Over at dailycaller.com, Dan Meadows of The Shooting Channel has plenty of advice for armed Americans who find themselves involved in a defensive gun use (DGU). It’s all solid, reliable stuff. Except for this. “Advise the officers that the suspect/subject who attacked you or caused you to feel that you or someone else’s life was in imminent danger. Let them know that you felt that you were about to be attacked, or that you were attacked by the suspect or intruder. Advise the officers or detectives that you were in fear of your life, based upon the actions of the attacker or intruder, and that you had no other alternative but to use deadly force in order to protect yourself or other’s lives.” Yes, well, no. Last week, I spoke with a Texas cop at Starbucks about this very issue . . .
“The homeowner said ‘I was in fear for my life’ just like he’s supposed to,” the officer told me, sipping on a half-caf double-something with something else beverage. “I just looked at him and asked why. The whole story came tumbling out.”
See how that works? After a defensive gun use you’re in an altered mental state. Surrendering control to an authority figure is the default option. If you give the responding officer the smallest opportunity to engage in what seems like a conversation about the DGU you will be hard-pressed to stop yourself from sharing.
Make no mistake: you must share NOTHING about the incident with the police. Nada. Niente. “I want to speak to my lawyer.” That’s it.
Gun guru Massad Ayoob has a five-point plan for talking to cops after a DGU. In a video on the subject Ayoob tells a chilling tale of an armed American who didn’t point out empty shell casing evidence that blew away in an icy wind. Bummer. But the danger of giving the cops an opening to discuss the DGU is too great. “How do you think that got there?” “Is that your shell casing?” Same with pointing out witnesses. “Where was he standing at the time of the shooting?”
Besides, five things to remember is two too many at the best of times. The human mind works in multiples of threes and sometimes fours (hence U.S. telephone numbers). So unless you’re sure you won’t blab under pressure here’s three things to say when the gun is hot but the perp is not: “I want to speak to my lawyer,” “I want to speak to my lawyer” and “I want to speak to my lawyer.” Sure, this silent approach pretty much guarantees a ride downtown, most likely in cuffs. Take it with pride. You did the right thing. The right thing to do after a DGU: STFU.