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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When you're carrying concealed, is your accessible in an instant? What if you're seated? Or running? Can you still quickly, safely, easily draw your weapon?

I've thought about this in the past when considering equipment options, but a couple monts ago it all came together on my way to work.....

I was exiting the Inner Loop eastbound at the St. Paul exit. I was in the far left lane stopped at the red light. The guardrail was to my left, a vehicle stopped at the red ahead of me, as well as to the right and behind. Could not drive off if needed. A guy was on the ramp panhandling. I see these guys out here often, and most are passive enough. My window is down slightly, as is my practice so I can hear something coming.... Anyway, the panhandler was approaching cars. At my window, I say something like, "Sorry, can't help." He says something I can't understand and then pulls my door handle and starts to open my door.

Bad idea sir. Because now it's go time.

I immediately do two things: agressively open the door right into him with my left hand and draw my handgun with my right. The door kind of knocked him back so I didn't actually have to be hands-on. I side step out from behind my car door so that I'm now mobile abd have no obstructions between him and I. A very loud clear "GET BACK" while presenting my weapon did the trick. His normally alcohol induced flush-face turned pale white. As fast as his tired legs would allow, he took off toward St Paul.

Someone behind us started honking. I don't know if it was to scare him or me or what.... I do know that there had to be 5-6 different people watching this and not a single 911 call was made by any of them. That is amazing to me.

So, to the point of the post.... Can you draw immediately if needed? If I were to have the NCIS: Los Angeles small-of-the-back thing going, I'm not sure I would have gotten my gun out as quickly. Ankle holster: forget it. When you are going to carry all day, you'll be in a variety of positions so make sure you can draw from any of them. Being able to draw from an open carry at the range isn't reality for CCW.

At a class with MDTS, there was an entire block on drawing from concealment. From under a shirt and/or a jacket. I've spent quite a bit of time on the range at work and have received a total of zero hours of training on drawing from concealment.

Think about it. Practice it. Repeat.

Be safe everyone.
 

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Thought you were in Rochester? But yes, I practice drawing for my cc holsters.
 

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Glad it turned out the way it did. That situation could have gone much differently with someone less prepared. It is surprising that no one called 911 though...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thought you were in Rochester?
Correct... I was on the Inner Loop eastbound exit to St. Paul St. in downtown Rochester.
 

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Without knowing much about the situation, I do have to ask, why was your car door not locked. Just wondering because I'm kind of big on that with my wife and daughter. I always tell them you never know when someone will try to open your door at a light or something. I've taught them to keep it locked until you park then look around for anything out of place, and then unlock and get out.
 

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Good job, I hope he crapped himself and headed to detox. I have to wonder though, if you were a witness and a non-LEO brandished his gun, after exiting his vehicle, how would you react?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Without knowing much about the situation, I do have to ask, why was your car door not locked.
Force of habit... I actually prefer it to be UN-locked. I spend 8 hours a day in a patrol car with the doors always unlocked and the windows slightly cracked. That way I can possibly hear somehing coming, someone yelling for help, gunshots nearby etc etc. As for the locks, if I need to get out of my car immediately, I don't want to have to be fumbling for the unlock button. For example, if someone is shooting at me and I'm behind the wheel.....If I can't hit the gas and either get the hell out of there or run the scumbag over, sitting in my car is the last place I want to be.

One advantage you already have than any of us is that your gun is on your hip exposed. We have to cover it up and that makes is difficult sometimes.

James
In this case, I was off-duty, not in uniform driving to work. As far as the guy knew, I was just some guy wearing jeans and a t-shirt driving a VW. That's why I posted this thread..... at that moment I had no patrol car, no uniform, no radio, no backup coming, no kevlar. Just the same way any of you who carry concealed will be if you find yourself in a similar situation.

I just want people to think about their carry habits and their equipment. Because like I said, drawing from open carry at the range isn't gonna help when I need to draw from under a t-shirt, sweatshirt, jacket, etc while I'm seated in a car, at a booth in a reataurant, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Good question Bill. I can sit here and think about it and come up with all sorts of answers. It really depends on what I see happen and the environment I'm in. I then have fractions of a second to decide what to do. Also, if I see a guy with the gun, he may very well be LEO and I dont know him. Blue-on Blue is a real concern. When I was in the academy, I was part of a group that did a presentation on off-duty encounters and the steps that can be taken by the off-duty to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

We've studied this a bit...the OODA loop. Observe, Orient, Decide, Act.

Did I see the panhandler open the car door? or was I looking at my radio and when I look up I see a guy in the middle of the road with a gun.
Did I see the guy with the gun get out of the car?
Etc, etc. To many variables to say what I would do.
 

