hole up a bit is perfectly reasonable, and legal. Nobody said don’t take defensive measures. Quite the contrary, going home puts up the first layer of defense, and in general if somebody in CA has a gun, the only place they can legally keep it handy is at home. The police can’t tell a community to get their guns and keep them on their persons as they go about unless they first either individually deputized them or if they… wait for it… declared martial law.”

      Spoken like a true Clover!

      1. avatar InBox485 says:

        How cute. Is that the urban dictionary obscure term of the day?

  8. avatar RB says:

    Problem in kommiefornia is you must cower in place.If a guy with a knife attacked you and you shot him,they would book you for murder.even if he went on a knife wielding and hurt/killed people they would book you for murder.if a person went on a rampage with a firearm and you stopped them,they would book you for murder.this state does not recognize self defense.the only people that can “save you” there are the police….so be it sheeple.

    1. avatar InBox485 says:

      Not even remotely true. Our gun laws suck, our self defense laws don’t. We don’t have the civil immunities that are all the rage these days, but the criminal protections are pretty solid.

    2. avatar InBox485 says:

      Case in point would be LA riots. Koreans took AKs and ARs to the mobs and not a single one was charged with anything.

      1. avatar JoshuaS says:

        Right. California has stand your ground, always has. The law even says you may pursue an assailant if a reasonable person would deem it necessary to prevent future harm. No duty to retreat.

        Our Castle Law, since we already had stand your ground when it was illegal in Texas to carry a gun (openly or concealed) but not in California (we have always been may issue, which is unfortunate, hut hey), states that if someone is an intruder in your home, the law presumes he poses a threat of death or felonious action (rape, robbery, etc). Unless they can prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that he was not such a threat and further that you reasonably should have know he was not a threat, your safe. The presumption is in your favor.

        Heck the courts have even ruled the a felon cannot be charged with possession in the case of immediate threat to self or others. In general, the jurisprudence in California is that self-defense is the higher law than felony in possession! (cf. People v. King)

        As pointed out before, this is not Los Angeles County, but a county that is fairly close to shall issue. People need to stop thinking all of California is LA or San Francisco (already two radically different places themselves). Many counties are freer with LTCs than others. None is perfect of course (state law being what it is).

    3. avatar JoshuaS says:

      Here is California law for you

      A defendant is not required to retreat. He or she is entitled to stand his or her ground and defend himself or herself and, if reasonably necessary, to pursue an assailant until the danger of (death/great bodily injury/ ) has passed. This is so even if safety could have been achieved by retreating.

      We aren’t New York.

  9. avatar Roll says:

    “Shelter In Place” WTF is this noise?

    What it should be, quoting the late SGM Plumley from the movie We Were Soldiers: “Gentlemen, prepare to defend yourselves”.

    1. avatar Rambeast says:

      Classic old-school hardcore badass. I love that character. “Any one of you calls me grandpa, I’ll kill ya.”

      1. avatar jwm says:

        Plumley was a legend. i never met him but in my time I had the honor of serving with men like him. Guys that had seen WW2, Korea and Viet Nam. If a youngster was smart enough to keep his mouth shut and his ears open he could learn volumes from these men.

        1. avatar Human Being says:

          You should really watch the deleted scenes for We Were Soldiers. They have a small expansion of the SGM Plumley story, regarding one Sergeant McDoon, in there that I adore.

  10. avatar Leo338 says:

    We had two stabbings that made the news here in Albuquerque the last 24 hours. Yesterday a man went crazy at the end of a church service and started attacking the choir. Today I heard something about a double stabbing. I caught the end of it so I didn’t catch all the details.

    Is it bad that I didn’t think about the victims? My first thoughts were “good thing a gun wasn’t used because that would give ammo to gun grabbers.” See what the MSM and progressives have done to us?

  11. avatar Ed Rogers says:

    Calaveras County is pretty much as close to the “old West” as you can get. People don’t take kindly to trespassers…especially dangerous lunatics. You could probably take that “Shelter in place” and translate that to: “Keep yer Mossberg handy & blow that MF’er a new @sshole!”

  12. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    Yeah, Calaveras is – different. “Shelter in place” can be construed to mean “we’d really like a lot less traffic out there so as to minimize chaff on our RADAR. Please?”

