I would like some opinions from people on De-Escalating a possible draw and fire situation. Everyone here I assume, like myself, is not looking to use my firearm, but will if it needs to be done. Today I was in a situation that could have gone either way. I was in a shady area of town and I bumped into a "local" and he decided to get threatening right away before I could move along. I was open carrying and he kept repeating "take off that gun and I will kick your a**". I talked in a calm voice to him and said "sorry for bumping into you, but is it necessary to threaten over an accident?". He wouldn't have any part in my apology and threatened further. I rested my hand on my Sig P226 and said if you don't mind I will be on my way sir. And I walked the other direction. He decided to leave as well.
What would have you guys/gals have done in this situation?
Your thoughts and suggestions will be appreciated!
I think you did about the right thing. Happy everything worked out for the best.
Wait, you mean you didn't get in his face and start preaching the Constitution to him? :smile:
I think you did well. Backing off immediately and allowing the alpha male to gain the verbal victory can often defuse situations with hotheads.
Perfectly handled. I've had to diffuse my fair share of situations before I started carrying, but have yet to run into any issues since I started. Hopefully it continues that way.
If you are waiting for a job on a local PD you'd better get used to being in the shady sides of town often and the negatives associated with it. Life comes at you fast sometimes.
I'm not a lawyer/LEO/DA, but you might want to think if putting your hand on the weapon could be considered escalating it. I wonder if it could also be construed at intimidation, or harassment, even though you didn't say anything.
Originally Posted by Kahnkem
When you walked the other direction did you turn your back?
Other than that, I think you handled it well.
The part I didn't clarify is I was working on the job, as an armed currier, I have come into many situations like this one but this one struck me as more dangerous seeing as he was 2 times my size. I would have no choice but to shoot if the situation turned physical. Stepping it down by talking calmly and quietly has never failed me yet, but if it failed this time it could have turned for the worse. Thanks tho!
*side note: I never turn my back on possible danger on the job, head is on a swivel all the time.
Oh I am well aware of shady sides of town, I work in the heart of a down town all day. I posted this one for suggestions due to the nature of it, look at my other reply to get the details. Thanks!
You came away from the incident without having to draw your firearm and no one was hurt so I think you did extremely well. I'm glad that everyone is okay.
Originally Posted by Kahnkem
I think you were right to remain calm. Others feed off of our actions and if we get excited then they'll probably follow our lead and get excited as well. I also think you were right to apologize.
The only thing that I might have done differently is to have refrained from saying; "but is it necessary to threaten over an accident?"
This could be construed as a criticism or come off as you questioning his rationale. By putting him in a position to where he has to explain himself, he may get the impression that he's being blamed for something. This is the beginning of a conversation that you don't want to get into or have with an irrational person.
Its hard to know before hand how people will react to different things. This guy decided to drop it and accept your apology but the next one may be even more irrational and escalate things with an inappropriate move.
If the whole situation escalates then the apology is negated so it stands to reason to offer the apology without a follow up statement. Sometimes it may be even necessary to re-state the apology or to reassure the person that you are sorry for the encounter.
I know it sounds like it may be over kill but I'd rather be a little excessive in the apology department than for things to get out of hand to where you'll be forced to do something that will leave you having to justify your actions in front of a jury.
Overall you did very well and I'm glad you are safe.
Matthew, you de-escalated the situation and escaped without any trouble. In any situation like that, we can always Monday Morning Quarterback the situation, but I would have to say that you did good.
You did the right thing, you may also have called the police (not necessarily 911) and informed them of the threat...they probably already know him.
I also would have stopped with the "Sorry, I didn't mean to bump you." (leaving out the rest...your question gave him an opening for more talk)OMOYMV
Given the situation and outcome, I think you handled it well.
Not knowing what types of materials you do courier service for, I am curious as to whether you have other less than lethal weapons at your disposal, that could be used prior to deadly force. OC spray coming to mind.
I have only a side arm and my two hands. There really isn't much under policy I can do between talking it down and drawing. The first thing I should do is get away, problem is he was leaving and I was entering, thus he was in my only path out of the situation so I had to talk it down.
It sounds like you did very well. Although, I agree with DefConGun that there are undertones and 'social interaction rules' that if followed can greatly decrease the chances of somebody spiking. Even something as simple as "I am sorry I bumped into you" instead of "Look, I am sorry I bumped into you".
Just by adding that one word you change the tone of the whole statement.
I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone wanting to better learn to defuse situations. Although it doesn't deal directly with defusing, it is basically a mans observations regarding transactional analysis; What is subconsciously expected in a social situation. Games People Play: The Basic Handbook of Transactional Analysis. By Eric Berne
Its not an easy read. But its good..
Thanks for the info/recommendation. It looks like an interesting read. I'm going to keep it in mind. Kudos.
Originally Posted by Ianator