1. Gator Country Black Friday special!

    Stay on top of the football coach search with the Insider Authority on Gator Sports with a special discount!

    Now's a great time to join or renew and get up to $20 off your annual subscription! LIMITED QUANTITIES -- for details click here.

Tactical Situation Discussion: Zimmerman Case

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by The_Graygator, Jul 15, 2013.

  1. The_Graygator
    Online

    The_Graygator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    36,060
    Likes Received:
    773
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,697
    This thread is primarily for those gun owners who have have tactical training/experience with firearms and hostile situations.

    As someone with some tactical firearms knowledge and experience in situational tactics, what I noticed about this altercation between George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin is that Zimmerman was not tactically trained to handle a situation like the one he was in. In particular, the physical altercation itself.

    Should Zimmerman have gotten out of his vehicle? In hindsight, no, I don't think he should have, but he still had every much a right to be on those sidewalks as Martin did.

    That said, Martin basically ran away and eluded Zimmerman and made it home, told his girlfriend on the phone that he was "already home", and somewhere within the next 3 - 4 minutes, Martin left that residence and returned to find Zimmerman returning to his vehicle and decided to physically attack him.

    Zimmerman could have avoided an attack that led to the fatal shooting of Martin IMO, if he'd been trained how to handle a situation like that. If someone came back to look for you, and you have no training in handling a physical confrontation, then he should have quickly backed away and gotten into the safety his vehicle.

    My main fault with Zimmerman is allowing Trayvon to invade his safety zone (mine is six feet), and committing the most cardinal sin of obviously taking his eyes off of him to allow him to sucker punch him. When you are carrying a firearm and you have room to, you back up some when someone enters your safety zone and try to diffuse the situation by demonstrating a non-threatening posture.

    Usually, you take a couple of steps back to keep a good field of view of your opponent and keep them out of arm's reach. Holding your hands up, elbows bent, palms forward and stating you want no trouble can help a lot is pacifying an aggressor. Your arms up in this manner can also help you counter a lot of possible punches if necessary.

    if they continue to threaten you, you reach back and place your hand on your weapon, do not draw it, turn the non-holster side of your body towards your aggressor and keep you free arm up to protect yourself with and keep them from getting to your gun, and in this situation you also tell them "I am armed, please stand down and back away".

    I guess we all know what happens when the aggressor continues to threaten you.

    It also gives you the chance to draw your firearm too if the aggressor continues to threaten your safety zone, and use it in a manner to demonstrate that you are armed and will use it if necessary.

    Martin's attack happened very quickly but Zimmerman could have benefitted from some tactical training in this situation. When Zimmerman was punched in the nose, he was basically defenseless and blind and he really had no choice to use deadly force.

    I still stand by the not guilty verdict as Martin obviously back-tracked and find Zimmerman after Zimmerman had disengaged, but perhaps if Zimmerman had had some tactical situational training he could have prevented Martin from harming him and maybe Martin would still be alive today.

    Just such a tragic story.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Edgar_
    Offline

    Edgar_ New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ratings Received:
    +0
    Thank you for your insights.

    - Blakejah
  3. helix139
    Online

    helix139 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    6,638
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,691
    God thoughts, I agree with most of them. Personally, I carry AIWB most of the time. a situation like Zimmerman was in with Trayvon on top of him could potentially make drawing the weapon difficult. The alternative for me based on my body type would be the 4:00-5:00 position but again, drawing the weapon would be hard on my back. But then again, my size makes it very unlikely I would get jumped or attacked.

    In any case, maintaining control of your weapon should be a primary consideration in any confrontation and yes, you do need to put your body between it and your attacker. You're also correct that Zimmerman erred in even giving Trayvon an opportunity to sucker punch him. Cardinal rule #1 of any hostile situation is to never take your eyes off a potential attacker. At the point where a confrontation becomes potentially hostile, my reaction side hand would be getting a solid grip on my shirt tail and my weapon side thumb would be underneath the shirt tail readying myself to clear it so I can draw the weapon, but I would not yet reveal it or have a hand on it. I would probably not announce I am armed as I wouldn't have known whether Trayvon was also and I would not like to give him the opportunity to draw and cause me to be reactionary to his draw if he was. IMO, it is most advantageous strategically if an attacker does not realize you are armed until you are drawing and using the weapon, and I would not draw unless I was going to use it.

