An aspect of POlice Use of Deadly Force incidents is that they tend to receive more media and other coverage than successful Private Citizen incidents. Captain (Ret.) Ersie Joyner’s gas station shootout in Oakland https://www.ktvu.com/news/retired-oakland-police-captain-wounded-1-other-killed-during-gas-station-gun-battle is no exception. Given the media’s bias, if this had occurred to a lawfully carrying Private Citizen, it’s unlikely it would have received the degree of favorable coverage it has. The amount of coverage works in our favor when viewing it from the standpoint of Lessons to be Learned.
The surveillance video of the incident gives us a very definite view of the skillset Captain Joyner used. It also gives us the opportunity to wargame other skills or tactics that would have been desirable.
- Wait for an opportunity to escape or counterattack
- Create distance while maintaining visual contact with assailants
- Establish grip
- Make the Draw Decision
- Draw to the eye-target line
- Engage Mr. Red, preferably with at least two rounds
- Transition 60 degrees and engage Mr. Black, preferably with at least two rounds
- Actual Positioning – pursue into the open
- Alternative Positioning – pursue to a position of cover or at least concealment
- Desirable Positioning – create even more distance
- Desirable Positioning – take cover
Tasks 3, 5, 6, and 7 constitute the solution to the shooting aspects of the incident. Individually, they are very similar to the 6 and 10 foot Stages of the Louisiana Qual Course video.
Just as with the off-duty incidents chronicled in Real Shootouts of the LAPD https://realshootoutsofthelapd.com/, it’s not hard to picture a Private Citizen becoming involved in exactly this same scenario. If Kalifornia had a Shall Issue system for issuing licenses/permits to carry handguns, it’s probable that more such Outcomes would occur.
An interesting aspect of the incident was that despite three robbers physically searching the victim, his concealed handgun was not discovered. This seems unusual. A distinct possibility is that he carried a small pistol in his pocket. At the moment he began to access his handgun, his elbow position is much more consistent with a pocket draw than either an Appendix or Hip carry draw.
Task 3, Establish Grip, is the most time consuming part of the drawstroke. Surreptitiously being able to Establish Grip while creating distance and prior to making the Draw Decision would explain how Captain Joyner was able to Draw and Engage so quickly. The ability to Establish Grip without making the motions commonly associated with drawing a pistol is one of the strengths of pocket carry. In many cases, it’s possible to shield an attacker’s view of Establishing Grip by slightly blading one’s body, although Captain Joyner didn’t do that in this case.
Captain Joyner must be exceptionally coordinated because when executing Task 2, Create Distance, he was actually able to take three steps backward without tripping over his own feet. He was able to do this even while he was in the process of Establishing Grip. Humorously speaking, since we’ve been told that tripping over one’s feet when walking backward is almost inevitable, this was an absolutely amazing display of physical prowess. In actuality, using a dragging shuffle step probably would have been more of a giveaway to his assailants than simply walking backward.
The mother of the deceased robber made the statement to the press, “death was not the answer. many people act unruly and even commit crimes in young adulthood, but go on to lead productive lives.” Captain Joyner clearly felt that his own death was not the answer and good for him for making that decision. Even if a criminal doesn’t intend to shoot you, it doesn’t mean they won’t have an Unintentional Discharge and kill you ‘by accident.’
More about the skills involved and how to practice them will be covered in a future Part II.
Tactical Professor books (all PDF) — Note: bad links fixed
- Real Shootouts of the LAPD https://realshootoutsofthelapd.com/
- Thinking Clearly about Self-defense and Personal Protection https://www.payloadz.com/go?id=3377208
- Serious Mistakes Gunowners Make http://seriousgunownermistakes.com
- Indoor Range Practice Sessions http://indoorrangepracticesessions.com
- Concealed Carry Skills and Drills http://concealedcarryskillsanddrills.com
- Advanced Pistol Practice http://bit.ly/advancedpistolpractice
- Shooting Your Black Rifle http://shootingyourblackrifle.com
- Package deal of Thinking Clearly about Self-defense and Personal Protection, Serious Mistakes, Indoor Sessions, Concealed Carry, and Shooting Your Black Rifle (50% off) https://store.payloadz.com/details/2644448-ebooks-sports-shooting-drills-package.html
Purchase of any book includes Serious Mistakes Gunowners Make.
STOPP Presentation at Rangemaster Tactical Conference
The direct purchase link for the STOPP Presentation is https://www.payloadz.com/go?id=3381307