What to say on the phone when you call 911 and when should you call? What should you do with your self-defense firearm once the threat is eliminated? How should you behave when police arrive? What can you do to make it safer for responding officers? You train and prepare for a defensive gun fight, but how do you train for the unavoidable interaction with law enforcement? How do things change in a home defense situation vs. a concealed carry defensive shooting? Early one Sunday morning in November, 2018, police responding to reports of gunfire at Manny’s Blue Room Lounge in Robbins, Illinois shot and killed an armed security guard. As with most violent encounters, facts remain murky to this day. Not because of a conspiracy or cover-up, but because things happen fast in the heat of the moment and witness reports are almost always unclear and frequently contradictory. We’re not here to pass judgement, in part because that’s impossible at this point in the investigation. Instead, we will endeavor to show just how easily the good guys can get hurt, or even killed, in the heat of a gunfight that ends with armed police response. The Jemel Roberson Shooting During the evening spanning Nov. 10 and 11, a fight broke out in the club. Sometime later, one of the verbal assault participants opened fire and shot four people. Two security guards, Dorian Myrickes and Jemel Roberson were involved in the encounter. Some reports indicate that Roberson was dressed all in black with no visible “security” markings. Other reports say he was wearing a hat embossed with “Security." There seems to be general agreement that Myrickes and Roberson were in fact doing their job trying to maintain order and protect patrons of the bar. Roberson possessed a Firearms Owners Identification card and a Security Guard license, so he was legally armed. What’s still murky is whether the club in question was an authorized security employer. To make a long story short, the initial altercation ended with Roberson holding a gun on the suspected shooter when police arrived. Soon after, a responding officer shot Jemel Roberson, who died on the way to the hospital.
Indicate that you want to cooperate – fully. But ask for time to calm down and to call your attorney. You'll need to lose the adrenaline and process a life or death event. Most people involved in shootings can't recall seemingly simple facts like the number of shots they fired. Trying to be helpful before your brain has processed what just happened may end up getting you in trouble even if you did nothing wrong. If you say you fired twice but forensics later shows that you fired six times in the heat of the moment, it might not look good for your case. It's more important to relay the facts accurately than immediately.
Be clear that you were attacked. Many trainers recommend saying that you're willing to sign a complaint. That shows that you are the victim, not the aggressor. Of course, it will all have to be proven later.
Consider identifying and getting on retainer with a local attorney experienced in self-defense law – now. You won't want to be looking for professional assistance at 2:30 a.m. on a Tuesday morning while you're on your way to jail.
Better yet, join a self-defense protection network. As an example, the USCCA offers membership plans that provide immediate 24x7 legal assistance, bail funding, legal funding, and much, much more. There are several similar plans on the market, so do your homework on the best fit for your needs.