    It takes approximately 2 seconds to clear your clothing, establish your grip, draw, present, and acquire a sight picture, and squeeze the trigger for most people, so ideally you would want to take that into consideration when looking to keep him at a safe distance.

    I would have made it clear that I am no threat to Trayvon and do not want any trouble, and it would be in both parties' best interest to back away now, and that is what I would be doing, but that I would not be taking my eyes off him and would respond in force to any attempts by Trayvon to advance his position.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. The_Graygator
    Online

    The_Graygator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    36,060
    Likes Received:
    773
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,697

    Good stuff.

    My point about indicating I was armed though was when I believed the aggressor was not going to stop and continued to close in my safety zone, and hopefully a warning would deter them. My hand would have already been on my weapon by that time too.

    I'm 6" 1', 230 lbs. and have weight trained for years, so I usually don't have people messing with me either, and I don't think Trayvon would have since I outweighed him by 70+ pounds.

    But Zimmerman could have seriously benefitted from some serious tactical training for a situation like this.
  5. T3goalie
    Offline

    T3goalie VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    2,752
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ratings Received:
    +22
    It was 2:00 a.m., the police were called, they were on their way, TM had not committed an act of violence or committed crime. GZ had little to no reason to leave his automobile. If Martin became upset that he was being followed, and GZ stays in his car, GZ may have ended up with a dent in his car or a broken window. From a tactical standpoint, GZ put himself in harms way the second he stepped out of the car. He knew absolutely nothing about Martin and thus put himself and martin at risk. Leaving a secure vehicle was stupid. There was not emergency or urgency to follow on foot.

    Note- if you ever go to an IDPA match, you can pick our the first timers and novices a mile away. The have little to no clue as to how to handle a firearm and are completely uncomfortable with the process of drawing such.
  6. leogator
    Offline

    leogator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2008
    Messages:
    2,446
    Likes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Melbourne, FL
    Ratings Received:
    +175
    He was totally ill equipped for this. That's why he should have stayed in the car.
  7. gatornana
    Offline

    gatornana Administrator

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    23,280
    Likes Received:
    292
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Ratings Received:
    +975
    It was only a little after 7:00 pm.
  8. 108
    Offline

    108 Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    18,266
    Likes Received:
    437
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    NYC
    Ratings Received:
    +1,656
    we are talking about Zimmerman here

    he might not be a murderer, but he doesn't seem like the brightest bulb either

    as someone who does not like to be around guns, it's good to know you guys take this tactical stuff seriously though
  9. leogator
    Offline

    leogator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2008
    Messages:
    2,446
    Likes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Melbourne, FL
    Ratings Received:
    +175
    The best tactical move was to call the police and wait for them to arrive.
  10. madgator
    Offline

    madgator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    Messages:
    8,717
    Likes Received:
    230
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    South Florida
    Ratings Received:
    +829
    Thinking about this in the context of the scenario gives me even more reason to believe that Zimmerman was not out "looking for blood" if you will. That is vital to those who believe that TM was "profiled, targeted, stalked, and hunted" of course because of the color of his skin.
  11. wargunfan
    Offline

    wargunfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    4,567
    Likes Received:
    149
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Inside your head.
    Ratings Received:
    +189
    I have on at least two occasions, (when I was out walking with my wife) had someone step right up to me and ask for money. Neither incident escalated (and I didn't give them money). I was carrying and wanted to back up and get them out of my space but there stood my wife. If I back up I leave her vulnerable. What to do? Thoughts?
    • Like Like x 1
  12. texigator
    Offline

    texigator Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    15,993
    Likes Received:
    147
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Criminole, Florida
    Ratings Received:
    +473


    Now go kill your SUV


    :grin:




