Trying to help LEO

I have noticed a few people on here talk about helping a LEO out if they are in a shooting situation. They talk about getting their gun out and jumping into the fight.
As far as I know that is a good way to get yourself killed. You come up on a gun fight and you pull you weapon out that LEO does not know if you are friend or foe. I would ask him if he needs help if he says yes I would say what do you want me to do as I am a legal carry. If he says to call someone or just get the hell out of his way that is exactly what I would do. If you pull and he sees a gun you are most likely going to get shot. Just common sense folks.


Actually, this topic has come up multiple times in the past, and someone usually brings up the risks of injecting yourself into a situation.

There are endless scenarios where this might play out, so I don’t think there’s one right answer. But yes, anytime things are going sideways, you put yourself at great risk by getting involved. Police have common training, uniforms to identify themselves, and radios to talk to one another. A typical citizen has none of these, and can easily be confused and cause confusion.

I doubt that anyone here wants to be the person who failed to help someone in need, but we have to be sure of our target and what’s behind it (be sure of the situation and the context). First do no harm, as the doctors say.


The endless scenarios, as @Ouade5 mentioned, make such decision very tough.
You have to be 100% sure what are you doing and who are you helping…
And even that there is a still chance something goes wrong…


Hmmm remember Murphy’s law, no good deed goes unpunished & don’t do stupid…


Just out of curiosity, what if you helped a cop in a bad shoot? Police have some immunity from prosecution, I wonder if they would go after the citizen? Maybe not a obvious bad shooting, but one that was marginal…

Again, out of curiosity, what if you helped, and they tried to say you could not have been shooting in self defense, as you stopped, got out of say your car, and shot at someone. I know some states allow deadly force to defend others. But cops and CHL holders are kinda under different rules of engagement.


Even off duty officers will be reluctant to have a gun in their hand when uniforms are involved in an Officer Involved Shooting.

A slightly cleaner scenario would be an officer in a ground fight with a suspect and you, after asking the officer if they want help, assist the officer in gaining control of the suspect/hands. But, if you are carrying, well, if it were me, I would not put myself and therefore my gun within arms reach of the suspect even to help in that capacity…the officer probably has a level 2-3 retention holster and most concealed carry holsters are realistically level 0, and the carrier less trained in retaining that firearm.


76-2-404. Law enforcement officer use of deadly force.

(1) As used in this section:

(a) “Deadly force” means force that creates or is likely to create, or that the individual using the force intends to create, a substantial likelihood of death or serious bodily injury to an individual.

(b) “Officer” means an officer described in Section 53-13-102.

(c) “Serious bodily injury” means the same as that term is defined in Section 76-1-601.

(2) The defense of justification applies to the use of deadly force by an officer, or an individual acting by the officer’s command in providing aid and assistance, when: …

So I guess in Utah LEO can actually “command” you to take significant action. I don’t think I’d cowboy up and start shooting without the LEO asking but if asked I guess I’d be as helpful as I could.


I think the “find cover and be a good witness” strategy should apply here.