A New Active Killer Trend and Eight Ways to Counter It

Written by: Greg Ellifritz

Within the past couple weeks, we’ve seen two active killer incidents with large body counts.  Interestingly, the killers in both events started shooting OUTSIDE their target location.

Reading about the shooting last Tuesday, I stumbled across the following quote:

“Because there were a series of gunshots about a quarter mile away that alerted that staff, and they went on an immediate lockdown without having to be alerted by law enforcement.”

When the gunman was unable to enter the school due to the exterior doors being locked, Johnston said he fired at the building several times before he headed into town along a two-lane road.”

The gunman fired on the building from outside.  He spent several minutes walking around the locked school and fired around 30 rounds at the building.  The gunman in the Texas church shooting did something similar.

Lots of big historic active killer events started outside ….

Read More HERE


Church shooting 5

When one of these events takes place it is imperative for us to learn from them should we hope to prevent or interdict the next one.  Sadly, this is rarely done to a true operational level.  It may be too soon to do this, but we have had three major events in the last three weeks.  I do not think it is too soon.  These points were brought to the discussion on my forum warriortalk.com by one of its members –

FACT 1:  Shooter visited the site five days prior to the attack.  This was probably a reconnaissance of the site.  We know that both terrorists as well as “crazy people” have done this prior to their initiation of attack.  Alternatively, he may not have decided to attack yet and was working up to it

LEARNING POINT: In today’s tech world it is an easy thing to have 24-7 passive surveillance.  We have it at home and at Suarez HQ.  This can run all the time and can be monitored remotely.  An alternative is the use of game cameras.  Any after hours suspicious visitors can be scrutinized at length.  These cameras can be elaborate and expensive or quite simple and cost effective.  Here is an Amazon link for such items for your convenience.  We live in a time of war and such steps, specially if you work at a desirable target, are not only simple and cost effective, but essential in your safety.  And anyone seen doing surveillance should be taken seriously.

FACT 2:  Shooter had sent threatening texts to his mother-in-law prior to the attack.

LEARNING POINT:  I will bet the threats were waved off as nothing serious.  In today’s environment, everything must be taken at face value, whether it is a man walking into a public venue dressed like an active shooter, or a threat made by text.        …   …    …

FACT 4:  Shooter was wearing body armor (type unknown) and a helmet.  Same situation in many other events.

LEARNING POINT: So this one is simple. We used to say, “If it walks like a duck and sounds like a duck…its a duck”.  So that man walking up to the church wearing armor and carrying a rifle is nothing but a freaking duck and should be treated as such.  Today we need to go on first impressions, because second impressions will be paid for with the lives of the innocent.

On weapons – Yes, I know Willeford used a rifle to kill the gunman (he gets the score, I am not buying the suicide thing).  But that was a fortunate happenstance.  These events will invariably be handled with the pistol that is already in your belt rather than the rifle you go and get.  And given that armor is prevalent, the traditional notion of center of mass shots is no longer valid.

The face is the target.  The ear canal is the target.  The base of the neck is the target.  And those may be preceded by shots to any exposed body part vis-a-vis counter-armor tactics.

FACT 5:  The good guy that responded was unprepared practically (no mag, barefoot), but was mentally ready to go anyway.


Read More Here

Kidnappings – Would you Intervene

Two Different Kidnappings- Would You Intervene?

Written by: Greg Ellifritz

One of the goals of any type of combative training is to “remove novelty.”  Novel situations combined with stress often force our brains to operate in a more instinctive manner.  When operating this way, higher order thinking isn’t possible.  Our goal as trainers is to introduce our students to as many possible situations as we can so that the student has a mental reference in the event he experiences a similar situation in the future.  If the student has already thought through an incident and come up with a viable solution, the brain is less likely to shift into “instinctive” mode and more likely to remain capable of intellectual thought.  That’s what we are looking for.


Fortunately, I don’t need to have you all in a scenario oriented training class to start making some mental maps.  You can do that by just thinking about crime scenarios and coming up with a logical plan to respond to them.  That’s what we are going to do in today’s article.

Here are two recent kidnapping attempts that were caught on video.  They are both somewhat different and a nuanced response may be required.  Take a look at both and think about what you might do.     Read more HERE

Gun Control hasn’t stopped mass shooting attacks

Gun control in Europe is almost total. It hasn’t stopped mass shooting attacks like Las Vegas

Within hours of the horrible attack in Las Vegas, before we knew most of the relevant facts about the tragedy, gun control advocates were calling for more gun control.  Here is something I would like those advocates to consider: Europe, which has all the gun controls that are being pushed in the aftermath of the Las Vegas carnage, has actually suffered more bloodshed from these types of attacks than the U.S.

