Multiple attackers in a parking lot...

geezer

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Down in "The Study", Bill Mattocks started a thread on a story about a racist attack in Canada. Three white toughs jumped a black man, Mr. Jay Phillips in a parking lot. Mr. Phillips put up a pretty good fight, although at one point it went to the ground and things looked pretty bad for him. Like everyone says, the ground game doesn't work against multiple attackers. Fortunately, he made it back to his feet and soon the three punks decided they'd had enough, piled back into their pickup and took off.

Anyway, after thinking about this for awhile, I thought it might be a good topic to revisit here. I teach high school and one thing I hear from the kids I work with is that ganging up on people to beat the crap out of them is getting so common that it's becoming the norm these days. A lot of kids don't see anything wrong with it. In fact, some feel that going into a "fair fight", one against one, is downright stupid. Well if that's becoming the social norm, or the reality for our times, maybe it deserves a lot more attention. What strategies do you apply in dealing with multiple attackers. And if you were Mr. Phillips in that parking lot, how would you have handled the situation?
 
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geezer

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Oh, another thought.

One thing I did learn from watching the videoclip on the gang attack mentioned above, was some good strategies if you are in the gang!

If you are in a group going after a single victim, even if he's big and powerful, apparently you do it like wolves going after a big caribou or other prey. You spread out and try to flank him. Then dart in and out from different angles to tire and confuse him. Then one of you shoots in and grapples onto him, tying him up and trying to take him to the ground. While the prey is momentarily tied up, the rest of the pack jumps on him from all sides, hemming him in while kicking and punching until he's done for.

Now, if you are really going to be like wolves, you need to rip your victim open with your teeth and eat him!
 

celtic_crippler

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Out of all the arts I've studied over the years, kenpo is the only one that actually has a curriculum for dealing with multiple attackers.

Some things I've learned from that are:
(1) Strike the closest attacker first and make it count. For instance a hard sword hand to the throat or a devastating kick to the knee...something that is likely to take them out of the mix quickly.

(2) Use your envirnonmnet. Position yourself so that there are obstacles between you and at least some of the attackers. Could be something material, or could actually be one of the attackers. Could be something as simple as putting your back to the sun.

(3) Make note of your environment. Look for things you can easily get to and use as a weapon; pipe, brick, rock, broom, bottle, fork, a handful of dirt...whatever...use your imagination.

(4) Move. Don't remain static; be mobile. Use your footwork

(5) Remain calm and focused.

(6) Take the first opportunity to escape to safety.
 
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geezer

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Some things I've learned from that are:

(1) Strike the closest attacker first and make it count.
(2) Use your envirnonment.
(3) Make note of your environment..
(4) Move. Don't remain static; be mobile. Use your footwork
(5) Remain calm and focused.
(6) Take the first opportunity to escape to safety.

Good list. Mind if I use it?

In the attack previously mentioned (dang, I wish I knew how to embed the Youtube clip, a little help anyone?) Mr. Phillips did a pretty good job with No. 4: moving. He was evasive and kept his attackers from flanking him. He tried to address No. 1: Taking out the closest attacker/leader, but was using punches, not some crippling/lethal technique... and although he landed some good shots, they didn't stop the attack.

On the other hand he did not do so well at No.s 2/3: using the environment. I can't help but wonder how you might best exploit a parking lot situation. One option might be to move into the gap between two parked cars, toward the rear so you can exit and not have someone come up behind you. That way your opponents have to move into the gap one at a time as they pursue you, You could kinda make your stand, one-on-one a la Leonides and the 300 at Thermopylae. The trick is to be back far enough that you can exit easily if they try send someone around behind you... or you're screwed. I mean we all saw what happened in the movie, right?

Finally, Mr. Phillips lost sight of No.s 5 & 6: staying calm and escaping at the first opportunity. If he had remained calm and hadn't responded to the verbal taunts of these jerks, as "Lucky" pointed out on the original thread, the whole ugly incident might have been avoided. And, regarding "escape", he appeared to have had plenty of opportunity to run away, but chose to stand and fight. But honestly, can you blame him?
 

celtic_crippler

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Good list. Mind if I use it?

It's not copyrighted. LOL Go ahead...if it benefits somebody down the road it's worth spreading. :)

In the attack previously mentioned (dang, I wish I knew how to embed the Youtube clip, a little help anyone?) Mr. Phillips did a pretty good job with No. 4: moving. He was evasive and kept his attackers from flanking him. He tried to address No. 1: Taking out the closest attacker/leader, but was using punches, not some crippling/lethal technique... and although he landed some good shots, they didn't stop the attack.

