Instructor Notes: Multiple Target Concerns

This past week of training classes had a bit of a different pattern and change in the normal topics.

I had students directly asking, “What do you do if there are multiple threats and the situation is beyond the Avoid, Evade, Escape…. course of action?” Of course this is not the, exact way they phrased it but certainly the theme.

The best answer I could give them is that every Dynamic Critical Incident is different.
If you fear for your life or grave bodily harm or that of another you will have to act accordingly to stop the threat(s).
Only using that much force to stop the immediate threat and no further.
If only one person out of a group meets this threat level, than your level of force to stop that threat is only directed at that one person.
I couldn’t give them “if then’s” as there are too many variables.
They will have to run through mental scenarios of different forms of threats and threat levels.

The next observation I had was, once again with students equipment.

*Using firearms that don’t fit the hands or in some cases don’t work properly.

*The lack of strength so as to not being able to physically press the mag release button.

*Another, you MUST slightly pull back the hammer to engage the safety!

*Of less concern but still something to consider was lose floppy belts and mag pouches that didn’t fit the mag they were carrying.

By the end of the day I saw lightbulbs going off in everyone’s heads.
There was so much they didn’t even know before and now felt so much better about their defensive shooting and what proper gear actually was.


As an Instructor you will be proud when you see these guys wearing new gear next time they show up !


@Fizbin It’s a good thing they asked that question and it gave you something to think about. I could picture the expression on your face when they asked that question. The fact that you noticed the equipment they were wearing. But it is a good question and you did the right thing. I’m not an instructor but I could imagine what I would have said if I was your assistant that day. Things like you guys are worried about multiple assailants and look at what your working with. I’m just saying. But as an instructor you have to have a lot of patience and you showed it there. I believe you taught me something, that we all started somewhere. :+1::+1:


@Johnnyq60, thanks for the kind words. Being an instructor does take a special breed. Knowing your material backwards and forwards, staying up on the most recent techniques/gear/etc and being able to present the information and training to a student so they enjoy the experience and at the same time comprehend, understand and can continue to grow their new skill set.

The specific question is a very very challenging one. We as instructors as well as all of us LTC/CCW holders have never been presented with such times before. Mobs/“peaceful protests”/riots/table crashing/ etc is not something I’ve ever had to teach or we has armed citizens have ever had to think about.

I think the smartest thing you could do is flight, run and get away as best and as fast as you can.
It’s legally hard for instructors to suggest specific actions, beyond what I’ve said above.


The smartest words I’ve heard from Instructor recently ! :clap: :+1:

There is not time for emotions. Simple, plain calculation. I can either fight and take a risk or just flight and live happy live next day…


It is very difficult to articulate that being afraid IS NOT being in fear of your life. It is even more difficult to say that there has to be a provable presence of an item or a person that is DIRECTLY threatening your life SPECIFICALLY before you can respond with deadly force.

Someone leaning over a railing screaming at you that they will kill you is verbal assault but not a deadly threat.

Someone with a bat or club on your front lawn telling you they will kill you is assault but not a deadly threat unless they rush you.

The list of "What if’s " is too long to even contemplate. In the world we live in WE must be entirely within the law while those that may attack us have no regard for the same. They can scream at you, throw things at you and even spit on you but if you muzzle punch someone or shoot someone YOU will be going to jail. It makes the mind wander.




Just a quick follow up to Multiple Targets.

Regardless of what the former Vice President, Joe Biden says, in a dynamic critical incident, DO NOT SHOOT THEIR LEGS OUT, continue to shoot center mass in an attempt to stop the threat.


I do not follow political news… Do we have any more accurate information which leg? Left? Right? Does it matter if aggressor is right handed? Damn… the new Law proposition is too complicated… :thinking:
I will definitely use @Fizbin’s advice and still aim at center mass.


Running is my tactic for avoiding the use of deadly force. Though this could be challenged if one is in a situation where one is cornered or cannot find a reasonable means of escape. Just because I carry a firearm does not mean I have to use it.

1 Like