Welcome to Aftermath, a portion of our First Line email newsletter where Attorney Anthony L. DeWitt walks you through a real-life self-defense incident and shares his key takeaways.
Richmond Case Shows What Not to Do
A delivery driver for a restaurant was approached by two 16-year-old cousins, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. One was armed with a pistol; the other with a shotgun. Both wanted money … and weren’t asking nicely. The delivery driver was unarmed and unimpressed. He wrestled the pistol away from one of the would-be robbers and shot the boy with the attacker’s own pistol. The shotgun-armed thief, however, shot the driver. Both injured parties were transported to local hospitals. The teens were charged with armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.
Do you have self-defense training outside of firearms? What kind of hand-to-hand combat do you recommend others learn?
At my age (74) physical conflicts are last ditch survival tactics.
What comes to mind was a scene in an episode of Davey Crocket where the agreement before the fight was “rough and tumble, no holds barred”.
Back in the 1800 or 1700s two rivals could challenge each other to a fight and decide whether to conduct the fight “fair”, or they could fight “Rough and Tumble”. Rough and Tumble fighters would gauge out full eyeballs, they could bite lips, ears and noses, and even the genitals weren’t off limits in these truly no-holds-barred contests. Some fighters would even attach sharp objects to their teeth so they could cause maximum damage when they bit down on part of their opponent.
Eventually the revolver was invented and two people who really hated each other began to practice the more civilized act of shooting each other with guns.
This shows the importance of “situational awareness” and finding time to engage in “mental exercises” (or, what would I do if this happens) for people regardless of whether you about armed or unarmed.
Ummm I think he should have shot the one who was still armed first.
Hard to say how it played out, always some difficulty with 2 against 1. Didn’t read how old the driver was. Hope he’s doing ok. Don’t know why they weren’t charged with attempted murder.
I’m presently wearing a kind of a splint on my left (shooting) hand.
I’m fairly healthy for my age but I accept that I’m no longer in my prime, I’m old and slow to engage in hand-to-hand combat.
I don’t intend to be in a fight I wouldn’t win.
I highly recommend taking/learning/practicing self defense. But this was stupid to attempt. Give up the goods. Not worth lo add ing your life over. Street fighting is good to learn. Combined with boxing and martial arts is a good way to start.
Unarmed delivery driver? Not so good.
Shooting the unarmed perp before the armed one? Not so good.
Shooting an unarmed 16 year old? I can see a prosecutor arguing he was no longer a threat. Not so good.
Taking on two armed assailants who have the draw on you over money? Really lucky he’s not dead.
And the Prosecutor will get hours, days, weeks and probably months to sift through all the data. Meanwhile, the delivery driver had mere seconds to sift through data before making his decisions. It demonstrates the need for people to conduct random mental exercises be they armed, or unarmed.
Hand to hand combatives training from the Army, as well as Muay Thai and BJJ. My recommendation: be clear and decisive if you choose to engage in hand combat against an armed attacker. Your best bet, give up the cash, cards, wallet, etc. All can be replaced. My mindset: if I’m getting into a knife fight, plan on getting cut. If I’m getting into a gunfight, plan on being shot. But have the will to win!
Great read! I definitely have combatives and mindset training outside of firearms for many years. I’m somewhat new to firearms. Still I understand that all that I know is but a spec of dust in a bucket.
I am 85 yrs old and unfortunately at this time in our country, it is evident that we should be armed at all times. I am always armed and wear my shirt over my Ruger LCP 380 with hollow points and in a situation even armed I would hand over the money, observing and taking any opportunity to pull and shoot. Dropping the money, handing it over with my off hand looking for the opportunity to pull and shoot with my right hand, maneuvering to get one hopefully to be my victim behind the other so I could have the advantage to shoot both of them with head shots or upper torso. Otherwise just give them the money and be unhappy because they got away with it.
I would suggest Krav Maga. With two armed attackers the odds of success in taking them both out are low. For fifty bucks or so, it would be best to comply with their demands and surrender the cash. One should also collect all the intelligence about them possible to assist the police in apprehending the assailants. I am a Krav Maga instructor and an Instructor in Israeli Combat Point Shooting (ICPS),
When I was in my 40’s I earned my Black Belt in Tang So Do. I learned back then that if all they want is money, give it to them! Now that I’m 69 yrs old I would be even less likely to fight over money.
This probably wasn’t even the driver’s money that he risked his life over.
Hello and welcome @Blake26 @James1151 @Joseph207 @John1230
I gave all my money at the gas pump, they would have to settle for lint.
I am a 68 year old former karate instructor. When up against a gun, give them the money. When I travel, I keep a small amount of cash gum banded around a matchbook, usually a 20 dollar bill. If faced with such a situation, I would reach in my pocket and pull out this matchbook and toss it a few feet away from them on the ground as a distraction, and when they went for it, I would pull my firearm and get to work if I had to.
As someone who has been involved in LE at various levels for over 35 years, I think this would be the proper response.
With two assailants and with both armed;I would say give up what money you have. Then watch their demeanor for an opening if you are carrying a concealed weapon and you have the training to put both subjects down!
I earned my first black belt in Shorin-ryu Okinawan karate January 1979. I’ve practiced every week since then. Although confidant at 64 years old and in great physical shape, I pray to never have to use those skills.
Get the book R.A.T. Fight by Paul Vunak. You can get it off the internet. Any age. You will definitely learn how to stop someone in a fight regardless of your age! Vunak trains Navy Seal teams. This man presents this way of fighting in detail.And it works!