Yup. He managed to keep moving although he almost bit it once when he hit the ground. In his case it was enough, but next time? Maybe not.

Anybody can throw a punch, but martial artists should know how to apply the proper weapon to the proper target. In this clip I noticed early on one of the attacker's got close to his right shoulder partially cutting off the other two...perfect opportunity to have delivered a sword hand to that guys throat. One down, two to go...

On the other hand he did not do so well at No.s 2/3: using the environment. I can't help but wonder how you might best exploit a parking lot situation. One option might be to move into the gap between two parked cars, toward the rear so you can exit and not have someone come up behind you. That way your opponents have to move into the gap one at a time as they pursue you, You could kinda make your stand, one-on-one a la Leonides and the 300 at Thermopylae. The trick is to be back far enough that you can exit easily if they try send someone around behind you... or you're screwed. I mean we all saw what happened in the movie, right?

Yup. That would be an option. Maybe move into the gap and try and open a car door to block their pursuit...like I said...gotta use yer head! Martial arts ain't all about being physical. :)

Or even just use a single vehicle as an obstacle to put between you and them, or to serve to split them up so that you have a few seconds to engage and take out another one while the other(s) circle around trying to get to you...use your imagination.

Finally, Mr. Phillips lost sight of No.s 5 & 6: staying calm and escaping at the first opportunity. If he had remained calm and hadn't responded to the verbal taunts of these jerks, as "Lucky" pointed out on the original thread, the whole ugly incident might have been avoided. And, regarding "escape", he appeared to have had plenty of opportunity to run away, but chose to stand and fight. But honestly, can you blame him?

Very good point. The first rule of self defense (as I was told) is to not put yourself into a position where you have to use it!

I don't know if I'd want to turn my back to those guys, but he definately appeared to not be looking for an escape route. LOL
 

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geezer raises a very good point. Gang attacks do seem to be on the rise. I didn't used to think that much about it but in view of the trend it seems like I need to adjust my thinking. I was in a situation just a couple of weeks ago where I thought I might end up needing these skills. I was at a convenience store when 3 belligerent (and big) teenagers came into the store and started terrorizing the place. They were completely out of control and clearly looking for trouble. For some reason they kept looking at me. Maybe it's because I was the biggest guy in the place. The manager kicked them out of the store and called the police. I made sure they were gone before I went back to my car but what if they had decided to start a melee in the parking lot? I know they were harassing one of the female customers in the parking lot before they entered the store and I was already thinking about the possibility that I might have to intervene if they ganged up on someone. Thankfully nothing happened but I've been thinking about it ever since. Sadly, it seems there's a real bankruptcy of parenting skills in the US and the problem is getting worse all the time. There are a lot of really great teenagers in this country but there are also a lot of them that have basically been left alone to raise themselves. It's kind of like wild dogs. Few things are more dangerous than a pack of wild dogs. They're vicious and they have no fear of humans. Same with teenagers that have no home training. I'd hate to have to use my skills on somebody's kid but what choice would I have if I was surrounded by a pack of wild teenagers closing in for the kill?
 

LuckyKBoxer

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Out of all the arts I've studied over the years, kenpo is the only one that actually has a curriculum for dealing with multiple attackers.

Some things I've learned from that are:
(1) Strike the closest attacker first and make it count. For instance a hard sword hand to the throat or a devastating kick to the knee...something that is likely to take them out of the mix quickly.

(2) Use your envirnonmnet. Position yourself so that there are obstacles between you and at least some of the attackers. Could be something material, or could actually be one of the attackers. Could be something as simple as putting your back to the sun.

(3) Make note of your environment. Look for things you can easily get to and use as a weapon; pipe, brick, rock, broom, bottle, fork, a handful of dirt...whatever...use your imagination.

(4) Move. Don't remain static; be mobile. Use your footwork

(5) Remain calm and focused.

(6) Take the first opportunity to escape to safety.

