Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

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Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby mustang00066 » Tue 15 Sep 2009 10:07 pm

Crazy stuff happened today- glad i was armed.

I was getting ready to drive up into the hills above the "B" where I live to pattern a new shotgun to make sure i've got the right choke and load combination for the upcoming duck season and couldn't find where i'd placed my pistol, I thought for a moment, "Ah, I'll have my shotgun if i need anything and it's not very far..." But there was a nagging feeling that I needed to get my pistol, I am glad that I did. On the way up to where I shoot in the hills the roads are dirt and really only wide enough in most spots for one car going up and one car going down.

I got to about 2 miles before where I usually do my shotgunning and there was a Ford Bronco going about 5 mph in the middle of the road. I go up shooting in the area about once a week and it's pretty commonly understood that if there's someone behind you who wants to go a little faster, you pull to the side and let them go by. I came up behind the bronco and pulled to the left a little to show that I wanted to pass and then pulled back to following distance. He kept just going slow and not moving over. After a minute I'd pull over to the left and get a little closer to him so he could see me clearly and hopefully speed up a little or pull over to let me pass.

We got to a wider spot in the road and he started to move off to the farther right side of the road and let me pass but when I went to go around him he cranked his wheel back and moved his bronco right where I was accelerating to and slammed on the brakes! I also hit the brakes and since the road was dirt I skidded a little into his bumper with my bumper. I'm in a little crappy toyota 2 wheel drive truck mind you. It didn't do any real damage but a little dent in my bumper. So the skinhead looking guy gets out immediately and I assume it's just to assess the damage or talk to me or whatever and the next thing I know he's opening my driver's side door telling me he's going to kill me/kick my ***** and just about everything else!

He immediately after opening my door reaches in and grabs my collar and starts trying to pull me out of the car. I still have my seatbelt on and i'm hanging on to the steering wheel to keep myself from being torn out onto the road. At this point I'm saying to myself "is this really happening right now? Surely this guy is going to wake up and realize he's being insane!"

We had just driven around a corner on a dirt road up in the mountains and I didn't think putting it into reverse and dumping the clutch would be the best idea... I'd either get pulled out by him and my truck would go over the edge, or i'd lose control of the truck and go over the edge with the truck!

He was getting more and more aggressive and i was getting very scared at this point, probably only 10 or 15 seconds of him trying to pull me out of the car. I know you shouldn't let people get that close to you from the get-go but I assumed he was just wanting to talk about the accident or maybe just tell me how stupid he thought I was or etc.

I realized I had to draw my weapon on this guy or he wasn't going to stop. I was leaning toward the center of the truck, hanging on to the wheel still and he was still trying to pull me out by my neck! I leaned a little farther in and pulled out my gun and pointed it right at him as he backed out of the cab and I sat back up more straight in the car. I told him in a VERY forceful expletive laced way to get back in his car.

The scary thing for me at the time is that this didn't seem to phase him! I am thinking if the roles were reversed and someone had pulled a gun on me or something i would be very apologetic, saying i'm sorry, putting my hands up, backing away, etc. This guy was still about 3 1/2 feet from me just staring at me like he didn't care! The next thing he says to me is "I don't give a @#@% about your @#$#ing gun! I spent the last 12 years in prison for killing a guy and you think i'm afraid of you and your gun?!??"

I honestly thought I'd have to shoot this guy because I was sure he was going to make another attempt at me or try and grab the gun or something. It honestly scared me to death afterwards thinking of how close i'd come to actually being forced to shoot someone.

I cocked the hammer (my gun is DA/SA but I guess just for dramatic effect because it wasn't seeming to bother him that a gun was pointed right at him!) and told him again, very forcefully, to get back into his car. I didn't know if he was on drugs and wasn't affected by the sight of a gun or if he'd been so much into crime and really had killed someone that he was used to having guns pointed at him? I also wondered afterward why he had told that story about being in prison? did he have a death wish and WANT to die? Was he making that part up? it seemed that if he was making it up though he would've said like 10 years or 15 years, not 12 you know?

He slammed my door closed again, and I still had it pointed right at him and he slowly walked back to where his car was but didn't get in so i just kept the sights lined up on him. He then says "Well you wanted to get by me so bad, here's your chance!" Like he wanted me to NOW drive by him?? Why, so his big bronco can push my little crappy truck off the road and down a cliff? So he can follow me and shoot me in the back of the head with the gun that's in his car while i'm driving??

I put the car in reverse and backed slowly to where I could turn around and head back into cell phone service to call the police. I wanted to leave so fast after the door shut and get away that I didn't get a positive match on his license plate, I was pretty sure but apparently not exact.

I dialed 911 as soon as I had a signal, told them the story and they said they don't deal up in that area and that I had to have the highway patrol come help me? So they transferred me and I had to explain the story again and they said they'd send someone up there to the base of the trail where the parking lot is. This is not far from civilization, probably 5 minutes from where I live, but 30 minutes later a sheriff shows up.