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On that subject, would you notify the police if you had to draw (but not shoot) in a defensive situation?

I can see arguments for both sides: YES!: You want to be the person that they talk to first and not the attacker saying "some guy just pulled a gun on me!" and NO!: We live in NY and pulling a gun in ANY situation may be "the big evil thing to do" and you might get your permit yanked.

I have often wondered that.
 

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I had a similar incident on East Main Street in front of the First Federal Plaza. I was stopped in traffic and some woman who looked like a crack whore, with a black eye and all, came up and opened my passenger door. I ALWAYS lock my doors when I drive, I have no idea why I didn't lock them that day. Anyway, she opened the door and I put my right hand on my briefcase (thought she was stealing it) and used some colorful words to tell her to get lost as she asked for money for the bus. I didn't scare her bad enough so she spit on the floor of my car, closed the door and ran off.

This was all 30 feet from a cop. He was sitting in his car behind an empty car which I had seen another officer take people away from in cuffs a few minutes before. I told him what happened and he said "I'm a little busy with a stolen vehicle.

I can't wait until they move the main bus stops somewhere else.

This kind of stuff happens even where you should feel "safe". I mean the police were right there.
 

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I understand if you don't want to reveal this info, but how and what were you carrying? Right hip, appendix, full size, compact, tucked, untucked etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I understand if you don't want to reveal this info, but how and what were you carrying? Right hip, appendix, full size, compact, tucked, untucked etc.
No problem.... I had a Glock 26, carrying IWB on my right hip (3 o'clock). An untucked t-shirt was covering my gun.
 

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No problem.... I had a Glock 26, carrying IWB on my right hip (3 o'clock). An untucked t-shirt was covering my gun.
Same here but usually a Kahr PM9 and tucked to prevent accidental exposure. You have a little more wiggle room if someone spots yours and calls it in. :)

Was considering a cross draw or appendix. One of my concerns is if someone comes up on me while I'm putting my 2 YO in his seat. I tend to slide part way into the car so my back is against the rear of the front seat and my gun is inside.
 

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I applaud your quick action. Glad you were aware and came out safely without having to discharge your firearm.

I practice at the range only from concealment. "The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in war" is what we used to say in the Corps.

I'm wondering, how did you being LEO, albeit off duty, change your mindset about drawing your weapon? Being former North Carolina LEO myself, I know that I am treated differently when I had to justify my actions to someone else on the job as a sworn officer and as a NY 'civilian'.
Also wondering how Castle Law in your vehicle changes as you exit the vehicle? (Not being snarky, I am curios is all.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I applaud your quick action. Glad you were aware and came out safely without having to discharge your firearm.

I practice at the range only from concealment. "The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in war" is what we used to say in the Corps.

I'm wondering, how did you being LEO, albeit off duty, change your mindset about drawing your weapon? Being former North Carolina LEO myself, I know that I am treated differently when I had to justify my actions to someone else on the job as a sworn officer and as a NY 'civilian'.
Also wondering how Castle Law in your vehicle changes as you exit the vehicle? (Not being snarky, I am curios is all.)
Train like you fight is a saying we use......

In my mind at that moment, I wasn't a cop, I was a guy who was cornered in his car. If the guy had any sort of blade, razor, shank, etc I would have been a sitting duck if I didn't do something quick. There's a saying "If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck." The moment that guy opened my door, it wasn't even a fair fight... he clearly had the advantage. I had to do what I couold to tip the scales back in my direction. The car door hitting him, my loud commands, moving out from behind the door, and drawing my weapon were all factors in me gaining any advantage.

You mention castle law and that's something that gets talked about quite a bit. To be honest, I don't know the answer related to getting out of my car. Was I just going to open my door and run off leaving my car and the guy behind? Nope. While seated in my car, I had no ability to retreat. Once I got out I had the ability to do so, but maybe because of my job, I'm wired (trained) not to run off. Interesting question/thought.
 

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Force of habit... I actually prefer it to be UN-locked. I spend 8 hours a day in a patrol car with the doors always unlocked and the windows slightly cracked. That way I can possibly hear somehing coming, someone yelling for help, gunshots nearby etc etc. As for the locks, if I need to get out of my car immediately, I don't want to have to be fumbling for the unlock button. For example, if someone is shooting at me and I'm behind the wheel.....If I can't hit the gas and either get the hell out of there or run the scumbag over, sitting in my car is the last place I want to be.
Makes sense. I can see how you would want your doors unlocked while on patrol and be used to that.
 
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