A decent list.. I might make a few alterations, or rather additions to it though..
somewhere between number 1 and 2 or a combination of the two I would add to position your attackers between each other to single them off, either by moving without touching them, or through contact or control manipulation...
The last thing you want is to be taken down, you need to maintain distance from your feet and your opponent for this, at the same time the best thing for you is to get your opponents on the ground, and even better to get them tied up with each other and on the ground.

number 6 I would add a couple things...
I would say take the first safe opportunity to escape to safety... if thats your goal. Also try to clearly assess the situation and decide what is the safe way to go, many times a group of attackers know the area they are attacking you in, and will drive you towards an area they want you.... if you run towards the only opening available to you its a good chance you end up in a dead end... and I mean dead.
also it is not always safe to exit a confrontation, you have to assess whats going on, whats around you and if its safer to stay and fight, move and fight, or run.

good advice overall though.
 

celtic_crippler

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I'd hate to have to use my skills on somebody's kid but what choice would I have if I was surrounded by a pack of wild teenagers closing in for the kill?

You have two choices:
(1) Flip your mental switch from human to killing machine or..
(2) End up hospitalized or dead.
 

kidswarrior

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I teach high school...
Me too, geezer, and I work with the kids who dish this stuff out. :uhyeah:

...and one thing I hear from the kids I work with is that ganging up on people to beat the crap out of them is getting so common that it's becoming the norm these days. A lot of kids don't see anything wrong with it. In fact, some feel that going into a "fair fight", one against one, is downright stupid. Well if that's becoming the social norm, or the reality for our times, maybe it deserves a lot more attention.
Yes, to all of your observations. It's becoming the norm, and kids see nothing amiss about it -- even if they're the victim. In those cases, they just shrug and explain, Got caught slippin'. It's one reason young people don't walk anywhere anymore.

The days when solid citizens could rely on someone nearby to call the police, or witnesses to take their side, are gone in many enclaves of our society.
 
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geezer

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... It's becoming the norm, and kids see nothing amiss about it -- even if they're the victim. In those cases, they just shrug and explain, Got caught slippin'. It's one reason young people don't walk anywhere anymore...

Social norms do change over time. And to be honest, as a kid I never thought the one-on-one duel was all that fair and noble, considering that I was one of the little guys! Worked great for the big guys though.

Different cultures have different takes on "fair fighting" too. I had a conversation with a Silat instructor, a "White" American who lived for a while in Indonesia. He really admired the culture over there, and even married an Indonesian woman. But one thing he noted was that the Indonesian street fights he saw or heard about almost always involved gangs or groups attacking an individual, rather than resembling the Western "duel" between individuals. He felt that this social reality heavily influenced his art of Silat as well as his personal approach to self-defense.
 

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I wont regurgitate what has already been listed but if I could add a couple of toppings to the cake:

Evade and escape if at all possible...If you cant outright escape you must ruthlessly agress initially in order to escape...

Agression must be ruthless= when faced with multiple attackers the force is multiplied to lethal so if agression is decided it must be ruthless and violent.

Always rotate... you need to maintain a 360 degree peripheral perimter even when striking... always rotate and use the pack mentality of lining up to your advantage... never just move linear in your attack...always rotate.

Line them up = it is ineficient for a group to simultaneously try to attack so they normally get thier licks and get out to give the next guy a turn... use this pack mentality to your advantage and line them up in your attacks... of course they wont be single file...they will be staggered

Stack them up= when you strike one rotate them into each other using thier bodies against thier accomplices and continue until you have a meat pile or till you can escape... break them on each other...use thier body weight as an anchor against each other...

keep moving though= dont back up and dont curl in a ball...if you are escaping bulldoze your way through them if you are agressing do the same.... run them over and turn them on each other...

Utilize the "meat shield"= If you get your hands on one... hold on to him and make an example of him... if he is on the vergo of passing out and you have him by the throat in front of you they may decline further action...


Improvise and Adapt= use the terrain and forge your own outcome... do not forsake yourself common tools as labor saving devices...
 
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I personally would have done a little bit more after the missed hook punch. It was a heck of a punch, but I believe the target thought it was going to land, so he did not follow up. It is always easy to armchair a situation like this, but refreshing when you can observe certain things not being done, that are taught by you, in class. When you decide to unload on someone, you need to go all out. A one shot knock down, unless you knock him out, will only piss off everyone on the other side. Once that person gets back up, you have a lot more to deal with. There is no reason a trained person can't fire off many decisive shots, including hands and feet, in a very short time frame. The more aggressive of the three, was almost taunting the target by coming in very close to draw a shot so he could come in off of it. For this very reason the target needed to unload with a barrage that would render the punk a puddle in the street, which in turn would give the other two, a choice to make. I have seen it happen, where once one goes down physically, the rest loose it a little bit mentally. You can plan all you want, but training will take over in the heat of battle, so plan in class, train hard and realistically, because in the long run there will be a time gap where your techniques will just happen.
 