He was very nice and took a statement and said he'd wait around to see if the guy came down soon. Nice, but honestly this trail leads to 3 different canyons possibly he could skate down to, he said he'd try and have someone watch those too but I honestly don't think they'll find this guy even with a good vehicle and bad guy description.
Maybe the local PD will surprise me though.

I know I would have been well within my rights to shoot this guy when he was reaching in through my car door at me, and maybe I should have, but it just didn't seem so cut and dry to me at the time. Like if you're in a mall and someone starts shooting up the place, you know you'd probably better take them out. if someone is coming at your family, you'd better shoot. But in this situation i thought maybe he just wanted to act like a tough guy or something or had some excess road rage and I'm glad I didn't have to shoot him, but feel that if he had come after pulling it out and warning him or if he hadn't immediately gotten off of me, I would have had to shoot him and that would've cleared my own conscience of any misunderstandings about it.

I know I took a risk in NOT just shooting him today really when he practically climbs into my car with me but in this situation I don't know if I would've been okay with myself had i just fired first. Does anyone know what I mean when I say this?

It's different when you talk about it on a website "oh if someone's coming after me they're dead!" but when it's you who are the one actually holding the gun in your hand with your finger on the trigger it's different, you want to make sure. I have also, a few years ago before I grew up and got a permit etc, been that guy pulling someone out of their car for something I thought was idiotic.

I think the best scenario came out of this though, I'm safe and didn't have to shoot someone, I am definitely thankful that he backed off just as much as he did when i pulled the gun out. I should have been a better witness for the license plate but honestly just wanted to get out of there and away from this guy.

this just happened today, a tuesday, at like 3:30 pm here in a very low crime area, it goes to show it can happen anyplace at anytime.

I just wanted to tell this story as a reason why we need guns in the hands of good, honest, law-abiding Americans. I know this will never be a stat on some news show about guns actually HELPING people, but hopefully whoever reads this will know I am forever glad that I had a gun today and this can motivate them to always be armed.

Even with my shotgun in its case in the cab with me, that wouldn't have done anything for me at the time. i needed my pistol, loaded and accessible in its holster. Who knows what would've happened, especially on a dirt trail with nobody around, if I hadn't been armed today?
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby schmack » Tue 15 Sep 2009 10:25 pm

Wow scary situation. Besides the obvious reasons, I think the scariest part is the fact that it wouldn't have necessarily been a clear-cut appropriate use of lethal force without any witnesses and without him having a weapon in his hand. Disparity of size may have been a viable defense, but it's still scary. You definitely would have had a lot of time to wonder to yourself if shooting was necessary had he forced a decision. Since getting my carry permit I've become much more aware of the implications if I have to defend myself. Even if you're completely in the right be ready to spend thousands to defend yourself. I sure hope I never have to use lethal force to defend myself or my family, however I carry every day to be ready to do so if necessary.
Way to stay alive today!
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby xRapidDavex » Tue 15 Sep 2009 11:42 pm

Yeah, shooting someone on a dirt road with no witnesses can put you in a tough spot - I'm glad he finally backed off from you.

The only thought I had was he might know the make, model, and license plate of your truck. Maybe you should spend the extra cash to get new license plates for some peace of mind.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby apollosmith » Wed 16 Sep 2009 7:49 am

Scary situation! It sounds like you did things right. Hopefully the police can get this perp off the streets (again?).

This brings up an interesting question - would you have been more justified in shooting him after you drew your firearm than you were before you drew it? In other words, while he was pulling you out of the vehicle, you could have drawn quickly and shot him. This would have likely brought up questions of justification of lethal force and disparity. But after you drew and he was aware of the firearm, if he'd have come after you again, would you have been more justified in shooting because there is now potential for him to take your lethal weapon? And is it more reasonable to believe that he was intent on causing you bodily harm because he apparently had no intention on preserving his own well being by taking on an armed man?
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby doconix » Wed 16 Sep 2009 8:04 am

Scary. Glad you were OK. It seems like you kept good presence of mind through the whole thing.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby Cheyenne20 » Wed 16 Sep 2009 8:24 am

I am glad to hear that your are OK. It just foes to show that you never know right? Not many people go up there and you have been a million times. It would be easy to get comfortable, and if you had left your pistol, the shotgun probably wouldn't have worked nearly as well.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby divegeek » Wed 16 Sep 2009 9:25 am

I think you handled yourself extremely well, and I don't think you'd have been in serious trouble if you'd had to shoot him. His actions were extremely aggressive, and his lack of reaction to your firearm gives you good reason to believe that he may have been armed as well. The bottom line is that you really were fearful for your life, and I don't think anyone would dispute that your fear was reasonable. However, it was also very good that you showed restraint.

You were also wise to disengage and back away, rather than pushing the issue or even trying to continue past him, and you did exactly the right thing in notifying the police as soon as possible. It's too bad you didn't remember his plate correctly, or take a picture with your cell, but I think you did very well to even think of trying to get his plate number in that sort of situation.

