Why can't I exit my car gun in hand if I feel threatened?

This is a discussion on Why can't I exit my car gun in hand if I feel threatened? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Rather than hijacking another thread, I want to ask this separately. Here is a link to the other thread for reference... - http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ad.php?t=33053 My question ...

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Thread: Why can't I exit my car gun in hand if I feel threatened?

  1. #1
    Member Array dang.45's Avatar
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    Why can't I exit my car gun in hand if I feel threatened?

    Rather than hijacking another thread, I want to ask this separately. Here is a link to the other thread for reference... - http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ad.php?t=33053

    My question is this - if it is OK to answer your door at home with a handgun in hand, say with it either behind your back or hidden from view behind your leg, why is it not OK to get out your car, gun in hand in the same manner, when confronted by a clearly agitated person, whose intentions are entirely unclear to you?

    For those that have read the above referenced thread, I don't want to argue whether or not Mr. Gumm should or should not have gotten out of the car - that discussion is already happening in the original thread. I also don't want to limit the discussion to the parameters of the original thread, i.e. Mr. Gumm is an older, not-very-mobile guy, confronted by a drunk driver high on meth. For the sake of this discussion, lets assume that the armed driver is me - mid-thirties, male, decent size, not trained or confident in any hand-to-hand situations, confronted by another driver who either I have pissed of (say by accidentally cutting them off), or is pissed off / agitated for some unknown reason.

    Posts in the referenced thread seem to indicate that exiting a vehicle, gun in hand, is a no-no pretty much no matter what. Why is that? If I have a reasonable fear for my life or safety, being approached by an unknown person, how can it be anything other than a good idea to revert back to my Boy Scout training and "be prepared" by having my lawfully-carried gun in hand?

    Again, since this is me in this situation & not Mr. Gumm from the referenced thread, lets assume that my gun, while in hand, is still hidden & not pointed at the person coming toward me...
    "It is only as retaliation that force may be used and only against the man who starts its use. No, I do not share his evil or sink to his concept of morality: I merely grant him his choice, destruction, the only destruction he had a right to choose: his own." - John Galt, from Atlas Shrugged

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  3. #2
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    I suggest reading up on your states laws. Depending on what it states , there could be many answers . Also with all the variables a situation could have , the response can vary greatly.
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    Member Array rb8941's Avatar
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    IMO when carrying, the first recommendation is always to avoid a confrontational situation whenever possible.

    Wouldn't it simply be easier (and more desirable) to drive away? Maybe it's just me but I don't see the advantage of exiting my car, gun in hand.
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    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    I'd just drive away, rather than escalate it.
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    Senior Member Array digitalexplr's Avatar
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    I can't see anything legally wrong with getting out of your car with you weapon already unholstered if someone is coming at you in an aggressive manner - and you have chosen to get out of your car.

    I think a better choice of action is to stay in the car try to leave if possible. If the person in question has blocked you so cannot leave in your vehicle, that in and of itself is an aggressive act on their part. In which case you have a better chance outside you car rather than trying to hunker down in your car while they break your windows out in an effort to get to you!

    Once out of you car it doesn't take but the blink of an eye for someone to close a car lengths distance between you and them. I'm not that athletic anymore, but I'll bet I can get from the rear of your car to you standing at the driver's door faster than you can draw your ccw. If you get out with you weapon drawn, and the bg continues moving towards you you can raise your weapon from your side, much faster than you can draw it. In the best case scenario, once he sees your gun pointed at his knoggin, he will stop in his tracks. If not he will stop dead in his tracks.

    In this case getting out of your car WITHOUT your weapon unholstered almost seems a suicidal act on your part.

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    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    There would be nothing wrong with exiting a vehicle with a weapon in hand as long as the weapon remained concealed based on your scenario. That is concealed from everyone, not just the person that you believe to be a threat.

    As far as I know it is ok for you to answer the door with gun in hand and visible. In your home there is no need for concealment as long as your not standing in your yard pointing it at your neighbors, then it becomes brandishing. On the street it is a different story, or in your car is not the same as on your property.

    Exiting your vehicle with gun in hand is not always a no, no. Please refer to this thread http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ad.php?t=34303
    This is a perfect example of when it would be justified, since the BG had a visible weapon approaching the off duty officer, although it would be justified for a civilian as well.