You heard that right: Countries such as France may have made all semi-automatic guns illegal, but that hasn’t stopped killers from getting fully automatic machine guns to use in mass shooting attacks. All four of the 2015 mass public shooting in France involved machine guns, including the 130 people killed in November of that year in multiple attacks including one at a concert venue.

In the 1970s, 80s and 90s, Europe saw machine gun attacks in airports and nightclubs by groups such as Black September and the Red Army Faction. In fact, machine guns are commonly used in mass shootings in the rest of the world.

This has not been the case here in the U.S. In fact, Sunday’s attack on a country music festival in Las Vegas – that left at least 58 people dead and more than 500 wounded – may be the first mass public shooting in the U.S. involving a machine gun, if it turns out the killer did use such a weapon. According to a Wall Street Journal report, the gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, is believed to have used at least one fully automatic weapon – weapons that are heavily restricted under U.S. federal law.

It is an attack that is likely to rank 14th in the most deadly mass public shooting in the world since 1970. It is the worst ever in the United States, according to data collected by the Center for Crime Research where I am founder and president.

There were 29 such shootings (four or more fatalities in a public place, according to the FBI’s official definition) in the U.S. during the eight years of the Obama administration; 26 in Europe. The rate at which people are killed is virtually the same in the European Union as in the United States.

Again, many of the facts about what happened in Las Vegas remain unknown at the moment, including exactly what type of firearm the gunman used. But one sad fact that everyone calling for gun control needs to consider is that, as Europe has shown, you can have all the gun control laws you want and you still won’t be able to stop horrors like this from happening.

John R. Lott, Jr. is a columnist for FoxNews.com. He is an economist and was formerly chief economist at the United States Sentencing Commission. Lott is also a leading expert on guns and op-eds on that issue are done in conjunction with the Crime Prevention Research Center. He is the author of nine books including “More Guns, Less Crime.” His latest book is “The War on Guns: Arming Yourself Against Gun Control Lies (August 1, 2016). Follow him on Twitter@johnrlottjr.

Original Article is here:

Shasta Defense Comment: Also, reflect on the hypocrisy of those (anti self defense and “anti gun” persons) who will call 911 requesting that the police to show up with guns to defend their lives from an evil attacker. Yet, they concurrently seek to disarm Americans and deny the right of self defense.  They place the police officers and other citizens at risk (e.g., high speed response, etc…) in order to save their own lives, when they have already made the decision that their life is not worth defending. For those who seek to remove our American Bill of Rights, it is suggested that you buy a plane ticket and go live in a 3rd world country. Our Bill of Rights are NOT negotiable!

Las Vegas Shooting – Fences and gates crowd control – but not cover

An article and video shows the gates and fences that the crowds pushed down to escape the gun fire.  When out in a large gathering, reflect that chain link fences may control the crowds, but they don’t serve as cover. In essence, you may be locked into the killing zone. Also, such wouldn’t protect against a  vehicle attack.

See article here

Some Quick Thoughts on the Las Vegas Shooting Police Radio Traffic

(a few points for CCW carriers are in the article)

I spent some time today listening to the audio feed of the police radio traffic for about 90 minutes following the start of the active killer event on Sunday night.  If you are interested in active killer response, either from the police or armed citizen perspective, this audio is pure gold.  In general, the police had a stellar response.  Being able to hear how it played out is an incredible resource for anyone studying the topic.


This article is primarily written for my police readers, but has some very important insights for my armed citizen readers as well.  The full audio of the radio scanner is available below:    Read Rest of Article Here:

Las Vegas Killing – Would armed citizens, skilled with rifles, have saved lives?

Below is a post – 5 Gunfighting Myths Debunked By Massad Ayoob.

[Shasta Defense comment: It shows how armed citizens disrupted a murder spree  (Texas Clock Tower sniper shootings) – reducing the number of casualties].  The Ayoob post follows:


Ray Martinez, hero of the Texas Tower incident, credited armed citizens on the ground with stopping the murder spree.

I don’t mean to insult anyone, but this statement flunks the litmus test for cluelessness. By definition, if you were able to shoot him at that distance, he was able to shoot you at that distance.

