Originally Posted by mhs4771
I read a long time ago something from the NRA, that if you point a firearm, handgun, shotgun, or long gun at another person, you better be prepared to pull the trigger. Granted probably most of the time the threat will be enough, but you need to be prepared mentally to follow through.
When you present a firearm period you'd better be ready to use it with deadly intent because in that instant you just escalated the situation to life and death. That bad guy on the business end will do what he has to in order to ensure his survival.
The moment you raise the firearm without just cause it becomes brandishing and depending on your state aggravated assault. In other words, you defend yourself and then get to answer for why you're waving a firearm around.
Now I'm not saying that you raise the weapon someone has to die. You can't purposely wing them, you pull the trigger your intent has to be to kill them and don't shoot them, aim, then shoot them again. Bang bang bang! is self defense. Bang, lay still! Aim carefully, bang bang! is murder. Same intent, same bullets, same result but totally different consequences.
I've had to draw my weapon in defense once and no shots were fired. I was in my truck, a woman didn't care for my passing her, done totally legally and safely I might add, the red light caught me and she pulled up on my right, got out of her car headed my way and was digging in her purse yelling she was going to cap me. I keep my weapon easy to reach, drew and about the time I leveled it her knees buckled. The problem is I now had no idea where she was.
Next thing I know her empty hand went up in the air and she was crab crawling back to her car once I could see her again. She got in and took off like her tail was on fire with her hair catching. Luckily that was all that happened, no police involvement. But had there been odds are I'd have been charged with ag assault for brandishing a weapon. Basically, let the courts sort it out, costing me lots of money, time and trouble.
I made two mistakes. I should have gotten ready to draw in the event she actually produced a firearm instead of just drawing. I could see she couldn't get to it so I had the benefit of time, putting my hand on my weapon isn't the same as drawing it.
The second and biggest one. The intersection was clear, we were the only two cars around and I had a fast truck. I could have punched it and been gone probably defusing the whole thing. The only thing I thought about was standing my ground and defending myself. It could have resulted in one or both of us hurt or dead, even worse what if I missed and hit an innocent? No one was around, but I don't know who's in that building behind her.
Wow I got long winded there. As you can see I've thought a lot about it, still do now almost ten years later.
Bottom line is you present a weapon of any type you'd better be ready to use it. A weapon can defuse a situation but only in rare cases. More often pulling as a bluff or scare tactic will only get you hurt or killed, possibly with your own weapon.
And to answer the question that may be running through your mind, yes I had my finger on the trigger and was going to fire once the silhouette of the top of the weapon covered her, and I considered opening fire through my door when she dropped because I didn't know what she might be doing on the ground, possibly finishing the search for her own weapon. God watches after fools and that moment I feel he told me not to fire. I've had training from basic defense to beginning tactical and feel that training is what kept me in a cool enough head to think my way through instead of blazing away.
Problem is, as I mentioned I made two critical mistakes. I didn't think enough and it could have cost both of us dearly.
I still carry regularly and haven't been in a situation where I even felt the need for my weapon, before or since. But I stay ready, I stay aware of my surroundings best I can and feel confident that if the situation presents itself I'll be ready to do what I have to in order to protect me, my family, my friends or to stop a person on person violent crime.
Make an informed decision, get training, practice and stay trained. Be ready, stay cool, calm and most of all think. Your brain is your most powerful weapon.