Attacked at a stop light - a few anecdotes

Attacked at a stop light - a few anecdotes

This is a discussion on Attacked at a stop light - a few anecdotes within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Now, I'm not offering tactical advice or advocating any particular actions here, I just wanted to relate a series of incidents that have happened in ...

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  1. #1
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    Attacked at a stop light - a few anecdotes

    Now, I'm not offering tactical advice or advocating any particular actions here, I just wanted to relate a series of incidents that have happened in my neck of the woods lately. Granted, these all happened in Brazil, where the crime (in some areas, anyway) is on an entirely different level than in the States, but they struck me as interesting, and have gotten me thinking (and re-thinking) my react plan for these types of scenarios.

    I'm curious as to the opinions of the forum members when it comes to this type of situation:

    Case 1: A man stopped at a stop light on a major thoroughfare in a large coastal town at approximately 10:30pm. A vehicle approaches from behind, and at least one armed man gets out. The victim sees this, and accelerates through the red light to escape. The attackers fire at the fleeing car, and the victim is hit in the left arm. The victim escapes, and is expected to fully recover.

    Case 2: A man stopped at a stop light in the same town, on a different major thoroughfare, at approximately 11:00pm. Two men appear from some bushes on the side of the road and approach the victim. The victim sees them and accelerates through the red light. The attackers fire at the car, hitting the victim in the back. The victim escapes, and is expected to fully recover.

    Case 3: A married couple in their 30s and their 7 year old son are stopped at a stop light in Sao Paulo (the largest city in South America, with some 20 million people in the metro area). They are on a major thoroughfare, the time is around midnight. Two assailants approached the car (no info on where the assailants were prior to the attack). The husband, driving, noticed the attackers and attempted to flee, accelerating through the red light. Both attackers opened fire, hitting the couple multiple times - they were both pronounced dead at the hospital. The boy was unharmed.

    So – you are stopped at a red light, on a major street in a big city (or anywhere, really). You see people approaching, either armed or with fairly obvious bad intent. What are your plans A, B, and C?
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Tough. A)I have no urge to be shot, so my inclination, if the BG is approaching from the front, would be to shoot him first, as the occupant(s) of the car will basically be a slow-motion shootbox in an accelerating arc past him.

    B) From the side, I would do as the driver did.

    C) I am so screwed. Tell my wife to hold the wheel, draw & start shooting, and stomp the accelerator.

    No good answer to A or B, since a car can't out accelerate a close pedestrian shooter.

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    I try to be alert enough at stoplight so I can hit the gas. Drawing would be too slow, I'd at least have to reposition the car to buy me a few seconds to draw and get out (only if I couldn't just keep driving). Depending on where the BG s standing, I might aim for him, or swing my door open as I pass him. Might hurt me, but it should force him to move or get up if I can knock him down. Just want him reacting to my actions, rather than let him keep the initiative. Can't drive away?(as in blocked in traffic or stuck in a drive thru), try to leap out the door on whatever side the (hopefully lone) BG is not at. Allowing myself to fall right to the ground where I hopefully can draw and make it a fight, not an execution.
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    Senior Member Array Andy W.'s Avatar
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    Try not to go out late at night!

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    Member Array Rebel Till Death's Avatar
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    buy a tank to drive during the night
    People are more violently opposed to fur than leather because it's safer to harass rich women than motorcycle gangs.

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    VIP Member Array Tom G's Avatar
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    (A) I would do the same as this driver did and accelerate through the light due to the fact that you would be going away from the BG. At this point you do not know how many are armed in the car behind you.
    (B) I would accelerate through the light and try to get a few shots in their direction hopefully screwing up their aim.
    (C)I would accelerate in the opposite dirrection that the BG are comming from and shoot if possible.

    Isn't Brazil the country where they just tryed to ban guns ? If I lived in Brazil I would buy a bullet proof car and never be out late at night. HOWS THAT FOR BEING PARANOID.
    Last edited by Tom G; June 29th, 2007 at 05:40 PM.

