When is it legal to brandish a firearm?


spc

Member
If it's time to draw, it's time to shoot. A gun isn't for scaring people.

In the 1.5-2 seconds it takes to draw and fire a lot of things can change. The question is, in the 3/4 sec. it takes you to react to that change will you be able to adjust to the new situation presented???:eek:

Simply acting is much quicker than reacting. First the BG has to react to your change in status @ 3/4 second. Then you have to respond and react to any new situation presented @ 3/4 second. This does not leave a whole lot of time to think about and exercise discression.

If there is a bladed weapon or striking weapon involved with a BG in motion in my direction I don't think my reaction will change from draw to fire even if the BG has started to back off it may be too late for my response time to adjust. His poor selection on assaulting an armed person.

Force Science Research Center has gone a long way into studing response times and the tunnel vision along with all of the physiological changes that happen when the response from a life and death situation arises.

spc
 

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spc

Member
SPC, I appreciate the fact that you did read the discussion, and brought up points that hadn't been raised before. The possibility of having my left hand unavailable, or of having the slide jamb, are issues that I *will* think about. Murphy does indeed intervene, eh?

I would have not been able to comment like I did if I had not gone over the debate. I hope I offered an unbiased statement that made sense and opened up new channels of thought. There is always room for growth. I truly appreciate that you *will* think about training for your safety.

Once a semi-auto is charged it is easy unless there is a failure to cycle. If the firearm is not charged, not only do you have to take the time to charge it, but have the availability to do so. If, for any reason you do not have both hands ready you had better have a solid back-up plan.

I firmly respect your decision to carry and to do so in any manner you see fit, so I am not picking on ya. I just want to point out the fact that you (or any of us) need to be fully prepared to cover any issues that might hinder your ability to defend yourself when the time arises. Again I understand you are working in a rural area, hopefully with good distance visability to aleviate the possibility of surprise.

I am sure that you will have thought out a set of drills to resolve the above mentioned issues is a breif time span. Even when everything works properly getting off accurate shots is an extreme challenge at best.

I do everything I can to give MR. MURPHY a vacation.
 

Pete V

New member
When is it legal to brandish a fire arm

Awaiting my C.C.W permit and wanted opinions. If you encounter a group of people not displaying weapons but are tauning intimadating and are say ten ft away.what are your opions on placeing you hand on the gun while holstered

than"d Pete V
 

PascalFleischman

New member
Get out of Dodge, Pete. Threats are threats. Hayeva.....here in TN (as in many states, I'm sure), your ability to tell a jury what you feel is the difference between an NRA headline and 10 years in prison. If you can reasonably convince people that your state of mind at the point of drawing and firing a weapon was your "fight or flight" response, you are justified. A bunch of wannabe thugs hanging out near your car doesn't count. That'll get Al Sharpton AND Jesse Jackson drawing every news camera for 100 miles. Bad JuJu
 

tattedupboy

Thank God I'm alive!
I would imagine that the situations for which brandishing is justifiable are not that different from those for which deadly force is, mainly, to ward of a threat or forcible felony of some kind. For example, if someone breaks into your house and you chamber a round in your 12 gauge pump while in the perp's presence, but don't actually fire, and then he stops, then you're justified.
 

ishi

New member
Awaiting my C.C.W permit and wanted opinions. If you encounter a group of people not displaying weapons but are tauning intimadating and are say ten ft away.what are your opions on placeing you hand on the gun while holstered

Here's a quote from Massad Ayoob's book In the Gravest Extreme:


Bare fear, then, can sometimes be the misinterpretation of past episodes as cause for present defense. An even clearer example is when apprehension of attack rises from the mere presence of a stranger or group of strangers, without a reasonable indication that an assault is in the offing. For instance, an individual walks past a group of tough-looking persons on a street corner. One of the them, perhaps, makes a snotty remark.

"Oh my God, they're going to GET me," panics the individual, going for this gun. He is at this moment in the grip of bare fear - a morbid fantasy without basis in fact, on the grounds of which he is about to wrongly employ lethal force.

