Episode 316 with Tony Simon

Rob- Introduction- Welcome to episode 316 of Self-Defense Gun Stories. We’re glad you found us if you’re well trained.. and if you’re still learning about armed defense. I’m Rob Morse and we’re joined this week by firearms instructor Tony Simon. Mister Simon, what has been keeping you so busy?

Tony Simon

Tony- Hi, Rob.  I’ve been hosting diversity shoots, and I went to Kevin Dixie’s event. How about you?

Rob- I finally got to take some training. I went to Phoenix, Arizona for a three day training course. The class is sponsored by FASTER Arizona. It teaches armed school staff and church security officers to be first responders.

I’ve been carrying a gun with a red-dot sight for the last year. It decided to stop feeding reliably at the end of the first day. I brought a backup gun with iron sights. I did not qualify as a firearms instructor, but I did qualify at the level of an Arizona law enforcement officer by shooting the state’s qualifying exam.

There were two days of range training and a third day split between force-on-force scenarios and trauma care. When I got back, I wrote about the class on my SlowFacts blog.

Tony- Pastor Mel wrote some of our stories last week and this week. Thank you, Pastor.

We received two ratings and two new comments on iTunes. (is 349,191).

Rob- A listener who calls themselves MogulUp said-

This podcast allows you to imagine how you would react in a self defense situation. You can learn from what others have done right and what they have done wrong. I love to listen with my brother Chris.

Another listener said they have been watching the podcast for a while. I’m not sure if we’re talking about the same podcast.

Tony- Probably a wrong number.

Please go to the iTunes store where you subscribe to podcasts and tell new gun owners why you listen.

Here in the US, we defend ourselves with a firearm thousands of times a day. We look at a few recent examples to see what we can learn. The links back to the original news articles are on our podcast webpage.

Our first story took place last week in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Rob- First story- Are you armed at home?

You are a 77 year old man at home on a Wednesday evening. It is 6pm when you hear the sound of breaking glass and the sound of someone moving around your home. You’re armed. You walk toward the noise. You see someone standing in the center of your kitchen and you shout for him to stop.

The intruder moves toward you. You present your firearm and shoot your intruder until he turns away. The intruder runs back toward the kitchen window the way he entered your home. He leaves headfirst.

You call 911 and ask for the police. You put your firearm away when the police arrive. You give the officers a brief statement and show them what happened. They find a bullet hole in the kitchen wall. You missed your attacker even though he was only 5 yards away from you.

You are not charged with a crime.

Tony- It sounds like the defender was armed at home. I like that his doors and windows were locked. He recognized an immediate threat of what I assume was a much younger man breaking into his home and confronting him. Our defender tried to use verbal commands to diffuse the situation. When that didn’t work, he defended himself. He stopped shooting when the attacker turned and ran. The defender called for help and gave a statement to the police. Well done.

Rob- Are there other things you want your students to do that were not mentioned in the news report?

Tony- Have a plan so you make good decisions. Avoid conflict with an intruder because you don’t know how many of them are in your home, and you don’t know how they are armed. It sounds like this homeowner lived alone so he could have stayed in his room and called 911.

Lots of people who carry a firearm at home never learn how to present their firearm from a holster. They count on luck, and that is all that saved this homeowner. Learn to present. Learn to hit your target.

Rob- Tony, would you even be on your sights at 5 yards?

Tony-  At 5 yards you’re sight picture is the silhouette of your firearm covering the target. You don’t need a perfect sight picture to achieve hits at that range.

Rob- When do your students get to present from a holster in a hurry?

Tony-  We have presentations from the holster in our defensive classes. These classes require a basic understanding of safety and firearms manipulation. It’s usually after they have taken a basic handgun class.

Rob- What else do you see here? 

Tony- You want a lawyer to fill out the police report for you. Buy insurance if you don’t have a self-defense lawyer on retainer.
Rob- Anything else?

Tony- That is enough for now. Our second story happened in Edinburg, Texas.

Rob- Second Story- Are you armed at home?

You are a mom at home with your children on Tuesday evening. It is about 9 at night when you hear someone break into your home through the garage. You gather your children with you in your bedroom and you lock the bedroom door. You grab your gun and your phone. You call 911 and ask for help.

The intruder tries to get into your bedroom. You shout that you’re armed. You tell him that you’ve called the police. The intruder bangs against your door again and you shoot your door near the doorknob. Now your intruder runs away.

You stay on the call with the police dispatcher. You put your gun away when the police arrive. The news stories aren’t clear how the police entered your home. You give the officers a brief statement. The police find your attacker about a hundred yards away from your home with a gunshot wound on his left arm.

Your attacker is taken to jail and booked on charges of burglary of a habitation. His bond is set at $750-thousand dollars. Later, you saw his mugshot in the news from a prior arrest. His head and neck are covered in tattoos.

You are not charged with a crime, and your children are uninjured.

Tony- I’m glad her doors were locked. That bought the family time to retreat. She collected her family behind a locked door. Great job. She called the police and had them on the way. She stayed at the scene and didn’t chase the bad guy down the street. She gave a statement to the police. I’m glad her family was safe.

Rob- Is there more you want us to do?

Tony- If she had a plan and had rehearsed it with her children then she might have done a better job. Get your children behind the bed or into the master bathroom and out of sight. You want to be behind furniture so you are hard to see and hard to hurt. Keep your gun aimed at the doorway and wait until the attacker breaks the door before you shoot him.

That is a lot to think about when you are frightened. That is why you must walk through your plan with your family several times so all of you know what to do.

