Kind of A Scary Day

This is a discussion on Kind of A Scary Day within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have to keep this real general, and it is a long story but it shows how quickly things can happen and how there is ...

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Thread: Kind of A Scary Day

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    Kind of A Scary Day

    I have to keep this real general, and it is a long story but it shows how quickly things can happen and how there is no time to think. Working on a book about big city police, I was with them on the last of my nearly 200 ride-alongs, and I had my Ruger P90 with me. I was the front seat passenger in an unmarked minivan and the officer driving was plainclothes drug unit. We were one vehicle of four, and the driver was just told not to accost this known drug dealer that we saw on the corner just now. Wait for the other three cars to get there. But the officer who was driving pulled right up to this known dealer, got out and walked toward the rear of the van, to come out on the other side and talk with this dealer. Now I am just sitting there as a front seat passenger and this guy starts walking toward the back of the van on my side, and now the officer is going to be confronted by this guy at the rear of the van, and will not be expecting it. I envisioned him being stabbed or shot, and I had approx two seconds to decide to open my door, bring up my .45, aim it at the guy, say uh uh uh uh uh, like that, which is all I had time to say. The guy immediately stopped and put his hands up and went to the nearby fence and put his hands on it. All I said was uh uh uh uh uh like that, no time to even talk. Turned out he was not armed, but I saw a cop who had just seen this guy standing on the corner, I saw a cop walking who did not know his subject was now walking towards him via the other side of the van. I had absolutely no time to talk or plan or consider. None of that. And after this incident I knew what people meant when they say that anyone can Monday morning quarterback a police officer's instantaneous decision. I know, I know, as a civilian I should have stayed out of it. But how could I? And the cops agreed with me. But I was not clearly right, nor was I clearly wrong. The answer was somewhere in the middle. I did what I thought I had to do and I had no time to come on the forum and ask. The quickness of it all is the deciding factor. No time to argue both sides of the question when it is live like that.

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    Member Array klx9mm's Avatar
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    That's a tough scenerio to be in. I think you did ok. It could have been the officers life at stake otherwise.
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    I will not disagree with you. You were pretty much a party to this situation because the officer put you in jeopardy by not following his orders.

    I am however surprised the PD allowed you to carry during ride alongs. I would have expected otherwise
    Mark

    "The world is filled with violence. Because criminals carry guns, we decent law-abiding citizens should also have guns. Otherwise they will win and the decent people will lose."

    -James Earl Jones

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    Senior Member Array MR D's Avatar
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    I probably would have done the same...

    My dad and older brother were both LEO's and if placed in a situation of being the "only" help close at hand - I vote help...

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    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    Another surprising thing was in 1994 when a Sgt from the same large city had a contact on NYPD who told him he and I could go on a ride-along in the South Bronx on a Saturday night. I was on the phone with the detective down there and he said are you armed, and I said yes, but I am not an officer. So what do we do? and he said what do you think you should do about bringing guns to NYC? And I said well, you have the same law we have here, namely one year in jail for possession of a firearm without a license to carry. He said I know that but what do YOU think you should do? I said, Bring our guns? Yes, he said. So we were on floor 16 of a huge apt building with NYPD, transit police and others, and a huge party out of control so I just stationed myself in a hallway.Again, in a situation under which you have no control, best thing to do was to be very very passive about it and not get more involved than just being in the same apartment with the craziness going on. So sometimes being passive is the best option. We did not even think about leaving the hallway and becoming even more involved.
    Last edited by dcb188; April 30th, 2008 at 07:01 AM.

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    VIP Member Array grady's Avatar
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    You and the officer both went home alive.

    Good call.