Bare fear is generally considered to be the mark of the paranoiac and the abject coward. It is the difference between, "He is about to assault me!" and "What if he assaults me?"

My interpretation is that visibly placing a hand on the gun without a clear and present threat to life and limb, would be aggravated assault. If nobody makes a move, this isn't warranted. In fact, this act might well escalate the situation. One of this group might see your gun, think "Oh my god, this crazy guy is going to kill us!" and pull their own gun and fire. You would likely be legally liable for the result of that.
 

festus

God Bless Our Troops!!!
While I was in the USAF...

While I was in the USAF we were taught use of deadly force at least once a year and briefed before most major deployments. I see it this way,
1.If the perp is a clear threat, the perp goes down.
2. If the perp is not a clear threat (gun pointed away from living things and back turned), my weapon is at the ready and trained on the perp. A challenge of drop the gun will be issued. Any action other than immediate compliance...the perp goes down.
3. If the perp complies, my gun remains trained on the perp until LEO's arrive.
4. If the perp tries to injury anyone...THE PERP GOES DOWN.

Nuff Said
 

shooter57

New member
After reading all the post I never saw an answer.
After looking at other states I find it's never legal to brandishing a weapon.
The right to carry a concealed weapon is for protection from fear of life or injury to self or another.
Use it to end the threat. carrying a weapon not ready for instant response will usually end up with the BG having your gun. The BG will not walk up to you from fifty yards to give you time to get ready for them. they will have a plan to get close and be upon you and the shortest amount of time possible, if your engaged in a task they may be only a couple of feet from you before you know their near you.
My thought if your not ready to react with a loaded gun leave it home.
 
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kwo51

New member
I often walk with my hand on my firearm in my pocket,or maybe with a knife in my hand but not open.Policeman approach a car with hand on firearm,or maybe with pistol drawn but behind leg out of sight.The responce I feel to this question is. If you present a gun at a person make darn sure you report it quickly.Fired or not. Remember pointing a firearm at someone is assualt .Remember a crime has been committed and it is you againsted them ,You must prove you feared for your life.Pee in your pants.JMO
 

Scarecrow

New member
after reading the entire discussion, I have to say that many good points were made. and the "what if's" could go on forever. I don't think there will ever be any situation that is exactly like another. the variables are infinite. it's just really important to prepare yourself physically and expecially mentally as best as possible.

as one above has mentioned, I also like to carry sometimes with a gun in my front pocket. especially when I go to parts of town where a higher risk is. this way I can just walk with my hands in my pocket. it's totally natural and not one person knows I have my hand on my gun.
 

Memphis

New member
I'm going to have to say that I subscribe to the "point and shoot" process. If I truly feel threatened for my life enough to where I have to draw my weapon I WILL fire, I WILL be justified and I WILL NOT think about whether or not the BG had the stones to strike first. He already did in my eyes, and the jury's I'd hope.

I'm a very laid back guy and at 6'1" and 185# I'm not big but, I can handle myself. I don't think many of my friends understand I'm as aware as I am of everything going on around me though. I preach this to them and my son constantly. KNOW WHO'S AROUND YOU! I have the same attitude about self preservation many of my fellow gun guys/gals have but, without that harsh militant attitude some seem to produce. Don't mistake that for a lack of willingness to fire my weapon to protect my loved ones though.

Just my $.02
 

Ryan H

New member
If someone is 30 feet away from you but has a ball bat and is coming at you, I'd consider it safe to go to the low-ready stance. Once they get within 21 feet though they're gonna change their mind one way or another.
 

FLSWCarry

New member
Lots of people stating interesting perspectives here, just read all 5 pages. Unfortunately this thread is suffering from black and white syndrome. And this is not a black and white issue, this is a huge grey area (both in practice and legally.) When you own a gun, it is not best to be "one-sided" about how you wield it. There are a million different scenarios and appropriate behaviours for each, and yes they will all be flying through your head a thousand miles an hour in a life/death situation.

