Episode 219 with Michael Woodland

Rob- Introduction- Welcome to episode 219 of Self-Defense Gun Stories. We’re glad you found us if you’re well trained and also if you’re new to self defense. I’m Rob Morse and we’re joined this week by firearms instructor Michael Woodland. Michael, tell our listeners about you.

Michael- Hi, Rob. My name is Michael Woodland and I have been an instructor since I was in the military starting around 2000, and decided to carry it forward after getting out. Since getting out of the military my journey has continued with instructing the people who seek out my services and keeping my shooting skills in tact with doing weekly competition shooting within the USPSA.

Rob- I’m sorry for the bad audio quality in our last episode. I’ll do better to prevent that. We received one more rating and two more reviews this week. (202/122). The first listener said he likes the short format podcast, but wants more information than we get from the news and videos. Each week, I write an article where I go in depth on one story. That is posted at Ammoland. Our second listener said he leaves a review and comment every week, but doesn’t see his comments posted on iTunes. We can’t tell if we’re being censored and shadowbanned, or if each listener only gets one comment on iTunes? Please go to the iTunes store where you subscribe to podcasts and tell new gun owners why they should listen to this show. We were listed as the top one percent of armed defense podcasts by Listen Notes.

Michael- We’ll talk about recent examples where gun owners were in a life threatening situation. We also give you the links back to the original news article in our show notes. Our first story took place last week in Fort Worth, Texas.

Rob- First story- Are you armed as you come down your driveway?  

It is a few hours after dark. You drive home and have two friends in the car with you. As you head down your driveway you notice a strange car parked near your house. You and your friends get out and search for your unscheduled visitors. You find them stripping your property from one of your buildings.

You’re armed. You draw your firearm and tell the two robbers to stop. Your friends call the police. You and your friends hold the robbers until the police arrive. Officers arrest your robbers on burglary charges. One of them is also held on outstanding drug and firearms warrants from another county. You’re a 67 years old woman and the police return your property.

Drugs, No shots fired.

Michael- Our defender had friends. She had a gun. It is Better to have friends with a gun, a phone, a flashlight, and a plan. As an older woman she decided she did not want to get into a physical confrontation with anyone. She had her firearm as a tool of defense ready for the unknown. The story is a little unclear if she had her firearm on her person in a holster, in her car, or inside her home. She called the police, but never had an immediate, unavoidable, lethal threat, so she never pressed the trigger.

Rob- Does this sort of crime happen very often where the defender uses their gun, but doesn’t shoot?

Michael- There are people who defend themselves with a firearm thousands of times a day. Incidents like this Only have shots fired about 10 percent of the time, but it almost never makes the news unless someone is wounded or killed.

Rob- Our defender faced two men who were stealing from her. Was her firearm the right tool for the job, or should she have called the police from the end of her driveway and let them sort it out.

Michael- 15 to 45 minute response time. 

You don’t know what criminals are willing to do in order to avoid being captured. These robbers already had a criminal record. They made a clear decision to break the law and steal your property so it is clearly reasonable to be armed if they decide to break other laws and try to hurt you. I want you to call the police as soon as you have a suspicion of criminal activity to be on the safe side.

Rob- You didn’t say proof of a crime, you want us to call early.

Michael- The earlier you make that call the sooner the police will arrive, just remember that everyone does not have the proper training to handle a confrontation especially when deadly force can be presented. 

Rob- This woman was arriving home. When do you talk to your students about armed defense in public and at home?

Michael- (What should your students do, and when would they learn to do it.) Seek out a reputable trainer in your area and start getting trained. Just getting a CWP does not make the situation any better unless you get the proper training to reenforce safety, and the procedures to make a clear and conscious decision when you are pulling the trigger in a self defense manner. Training for the unknown will have you in a state of readiness but it is a time consuming process that does not just happen overnight. 

Get your carry permit so your defensive tool is with you backed by the training from a reputable instructor. A firearm on your bedroom shelf isn’t a useful tool if you have to fight armed intruders to get to it or not properly understanding how to use it.