MJS

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As a Kenpo man myself, I pretty much agree with everything that celtic crippler said. One thing that I might say is another option would be to grab ahold of one of the attackers, using him as a shield against the others. Now, when I say grab, I'm talking about grabbing him in a choke if possible, and while doing this, cause him some extreme pain. Will the bad guys still try to attack me, while I have their friend? Maybe they will, but maybe it'll be a deterrant.

Of course, seeing that the odds are already stacked against me, I'm going to grab and use the nearest weapon possible and use it. Of course, as soon as the opportinuty presents itself, I'm going to get the hell out of there. No need to stand around and prolong anything, any longer than necessary.
 

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I would like to add that I couldnt view the video due to firewall regs here at work. I also had a few mispelling that I missed...

I am however going off personal experience on this subject as I have been assaulted by multiple attackers many times in my early to late teens. The very last being at 18 years old by more than 10 men(5 marines) after declining a 1 on 1 I was struck from behind and I turned an dropped him with a shot to the lateral neck...I mounted him like a horse as he woke up and then got a bottle to the head... the rest was a bunch of racial slurs and me getting booted to the face four times along with some stomping and punching.... I was drowning in arms and then the one I knocked out mounted me and continued his racial slurs as he pounded my face a few dozen more times... I then pushed him off of me by his face and got up cursing still ready for more... My head was split and I was visibly battered but I was ready for more... they huddled in confusion wondering what to do next as I asked them if they wanted more.... the werent going to shoot me so they gave up and I left.... buddy was already in the car with a concussion and a pretty beat up face... I went and got some staples and thats it.... This was the last time...ever. I walked away with a very big lesson learned which I forgot to add above...

1. THIER NUMBERS ARE THIER WEAKNESS.... I dont expect everyone to understand this concept but when operating as a mob thier conciousness and situational awareness is unified and so are thier problem solving abilities... this can be exlpoited and advantageous.

2. NEVER FOCUS SOLELY ON A SINGLE PLACE OR PERSON....never posture and never quare up... you actions should be more akin to the tazmainian devil fromt he warner bros cartoons....


Hey MJS... I call it a "meat shield" which I added to the list in my response above.

Seasoned you are absolutely right...you need to attack with vicious, ferocious violent intent seeking to break and maim your way out.
 

BLACK LION

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Yes Bill a firearm would be great. Preferrably a 12 guage with 8 shells of 00 buck ;)
 

Omar B

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I once read an article in Black Belt Mag on Ed Parker (a god among men, one of the true pioneers) and to add to what the Kenpo guys have always mentioned Ed stated that in a group attack the first person you take out must be done in as bloody and brutal a fashion possible to dissuade the other attackers. Funny part is, in the picture that went with the article he was throwing a straight punch to the side of the attackers nose and the caption was somethign to the effect of "Won't put him down but the blood spray will scare the whole group."

The more I see of street fights the more disgusted I get. It's not the wild west anymore boys, it's not about a man standing tall, it's about who's got the largest pack of wolves.
 

KenpoTex

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my reply from another thread on this subject from a while back...
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To me, the most important thing in this situation is your mindset. Remember: multiple attacker situations are DEADLY FORCE situations...treat them as such.

If you have to fight:

-ATTACK!!! don't wait for them to set you up, go on the offensive.

-Seek to "line up" your attackers so you only have to deal with one at a time.

-Introduce a weapon at the earliest possible moment and use it until all threats have been neutralized.

-Don't waste time with ineffective strikes or control/restraint techniques, be nasty...attack the eyes, throat, and knees in an effort to take the opponents out of the fight as quickly as possible.

-KEEP MOVING! if you remain stationary, you're going to get "boxed in" and you will not like what happens next.

This is a good article on multiple attacker situations...definitely worth the read.
http://www.personalprotectionsystems.ca/index.php/fighting-multiple-opponents/
 

Omar B

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There was nothing I was gonna say that Matt didn't, much better.
This is the street.
Stop thinking Frank Mir and start thinking Frank CASTLE.

Gotta give you a hailz for working Frank Castle into the thread!

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