    To present a weapon in a manner which it appears that it will be used for defense, you will have to refer to your state laws as to when that is acceptable behavior. Each one is going to be a bit different. In Texas we have pretty broad range, other states are not so broad.

    You said it in your post, the persons intentions are unclear, that in itself tells me your can't be sure what they are thinking and therefore can't truely be in fear for your life or limb. Until their intentions are clear, you can't make the judgement that most states require you to make for the presentation of lethal force.
    Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
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    Member Array 1911packer's Avatar
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    Answering the door at home is not a good analogy. You didn't leave your house and step onto public property when you answered the door. In many states, a car is not an extension of your home.

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    Yes - state laws will color this but - overall it strikes me that even if someone can regard their vehicle as ''home'' - the problem is, exiting a vehicle will usually mean exiting into public space - and so potentially instant brandishing.

    At home is a different matter IMO - plus there is no need to have a gun presented and actually visible anyways. Castle doctrine or no - your home is not public.

    One thing I should have added - much will depend on the threat level and nature of threat.
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    Senior Member Array joleary223's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang.45 View Post
    why is it not OK to get out your car, gun in hand.
    Because your car isn't on your property. If you are in public with a gun at the ready you are escalating whatever situation is going to transpire and in most states you can only meet force with equal force. Fist doesn't equal gun and you may very well end up in a fist fight. Best to stay behind steel and glass.
    Now, laws vary from state to state ,and I'm not a lawyer but that's how I see it.
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    VIP Member Array tns0038's Avatar
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    I would check your state laws. If you’re not at home, or place of business, most states require you to retreat if possible than to take lethal action.

    Sure there may be exceptions: But at this time, I can not think of any where I would chance my life.

    Remember just using a firearm to gain the advantage in a situation can be viewed as brandishing a firearm… or at the very least, improper display of a firearm.

    Ether of those charges could result in your arrest, spending a night or two in jail, and having to pay out $3,000 dollars or more for an attorney, or even worse, being convicted of a felony and never allowed to carry a gun again.

    For me, I’d just drive off, and if the BG follows call the COPS.

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    Member Array dang.45's Avatar
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    I understand all the responses I've gotten so far, but before I say anything else, I guess I should have been more clear that one thing I wanted to keep the same from the referenced thread, is to assume that I can't drive away for whatever reason. Obviously, if I can avoid a situation where there are unknowns, I will do so...

    Thanks for the replies, and any more thoughts will be welcome!
    "It is only as retaliation that force may be used and only against the man who starts its use. No, I do not share his evil or sink to his concept of morality: I merely grant him his choice, destruction, the only destruction he had a right to choose: his own." - John Galt, from Atlas Shrugged

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    VIP Member Array miklcolt45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang.45 View Post
    My question is this - if it is OK to answer your door at home with a handgun in hand, say with it either behind your back or hidden from view behind your leg, why is it not OK to get out your car, gun in hand in the same manner, when confronted by a clearly agitated person, whose intentions are entirely unclear to you?

    Again, since this is me in this situation & not Mr. Gumm from the referenced thread, lets assume that my gun, while in hand, is still hidden & not pointed at the person coming toward me...
    1. Why exit the car in the first place? You are now potentially in the danger zone for knife/bat/fists/feet, etc.

    2. You can't know for sure who is looking/able to see (I remember a time when I loving patted a portion of my wife's anatomy, thinking no one was around/could see...WRONG! And, boy, did I get it from wifey after!) Someone noticing could open you up to a charge of brandishing/display in angry, threatening manner. Or, you could just get the hysterical sheep's 911 call about 'man with a gun.'

    3. Is there another, less potentially dangerous (life, limb, legally) response? (Drive away, call 911)

    Anyway, those are my first thoughts...
    He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliott

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  14. #13
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    dang,

    Not trying to throw fuel on your fire but a start to your question would be to review the 'J.A.M.' concept principles as featured at this recent thread;

    'Three easy citizen CCW rules to know and memorize to avoid hard times'
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ad.php?t=36322



    There is not a hard rule stating that exiting ones car, defensive tool in hand (gun, knife, bat, tire iron, etc.), is either a bad idea or even unlawful.
    As stated by others conditions can and do vary greatly and as such you have to have ability to make a proper assessment of the situation and with that degree of threat in a real way.

