Criminals and guns - and us CCW's.

This is a discussion on Criminals and guns - and us CCW's. within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I think, loosely at least - this can belong here. Exactly one year ago Preacherman on THR responded to a question I put, re the ...

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Thread: Criminals and guns - and us CCW's.

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    Criminals and guns - and us CCW's.

    I think, loosely at least - this can belong here.

    Exactly one year ago Preacherman on THR responded to a question I put, re the attitudes of inmates to guns, CCW's - and things in general. I had archived it and felt on re-reading you may all find it interesting - maybe even depressing!

    He was a prison chaplain and - IIRC we have another CO here, Armoredman.
    Criminals and guns... boy, where do I start?

    I think this can be divided into two categories: criminals and their use of guns, and criminals and their reactions to guns in the hands of potential victims. Let's tackle each in turn. Also, please bear in mind that the kind of criminals I've discussed this with are medium- to high-security inmates, in the Louisiana State system and in the Federal system. Less "hard-core" criminals might have different things to say, but I'm not familiar with them, so I can't comment.

    I think there are a small proportion of criminals - perhaps 5% or so - who really know their weapons, and actively seek out good-quality firearms appropriate for their needs. (A good example would be the North Hollywood bank shootout a few years ago, or the Miami Massacre in 1986 - these bad guys really armed themselves well, and knew how to use their weapons effectively). Some of those of this type with whom I've spoken have been big-time crime bosses, or contract hitmen. They seem to pride themselves on their professionalism as criminals, in the overall sense, and see firearms as a professional's tool. Fortunately, they're a small minority of the criminals out there!

    A second group would be the gang-bangers. Among these guys, a firearm is a status symbol, a sign that "I'm a real cool dude" or "I'm the baddest guy on the block". Most of them have little or no idea of how to use the weapon - hence the term "gangsta-style aiming", where they hold the gun high above their heads with a bent wrist, shooting downward at their intended victim, or hold it on its side. They're also remarkably careless about routine weapon maintenance, buying ammunition (the cheaper, the better, seems to be their approach) and the use of accessories such as holsters. (In several cities, LEO's have informed me that if they see someone carrying a gun, and it's in a holster, they automatically assume that the carrier is a CCW permit holder, as the local BG's never, ever use holsters.) As for ammo - there's one guy in prison right now (and a cop who's thankfully still alive) because the BG bought "nine mil" ammunition, without specifying what he wanted, or even the exact caliber. As a result, he was sold a box of 9x23 fodder, which he loaded into the magazine of his pistol but did not chamber. (I think the pistol was one of the cheapies - Lorcin, Jennings, Bryco, or something like that.) Anyway, when he was interrupted during a drugstore heist, he racked the slide and pointed the gun at the cop - only to have the gun fail to fire because the 9x23 cartridge was too long for the 9x19 chamber. The cop, not noticing that the slide was out of battery, fired three rounds into his guts, which the BG still resents as being a terribly ungrateful sort of thing for the cop to do...

    A third group would be those who routinely use firearms in the commission of crimes, but regard them more as psychological tools than precision instruments. To them, guns are a means to threaten, intimidate and subdue their victims. Sometimes these guys are really dangerous: if they have prior convictions (which is usually the case) and don't want to get another sentence (especially if they're in states with a "3 strikes" law), they may very well try to kill their victims and any other witnesses, so as to render prosecution difficult. Often, they dispose of their guns as soon as they've used them, so that there won't be any ballistics match-up to them. They're not very good with their guns, but they're more than willing to use them if they have to.

    A final note: if the criminals from the last two groups mentioned are on drugs, the likelihood of their using their weapon goes up exponentially. They're no longer able to think clearly about the consequences of shooting someone, and they're also likely to be very slow in their mental processes. They might pull the trigger in a moment of anger, or in a blank daze, without thinking about it. I know a number of such guys who are doing very long prison terms, and they still don't remember killing or wounding anyone - that part of their lives is a complete blank.