    The LEOs there are exactly what they should be, and so are the jumping frogs.

  13. avatar dwb says:

    shelter in place = stick ones head in the sand. typical.

  14. avatar Ralph says:

    Ya gotta love bureaucratize. “Shelter in place” means go inside, lock your doors, crap your pants and quiver like a bowl of room temperature Jello.

    In case of emergency, I intend to load up the shotty, strap on the forty and let the BG crap his pants and quiver like a bowl of room temperature Jello.

    1. avatar Pwrserge says:

      That’s why I keep a fully loaded tactical vest and pistol belt in a locked footlocker. In two minutes, I can be carrying the civilian equivalent of my assault load.
      Rifle, spare mags, flashlight, medkit, zip cuffs, and sidearm. More than enough to shelter in place.

  15. avatar DaveL says:

    “Shelter In Place” orders were originally intended as emergency advisories issued by civil authorities in case of things like extreme weather, chemical spills, or a radiation release. In other words, they were intended for threats to the public welfare that actually are dispersed over a wide area.

    I don’t know when it made the jump to “we think there’s a violent criminal at large kinda sorta in your vicinity.”

    1. avatar InBox485 says:

      I guess I took “Shelter In Place” in this case as meaning that the police feel that there is a nut job out looking for somebody to stab and that 1, people would be safer going home for the day, locking their doors and having whatever they protect their house with at their disposal and 2, that finding the SOB is a lot easier if the streets clear out. This type of thing has huge impacts to local business, and a simple reality that might be hard to wrap around a tin foil hat is that city hall wouldn’t tolerate “Shelter In Place” orders unless the impact to safety exceeded the impact to business revenue (and taxes). This is completely different than Boston, and the fact that some here can’t see the difference is kinda disturbing.

      1. avatar DaveL says:

        I’m curious, what indication is there that this is some sort of spree stabber?

        I think you’re the one missing the point that it’s almost ALWAYS safer to barricade yourself in your home than it is to go about everyday life. I’m sure it would ALSO be easier for the police to find criminals if they didn’t have to worry about interacting with those pesky free civilians on the street, whether it’s a serial stabber or a bicycle thief.

        I’d love to believe that City Hall wouldn’t tolerate a lockdown unless it had sober and convincing evidence that it was justified by a widespread and imminent threat. The thing is this: I’m not willing to spot them the assumption that the lockdown is justified just based on the fact they’ve called it. That’s circular reasoning.

        1. avatar InBox485 says:

          “I’m not willing to spot them the assumption that the lockdown is justified just based on the fact they’ve called it. That’s circular reasoning.”

          Suggesting that City Hall has a self interest in not tolerating a lock down is hardly circular reasoning. Might want to look up the definition on that one.

          But anyway, so you don’t believe them. What exactly does that change here? Nobody was put on house arrest. Nobody had their house searched by force (either stated or implied). Who gives a damn if you “spot them the assumption”? You’d be perfectly free to wonder about your business and deal with whatever risk that entails.

  16. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    I don’t disagree but remember that at the time in Boston, they didn’t really know whether there were only two bombers or if there was a larger terrorist effort going on.
    Best regards and keep up the good work.

  17. avatar Ben says:

    I live in beautiful Valley Springs. Never expected to see it on here. Calaveras county ( affectionately known by many residents as Calabama) is about as rural as California gets. We haven’t voted for a Democratic president since Lyndon Johnson in 1964.

    And I am happy to report, all is well and fine here. Nobody is on lockdown, the whole town is going about its business as usual. The sheriff is just warning people that there is a violent, armed criminal at large.

    Furthermore, Valley Springs is damn near the worst place in CA to try to commit violent crimes. This is a sad exception. Gun ownership here is huge, and there are very few police. At any one time, there are between 3 and 6 combined CHP/Sheriffs on duty in the entire county (pop: 45k). The people here are all very well aware that response time is terrible, and it is their own individual duty to protect themselves, from troublemakers on 2 and 4 legs.

    In fact, the sheriff issuing this statement is almost definitely not trying to send the message “stay put, stay home, the police state will take care of your safely.” He’s putting the people on alert. It is only responsible to alert the citizens of a violent offender, so that they can tool up and lock their doors.

