Private Investigations and Personal Security/Gang Fights
Hi Marc, what advise would you have for someone who is part of a group (not necessarily part of gang etc. but just a group of friends) and is suddenly ambushed or attacked? What strategies would you recommend to get out of a gang vs gang fight situation?
Strategic withdrawal is always good -- for everyone.
The number one problem with situations like that is sooner or later someone is going to draw a weapon or decide to reach for one. In the whirling chaos, you usually won't see it coming. A beer bottle upside your head can leave you retarded for the rest of your life.
Also, it's real easy to get nailed by your friend if the lines get mixed. I saw security video where someone raced up to one of his own from the guy's blind side and the guy whirled around and shot him. Oops friendly fire.
If you have to fight, fight your way towards the edge of the conflict. DON'T stay in the middle. If you're in the middle fighting, unless you're back to back with your friends, you have three blind sides. Getting to the edge is doubly important because often people who have gotten there turn around (or they never joined in) and pick up a chair and throw it into the middle. If you're lucky, the guy is on your side and aiming. Just as often however, the dude is a bad shot or you move into the line of fire -- and you're back to being in as much danger from your side as the other. Believe me when I tell you there is no good way to catch a thrown chair. Dodging one is hard enough.It's even harder if you don't see it coming
Also learn to read the situation. I've seen bare knuckle brawls where folks just wade in. On the other hand, I've also seen weapons situation that look straight out of the movie "Yojimbo." That's where both sides are dancing back and forth, afraid of each other's weapons. Those result in clashes and then springing apart to start the dance over again rather than full on commitment to overwhelm the other side.
If you got the time, call for your side to 'back away' and you all can get back to a stronger position (even better is to guard the door in case you need to beat feet). Buying time is a really good idea because it gives the hot heads a chance to cool down. One or two guys might be hot to fight and if everyone is bunched up and in each other's faces, it WILL blow up.
On the other hand, by falling back to a stronger tactical position, you not only guard your flanks, but that hot head is quickly going to realize he's standing out there alone. This can cause it to cool down right quick.
In any group situation, the side that has stronger, joint tactics is going to win when the other side is a mob. Three guys -- working together and who have jammed themselves into a corner -- have a much better chance against five guys than if the three were in the middle of the room.
Situations where you can't withdrawal are actually rare. Hot heads and panicky types often get themselves 'rattlesnake cornered' -- the belief they are 'trapped' in a wide open field and, since they can't withdraw because they are cornered, they have to attack (rattlesnakes are famous for this, that's why so many of them die). Getting your ass and your friend's asses out of there needs to be your primary goal.