At the Circle K.
It has been a long while since I posted something interesting in my concealed carry life. I've talked about the bums and vagrants that hassle us at the local pizza parlour, that meth-head at the burger joint, and various and sundry others.
Recently, at the Range, we've had a string of break-ins. Mostly, people taking the CHL class have had their personal weapons swiped from their cars. In one case, the poor schlub just bought the gun for the class a day before it was stolen. The perpetrators are not just targeting cars with guns, they are going after anything pawnable enough to hock for meth, or whatever drain cleaner they are snorting that day.
The CHL instructor has allowed his students to store their weapons at the front of his classroom now. There've been too many close calls with students fonding the bang switch with their booger hooks during class. This has cooled the break-ins somewhat.
Darth Lord of the Range has also convinced the Imperial Owners to invest in some low-light capable video surveillance equipment. While there are still some blind spots, the cameras cover the affected areas of the parking lot and the rest of the range. I've seen the set-up firsthand. Pretty impressive. I have also been touched by its effectiveness, too. The Imperial Owners have purchased a remote package that allows them to spy on the Range minions whenever their favorite snitch isn't around to play tattle-tale (another story for later). It is nice to get that phone call asking, "What are you guys doing just standing around?"
Anyway, I digress a bit. Last night was shotgun night for our Tac Tuesday class. We were working on shoot-n-move and transition drills. I got the chance to work with my new GG&G single point attachment with the Blackhawk sling and my new Wiley X assault gloves. I did pinch my thumb during a pistol mag swap out, but everything worked fine.
As the class was winding down, Scary Larry (the evening's instructor) was running through some remedial drills with the newest students. I decided to put my shotgun in storage mode (completely empty, action closed, firing pin tension released) and lock it in my truck. I wasn't too worried about a break in at this point and really wasn't thinking about it. I recently put the tonneau cover back in my 4Runner to cover all the crap floating around back there. I was also parked righ next to the entrance and underneath one of the cameras. My truck was plainly visibly on the store monitors.
I stepped out and rolled down the back window to set my shottie inside. I was just thinking about the vehicle used in the burglaries when I heard a car pull up on the other side of the lot. It was twilight and I still had my tinted shooting glasses on, so my vision was effectively compromised. I turned in time to see a dark color Ford Taurus slowly inch around a parked car. The windows were all tinted and the lights were blacked out. This dude was Up To No Good. I turned and took my shooting glasses off in time to make out the color of the car. Blue. Shit.
I took a couple of steps to the door and popped it open enough to shout for Darth. I shouted that the blue Taurus was in the lot now. He came running with his shottie and Country grabbed his AR. Meanwhile, the Taurus has stopped at my truck, and while my attention was on Darth and Country, they were probably contemplating making a play for my gear. It would have been a fool's errand going for my stuff. I unintentionally left the keys in the tailgate and the back window was down. I guess the occupants of the Taurus were playing the odds in their meth addled brains.
Should they try something foolish, they would have lost. Their MO is to park in the back of the lot and hit three or four cars simultaneously. I was fairly certain this would be a multi-shooter scenario. I started moving from the front door behind where the car was stopped across the lot to a large Dodge truck for cover. If anyone popped their heads out the door, I would have a clear field of fire without their doors blocking me. I also made this move so Darth and Country could clear the front door and assume cover positions behind my truck.
While this is going on, the suspects realize the jig is up and start to leave the lot. We all had guns at the ready (I had Roscoe on my hip and cleared the holster before I called for backup). I am sure they dropped a load in their shorts as they hauled arse from the parking lot.
We weren't in a position to stop or detain, but the way they came up to my truck and stopped was an indication that they were contemplating possibly jacking me. They probably thought I was an unsuspecting customer and an easy mark. Foolish mortals! I am very well trained and keep a high level of SA. Yeah, I was a little lax while at my truck, but I scanned the lot and didn't find anything to arouse my suspicion when I stepped outside. Had I seen the car in the first place, I would have done things a bit different. As it was, Eclipse and I stood watch behind a couple of cars until closing. He with his FAL and me with my 870.
I don't know if these chuckleheads will ever be caught. But they are getting pretty brazen. This is the first time they came through the lot after dark. All other times, they strike during the day when the Range is at its busiest. We can only wish that they meet their timely demise underneath a Mack truck. The last thing I want is to explain to the po-po why I was participating in a shootout in the middle of a gun store parking lot.
Stay safe out there. And remember, if you are ever in Houston and stop by the range, keep your eyes open and valuables at home.
The Virtual Classroom: Lessons Learned
2 weeks ago