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    Senior Member Array TheGreatGonzo's Avatar
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    Sounds like you evaluated the threat and acted according to what you saw and believed. Can't ask more than that from anyone. Sounds like an interesting book you are working on. When can we expect to see if on the shelves of the local Barnes & Noble?
    Gonzo
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    Senior Member Array mulle46's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcb188 View Post
    I had absolutely no time to talk or plan or consider. None of that. And after this incident I knew what people meant when they say that anyone can Monday morning quarterback a police officer's instantaneous decision. I know, I know, as a civilian I should have stayed out of it. But how could I? And the cops agreed with me. But I was not clearly right, nor was I clearly wrong. The answer was somewhere in the middle. I did what I thought I had to do and I had no time to come on the forum and ask. The quickness of it all is the deciding factor. No time to argue both sides of the question when it is live like that.
    As I have posted on another thread, lawyers have months and years to debate an event that was over in under 5 seconds start to finish. I am surprised that you were allowed to carry in a ride-along though. As an officer, I wouldn't want someone I didn't know, whose level of training I didn't know, to be carrying in a ride-along. OMO
    You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, "I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." . . . You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt

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    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    The thing is, I did know them, all of them. They first invited me out in 1992 and I went out nearly 200 times 1992-2000, the date of that incident. And they kept inviting me out but I had seen enough. All those officers are my worthy adversaries, or so they call themselves, in criminal cases, where I am the defense counsel in a lot of their cases. So we all go back to 1985. And I think I am the only crim defense atty who does not see the police as my adversary. So that is one thing that caused this bond to develop. Defense counsel and police mix real well like oil and water. But we are a tight group, all my friends being Boston PD officers and no lawyers as social friends at all. So it is a unique situation. They were the ones who advised me to start carrying. I did not think about it before they suggested it two years into these ride-alongs.

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    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    Whenever we encountered defendants I knew, I would tell them I was on a secret mission, don't tell anyone about it, and they thought it was some secret thing. It was funny.======plus all these officers know that I was at one time in the past an assistant district atty plus a special asst US attorney, and they also know my true feelings, that it is the highest honor to be a police officer. I have always felt that way. All this contributed toward the day in January 1992 when a detective said, hey, why don't you come out with us on a ride-along. So that is how it began. Right after the incident with which I began this thread, they jokingly said, well you did the right thing but what would the Boston Globe have printed tomorrow morning had you shot that young fellow and I said I didn't know, Lawyer Kills Savage? and they thought it was somehow fitting as a headline.

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    VIP Member Array crzy4guns's Avatar
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    You did the right thing, you went home and the officer went home like was said before. LEOs face these "gray areas" everyday. I know, I used to be one and my brother in law is still on the department.

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    Distinguished Member Array morintp's Avatar
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    Is this your first book?

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    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    Yes, never wrote anything in my life, but I am having trouble with it, I sent it to my sister, just a few chapters and she wrote back and told me I should have someone write it for me because although the incidents are interesting and no one in this country has ever been on 200 ride alongs, and no attorney has ever done it like that, she said I write "like a lawyer".
    So I asked her if I should write like a painter, I had no idea what she was talking about. But I read thru my stuff again and it is really without flavor like a true author would make it. So I need a ghost-writer like she says. She told me the truth, although I didn't like it........so it is not the material, it is me.
    And there are a lot more incidents involving doing actual police work at the officer's request because I was right on the scene with them but I would rather not mention those things and have the department get curious.
    I had written ride along permission with no expiration date on it and still do, but that incident where I could have had to shoot someone? There were incidents like it before but this was just the straw that broke the camel's back.
    These are all very very active officers with great arrest records and they have all been involved in shooting incidents simply because they are so proactive on the streets.
    It may have been a matter of time before I ended up having to defend myself.
    Last edited by dcb188; May 1st, 2008 at 02:08 PM. Reason: typo

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    Distinguished Member Array morintp's Avatar
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    What a coincidence. I am in the middle of my first book too. Mine is post-apocolyptic fiction. I have taken college writing courses and done a lot of technical writing, but it's always been my dream to be a novelist. I am sure I have a little of your problem as well because of my experience. Actually, I probably write like an engineer.

    But I think I'm getting better. Sometimes I just get into a rythm, almost a Zen-like thing. I've been able to do that (the Zen thing) with other stuff I've worked on, such as previous jobs, cooking, writing code, and everytime I do, I've always worked at the peak of my abilities. I'm just hoping it is working with this as well. My wife says it's good, but I don't know if she's being honest or nice.

    BTW, don't touch any of the material in my LEO Stories thread. I have plans for that. If the book I'm working on pans out as I hope it does, every officer that posted a story in that thread will be getting a PM and a check, and then the material will build most of my second book.

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    Senior Member Array dcb188's Avatar
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    And my check for being your own legal advisor about all of this?

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