The truth is the closer proximitity (sp?) you are to potential threats (any sizeable living thing really) the more sense it makes to be carrying hot, because you are more likely to encounter a situation that requires less time to respond. (That's right, respond). A reaction is saying "ok I'm gonna shoot" and then pulling the trigger. Both are needed for action, but there is no intelligence there. A response is an intelligent, constantly changing counter-reaction, which is what you will need in a real life situation to get through un-harmed (both physically and legally).

Which, regretfully, is why stupid people shouldn't be carrying guns. The more power/responsibility you wield the more intelligence it's going to take to control that power/responsibility. Carrying a hot sidearm (safely 100%, not 99.8%) requires in immense amount of intelligence.

There is a phrase I believe most of us have heard before... it's called "situational awareness." It is part of an overall high awareness level, something many (most) of us lack. I haven't heard it mentioned once in over 50 posts on this thread. The truth is your ability survive in the world today requires an immense amount of situational awareness. Instead of training how to shoot 24/7 you all should take a few minutes to develop yours (if you aren't doing that already).

I hope I'm not offending anyone, I don't mean to. I believe there was one more issue...about the whole quote from the guy talking about "paranoia" blah blah blah. It's a great quote to get a point across to the CCL guy, which is why I'm sure he put it there, but all in all it's crap. Yes it's true that "bare fear" the way he's describing it can seperate a paranoid person from someone who is situationally aware (he's going to attack me! vs what if he attacks me?), but that is way too much besides the point here. The reality of the matter: Anyone is a threat. Recognize that completely, then get over it completely (and yourself while your at it :p). Not singling anyone out here. It's up to you to respond intelligently to any situation as it presents itself to you. Many of us here seem to train mentally and physically. I think preparation is the key when owning a firearm. That doesn't mean however, by any stretch of the imagination, (at least when I say it) that you need to keep your gun hot all the time. At the end of the day, common sense prevails over clinging to beliefs about a situation. If of course, you have any to use in the first place :p
We can argue semantics ALL DAY people. Let's try to be a little less black and white.
But anyway, How's that for filling in some grey area? :)
Sorry to add so much to this already lengthy thread, but thanks for listening to my opinion.
 

JosephR

New member
I'm with you guys. The only time I would ever brandish is, if in the act of drawing to shoot, the bad guy starts running. I wouldn't want to shoot somebody in the back.

Exactly. I think in most states that this is the only instance where you can legally brandish the firearm.

I would never brandish a firearm to deter someone although I actually have once. He was in my car, through the passenger side window, all the way in up to his belt yelling and screaming because I wouldn't turn on red and was holding him up. I gave him a stern get the F out of my car 6 or more times and finally put my hand on the gun in my holster. The eighth time I yelled the same thing, it came out about an inch or two so he could see movement. I wasn't in grave danger so there was no shoot.

But, if the gun comes out it had better be to shoot. Obviously I can understand a circumstance where it doesn't happen this way but my advice is don't bring it out until it's time to shoot.
 

squisher

Member
Exactly. I think in most states that this is the only instance where you can legally brandish the firearm.

I would never brandish a firearm to deter someone although I actually have once. He was in my car, through the passenger side window, all the way in up to his belt yelling and screaming because I wouldn't turn on red and was holding him up. I gave him a stern get the F out of my car 6 or more times and finally put my hand on the gun in my holster. The eighth time I yelled the same thing, it came out about an inch or two so he could see movement. I wasn't in grave danger so there was no shoot.

But, if the gun comes out it had better be to shoot. Obviously I can understand a circumstance where it doesn't happen this way but my advice is don't bring it out until it's time to shoot.

I would consider a person coming in through my passenger window to be a very clear and present threat, especially if they are hot & bothered about something as stupid as traffic flow.

The fact that you were able to defuse the situation without resorting to violence is a good thing "brandishing" or not. To me it seemed more like you were preparing, not "brandishing." IANAL, but seriously, I would be afraid for my person in a situation like that. Although trouncing the skinny pedal, then mashing the brakes while he's hanging half-in half-out like that might change his mind too (traffic allowing of course).