Rob- When do your students learn about making a home safety plan?

Tony-  We discuss home safety in our basic class if that’s the reason a student is taking our class. I definitely attempt to get self defense information to students that say they are taking the class because they have immediate concerns about their safety. 

Rob- Talk to me about storing firearms at home to protect my family.

Tony- You might not have time to run and get your gun. In addition, your firearms must be secured so your children do not have access to them. I’d like you to take a class and carry your defensive handgun on your body. Start doing that at home. Then, I want you to get your permit and carry all the time. Even if your state has Constitutional Carry I’d like you to have a permit. The reason being is you have a license to show that you went above what was necessary to carry. This could discourage a prosecutor from charging you or a jury from convicting you. I’m not a lawyer they may think differently. With many self defense coverage plans speaking to a lawyer for free is part of the plan. 

Rob- Why is it a bad idea to shoot through a door?

Tony- Most of the time, yes.  It’s a bad idea. You don’t know who is on the other side of the door. You hope you are shooting the intruder and not a neighbor or a relative. In addition, you don’t know where your bullet will stop if you miss.

Rob- Where are we headed for our next story?
Tony- Our third story happened in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Rob- First this message from Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership


Rob- Third story- Are you armed at work?

You are working behind the counter at a Dollar General store. A man comes up to the cash register. You scan the item and the man argues about the price. He tells you to come outside and he’ll beat you up. You stay inside the store. The customer walks to the door then turns around with a gun in his hand. He points his gun at you.

You’re armed too. You present your firearm and shoot your attacker in the chest. He runs outside. He crawls into his car and drives away. You stay at the scene and call 911. You give the police a brief statement, and other witnesses tell the police what happened as well.

Your attacker crashed his car on the way to the hospital. Another driver delivered him to the emergency room. Your attacker was in critical condition for several days. He says he doesn’t remember being shot.

Your attacker was taken from the hospital and charged with aggravated assault with a gun and possession of a gun by a convicted felon. He is held on a $95 thousand dollar bond.

You are not charged.

Tony- Thank you for being armed at work. Thank you for staying in the store and not going outside. Good job defending yourself, defending other employees and customers. I’m glad our good guy called 911.

Tony- I’m going to jump right into the part where we want him to do more. If this happens to you, then ask everyone in the store to call 911 for you. Ask if anyone is injured. Then, you lock the front door and call 911 yourself.

We haven’t talked about it, but a lot of these assailants are either high on drugs or drunk on alcohol when they pull a gun. We can’t expect reasonable behavior from them like leaving the customers alone. 

Explain to the customers that there was a man with a gun outside and you’d like everyone to stay inside and away from the windows until the police say it is safe to go leave.

You can’t force them to stay inside. That is kidnapping, but you can beg them to stay inside for their own safety.

Rob- How do we get that smart after defending ourselves?

Tony- If your employer allows you to carry at work,  develop a plan for armed defense. Walk through your safety plan with your employer. Hopefully you do it together with all the employees.

Rob- Where would I learn about defending myself at work?

Tony- That would come after your concealed carry class. The follow on classes and the legal use of lethal force will start to cover defense at work. Ideally you can take some force-on-force training too.

Rob- Where are we going for our last story?
Tony- Our fourth story took place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Rob- Fourth story- Are you armed as you drive?

You are a 27 year old woman. You’re driving through downtown traffic on a Wednesday. It is about 5:30 when a stranger runs up to the passenger side of your car. He smashes the passenger side rear window with a crowbar.

You’re armed. You shoot your attacker. He runs back to his car and drives off. You drive to your relatives house nearby. Now you feel safe enough to call the police. You show the police your identification and your carry permit. You show them the crowbar in the back seat of your car. The police find one shell casing from your firearm inside your car. You give the police a brief statement that describes what happened.

Police find your attacker at a nearby intersection. The woman who was driving with him ran from the scene. EMTs take your attacker to a nearby hospital with a single gunshot wound to the groin.

You are not charged.

Tony- Our defender had her carry permit. She was armed. She recognized a lethal threat. She defended herself and then moved to safety. She called the police and asked for help. Well done. There isn’t a lot more I’d ask my students to do.

Rob- Why was a crowbar a lethal threat?

Tony- A stranger broke into your car unprovoked. He smashed a back window. That means he can enter your car behind you with a crowbar. He can hit you from behind and you’re defenseless unless you have a gun and can stop him.

Rob- Is breaking the windows of my car the same as breaking the windows of my home?

Tony- Exactly. You have every legal right to be inside your car on a public street. Someone breaking into our car is the same as someone breaking into your home.

Rob- When do your students learn about using lethal force in public? 

Tony-  During our self defense handgun classes we train people in the skills to use a firearm from concealment. Other classes we host go over self defense and deadly force law. 

Rob- Is there more you want to talk about before we close?

Tony- Try to avoid road rage incidents if at all possible. Allow the car tailgating you to pass,  don’t argue with them. Be the bigger person and let the situation defuse itself. Again if possible. If it’s not possible make sure you have trained and practice using your defensive firearm from the seated position, to replicate how you sit in a vehicle.

Exit- Rob- That wraps up this episode. Tony, thank you for helping us again. Where can we learn more about you?

Tony- Find me at Diversityshoot.com 

I’m also on Instagram and facebook at Simon Says Train, and at The 2nd is For Everyone podcast.

Rob- I hope you look at Tony podcasts and at his classes. Then, please leave Tony a message on the self defense gun stories episode webpage.

Tony- 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 week with more Self-Defense Gun Stories.




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