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I Thought I Was Going to Die...

January 04, 20236 min read

What Can You Do According to Florida Concealed Carry Laws?

What's Up Sheepdogs? Ryan here with Tampa Carry.

On December 18 of 2019 Laura decided to go shopping at her local Walmart in Lakeland Florida. Everything about her trip to Walmart seemed normal until Laura noticed that a strange man was following her around the store. 


Laurie is generally pretty aware of her surroundings and decided to walk down a few random miles to see if this individual continues to follow her. After several attempts to lose this strange man Laura was finally successful. So she decided it was time to check out and walk to our car. 


As she was placing groceries in her vehicle the man came out of nowhere and grabbed her purse hanging on her shoulder. Laura font as hard as she could to fight off the attacker and protect her purse.

What is Laura legally allowed to do According to Florida Concealed Carry Law? Let’s ask ourselves the big questions. 


The Big Questions


How Could This Situation Have Been Avoided? 

One of the big mistakes that Laura made is that once she lost the strange man in the store she let her guard down. At the end of this chapter I’ll share with you exactly what the police discovered on the Walmart security footage but based on that information Laura should’ve been more aware of her surroundings as she was walking through the parking lot. If she would’ve kept her head on a swivel continually searching for potential threats she would’ve identified that the strange man was still stocking her except this time it was at a distance. Remember the wolves like to attack the week the sack the young and the old and most importantly those people that are not aware of their surroundings.


Does This Scenario Fall Under the Justifiable Use of Force statutes?

Florida Statutes 776.012 (2) A person is justified in using or threatening to use deadly force if he or she reasonably believes that using or threatening to use such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony. A person who uses or threatens to use deadly force in accordance with this subsection does not have a duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground if the person using or threatening to use the deadly force is not engaged in a criminal activity and is in a place where he or she has a right to be.



Are you or someone around you going to die within seconds?
I personally don’t believe it is reasonable to believe that Laura was about to die within seconds. Yes she is fighting a strange man to protect her purse however there have not been any threats made on Laura‘s life or any attempts to use or threaten deadly force. 


Are you or someone around you going to become the victim of great bodily harm?
Let me remind you that great bodily harm does not have a statutory definition in Florida law. However it can be simply explain as something greater than minor cuts or bruises. And example of this would be a broken bone, large scar, permanent disfigurement or permanent disability. At the moment Laura is fighting for the purse but there is no indication that a severe bodily injury is about to occur.


Are you or someone around you going to become the victims of a Forcible Felony within seconds?
The only forcible felony that I think would apply would be robbery. Here’s what the law says; 


Robbery
F.S 812.13 (1) means the taking of money or other property which may be the subject of larceny from the person or custody of another, with intent to either permanently or temporarily deprive the person or the owner of the money or other property, when in the course of the taking there is the use of force, violence, assault or putting in fear.


Is the use of deadly force reasonable?
I’m really not sure I think it’s right on the line of being reasonable to stop the attack.  However if Laura would’ve just let go of her purse the attack would’ve ended as fast as it started. I’m not saying that I agree with allowing some scumbag to steal your belongings but we should always try to take the path of least resistance. 


Is the use of deadly force necessary?
I think it could be depending on how violent the attack was. 


Are you in a place that you have a right to be?
Yes Laura has a legal right to be in the parking lot of Walmart.


Are you engaged in a criminal activity?
No, Laura is not engaged in criminal activity. 



Where Is The Line In The Sand? 

The line in the sand would be the point at which Laura would have no other option to stay alive but to pull out her firearm and shoot the strange man. For me the line in the sand would be if this strange person threatened the use of a weapon like a knife or a firearm or attempted great bodily injury. 


However I think a much better solution would have been if Laura was aware of her surroundings she would have noticed the strange man beginning his approach to launch his attack. She could’ve easily were into her body towards a threat and made a demand of back up get away for me while at the same time preparing To spray the individual with pepper spray. I think this would have completely ended the situation and prevented Laura from being attacked.


What Would You Do If? 

What would you do if you were in a situation just like this? If you noticed a strange person following you around a store what would you do? A few years ago Tiffany called me from Ross which is her favorite place to go shopping and told me that a man had been following her around and made her feel very uncomfortable. I am mediately told her not to leave the store. I will be there in 10 minutes and I will walk you to the car. Unfortunately Tiffany did not listen to me and She decided to approach an employee of Ross and asked this gentleman to walk her to our car because she felt uncomfortable. Personally I am still happy that she did not walk to her vehicle by herself because that would’ve put her in unnecessary danger. Don’t wait until a situation like this occurs to figure out what you were going to do to keep yourself safe figure out a plan today.

That's all I have for today. So until next time keep training and stay safe...

Ryan G. Thomas

P.S. You’re one step away from getting your Florida concealed carry permit….FAST & EASY…

And for a limited time you can watch the concealed carry course online for free... Click here to get started...

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Ryan G. Thomas

Ryan believes a trained and aware citizen is the best way to minimize crime, victims and senseless acts of violence. Ryan is a veteran of the United States Air Force and a father of three beautiful children. Ryan and his wife Tiffany met while doing inner city ministry for Operation Explosion in Tampa 12 years ago. He is passionate about God, his family, and his community. Ryan has a passion for the 2nd amendment and believes all Americans should have the right and ability to protect themselves and their families.

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