Now What? - Alone on Jogging Path as Two with a Flanker Approach Me

This is a discussion on Now What? - Alone on Jogging Path as Two with a Flanker Approach Me within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Setting: I am on a paved jogging path thru moderately wooded area. Path wide enough for 4 people abreast. No one in sight front, back ...

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Thread: Now What? - Alone on Jogging Path as Two with a Flanker Approach Me

  1. #1
    3D [OP]
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    Exclamation Now What? - Alone on Jogging Path as Two with a Flanker Approach Me

    Setting:
    I am on a paved jogging path thru moderately wooded area.
    Path wide enough for 4 people abreast.
    No one in sight front, back or sides.
    Parallel city street approximately 20 ft. on left side – very little traffic.
    Time of day: 10:30 AM; cloudy overcast daylight.
    I am 70 yrs. old; 5’-8” tall; 185 lbs. I am concealed carrying. I have OC spray.

    Events:
    I first noticed two ~20 yr. old hooded-sweat-shirt clad males come around the turn ahead walking toward me on the path. They were about 30 yds. in front of me.

    The one on the outside of the path (the street side) was ~200-220 lbs. (not fat!!) ~6 ft. tall.
    I’ll call him ‘Burly Boy”.
    Next to him in the center of the path was ‘Slim’ – 5’-8” ~140 lbs.

    My attention shifted from them as I then saw ‘Flanker’, also in a hoodie. He was walking up the middle of the street! My attention changed to suspicion as I realized ‘Flanker’ was in conversation with ‘Burly Boy’ and ‘Slim’ ____they are together. . . and all their eyes were on me as they spoke to each other.

    As we are advancing toward each other (distance now ~15 yds.) ‘Burly Boy’ moves ‘Slim’ to the outside position where he was. ‘Burly Boy’ will now be right next to me when we pass each other. At that same time ‘Flanker’ jogs ahead a little and angles off of the street toward the path behind me. I’m starting to get a very uneasy feeling. ‘Burly Boy hasn’t averted his “locked-eyes” stare at me since the beginning.

    The steadily closing distance has decreased to ~3 yds. and 'Burly Boy' is still staring at me.

    What Would You Have Done?
    "It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end"____Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519

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    VIP Member Array Paco's Avatar
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    Tough one. It sounds like an imminent jumping to me, based on your description of their movements and the fact they appear to be together. Then again they just might know each other and be out for a jog or meeting up for a pick up game of some sort.

    If I am in this situation and I get the feeling like it is a jumping about to happen, I will stop jogging and appear to do the after jog walk. This way I am not off balance by running and can move in any way I need to. Based on where my pistol and OC spray are while jogging I'll have hands on one or both and just be ready for someone to make a move, then I'll reply as appropriately as required.
    "Don't hit a man if you can possibly avoid it; but if you do hit him, put him to sleep." - Theodore Roosevelt

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    Senior Member Array CR Williams's Avatar
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    VERY fast impression: Move to your right such that you can step off the path and into such woods as you have opposite the pair and the flanker. Get the OC into your hand and get a hand on the gun under the cover, look Burly Boy in the eye, nod politely, and smile at the thought of what will happen if they continue to close with you. Flank them and get ready to take advantage of it, in other words.

    This thought is categorized under the heading: Take some kind of action even if it's not the best one!
    surefire7 and garyacman like this.
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    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    I wouldn't have waited until they were only 3yds away. At about 10 yds, stop jogging and move 8-10 feet off the path to the side away from the street, like taking a breather. If they leave the path in my direction, blade into a position with gun away from them and not visible and prepare to draw. Further action as needed.
    "I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".

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    3D [OP]
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    I did stop jogging; walked slowly; moved to right side of path but not off it.

    OC spray in left hand jacket in pocket concealed. Right hand went under jacket onto pistol grip - still concealed.

