Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Violent Crime Jumps: Highest Increase Since 1991

Violent crime in the United States increased 2.5 percent in 2005--the first increase since 2001 and the highest rate of increase since 1991, according to the FBI's preliminary annual crime report.

Homicides rose 4.8 percent overall, but some cities are seeing huge increases. Milwaukee and Cleveland's homicide rate jumped 40 percent and 38 percent, respectively.

Two theories being floated publicly for the big increase:

1. Violent gangs have gained a foothold in mid-sized cities, especially in the Mid-West. (Violent crime rates rose significantly in nearly all categories in most small-to mid-sized cities);

2. There has been a shift of law enforcement resources away from high crime areas to fight terrorism since 9-11.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Simulations Needed for Firearms

"Nonetheless, life and death struggles, where a defensive firearm is most likely to come into play, are dynamic, fluid and violent events. Training that consists of standing still and shooting paper targets from 7 yards will only get you so far. If you want to increase your odds of winning a fight you need to expose yourself to more advanced training. This kind of practice will include both live fire and simulations."

Paul Markel

For an up close and eye-opening look at firearms simulations, check out the DVD "Gunfight Simulations for Self-Defense" at Defend Gear.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

You missed the grenade disarming class?

If you've been a visitor to Defend University for any length of time, you know that we talk more about concepts and principals than we do about specific techniques.

Although serious discussions about techniques are useful, the problem is that the nature of self-defense is chaotic, spontaneous and unpredictable. Events unfold with an infinite number of variables. You can't possibly foresee all of these variables and come up with techniques for all of them.

Okay, for example...what if someone walks up to you and tells you they are going to kill you with a hand grenade they have? What's the technique for that? And don't laugh, that's precisely what happened to a woman in Tucson (July 2, 2006).

Police reported that 38-year-old Edward D. Otero had a World War II vintage grenade in his possesion, walked up to a woman and -- pulling the pin -- told her that she and her family would die.

So now what?

Your self-defense training should be broad enough that the principles and concepts that you've trained with in one area can apply in another -- often unexpected -- area.

For example in the Rape Escape program, we teach non-martial artist females a number of concepts that allow them to protect their heads while attacking a man's weakest targets -- and in a way that makes it difficult to physically take the woman somewhere. We've found that, after one or two Level 1 courses, the students begin to show effective responses spontaneously to attacks they've never seen before.

In this case? The woman "wrestled" the hand grenade from the deranged man. No details are given as to how she did it. Police say the grenade had a live fuse, but that the explosive charge had been removed and a hole was drilled through the casing.

But, hooray for the unidentified woman who reacted, responded and prevailed.

As for Otero, he was arrested on suspicion of aggravated assault and burglary and on a warrant charging him with violating probation.