A scenario I run through my head constantly

This is a discussion on A scenario I run through my head constantly within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Ok, as I mentioned before I'm employeed at Mcdonalds fast food restaraunt and there is a scenario I run through my head constantly. I usually ...

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Thread: A scenario I run through my head constantly

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array SubNine's Avatar
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    A scenario I run through my head constantly

    Ok, as I mentioned before I'm employeed at Mcdonalds fast food restaraunt and there is a scenario I run through my head constantly. I usually get to work about 45 minutes early so I can grab a bite to eat before I get on the clock. As I sit there eating my food I picture in my mind a robber barging in with a gun drawn, demanding money. Now there are usually maybe 4 or 5 workers, with one or two at the front counter. I always have my G19 on me. Where I sit, there are exits to my right, and one in front of me, but would require me to run all the way passed the front counter.

    Ok say you are me,there are no other customers inside, and in comes a robber demanding money with a gun (or knife) drawn, and threatening the cashier's life. You have your carry gun on you, and the robber hasn't seen you yet as you're sitting in the corner with your back to the wall. As the robber is waving his gun around, and demanding money, you know in your mind the robber may or may not shoot the cashier even with compliance, and you see a trash can in front of you that u can use as cover. Would you,

    A: Risk your job, take cover behind trash can, draw your gun take aim at robber, and demand the robber drop his gun/knife

    B: Risk your job, take cover behind trash can, draw your gun take aim at the robber, and then fire without warning, knowing there are innocent workers behind the front counter

    C: Take cover behind trash can, dial 911 on your phone, draw your gun, and try everything you can to get out of the store, knowing the robber may see you trying to leave

    I ran this scenario through my head, and I think I would choose C myself. The exit I chose to use is the one to my right, but I would run the risk of the robber seeing me no matter what exit I used, so I chose the one closest to me. I carry to protect myself, not my co-workers and managers.

    Here is the layout of the lobby

    USMC rule # 23 of gunfighting: Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

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  3. #2
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    Well, no matter what option you choose, I wouldn't count on a trash can (even one of those big-square-box types common in places like this) as very good cover. Better then nothing, certainly, but be careful.

    That said: How about D - move to cover/concealment, draw and aim, dial 911, see what happens. If the VCA seems intent on causing harm and/or starts to move people out of the public area, or, worse, hurts someone - then you shoot. If it seems to be going "smoothly," be a good witness and try to get the police there. If the opportunity presents itself to either issue verbal commands or take the VCA out with minimal risk to innocents, then you have the option to take it while in an advantageous position and with 911 on the line to hear the sequence of events.

    I don't think that there is a text book "right" answer to this question - much of it depends on your mind set, training, willingness/responsibility to intervene, et cetera. The fact that you are war-gaming such scenarios in the first place puts you well ahead of the pack, IMO.
    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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    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Your scenario is not simple, much like life.
    But at the end of the day my own personal position is that my life and ability to continue living is most important, more important than my job.

    I'm self employed and as the 'boss' do not have the real issues you have to deal with working in an non-permissive environment and the hours you do.
    IMHO any one of your three choices are relevant depending on exactly how the situation might go down.

    Just be safe, stay alert, and maintain a mindset to do whatever you have to do (of course within the law) to support your own survival. :\

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  5. #4
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    First, trash can is concealment not effective cover! Know the difference.

    There is a psychological factor that a lot of people won't try to shoot through concealment because of the psychologcial "barrier" but that is certainly nothing to stake your life on! Concealment is better than being in the open but is not a substitute for "hard cover!"

    In your scenario, the BG is unaware of your presence... therefore trying to escape, may alert him to your presence and change the entire dynamics of the robbery situation. Likewise with calling 911 may also alert him to your presence and change the dynamics of the robbery situation.

    I will point out, that whether you shoot "without warning" is something you are going to have to decide for yourself!

    For me, it will have to be dictated as the situation plays out. In your situation we are talking about victims being friends and co-workers and not total strangers.