    Reference the information in that thread or better yet ignore my own words completely and skip down to the multiple and disparate links I'd provided therein. Read those some of which go into great detail on this subject.
    Then as suggested here by another not only read but study your own state and local laws on this subject. The answer to your question should with that become self evident.

    Oh, and one other thing.
    Ask yourself what is most important to you?

    Is your ego being momentarily bruised by an obviously drunken irrational acting fool worth trading against your time, your savings, a bankruptcy, decreased health status, and your future freedom upon being jailed, adjudicated, and worst found guilty of a crime even if it's deemed or plead down to a misdemeanor assault? As my mom used to say; "That'll go on your permanent record!". Good luck keeping your job and/or finding a new one or getting a security clearance with an assault/gun related charge on your record.

    Is your ego being momentarily bruised by an obviously drunken irrational acting fool of greater value than your life, liberty, and ability to be there to provide for your family and pursue happiness?
    No one can answer that for you but your own self.

    Another relevant thread to reference toward this subject and life & living on the streets is the recent thread;

    'I've learned that...'
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ad.php?t=36326

    Three statements of fact in that thread relevant to your question and the Gumm Vs. Turney situation are the following;
    Quote Originally Posted by retsupt99
    I've learned that being cognizant of one's environment could save a life...your own!
    I've learned that firearms require the user to have good judgment and responsible decision making skills...without one of the aforementioned, a firearm can get you into trouble, rather than OUT of trouble.
    Source - http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...2&postcount=20
    And...

    Quote Originally Posted by ethereal
    You may have a right to go somewhere, but that doesn't mean it's a good place to be.

    Source - http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...8&postcount=23
    Best wishes and be safe out there.

    - 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

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    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang.45 View Post
    I understand all the responses I've gotten so far, but before I say anything else, I guess I should have been more clear that one thing I wanted to keep the same from the referenced thread, is to assume that I can't drive away for whatever reason. Obviously, if I can avoid a situation where there are unknowns, I will do so...

    Thanks for the replies, and any more thoughts will be welcome!
    Go back to that thread to the first post where the police statement is provided detailing what Gumm states occurred.
    Gumm stated, to the police, that he was cursed verbally by Turney as he was in the street and attempting to turn into the parking lot.
    At that point noting and knowing that a crazy acting person was behind him and that time wise he was well within the witching hour he should then have thought to himself to heck with parking my car. Keep going straight and get away from this jerk. Why?
    Because pulling himself into a parking space knowing that jerk guy is behind him following greatly restricts his ability to be mobile and mobility provides distance to which every school kid knows distance from a bully/trouble is your very best friend.
    So Gumm pulls into the parking lot, selects a parking space that doe snot allow him to escape without reversing to which Turney is behind him, and then Gumm choose to exit his steel & glass cocoon of relative safety and _concealment_ to instead engage Turney with the aid of cover and concealment via the very thin air.

    That in and of itself is not wise or even sensical.
    Further it's not like Gumm was an average Joe Blow citizen.
    He was in fact as stated "certified as an armed security guard by the Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training".
    For more information on 'CLEET' and it's not an average Joe 'CCW' Citizen programming and training go here; http://www.cleet.state.ok.us

    As well people in that thread have said; "there is no reason I should put myself at a disadvantage especially if I (like Gumm) have health and physical limitations already".
    Well if he is physically limited and does have health issues to such a degree that he cannot reasonably flee/run away on foot then exactly how is exiting ones vehicle made of _steel_ going to be beneficial and better going to nothing but air and to meet head on the source(s) of danger? Not one person has explained that.
    Stay in the car, engine on, foot on/at the gas, firearm deployed _inside_ the car hidden from the attacker(s) view and at the ready (a strong tactical advantage), and if force subsequently becomes prudent you then have _two_ weapons available to you. One being your firearm, a weapon of very last resort. And two being your vehicle which is going to hit a human hard with _steel_ and weighs in at the approximate size of a small rhino at the least.
    In a fight which would you rather have at your command? A small rhino or closely quartered air?

    The choice is yours.

    - 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

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array dairycreek's Avatar
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    Most states use a three point test to decide if a gun can be used lethally. Means, intent, opportunity = MIO. Does the potential assailant have the means to harm you, the intent to hurt you and, finally, the opportunity? In the case described there does not seem to be all three present if the driver stays in the car or drives away. Bottom line is that, should the driver leave his/her car, only then does the opportunity seem to have been presented. Drive away
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