Rob- Do you talk to your students about holding someone at gunpoint, because that can go wrong?

Michael- Yes we do, and we run various scenarios to show how you can control someone with a firearm. It can go wrong if you do not know what you are doing but with the right measures in place controlling the situation with a loaded firearm is better than a life lost.

Rob- Anything else?

Michael- That is enough for now. Our second story happened in London, Kentucky

Rob- Second Story- Are you armed at work in the morning?

The three of you are working behind the counters selling food, coffee, and gasoline. It is 7 in the morning when a customer says to hand over the cash or he’ll shoot all of you. You don’t see a gun in the robbers hands, but a second the robber comes around the counter and starts hitting your male co-worker because your co-worker didn’t hand over the money fast enough.

You’re armed. You shoot the robber and he stops attacking your co-worker.

They move apart. Now you see that your female co-worker is injured. She was shot. The article says she was struck by a deflected bullet.

You and your co-workers call 911. EMTs take your co-worker to the hospital. They also declare your attacker dead at the scene.

Michael- Our defender was armed while working at convenience store. He didn’t need a carry permit because Kentucky has constitutional carry, but he lives fairly close to both Tennessee and Virginia. You want your permit so you’re armed when you travel. Our defender recognized a lethal threat when the robber said, I’m going to shoot you.

Rob- Let’s stop there. So you don’t have to see a gun or a knife to legally respond to a threat?

Michael- A verbal threat is a justified threat if the attacker could be armed.

Our defender shot the attacker when his co-worker was being hit. The defender stopped shooting when the robber stopped being a threat. He called the police, stayed at the scene, and made a statement.

Rob- Talk to me about the wounded co-worker.

Michael- We don’t know the extent of the shot in the side from the female employee that was injured. Understand You are responsible for every shot you fire, but the article isn’t clear if the employee was struck by the bullet you fired that went through the robber, by another shot you fired that ricocheted, or by a shot fired by the attacker.

Rob- I’ve had competition stages that were filled with targets that were considered innocent people who we were NOT supposed to shoot them. I’ve been in force-on-force exercises where there were lots of innocent actors around you. When do you remind your students about where their bullet will stop, and do they get to practice those decisions?

Michael- We can not clearly say how a bullet will travel after being fired that are to many particulars in play, but we do know the bullet will travel in a straight line until it makes contact with another object. That object might absorb the round or it can reflect it causing injury by ricocheting. When it comes to training, we must understand that one of the four firearm safety rules is to know what is in front of your target and what is beyond it but also realize you are responsible for every round leaving that firearm when fired. 

Rob- Is there anything else you notice about this story?

Michael- If you don’t know the condition of the bad guy after he is shot, then retreat to the back of the store. If there are other customers in the store, then maybe you have to stay there and keep them safe.

If the bad guy ran out of the store, then lock the doors and ask all the customers to call 911.

Give the dispatcher your address and ask for police and medical help. Tell the dispatcher what you look like, and if the scene is safe for them to enter. Holster your gun and treat anyone who is injured.

Rob- Talk to me about moving so you have a clear shot.

Michael- This is where training comes into place. We see often times people are being on videos with a firearm, but standing in the same place where we call the X might not give you the clear shot or enough time to present the firearm to be used in self defense. There are times when you are obstructed by objects in your view but taking a step to your left or right or kneeling might present more of a surface area on the target. Again, this is where training comes into play.  

I also want you to have some medical training and where I know how to properly stop anyone who is bleeding from an altercation where a firearm was possibly used.

Our third story happened in Saint Louis, Missouri

Rob- First this message from the Crime Prevention Research Center.


Rob- Third story- Are you armed when you’re riding as a passenger in a car?

You are riding down the street with two of your friends. It is 1:30 in the afternoon when a stranger comes up to your car. This is a residential neighborhood and the driver stops. The man draws a gun and starts shooting at you.