    As to citizens with guns: virtually all criminals hate and fear the armed citizen. They're particularly concerned with two types:

    1. The untrained, panicking target, who is completely unpredictable as to whether he'll shoot or not, and how accurate he may be;

    2. The CCW holder, whose status as such is usually unknown until the crime occurs - criminals hate surprises!

    Oddly enough, criminals seem to be more comfortable with a really good gun-handler, who knows the law, than they are with the types mentioned above. They reason that a good shot and an informed gun-owner will not shoot them if they flee, and is good enough with his gun that he won't fire indiscriminately, which they regard as a greater danger than aimed fire (probably because they encounter so much of it from their own kind!).

    Many criminals - those capable of some thought, anyway, which tends to exclude gang-bangers and drug-addicts! - have told me that if they see a neat, clean house, in an up-market neighborhood, they regard it as a relatively safe target. If it's a less well-kept house, or in a lower-class neighborhood, they regard it as more dangerous, as the occupants are more likely to have a gun around the place. They also draw a distinction between city folks and those in more rural areas or smaller towns. The latter are regarded as MUCH more dangerous, more independent, more likely to own guns, more likely to rely on their own efforts for defence rather than trusting to law enforcement to protect them. (Inner-city gangsta's don't make this distinction, but then they're not exposed to it much. All too often, those who are exposed to it - at least in this part of the world - don't survive the experience, and so can't pass on the lesson! )

    A significant number of prisoners have been shot - at a rough guess, I'd say 20% or better. Of these, the vast majority have been shot either by their own kind, in gang battles, or by armed citizens. Probably only a few have been shot by law enforcement. The prevailing attitude among the more street-smart crooks (again, excluding gang-bangers and drug addicts) is that if the cops draw down on you, give it up, RIGHT NOW - you won't get another chance. (Of course, the majority of these crooks are from the South-East, South and South-West USA, where cops are rather more likely to use lethal force than they would be in, say, Chicago or New York, where liberal thought processes have made the use of deadly force much more controversial.)

    The coldest, most scary characters have to be the few hit-men I've met. One of them is responsible for at least 7 murders (well, those are the ones for which he was convicted, but he makes no secret of the fact that there were others). He claimed to me that he wasn't sorry for killing them, as they were all crooks and bad guys who deserved to die. He seems to be utterly without a conscience, and speaks quite casually of arms, their use, and the selection of different weapons for different scenarios. He's in for life, and won't get parole, but is still a very dangerous man indeed. It's noticeable that even the roughest gang-bangers on the compound give him a wide berth. No-one messes with this guy!

    I hope this helps to answer your questions. Let me know if it needs further elaboration.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    VIP Member Array Euclidean's Avatar
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    Where's Oleg Volk's poster that says this gun is keeping you safe because criminals don't know you're not the one carrying it?

    5 years after W signed the CCW law in Texas, the state murder rate plummeted 33% and I believe has remained rather steady since then.

    I honestly believe that portion of crime that suddenly dried up reflects on the homicides where an unprovoked goblin kills an innocent bystander. I think the other homicides are the goblins preying on each other for the most part.

    Perception is reality. Put it in someone's head that people in Texas carry guns, and they'll act accordingly. In this county, only about 3% of the population has a CCW permit and that's typical for the state or close to it. 3% of the people doing something voluntary that prevents 33% of homicides is pretty darn efficient and it costs the taxpayer nothing.

    I also like the piece because it point something out: the gun is a mere tool. Aggression, robbery, theft, assault are all human vices that will always be present and always be carried out regardless of guns being present or not.

    There were murders and rape and robbery for centuries before guns ever came along, and there will continue to be such things long after guns are hopelessly obsolete.

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    Distinguished Member Array RSSZ's Avatar
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    I think that we all know that more guns in the right hands does not cause more crime. Also we all know that where CCW is legal,the towns don't revert back to the wild west. We know that honest folk should have a right to protect themselves. The anti's(IMO) will never or can never be changed. They feel the way that they do for some deep set reason that I will never be able to understand. But,as I get older I find that I just don't care. I don't need to understand them. I also don't care if they understand my way of thinking. I don't want to talk to them. I don't want to live with or around them,I don't want to even associate with them. I do understand that to a certin extent I have to though. I feel that I can fight for my rights without having to engauge them. We (IMO) need to go about or buisness fighting for the things that we believe in and forget about the lost causes in our society. I'll tell ya what though--- I sure as hell wont protect them if the SHTF. They'll be hideing in their upstairs closet - I'll be shootin'. I will read their names in the paper tomorrow AM. I can live with that.--------