    But, seriously though, good stuff here, guys. Very interesting.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. helix139
    Online

    helix139 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    6,638
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,691
    I would generally agree with this. Observe from a safe distance within your car. Earlier posts I took as assuming the confrontation was occuring, and that the option to avoid was past. As a CCW holder, there absolutely is a higher standard of care to avoid loss of life.
  14. helix139
    Online

    helix139 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    6,638
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,691
    Generally keep your wife on your reaction side to keep your weapon side hand free to draw and your reaction side hand free to move her out of the way. Use your reaction side hand to move her behind you/you step in front of her. Instruct her in advance that should the situation arise again and you make that move to put yourself between her and the attacker, she should begin slowly backing away, always keeping a hand on your back so that you can back away also and and be aware of where she is and not trip over yourselves. Once she is behind you, begin to prepare to draw and present should the need arise. I'm not sure how you carry, but if you're carrying underneath a shirt, get your reaction side hand on the shirt ready to clear the cover garment out of the way so your gun won't snag, and prepare to expose and draw the gun. Practice it in your home so that you aren't doing it for the first time if it happens again.
  15. DaveFla
    Offline

    DaveFla Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2007
    Messages:
    18,375
    Likes Received:
    149
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings Received:
    +979
    And humans are ill-equipped to be in the ocean. Therefore, they should stay out of,it, right?
  16. fastsix
    Offline

    fastsix Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    6,691
    Likes Received:
    268
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Seattle
    Ratings Received:
    +1,215
    Well for starters Zimmerman really should have been wearing some type IIIA body armor with a rifle plate. Because while in this instance it wasn't necessary, what if the perp had been carrying an AR-15? We all know a pistol is what you use to fight your way to your rifle.

    Speaking of pistols, I also question his choice - a Kel Tec 9mm? Sure, in this instance it worked, but it's not the most reliable weapon. The most obvious choice would have been a Glock, and not in 9mm either. 9mm just doesn't have the stopping power I look for in a tactical situation. He should have went with a Glock 20 in a Kydex holster with level 2 retention carried at 4:00. with a holder for an extra magazine in case 15+1 wasn't enough to get the job done. As it was night time, I also would have added some Trijicon HD sights, and a Surefire X400.

    Finally, I don't think he was wearing tactical pants. 5.11 makes a nice pair.

    Like I said, it worked out for him this time, but I think that was more luck than tactical preparedness.
  17. GatorBen
    Offline

    GatorBen Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
    Messages:
    7,053
    Likes Received:
    515
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,222
    A Glock 20? Does Zimmerman reload, if not 10mm is a bold ammo choice given its limited availability.

    :wink:
  18. wargunfan
    Offline

    wargunfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    4,567
    Likes Received:
    149
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Location:
    Inside your head.
    Ratings Received:
    +189
    Thanks for the advice. We had that conversation during our walk today and we feel better prepared to react to this type of situation. Nine times out of ten the guy will just go away. But it only takes one nut with a knife to change your life forever.
    • Like Like x 1
  19. helix139
    Online

    helix139 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    6,638
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,691
    Pandora's box has already been opened. Weaponry is going to continue to proliferate among those who don't respect the law and there is nothing that can be done to stop it.

    I don't think anyone who wasn't there actually knows what stance GZ actually postured towards Trayvon. We know somehow it led to a scuffle and an unfortunate resolution, but that is all.

    GZ probably could have handled the situation better, but the vast, overwhelming majority of CCW holders are responsible citizens, who carry around you every day while you are blissfully unaware and enjoying their protection on a passive level. Statistics bear that out, as CCW holders commit crimes at MUCH lower rates than the general population.

    Additionally, even the most conservative estimates have defensive gun uses far outweighing any loss of life at the hands of guns by an order of magnitude. For every GZ situation you have multiple instances where responsible CCW saves a life or prevents a crime.

    I get out of my car with a loaded weapon all the time and I can assure you I'm not a total clown. Additionally, when does someone on neighborhood watch give up their right to protect themselves? Is it only while patrolling the "hood?" Let's keep in mind he did not know if Trayvon was armed or not.

    FWIW, yes, getting out of his car was a dumb move given that unknown, but having a sidearm on him when he did so was not. It was simply prudent, though his subsequent handling of the situation was not.
    • Like Like x 1
  20. helix139
    Online

    helix139 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    6,638
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Ratings Received:
    +2,691
    FWIW, inside of around 6 feet, a guy with a knife has the advantage over the guy with the gun. Blades can do damage in an arc, while guns only do damage at a point. It's worth it to carry a blade also.

Share This Page