    You have to assume that if you shoot the bad guy, and hit him from any distance beyond "contact range" you are doing pretty good while in a body alarm mode with adrenaline coursing through your veins. As you draw a careful bead on your target, I wouldn't be surprised if you find yourself shaking almost uncontrollably in that situation. (be aware real life does not play out the way you imagine it when running through "what if" scenarios)

    You must be aware that if you shoot him, he may very well "reflexively" pull the trigger effectively killing the person in front of him at the counter. (I would highly advise against trying to take a "brain stem shot" in that situation unless you can sneak up and put the muzzle against his head, and that is unlikely)

    More than likely, I would hold behind concealment and see how it plays out. If he shoots the counter person, I would shoot without warning and feel horrible about the co-worker who got shot, but understand it was the bad guy who shot them. not me.

    If he turns to leave and still doesn't see me, I would then call 911 and give good descriptions of the robber and try and get specific vehicle ID including license plate number.

    If he turns to leave and see's me on his way out, I may shoot him without warning depending on his reaction or challenge him and hold him at gunpoint! Making sure he dropped his weapon of course and then call 911 informing them that I am an employee holding an armed robber at gunpoint and give good discription of myself.

    These are basically MY responses... But know that my responses are always fluid and I would play it as circumstances dictate as they play out!

    YMMV.

    as Jang says... it's NOT an easy scenario!

    (also your lobby diagram did not post where I can see it)
    -Bark'n
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    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

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    What ever choice I'd make, losing my job would not be a factor in the choice.
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    It's a big difference between he is waving a knife or a gun around. While my gun is to protect me and my family first I cannot sit idly by and allow someone to hurt an innocent person if there is something i can do about it.

    Cover behind a trash can is not protection so if he has a knife I wouldn't even bother. I have the advantage, gun over knife. If he has a gun I might pull my gun out under the table where he can't see it and see how things progress. If I could get him away from others to come toward me I am in fear for my life and the gun comes out firing.
    DEMOCRACY IS TWO WOLVES AND A LAMB VOTING ON WHAT TO HAVE FOR LUNCH. LIBERTY IS A WELL ARMED LAMB CONtestING THE VOTE.

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    Distinguished Member Array SubNine's Avatar
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    The trash cans do have an enclosure around them, big enough to allow full concealment of my body. I'm not sure how strong the enclosures are, they're probably constructed of laminated wood, but maybe it would be enough to stop most handgun rounds from going through with enclosure, trash can, trash bag, trash, and the back of the enclosure. I could be wrong though, I'm no expert on handgun round ballistics.
    USMC rule # 23 of gunfighting: Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

    I am the God fearing, gun toting, flag waving conservative you were warned about!

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    My thought is that most robberies are exactly that: robberies not murders. There are very very few situations like this where I'd consider firing.

    Turning a robbery into a gunfight is called "escalation" not self defense.

    I'd have to be getting some strong vibes that the BG isn't planning on leaving witnesses before I'd take preemptive action like shooting. The possibility of the McDonalds corporation being a few hundred dollars lighter doesn't motivate me to get directly involved in that unless it starts to get ugly.
    "Friend, I would not harm thee for all the world, but thou art standing where I am about to shoot."--Unknown Quaker

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serenity View Post
    My thought is that most robberies are exactly that: robberies not murders. There are very very few situations like this where I'd consider firing.

    Turning a robbery into a gunfight is called "escalation" not self defense.

    I'd have to be getting some strong vibes that the BG isn't planning on leaving witnesses before I'd take preemptive action like shooting. The possibility of the McDonalds corporation being a few hundred dollars lighter doesn't motivate me to get directly involved in that unless it starts to get ugly.
    Down our way, we've had a rash of robberies where the BG shoots the cashier after they comply fully with whatever demands were made.

    Just because it looks like a straightforward robbery doesn't mean the BG isn't going to shoot someone just for the heck of it on the way out, at least not down here lately.

    Just food for thought.

    Matt
    Battle Plan (n) - a list of things that aren't going to happen if you are attacked.
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    Sereinity... How do you tell if they guy robbing you is going to shoot? Wait and see if he pulls the trigger.

