One thing for sure; you're gonna relive that moment over and over and question yourself until the fades
It's been said by the Sheriff here that if you shoot someone in this county, you WILL spend the night in jail. Justified or not. I doubt the county attorney would bring charges, but you'd at least get arrested.
Personally, I think I would have drawn as soon as the knife opened.
Story sounds like it came out of a Mickey Spillane novel.
to L3git: Sir--you both went home alive--good job.
Now, go somewhere either private, or away from close viewing eyes, you and your b-i-l, buy a rubber toy knife and a pastic toy gun. Have one of you with the rubber knife stand 15 feet away, then stick the toy gun inside your waist-band and put your hand on it. Have the person with the knife rush the one with the gun--like he means it--and see what the results are.......
When I posted my thoughts I was trying to be polite and reassuring but the fact is both of you choked! You did the worst thing you could have done; you went into denial and were hoping it would have gone away and that might have cost one of you a lot of pain or your life. A hesitation on your part sends a message to the thief/attacker that he has the upper hand because he is willing to go through with his end of the attack
The OP made it home safe and sound. We here sitting in our comfy sofas can opine as to what he did wrong but I'm sure he has done that several times over. Hindsight being 20/20 I would have hoped the OP would have drawn his weapon, I BELIEVE I would have. It probably took us longer to read his version of events than it took for the events to actually happen!
This should be a learning opportunity for all of us here as to our level or readiness.
Makes me want to sign up for the defensive pistol classes headed this way!
It is a huge responsibility to carry a gun. If you carry, you may actually have to shoot someone to save your life someday. Now the question seems to be, when do I draw and when do I shoot? There appears to be a problem in mindset, possibly brought about by all the negative arm chair quarterbacking you read about in just about every shooting scenario these days....
It's always easier for us to look at a defensive situation, and to evaluate it, than it is to be IN the melee and try to do everything right. I'm thinking now..if someone pulls a knife while walking directly towards me..I have my hand on my pistol in my front pocket. I say STOP NOW. If he gets to within 20 feet, the pistol is drawn and close to the chest. I'm now saying "stop or I'll shoot". If he keeps coming, opens the knife, or gets to within 15 feet ...one last STOP!!. He had every right to stop. I have every right to defend myself. This to me is one of those scenerios that I have tried to already have decided before it actually occurs. Life is not an easy trip these days. Precarious times require strong reactions, and thoughtful reflection before bad stuff goes down. I'm glad it turned out okay for all this time.
Sounds like you guys handled it very well. I am not sure if this was feasible in your scenario, but if it was, I might have tried to make it to a car and put it between me and the threat before revealing the firearm. The buddy in the vehicle may have had you both covered with a concealed long gun.
Just to be clear - in this case as that knife snapped open I would have drawn, but not fired unless the perp continued to engage.