In 1867, Dave Tutt opened fire on Wild Bill Hickok across the town square in Springfield, Missouri. Hickok carefully aimed his .36 caliber Navy Colt two-handed and shot Tutt through the heart, killing him. The ruling: Justified.

Fast-forward about a century to 1966. Charles Whitman began a murder spree by firing his scoped rifle from atop a 330-foot clock tower in Austin, Texas, killing people hundreds of yards away. When police .38s and buckshot proved impotent at that distance, private citizens on the ground returned fire on Whitman with hunting rifles and target rifles. Whitman was forced to take cover and stop shooting. Armed citizen Allen Crum then led Austin policemen Houston McCoy and Ramiro Martinez to the top of the tower. Crum fired the first shot of the encounter (which may have broken Whitman’s planned ambush of the officers), and McCoy and Martinez shot Whitman dead. Martinez later publicly credited the armed citizens with stopping the killing. They became heroes, not defendants.

Fast-forward again to Brownwood, Texas, in 2012. A man went berserk and began killing his neighbors. When the first responding officer arrived, the killer pinned him down with a .30-30 rifle. Armed citizen Vic Stacy shot the gunman from some 65 yards away with a Colt Python .357 Magnum revolver, wounding him badly enough that the officer could take control and finish the fight, killing the killer. Far from becoming a defendant, the heroic citizen was presented with a fine rifle by appreciative Texas Governor Rick Perry.

The Ayoob  article is HERE

Also, from https://www.britannica.com/event/Texas-Tower-shooting-of-1966

“Texas Tower shooting of 1966, also called University of Texas clock tower shooting, mass shooting in Austin, Texas, on August 1, 1966, in which Charles Whitman, a student and ex-Marine, fired down from the clock tower on the campus of the University of Texas, killing 14 people and wounding 31 others (one of whom died years later from complications related to his wounds). Earlier in the day, Whitman had killed his wife and mother. The incident was one of the worst mass murders in a public area in the history of the United States and the first to unfold “live” in the era of mass media. …”

“…After killing or wounding a number of others on the mall, Whitman trained his fire toward the businesses of distant Guadalupe Street, wounding or killing others as they innocently passed by or sought cover in fear. Alerted by a phone call only minutes after Whitman began shooting at the mall, police arrived quickly on the scene, and one of them became another victim, shot dead through a columned stone wall. Most of the event’s casualties occurred within the first 15 or 20 minutes of Whitman’s fusillade. As police began arriving in greater numbers, they were joined by private citizens (many alerted by the on-the-scene radio report of the incident as it occurred) who came armed with hunting rifles. The expanding fire from the ground forced Whitman to seek shelter behind the observation deck’s thick walls and limited his targeting ability by confining him to shooting through waterspouts. … ” (emphasis added).

“…As a result the assault that ended Whitman’s rampage came about haphazardly. Using stairs and the elevator, three police officers and an armed citizen (the university bookstore manager), acting largely independently, found themselves together on the 27th floor. Without a plan or any real coordination, all four men took to the observation deck in a successful attempt to surround Whitman, enabling policemen Ramiro Martinez and Houston McCoy to shoot and kill Whitman. After more than 90 terrifying minutes, Whitman’s murder spree had been brought to an end. Excluding his wife and mother, he had killed 14 people (including the unborn child) and wounded another 31 (one of whom would die some 30 years later after deciding to end the daily dialysis treatments necessitated by his wounds).”

And this account, from a person on the 26th floor of the tower (one floor below the gunman)  from http://www.khou.com/news/local/texas/50-years-later-survivors-recall-horrific-ut-tower-shooting/285583966

‘…There’s bodies in the stairs, bodies in the stairs,’” said Houston defense attorney Herb Ritchie, who was a student on the 26th floor of the tower that morning helping a professor with a research project. He, along with seven other people, remained trapped one floor below the gunman for the full hour and a half before the siege ended.”






The Jakarta Terrorist Attacks – Relevant today

The Jakarta Terrorist Attacks



One of the terrorists with a pistol. His job is to provide security to allow the other suicide bombers to get to their place of detonation. Photo from linked article.


Last Thursday, ISIS terrorists conducted a series of coordinated attacks in Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia.  As has been the trend worldwide, these coordinated or “symphonic” attacks involved guns, bombs, and grenades.  Up to 14 terrorists conducted the attacks on seven locations in a period of three hours. …

Read rest of article here