    (Borrowed from the signature of one of our fine members)

    Just food for thought!
    -Bark'n
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    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Serenity View Post
    My thought is that most robberies are exactly that: robberies not murders. There are very very few situations like this where I'd consider firing.

    Turning a robbery into a gunfight is called "escalation" not self defense.

    I'd have to be getting some strong vibes that the BG isn't planning on leaving witnesses before I'd take preemptive action like shooting. The possibility of the McDonalds corporation being a few hundred dollars lighter doesn't motivate me to get directly involved in that unless it starts to get ugly.

    Hello fellow South Carolinian!

    Armed robbery is a violent crime in SC and is about as escalated as you're going to get. It is listed with murder, not under murder. Here are some quotes from the SC code and case law that would justify deadly force in such a situation. Granted, I'm not a lawyer and this is just my interpretation.

    SECTION 16 1 60. Violent crimes defined.
    For purposes of definition under South Carolina law, a violent crime includes the offenses of: murder (Section 16 3 10 ); criminal sexual conduct in the first and second degree (Sections 16 3 652 and 16 3 653); criminal sexual conduct with minors, first and second degree (Section 16 3 655); assault with intent to commit criminal sexual conduct, first and second degree (Section 16 3 656); assault and battery with intent to kill (Section 16 3 620); kidnapping (Section 16 3 910); voluntary manslaughter (Section 16 3 50); armed robbery (Section 16 11 330(A)); attempted armed robbery (Section 16 11 330(B)); carjacking (Section 16 3 1075); drug trafficking as defined in Section 44 53 370(e) or trafficking cocaine base as defined in Section 44 53 375(C); manufacturing or trafficking methamphetamine as defined in Section 44 53 375; arson in the first degree (Section 16 11 110(A)); arson in the second degree (Section 16 11 110(B)); burglary in the first degree (Section 16 11 311); burglary in the second degree (Section 16 11 312(B)); engaging a child for a sexual performance (Section 16 3 810); homicide by child abuse (Section 16 3 85(A)(1)); aiding and abetting homicide by child abuse (Section 16 3 85(A)(2)); inflicting great bodily injury upon a child (Section 16 3 95(A)); allowing great bodily injury to be inflicted upon a child (Section 16 3 95(B)); criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature (Section 16 25 65); abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult resulting in death (Section 43 35 85(F)); abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult resulting in great bodily injury (Section 43 35 85(E)); accessory before the fact to commit any of the above offenses (Section 16 1 40); attempt to commit any of the above offenses (Section 16 1 80); and taking of a hostage by an inmate (Section 24 13 450). Only those offenses specifically enumerated in this section are considered violent offenses.


    South Carolina has adopted the “alter-ego” rule with respect to the defense of others. In State v. Cook, 78 S.C. 253, 59 S.E. 862 (1907), the Court summarized this rule:

    If you intervene on behalf of another, you will not be allowed the benefit of the plea of self-defense, unless that plea would have been available to the person you assisted if he himself had done the killing.

    In other words, the person intervening is deemed to “stand in the shoes” of the person on whose behalf he is intervening. If that individual “had the right to defend himself, then the intervening party is also protected by that right. If, however, the party [victim] had no right to use force…then the intervening party will also assume the liability of the person on whose behalf he interfered.” McAninch and Fairey, p. 494.
    The “defense of others” rules apply to “any relative, friend or bystanders…” State v. Hays, supra.

    Use of Deadly Force
    State v. Fuller, 297 S.C. 440, 377 S.E.2d 328 (1989) sets forth the elements of self-defense in South Carolina. These are:
    • you must be without fault in bringing on the difficulty;
    • you must actually believe you are in imminent danger of loss of life or serious bodily injury or actually be in such danger;
    • if you believe you are in such danger, you must use deadly force only if a reasonable or prudent man of ordinary firmness and courage would have believed himself to be in such danger, or, if you actually were in such danger, the circumstances were such as would warrant a man of ordinary prudence, firmness and courage to strike the fatal blow in order to save yourself from serious bodily harm or losing your own life;
    • you had no other probable means of avoiding the danger of losing your own life or sustaining serious bodily injury than to act as you did in the particular instance.