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    Senior Moderator
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    I'd get one of these



    A Flamethrowing car

    Really I'd just floor it and pray.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy W. View Post
    Try not to go out late at night!
    +1.

  9. #9
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    Lol at flamethrowing cars and such - can we use them against squeegie guys, too?

    I brought these up because, normally, we are taught to use the car as the weapon and get the heck out of Dodge. Usually, that is the best answer for many reasons - most of the time, the guy won't shoot anyway, you are creating distance, you are putting more metal between you and the attackers, etc. These cases struck me as pretty "worst case," as the drivers all saw the attack coming, and reacted in what most would consider the appropriate manner - they floored it. In all cases, however, they ended up wounded or killed. So, food for thought.

    And yes, Brazil has some pretty restrictive gun laws. Doesn't seem to be slowing the murder rate, or the HUGE firefights that erupt between drug gangs and cops. In Rio over the last few weeks, an average of a person a day has been killed/wounded by stray gunfire... Here's a day in the life article:

    Clashes between police and drug traffickers in a slum in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro left 19 people dead. Guns and grenades were used in the fighting, with armored vehicles and helicopters backing police units. The violence began when more than 1,000 policemen advanced on Alemao, the slum stronghold of a drug-dealing gang. Rio de Janeiro officials are trying to make the city safer before it hosts the Pan-American games on 13 July.
    BBC News – June 28, 2007
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    That sounds rough, but yeah a car is my weapon I'd use to escape.

    I'm sure as heck not going to bail out and shoot it out with the BG's

    Flooring it and hoping not to get hit, is the best I can think of, maybe swerving a little bit but then you risk loosing control of the car which could be very bad.

    It sounds like a low-intensity war there in Rio.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

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    Senior Member Array Smith&Wessonfan's Avatar
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    My biggest fear is that my daughter is the most exposed when we are all in my truck.

    Her car seat makes her ride higher than anyone else in the vehicle and her head is smack dab in the center of the rear window. We placed her seat in the middle to protect her as much as possible from side impacts.

    This is truly a nightmare scenario.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pgrass101 View Post
    It sounds like a low-intensity war there in Rio.
    Pretty high intensity for the local cops who have to go in there! There was a great quote in the paper today by one of the many people that complain about overly aggressive police contacts (the background here is that there is a strong propensity for the police to shoot first and ask questions later - which is almost understandable under the circumstances). In any case, after 19 people were killed in the last shootout, the police claimed that they were all drug traffickers.

    "The police are quick to call you a drug trafficker," this guy said. "Especially after they've killed you."
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

  13. #13
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    I don't blame the police for shooting first, I wonder how long the BG's are just going to use small arms? Is there any car bombings or rocket/mortar attacks?

    Yeah anytime someone is shooting at me (or me shooting at them for that matter) it is high intensity.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Member Array FknRa's Avatar
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    With the BG getting out of the car behind. IF i repeat IF i noticed in time IE: someone had been following and I saw them get out, I might be inclined to throw it in reverse and ram backwards as thier door might catch them, it hopefully will pop their radiator, and prevent them from following.

    When driving unfortuatly we are restricted in movement and shooting to the rear just isn't practical. If you have enough time to turn the car to shoot through the sides you are better off running in my opinion.

    From the side attack I would be tempted to shoot. I have practiced with my wife on this one. I yell DOWN and she flops forward in the seat so that I can shoot over her. Hot brass in the butt crack sucks but its better than catching a face full of powder flash.

    From the front it depends on who is behind me. If its clear its time for a J turn. If not, accellerating while shooting is my best bet as it is unexpected. You may kill me but my car is running you over.
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    As with all statements I've made and All that I will make, please check your local laws to verify accuracy. (and if i'm wrong let me know as I like to be right in the future) After all I'm just some goofball posting on an internet forum.

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    VIP Member Array havegunjoe's Avatar
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    Now that I know this seems to be a pattern in the area I might consider having some kind of steel plate installed behind the back seat. Also alert the family and instruct them to drop low when I accelerate so the steel plate protects them more. Other than that I would do the same, try to get out of there as fast as possible.
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