    As the distance got to "bad breath close 'Burly Boy' started acting real "antsy". I was (and still am) convinced he was going to jump me so I unholstered then put pistol under my untucked "T" shirt.
    As I did this I looked him (BB) directly in the eyes, smiled and said "gentlemen" with an acknowledging nod.
    I think he saw my moves, he just said out loud "ohhh mannn"!
    When they had passed they rejoined on the path. I checked my back trail to be sure they were goin' the other way.
    "It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end"____Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519

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    VIP Member Array Old School's Avatar
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    Cool

    I would not have waited and let them get as close to you as Guantes has already suggested. If the area was clear on the street side I would have changed direction taken a 90 degree turn and headed that way at no closer than 10 yards to these individuals. For all they know I was planning on changing direction anyway. Even though there is little traffic I like the idea of being in a more open area than in the woods. If they change direction and begin to head my way then whatever the situation calls for will be initiated by me. Despairity of force in the situation you have described is obvious and in your favor.

    Nine feet is danger close to get your hand out of your pocket for the OC spray and your gun from under your shirt and deal with three BG's.

    Glad it worked out in your favor.
    "Violence is seldom the answer, but when it is the answer it is the only answer".

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    Senior Member Array Lotus222's Avatar
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    I hate shady situations. Sometimes its tough to decide. I'd rather be on the safe side, so I probably would have tried to stay further away, but luckily, it seems to have worked out alright for you.

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    VIP Member Array JDE101's Avatar
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    I gotta agree with Guantes. I'd never wait until they got that close! And I have had some similar experiences in the past while riding a bicycle on a bike path. While a suspecious looking individual was still a ways away, I'd stop, move off to the side of the bike path, take a drink of water and begin to stretch out my legs. Looks perfectly natural. All while keeping a wary eye on the approaching individual. And those were the days before I carried. I'd do virtually the same things now that I carry, except I would be prepared to draw instead of being prepared to hit them with the bike!
    Live to ride, ride to live. Harley Road King And keep a .45 handy Kimber Custom TLE II

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    I had a similar situation happen to me on a bike trail. It happened two, maybe three years ago, but it still bothers me. I still don't know what would have been the best way to handle things.

    The bike trail is off a major highway and wooded and difficult to see from the Highway. I was four or five miles out of town and two 20 somethings (in hoodies in 80 degree weather) blocked the trail with their bikes about 50 yards ahead of me. They maybe were just talking, but someone else was coming up fast behind me - also dressed in a hoodie.

    For whatever reason, I decided to stop, turn around, and go back the other direction. I guess I figured going past one was better and easier then going past two. Anyway, I got by the single rider although he did move his bike toward me to run me off the road. I peddaled maybe another 150 yards or more and turned around and all three were together talking. It appeared they knew each other.

    Within a week, something was written in the local newspaper about "muggings" on the bike trail. I would bet these three were the "muggers" in question. What would be the best way to handle this situation. I was armed by the way.

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    Distinguished Member Array kelcarry's Avatar
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    When you want the best answer to a "what if" and if you are lucky, Guantes will respond. Case closed. You just have to give these guys a chance to show you they are doing something other than what your suspicions tell you they are doing and you have to do this with some distance between you and them and, in doing so, be ready if your suspicions are correct. Once again, situational awareness is preeminent and the be all and end all to be able to do anything that can adequately protect you. Situational awareness gives you that opportunity to do something before it is to late to do anything.

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    Distinguished Member Array Ghettokracker71's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3D View Post
    I did stop jogging; walked slowly; moved to right side of path but not off it.

    OC spray in left hand jacket in pocket concealed. Right hand went under jacket onto pistol grip - still concealed.

    As the distance got to "bad breath close 'Burly Boy' started acting real "antsy". I was (and still am) convinced he was going to jump me so I unholstered then put pistol under my untucked "T" shirt.
    As I did this I looked him (BB) directly in the eyes, smiled and said "gentlemen" with an acknowledging nod.
    I think he saw my moves, he just said out loud "ohhh mannn"!
    When they had passed they rejoined on the path. I checked my back trail to be sure they were goin' the other way.
    First and foremost, glad you are okay! Wonder why else he would say "oh man" for unless he saw part of your weapon or could tell by the way you moved your hand and were holding your arm you were handling a weapon?