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    Member Array ibex's Avatar
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    Very good post. I'm gonna save that for later use in arguments with fence-sitters and maybe even antis. Hey, I'm still young and naive, so I can at least try. I'll give up soon enough.
    "So this is how liberty dies. With thunderous applause."
    - Senator Padmé Amidala, "Revenge of the Sith"

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    Member Array Larry Ashcraft's Avatar
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    They also draw a distinction between city folks and those in more rural areas or smaller towns.
    There has been a rash of home invasions here in Pueblo CO in the last year or so. I have noticed that NONE of them have taken place out of the city limits. I guess the little bangers know that every farmer has at least an old single shot shotgun at hand.

    I enjoyed that post Chris, I guess I missed it on THR. Thanks.

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    You're welcome Larry.

    I am often glad that my house and environs are not blatently ''posh'' - just sorta ''average'' and semi rural - suits me fine. Nothing about our place really says ''Money" or wealth - too ordinary - plus I doubt if in my road there is one house that has not at very least got a rifle in the corner

    Then of course we need to remember that not all BG's are brightest bulbs in the box - and so there are always still those who just might try it on - thus I keep my guard up regardless.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    This little essay pretty much mirrors my experience as a state probation and parole officer years ago. I always treated my "clients" with some respect. Just calling a scumbag "sir" had an amazing effect! Those guys opened up their world to me. Treated me with respect, did as I asked and gave me no trouble. Ocassionally, I'd have a real hard case come onto my caseload. If the other guys recognized him for what he was, they'd usually warn me.

    My sense is the same: A cop will arrest you before he shoots and that is simply a cost of doing business. But a citizen with a gun, afraid for his life or the lives of loved ones? THAT guy will kill you and he is not operating under the same rules as the cops! Most of our BGs are the gangsta variety, however even they have to be broken down by group. The true carnivore out here now is the MS13 animals. They just busted three of those the other day.

    Otherwise, I see most of the garden variety stickup artists, strong arm purse snatchers and other assorted riff raff in my classroom when they bother to come to school. They always fail because they don't EVER try. Word has gotten around and most folks know my story and so I haven't been really tried in awhile. But I worry about that as I age. In May of 06 I'll be 49. My back hurts and I'm getting a bit of arthritis. The scum can sniff out weakness like a shark smells blood. I may have to brush up on my Aikido skills using the JO-Stick and start walking with a cane. I favor the "Walk-A-Bout" stick from Cold Steel. Excellent cane, too.
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    Distinguished Member Array RSSZ's Avatar
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    You know ---- I know how the law reads--- BUT--- If there wuz any group that the gov't ought to unleash some of my military friends on is them MS13 bros. It would be a fine "test case" for further actions against--- ??---well,anybody that needs to be delt with kinda harshly.-------

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    Chris,

    Just a thought about the decrease in crime levels...it must have been an anomaly cause the anti's totally seem to dismiss that reduced crime has occurred all over the country where there is CCW. In Australia, Canada, and the UK just the opposite has occurred; an increase in crime when the guns are gathered. I wonder if they'll ever lose the tunnel vision they seem to have. Until then...
    noli nothis permittere te terere...

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    Senior Member Array KC135's Avatar
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    Suggested reading: Armed and Considered Dangerous by Wright and Rossi.
    Keep the shotgun handy!!

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    Great post Chris...good reading to say the least! I think it places the seeds into our heads, in order to be able to peer into the mindset of some pretty nasty individuals. Better still, be able to have a sence of being able to deal with the little demons, should we enounter one or more of them
    Why Waltz when you can Rock-N-Roll

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    Good Thread ~ Mighty Fine Comments

    Funny...Cops arrested this gangsta type on the TV last week & he had a loaded revolver.
    The Cop cracked open the wheelgun cylinder & the BG only had it loaded with two cartridges.
    Don't get me wrong...I sure do know that one bullet is enough to kill but, this particular punk only owned two bullets.
    One more than Barney Fife.

    Sort of "off topic" but, thought you'aal would get a jolt out of reading it.
    Last edited by QKShooter; November 23rd, 2005 at 06:23 PM. Reason: correct typo
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