Lessons learned from a Wallyworld parking lot

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  • gcmj45acp

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    A friend of mine relayed a story to me last night in which a legally armed citizen found himself in a quandary about whether or not to intervene in a situation he saw developing. Imagine for a moment that you've just left Wallyworld and are walking toward your vehicle when you hear a woman screaming "Stop, stop, stop!!!" at the top of her lungs.

    You look to your left to see a woman looking toward a long-haired, unshaven man who is turning to run away from the woman as she continues to scream. Cars moving through the parking lot are blocking your view so you do not see a weapon and really can't see anything other than the man's head and shoulders which keep getting lower as if he's trying to run in a nearly crouched position and the two of you are basically on an intercept path as soon as the next vehicle passes between you.

    The woman is visibly upset and still screaming "Stop!" in the man's direction as he runs away. Other people are now starting to shout and point in the man's direction as he's running. Given this information, if you saw the same thing happening, what would you think/do?
     

    matefrio

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    Anyone's life in danger? Seems not in this situation - I try and become a good witness.

    Let me ask you and your friend this: You go after him and catch him or corner him, then what? You have enough training or equipment to detain the guy verbally or while using the threat of deadly force?

    A big assumption is something he did is wrong. Do you know if he has a partner or more guys that are watching near by and is he armed? I always assume multiple threats.

    Say you try and tackle him. You have the skills to fight off a guy with a knife or a gun? Even if you had the skills and are a black belt in three disciplines of martial arts and special forces from the .mil what's the risk versus the reward of catching the guy? What would be your motive in intervening in a half blind situation?

    More bluntly a CHL isn't a superhero license.
     
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    gcmj45acp

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    Indeed. That's the point of the exercise here. Is there enough information to suggest anyone's life is in danger? Is there enough information to suggest intervention even without the use or threat of deadly force?
     

    Renegade

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    A big assumption is something he did is wrong. Do you know if he has a partner or more guys that are watching near by and is he armed? I always assume multiple threats.

    Exactly. The two people could be unconnected. Or the man could be a process server who just served the woman, or he could be a repo man telling he took her car and where to go claim it. Lots of legal things might have happened.
     

    Renegade

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    +1 But is he a suspect. He's a man running through a parking lot. The woman is simply screaming stop. Is there even enough info to justify a call to 911?

    911 will decide if it is worthy to send an officer or not based on what you tell them.
     

    matefrio

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    Indeed. That's the point of the exercise here. Is there enough information to suggest anyone's life is in danger? Is there enough information to suggest intervention even without the use or threat of deadly force?

    He's running away, so no. Seems the only person whose life could be in danger is the person who has a few moments to decide of their own free will rather or not to inject themselves into the situation.

    Although not wise they have the right to confront the man running away. I wouldn't for reasons above. If the confronted and then the man becomes a threat, deadly force could come into play at that point.

    Just realize the outcome for that momentary sense of justice will be replaced with a reality that could equal Zimmerman's predicament.
     

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