Can't think of a single thing you could have done better.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby muddy » Wed 16 Sep 2009 9:39 am

Glad it worked out ok. Maybe next time you will be a little more patient and not try to be in the me first mode and use your rig to push by someone on a narrow mountain road. Did you get cited for reckless driving, probably should have? Luck you just bumped bumpers and didn't cause more damage. You may understand that if someone wants to go faster you pull over and let them by but not everyone dose. I dare say I have driven on more gravel and one lane roads then most and I have never heard this, it might be common courtesy its not the law. This guy sounds like a real winner but in the end you pulled a real bone head maneuver.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby DangerCl0se » Wed 16 Sep 2009 10:03 am

This was a surreal story for me to read, since I live in the Bountiful/WX area and head up the same mountain all the time - in fact, I wonder if you were heading to the same place I go to shoot clays.

Regardless, thanks for sharing your experience ... it's a good reminder to ME of several things:

1) I always need to carry my handgun because:
a) no one else is going to be able to protect me, especially when I'm up in the mountains where there is spotty cell-phone coverage and extended response times for police (btw, I once called Bountiful/WX dispatch to report a person dumping appliances up on the mountain, and they told me pretty much the same thing ... i.e. that they couldn't help me, though with me they had me call Davis County dispatch instead of Highway Patrol).
b) the only weapon that matters is the one accessible to me (i.e. attached to my body). As you said, the shotgun in a case in your cab was not accessible, and subsequently was not able to help you ... this makes me think of people that squirreled away a gun in some inaccessible location yet think it will be able to help them in a home-invasion/robbery - it just doesn't work that way.

2) I know a lot of people are uncomfortable carrying with a round in the chamber, but this story just reinforces for me the reality that I may have to use one hand to defend myself in an attack (or to keep myself from being dragged from my car), and that in such a situation I most likely won't be in a position to rack my slide to chamber a round ... just something to think about.

3) duck season is coming up, and I really should pattern my shotgun too. :D

Anyhow, I'm glad you were carrying, that you're safe, and that things didn't turn out any differently than they did. If you want backup next time you head up that way, I'd be glad to offer my services ... like I said, I need to pattern my shotgun too.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby divegeek » Wed 16 Sep 2009 10:20 am

muddy wrote:Glad it worked out ok. Maybe next time you will be a little more patient and not try to be in the me first mode and use your rig to push by someone on a narrow mountain road. Did you get cited for reckless driving, probably should have? Luck you just bumped bumpers and didn't cause more damage. You may understand that if someone wants to go faster you pull over and let them by but not everyone dose. I dare say I have driven on more gravel and one lane roads then most and I have never heard this, it might be common courtesy its not the law. This guy sounds like a real winner but in the end you pulled a real bone head maneuver.

I think you need to re-read the post, muddy. He didn't try to push by someone. He just indicated that he'd like to go around, and followed until the guy pulled over to the side at a wide spot. When he tried to go around, the guy suddenly pulled back over in front of him. It was that action that caused the bumping.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby Cheyenne20 » Wed 16 Sep 2009 10:32 am

:agree: Definitely. I take my Jeep out almost every weekend, it is common courtesy to yield to faster traffic. (when there is space to do so.)
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby The Armed Female » Wed 16 Sep 2009 12:10 pm

Glad you are safe. :D

It sounds like you stayed very level headed. And, you went with your gut feeling. :thumbsup:
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby rccooley » Wed 16 Sep 2009 12:42 pm

I agree with divegeek. The op did nothing wrong by simply signaling that he wanted to pass. When the op saw that the guy pull to the side he assumed that the guy was allowing him to pass. With my trail experience I would have done the same. I spend most available weekends on the trail in my Jeep and one thing that I learned very quickly was to yield to faster traffic when space allowed.

Mustang00066, thank you for sharing your experience. It, plus this past weekend, has reinforced to me that fact that I need to carry at all times. I spent this past weekend in LA and while I haven't "lost" my pistol yet I felt very naked and vulnerable without it.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby MarshallDodge » Wed 16 Sep 2009 1:07 pm

Wow, that is quite the event. You handled yourself well and based on the evidence I feel you would been in the right if you had shot him to protect yourself.
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Re: Had to draw today - very glad I was armed

Postby schmack » Wed 16 Sep 2009 1:10 pm

apollosmith wrote:Scary situation! It sounds like you did things right. Hopefully the police can get this perp off the streets (again?).

This brings up an interesting question - would you have been more justified in shooting him after you drew your firearm than you were before you drew it? In other words, while he was pulling you out of the vehicle, you could have drawn quickly and shot him. This would have likely brought up questions of justification of lethal force and disparity. But after you drew and he was aware of the firearm, if he'd have come after you again, would you have been more justified in shooting because there is now potential for him to take your lethal weapon? And is it more reasonable to believe that he was intent on causing you bodily harm because he apparently had no intention on preserving his own well being by taking on an armed man?


The simple fact that he might take your weapon wouldn't be justification, but to me if someone continues to be aggressive while staring down the black end of a barrel he intends serious harm or death.
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