    If you'd like for me to send you links to the current code, PM me and I'll e-mail them to you.
    NRA Certified Instructor

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    I think you are on the right track. Only thing I might add is why are you having your lunch in an area away from the nearest exit? When I go to a resturant I will wait until I can get a seat by the emergency exit. If your McDs with 3 exits does not have a seat near one of them. Then heck, if you have to eat in your car.

    If a BG or multiple BGs get the total jump on you and you are trapped with your CCW and it becomes a takover situation. Who are they going to kill first after they discover your gun? This is another reason why I don't carry my CCW license when I am not carrying.

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    Of course anybody can say what they would do in a given situation. I think no one really knows until it plays out, except probably highly trained professionals. As I am not a professional the following is what I hope I would be able to do.
    If I were able to "get the drop" on a BG using a knife I would probably:
    1. draw and aim from a concealed location.
    2. dial 911 giving location and description of BG and myself (quietly)
    3. order BG to drop knife and lie on floor face down until PD arrive.
    I would not shoot in this scenario, unless the guy did something stupid like not dropping the knife NOW. Hopefully the BG would have enough sense to comply or run away.

    Of course if the BG is using a gun this complicates the situation. Also, I realize a knife is a deadly weapon, but I think if I had a knife-wielding criminal in my sights I could put enough lead in him before he could harm me, hopefully, since I would not be right on top of him.

    If the guy was using a gun I would probably:
    1. draw and aim from a concealed location (my safety being the priority)
    2. dial 911 giving location and info
    3. ? - the tough part.
    I don't think I would have any moral problems taking out a bad guy when he least expects it. However, I would be concerned with the ramifications of that action...such as being sued by the scumbag or his scumbag relatives. OTOH, I would hate to have had an opportunity to prevent innocent co-workers (friends?) from being killed in front of me when I had a chance to stop it ! I pray I never have to make that type of decision and that I make the right one if it ever comes to that.

    BTW, I am not a ballistics expert either, but I would not consider any trash receptacle I have ever seen inside a fast food restaurant as anything other than concealment.

  15. #14
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    Your correct actions in that scenario would depend on a few things that you have not provided information on.
    What is your personal skill/competence level with your carry firearm?

    If you are already in a location where you have a viable shot and the Bad Guy is not aware of your presence then why on Earth would you move from that location to another location of poor cover?

    That would not be a logical move.

    Absolutely your firearm should be out of the holster the instant you spot the threat and the event begins to transpire.

    Forget about dialing 911 at the same time that you have already drawn your firearm on the threat. You will already have enough to concentrate on.

    I would stay right where you are at and get ready to take a carefully aimed brain shot.
    If you can stay calm and fairly collected then you have some superior advantage in your scenario as you have presented it.

    Basically, you can be a sniper from a "hidden thunder" location provided that you are a qualified shooter.

    You are in a scenario where you are basically target shooting only your intended target is not paper.

    The question as to if you take the shot or not is one that you'll have to answer in your own head.
    Absolutely and no matter what else you should be ready and willing to take the shot if things go sour...but, know (in advance) that if they do - they will in a fraction of a second.
    That is NOT the time to be on the phone w/ a 911 operator.
    Your handgun should be your 911 until the deadly threat either exits or he is stopped or dead.


    That's as much of an answer as I can give with the info provided.

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    Forget about dialing 911 at the same time that you have already drawn your firearm on the threat. You will already have enough to concentrate on.
    That's where the Bluetooth headset becomes worth its weight in gold; I can either manually dial 911 left-handed, or just hit the button on the headset and use voice dial. Once they pick up, everything you say is being recorded, and if the guy doesn't cooperate, I'm pretty good at ignoring people on the phone. (I knew those 6 years of tech support experience would come in handy for something.)

    It would also be a point in your favor if the situation ever goes to trial, that you tried to "just call 911 and let the pros deal with it" and the BG forced your hand by continuing/escalating the threat.

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