Back on (sorta) topic:
Several IF's come up when I think about this. I practice primarily a "draw and drop safety" -- but leave out the shoot (mostly because I'm in my house -- but it also will ensure that the decision to shoot is a conscious one, not one born of muscle memory), but each situation is different. Hopefully there will be enough time for the BG to have the "lights turn on" and choose not to pursue his crime any further. If no-one dies or gets hurt, that's always the best. But if it comes down to it, I don't plan on it being me.

It's all about being prepared, and being able to use your best judgement and instincts at the time -- and praying that that time never comes.

That prayer is the main reason I prefer to OC when I'm out and about. I practice being aware, but I also practice being a poor choice in targets. I WILL fight back, and that's 3/4's of the battle.
 

toreskha

Titles are un-American.
I had an incident a little while back in a store parking lot. While putting bags in my car, I saw a guy coming up to me from about 20 yards (he seemed to appear out of nowhere). I stopped what I was doing so that I wouldn't be caught unawares, and he gave his spiel about being lost and needing bus money to get back to wherever or some such crap. I told him "no" a few times, and then he started in with the "ride to an ATM" bit.

He wasn't acting aggressively yet, but I felt like I was being set up for his buddies to move in or something. He was also moving a little closer to me, which I found creepy. I didn't want to turn my back on him to get in the car, and I didn't want to be in a position for a robbery inside of my own car.

I was carrying IWB on my right side with my shirt untucked, so I took my right hand and moved it up under my shirt and got a good grip on my weapon. Nothing could be seen and it never left the holster; my shirt covered my entire hand and wrist. However, it clearly wasn't in my pocket.

He quickly said goodbye, and I watched him make a beeline for another part of the parking lot.

I never brandished a weapon or even gave any verbal indications; he just read my body language. As far as he knew, it could have been anything from a cell phone or a knife to a gun, or absolutely nothing. In any case, he decided it was time to leave.
 
Must be something about reaching for one's waistband that makes a BG think that you're not gonna be an easy victim. :wink:

Glad everything played out o.k.



gf
 

tattedupboy

Thank God I'm alive!
Good situational awareness and good handling of the situation. Any time you can get out of a predicament without firing a shot, that's a good thing, brandishing or not.
 

Jay

New member
Depending on the environmental situation, the threat threshold could be extended so that an aggressor is not allowed to get close enough to negate the appearance of a weapon. Walking with my wife once in a parking lot, we were approached by a gent who declined to answer me when I asked if I could help him at a distance of 50-60 feet..... at 30 feet, I simply pulled my shirt tail back and revealed the handgun still in it's holster. He never said a word, but turned and walked away. My wife had already stepped behind me and was on the phone to the police. Cops showed up and took our report, and told me to have a good evening.

In my opinion the distance at which you choose to challenge a potential aggressor has to be flexible. I do train with my wife, and this scenario is just one of several that we discuss now and then...
 

HillBilly

New member
Thought provoking thread

I have not read the entire thread, but most of it. There is a lot of stuff here to encourage a revisit of any thoughts about one's readiness to defend one's self. I believe that its good to do just that from time to time, kind of like a "booster shot" to keep a fresh perspective.

I have never been in the situation to have to make that ultimate choice.

I would like to imagine that there would be that 10 millisecond (an eternity when faced with death) window between the time one takes up the slack in the trigger, you can feel the first two safeties disengaging on a glock, and the release of the third safety and the striker, where one could abort if appropriate.

Again, I've never been there, but I believe that, for me, the non-negotiable draw = fire approach would not be an option, but that is just me. I cant imagine that looking down the business end of a gun would not be a deterrent, then again, I can't imagine the depravity of being the BG so maybe my imagination is not an appropriate metric here...

Each situation is unique, and each post sheds light on some of the choices one would have to make.

What bakes my noodle is the apparent disparity between an unconditional respect for the sanctity of human life and the undeniable responsibility we have to use lethal force to preserve it.
 

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