You’re armed. You shoot your attacker in the arm and the buttocks. Now he runs away. You call 911. Police take a statement from the three of you and from your attacker. EMTs take your attacker to the hospital.

(constitutional carry in Missouri)

Michael- Our defender was armed even though this took place in a residential neighborhood. The 27 year old who returned fire recognized when he and his friends were being attacked. By defending himself, he stopped shooting when the attacker stopped being a threat. The article doesn’t say if you and your friends stayed at the scene or if your driver moved down the street. Get to a safe place and call the police.

Rob- Do you talk to your students about scenarios where it is safer to move than to stay?

Michael- Yes we do, it is always a good idea to move to a location in the same vicinity where you can receive assistance from others until law enforcement or medical  arrives

Rob- Are there things you want your students to do that aren’t mentioned in the news article.

Michael- One good thing about Missouri is that it is a constitutional carry state so you don’t need a carry permit. One good thing about having your carry permit is that the police officer immediately knows you have a clean criminal record.

Shout for help. Ask everyone that can hear you to call 911. That makes them an ear-witness and gives the police their phone number. You want all your friends in the car to call 911 as well. That is because the good guys call and ask for police and EMTs.

Rob- Talk to me about shooting from inside a car. 

Michael- There are a number of parameters that take place when shooting inside a car. Remember the space is enclosed and sound bounces off the interior and will affect your ears more than shooting in a open field. Stay focused and keep shooting until you can move to a more neutral spot or cover, or the bad guy is hit and not returning fire.

Michael- Our forth story took place in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

Rob- Fourth story- Are you armed at work?

You’re working for the local ambulance company as an EMT. It is 4:30 in the morning when you and your partner respond to a call from a woman who asked for help because she couldn’t walk. You’re treating her leg in the back of the ambulance preparing to transport her. That is when her boyfriend walks up. You ask him to step back from the ambulance and he says make me, and pushes you back into the ambulance. You punch him to make him stop and get him away from you. Now he draws a gun and shoots you and your partner. You’re armed. You shoot your attacker until he runs away. You and your partner call for police and other EMTs. Your colleagues take you and your partner to the hospital for treatment of your gunshot wounds.

Police say your attacker died at the scene after he ran back inside of his house. He’d kept his girlfriend captive in her car the night before after slamming her into the ground and injuring her knee.

Domestic Violence, drugs, most shots survivable if you’re treated quickly.

Michael- Our defender was wounded before he got to his gun. He defended himself, his partner, and their patient. He stopped shooting when the bad guy ran away, he didn’t chase the bad guy. He called for help.

Michael- EMTs won’t go to domestic violence calls without police and this is an example why. Unfortunately, the dispatcher didn’t know it was a domestic violence call.

Rob- I’m also thinking there were drug or mental health issues but it could be nothing more than domestic violence.

Michael- Get help if you’re shot. The defender died because he ran away. No-one wanted to go inside the building to face an armed attacker and to treat him. He died before the police could clear the building.

Rob- EMTs won’t go in until the police say the scene is safe.

Michael- If you’re wounded and the attacker is still in your house or office, then try to get outside so you can be treated. Be prepared to help a neighbor before the police and EMTs arrive to take over. You could help by stopping the threat with a gun, or stopping the bleeding with a bandage or tourniquet.

Rob- depending on time. Talk to me about defending yourself one handed after you’re shot.


Rob- That wraps up this episode. Michael, I hope you had a good time on your first visit. Where can we learn more about you?

Michael- Look for me at M-W Tactical.com

Rob- After you look at Michael’s training classes and videos, then please leave us a message on the podcast facebook page.

Michael- We share this podcast with you for free.
Please share the podcast with a friend and give us a rating on I-Tunes and Stitcher.
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Rob- This show is part of the Self-defense radio network. Find more pro-freedom podcasts at sdrn.us

I’m Rob Morse.  We’ll be back next year with more Self-Defense Gun Stories.

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