    Those of us living in Calaveras shouldn’t be lumped in with the stereotype. We may be from California, but we are not “Californian.”

    1. avatar InBox485 says:

      Careful Ben. You just busted some really big tin foil bubbles and fantasies of martial law, jack boots, false flags and the whole works…

    2. avatar CarlosT says:

      Why not just put out an alert then, saying there has been a stabbing and the perpetrator or perpetrators are still at large. Please report anything suspicious and take precautions you deem appropriate.

      Seems a lot more straightforward and a lot less pearl clutching to me.

  18. avatar Ralph says:

    Maybe the Calaveras County Cops are still searching for the Celebrated Jumping Frog. I understand he was last seen in 1865.

  19. avatar KY1911 says:

    The only shelter in place I ever expect to see in my community is when the chemical weapon storage facility just down the road has an incident.

  20. avatar Tom W. says:

    Wussification of America continues. In the ol’ days, in what’s now a galaxy far far away, called Kalifornia, posse’s with local folks familiar with the local area would have been asked to volunteer even temporarily deputized especially for a crime of this magnitude. Now? Shelter in place is the coined phrase for 2013.
    Oh joy.

    1. avatar SGC says:


      Yes, the Wussification of Amerika is a serious problem. Everybody wins, nobody gets hurt, we’re all special. That’s the new way.

      I grew up in the 1970s and it’s a miracle I survived…

  21. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    Yes, we had to shelter in place under our school desks in the old days. That was so you didn’t take the ICBM on the bridge of the nose, it was much safer under your desk. We had laws in Wisconsin before we got asshole doyle out that were too stupid to even repeat, Randy

  22. avatar littlegunguy says:

    And its coming near you also, its easy to call Boston or California citizens names because they are mostly liberal sissies. But that doesn’t hide the fact that they are going to keep trying this to see how far they can push all Americans. If they come down your street what will you do? You will do the same thing they did. wait inside! We all need to approach this politically on a daily basis and never let up. If we don’t want this to happen in our towns, then we need to stop it before it starts…

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      If they come down your street what will you do?

      I’ll do whatever the f^ck I want to do.

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        Hey Ralph,

        I feel like I am pretty smart when it comes to Natural Law philosophy, basic common law, the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights, and just basic street smarts with regards to police arrests, detentions, search warrants, etc.

        That said, I have no idea how “martial law” fits into everything. Can you provide a brief explanation of what, if anything, that changes with respect to common law, the Constitution, civil rights (including due process), and anything else that is important?

        1. avatar Anonymous says:

          “That said, I have no idea how “martial law” fits into everything. Can you provide a brief explanation of what, if anything, that changes with respect to common law, the Constitution, civil rights (including due process), and anything else that is important?”

          I can elaborate for you.

          All those rights you are talking about – they are floating and the government entities push down the little lever and a loud flushing sound is heard as the rights are loudly spun and sucked down into non-existense ending with some gargling splashes.

          However – Ralph and some of the rest of us are going to still react in the following manner:

          “I’ll do whatever the f^ck I want to do.”

    2. avatar Joke & Dagger says:

      I’ll be out on my front porch with a SCAR. Some of us are grown a$$ men who can protect ourselves and our familys from the bomber boys of the world without APCs with SWAT guys hanging out the hatch thundering through the neighborhood.

    3. avatar Anonymous says:

      @LittleGunGuy -I 2nd that – and add – defenseless, quivering, cowardice, liberal sissies who’s liberal dream of unicorns and rainbows was awoken sharply and abruptly with feelings rendered much like those rendered when the sound of a film projector burns through a liberal propaganda documentary.

  23. avatar Anonymous says:

    LEO’s were simply lazy. Lets have everyone “cower in homes” so that “hopefully” we’ll spot the suspect running around.

    Let us bother and inconvenience the entire city and force everyone to stay in their homes so we can “conveniently” do our job.

    This is the typical transition of public servants to militant nanny’s in a statist, totalitarian state.

    And – it is totally the fault of the people who have allowed such to happen. It is their collective mentality to do what is told, pay your tax, and question nothing. It is people like us that see the ridiculousness of it, disobey, and get harassed by government entities.

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