    Secondly-Great situational awareness. Possibly saved your life.

    Third-I agree with everyone else, try to keep them as far away as possible. Depending on the layout of the trial,I might have immediately stopped jogging and acting as though I was "catching a breather" and watched their actions while being ready to defensively respond.


    "To blame a gun for a mans decision is to foolishly attribute free will to an inanimate object"- Colion Noir.

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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    Areas like this are gaining in popularity for dirtbags.

    Kinda like hunters watch the game trails; these dirbags 'hunt' the well traveled corridors. All too often a jogger, or bicyclist, becomes their unwary victim. A lot of people are doubly distracted by an iPod, or similar.

    There have been several incidents in my area, within the last 5 yrs, where these dubious types have targeted female joggers/hikers.

    I try to avoid these areas, and would prefer to travel them with a buddy rather than alone.

    All's well that ends well. But, what would you have done, if it had gone to violence? I'm just curious; they got awful close...
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    Senior Member Array Ragin Cajun's Avatar
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    I would have stoped in my tracks as soon as I noticed the set up. If they had no bad intentions, they would have just kept moving on. If their intentions were bad, they probably would have stopped or started looking to see what you were doing. It would have thrown their plan off. Then the next move would have been theirs. If they would have changed directions and headed stair towards you, then 1 against 3, the gun would have come out. That's just how I see it playing out and what my actions would have been. I'm glad nothing happened to you.

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    Member Array rglyons's Avatar
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    All posts on this thread have been good. First and foremost, after it was all over, would have been CALL 911!!
    There have been too many times when the BG's have called the law themselves to get YOU in trouble since they are pretty sure you are carrying a concealed weapon.
    In instances like this, ALWAYS have/leave a paper trail. When I was a paramedic, it was called PTOA ~ Protect Your Own *****.

    I'm glad it worked out well for you. I've read that out of 20 draws, 19 have no shots fired. Good odds.
    Yeah, My old CCW 9 MM is nicknamed "Barkey"
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    and my 12 Ga S x S Coach gun is "Boomer"
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    We're old so we can get away with that.

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    TVJ
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    I am very glad it worked out for you! I have deep respect for older folks. They carry the wisdom of our society.


    My opinion:

    Three thugs including one with size and your age - What is the point of OC in this gross disparity of force situation other than heightening risk to yourself - sprayback, multiple attackers from different angles, they get you down and find your gun, stomp your head etc. I feel strongly that OC in this case hinders you and splits your focus. If you were my parent, I suggest you only concentrate on your weapon, creating space, and mentally rehearsing your draw/firing pattern. Period. At your age, leave the spray for some canines.

    Why did you allow yourself to get within three yards of burly boy? It was your choice. IMO this is your critical tactical question to analyze. What feeling got in the way of taking an extraordinarily wide berth into the scrub area, crossing the street, anything but what you did?


    I notice how uncomfortable good people get doing the following: Going out of their way to make large amounts of space between themselves and someone(s) they think/acts like a perp.

    Doing this makes some good people feel really really really uncomfortable - so uncomfortable, they rather choose to stay close to the potential perp - in this case three perps with one flanking (nice SA on size, flank, numbers, and thousand yard stare...also what about hands of any of them, esp close by burly boy).

    Some people suggested they would fake being out of breath. That's a choice and I understand it. I wonder why I have to fake anything? I owe perps, potential perps, and law abiding citizens nothing if I want to move out of their way, leave them alone and mind my business.

    I noticed this behavior in myself when I began carrying. I bit the emotional bullet and made it ok to get really uncomfortable when I make it really obvious I avoid someone I distrust, like when I go running with my pointer/healer. Once I did this, it got way easier to be really obvious about creating a wide berth around someone I distrust. Now I do it without any discomfort. In fact its way more uncomfortable to be close. Force on force training really helped with this as well. Both knife fof and airsoft combatives classes I take. Space is such a friend, especially when you have time to create it.

    Thank you for taking the time to post your detailed real life experience. I find it really valuable.
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it."
    - Frederic Bastiat

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