View Full Version : When you call police after confrontation, drawing
There has been discussions and very sound advice from you regarding what to say and not say in aftermath of a shooting.
You and others have also advised I quick draw the cell phone after a confrontation where I have had to draw a weapon, but no shots fired or violence inflicted. This as you explain helps establish me as the victim.
However, do I limit what I say to the same degree, that I would in case of actual shooting or violent confrontation?
I am after all trying to establish myself as the victim. I don't see how I can do that if I call and when officer arrives simply say I had to draw my gun. I think it might be counterproductive in this situation to refuse to tell the officer WHY I drew my gun, which gets me immediately into telling what other guy did and my reactions in detail.
As always appreciate your advice.
Jack, I've long recommended a five-point checklist of things that need to be established in the immediate aftermath:
1. That this person attacked you or yours.
2. That you will sign the complaint against him.
3. Point out evidence.
4. Point out witnesses.
5. "Officer, you'll have my full cooperation after I've spoken with counsel."
I am thinking of what is probably a fairly common situation, in public area good guy is threatened by a stranger/bad guy(s), the good guy draws and bad guy(s) runs. No shots, no blood, no evidence, no witnesses.
So as I understand your advice I should say threatened by person(s) describes as ............. But I should refuse to provide at that time details of threat, presence of weapons not available as evidence, and my reaction to the undefined threat, beyond fact threat was sufficient for me to fear grave bodily injury or death. And I gather I should specifically NOT volunteer that I drew a weapon and refuse to answer any question regarding weapons beyond fact I am armed and have permit.
I should however, promise to answer question regarding threat/incident and provide details once I had consulted with a lawyer.
Now I don't suspect the officer could arrest the bad guy(s) even if they located them that evening because of my lack of details of the incident. This I think the officer would point out to me in no uncertain terms and I think not put the officer in my corner, so to speak.
But that is not my primary objective, as I understand your advice. My primarily objective is to get a report on file that says Jack was threaten in undefined manner, that he claims put him in fear of grave bodily injury or death by people who he described as ....... at x time at y location.
And if my lawyer says don't say any more at this time re details of incident, well promises made without presence of counsel.
Sorry, Jack, misunderstood your question. If you've drawn on an assailant who was threatening you with sufficient force to warrant your action, you want to call in immediately. Whomever calls in first is seen by the system as the victim complainant; whomever is first called in and REPORTED by someone else is seen as the criminal suspect.
Very often, the real perpetrator will leave the scene, then call the police and claim that the victim who turned the tables was the aggressor, and that tends to result in an uphill fight in court.
In THIS situation, the innocent party who drew in self-defense should call in the report, describe the perpetrator, and describe what happened. Expect to have one or more police respond to take a report. Since you are the complainant, you can expect to be giving more details.
If you drew on the guy, say so in the initial call. Your failure to mention it would likely be seen as "deception by omission."
Mas, thanks for clarification.
I was having trouble, concerning how you could file a complaint and not provide details or answer legitimate questions, especially questions, that would justify an officer making an arrest.
I can see this type of bloodless street confrontation more difficult to handle than a shots fired, blood drawn situation. In the latter you follow your points and ultimately let a lawyer handle the situation. Yes, more expensive and more potential for fine/imprisonment, but easier to handle at the scene, if you keep your mind on the guidelines. Not that keeping your mind on the guidelines would be easy in a stressful situation.
But back to the "bloodless street confrontation." Do you have any guidance for what to say or not say in this type of complaint situation?
I suspect be as brief as possible, which could be tough, as officer will ask specific questions. And I suspect you would want, if appropriate, to indicate the other person initiated the contact - spoke first, approached you, etc. Naturally, describe any weapons displayed by the bad guy. And you tried to break off by whatever means. In fear of grave bodily injury or death you drew your weapon.
Then there is the question of the description of the bad guy. How specific would you be, given potential for errors under stress?
Just explain what happened. Keep it in sequential narrative. Don't try to estimate distances or exact time frames; the involved individual is the worst judge of those things. If you don't remember the color of his jacket or something like that, don't guess, just say "I don't remember."
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