Eye Contact and Attacker Psychology

Discussion in 'Concealed Carrying & Personal Protection' started by SheridanB, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. SheridanB

    SheridanB New Member

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    Does anyone have any ideas on the effects of eye contact on attacker psychology in situations in which one would need personal protection?

    Some say they will attack when you look away for instance, some say they won't approach you if you make eye contact, and others say that they will approach if you make eye contact because they have an inner instinct that tells them to, there are alot of theories, what are your experiences?
     
  2. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    eye contact

    We are animals, predators. We have binocular vision to give us depth perception for taking down prey. In the animal kingdom there are predators and there are prey. The predators do not eat the other predators. The criminal element are the worst kind of predators. They are wolves. The wolves do not attack the sheepdogs. They attack the sheep. One of the typical behaviors of the sheep is to look away from the predator, refuse to acknowlege his presense and get into the herd for protection. The wolf can only kill one of us, I hope it is not me.

    I have been a cop for nearly 25 years. I have seen my share of wolves. They will make eye contact. When you lock eyes with them you are telling them you are not a sheep, you are not food. You may kill me but, you cannot eat me. Wolves are looking for an easy meal. If you are going to put up a fight they will move on to another flock looking for sheep.

    Open your eyes and be a sheepdog.
     

  3. FALPhil

    FALPhil New Member

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    I don't think it matters. You have to understand the criminal mindset. They are strictly looking for targets of opportunity for the most part. Very rarely do street thugs plan a specific encounter. They are the ones that decide whether or not to engage. Whether you make eye contact or not, they are simply waiting for the right opportunity.
     
  4. allmons

    allmons New Member

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    robocop10mm is correct

    Make eye contact to let them know you are in condition yellow. Predators understand strength - they want to attack the weakest.

    I let them know right up front that I am willing to dance - and I have rarely seen a perp who wanted trouble. They want to hit someone fast and hard and get away before they can be caught. Getting into a tussle is a good way to end up in jail - or worse.

    Unlike many "tough guys" I've met, most crooks are smart enough to understand that you never know who you are up against - so they pick victims based on instinct. Do you look scared? Will you meet their gaze? Are you wearing clothes that would restrict your movement?

    Do you have long hair or a pony tail they can grab and use to control your head? Expensive watches or jewelry that say, "Rob me"?

    Or, do you look competent and unafraid? Sturdy shoes and loose clothing that will let you give as good as you get?

    Believe me, these guys and gals size you up in an instant. If you look like another predator they automatically seek another victim.

    Caveat: if they are on drugs, all bets are off. You will need to be prepared to defend your life.

    :cool:
     
  5. Spartan

    Spartan New Member

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    eye contact

    not to poke fun at a bad situation...but hopefully you are making eye contact, or at least focusing in the general direction, when the time comes to pull the trigger.
     
  6. Jay

    Jay New Member

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    .... not being an expert in anything......

    I feel like would-be attackers seek anonymity, and surprise. If one meets their gaze ..... not long enough to challenge, but long enough to indicate, " I see you, I know what you look like, and I know you're there." ... I think they'll move on.....

    Yes, there's always the exception
     
  7. Bidah

    Bidah New Member

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    In me and my wifes experience as a citizens, yes it does make a difference. There have been several situations that were avoided because we were paying attention, and we did let them know that we are not an easy target.
     
  8. allmons

    allmons New Member

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    On target, bidah!

    Once you decide that you are responsible for your own life and safety, you start to pay serious attention to people and situations.

    Once you start to observe life in a higher threat level, your eyes will literally be opened! You will be amazed at how many other people are "heads up". Many are LEO or military trained and will meet your eyes without hostility. Some of the alert predators you see will be up to no good.

    Much to your dismay, you will find most people are paying no attention at all.
    These are all future victims. It is always better to be a predator than to be prey.

    Never forget to watch your 6 - and be prepared for action.

    :cool:
     
  9. FALPhil

    FALPhil New Member

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    I must respectfully disagree. I have been studying two phenomenon:

    1. Mohammedan militancy, AKA 'jihad', and
    2. MS-13.

    They are both pretty indiscriminate in their victim selection. MS-13 often uses the same tactic that US police use - overwhelming force. Mohammedans pretty much don't care at all, since their own life has no value except in death. Heck, they attack victims who are locked and loaded. Its almost as if they get 'extra points' if the victim is strong.

    Now, granted, encounters with these two groups in the USA are pretty rare right now. But over time, that will change, because the USA has no coherent border control strategy. Also, when the common street thug realizes how successful these two groups can be, the street thugs will begin to emulate them.
     
  10. Varro

    Varro New Member

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    Not sure there is a definite answer since I'm sure situations will vary if you're in a dark, Wally*World parking lot or inside a shopping mall.
    I've learned through my life-experiences that eye-contact displays a sort of confidence in your demeanor.
    As stated earlier, you want to be in the right color-condition when conditions dictate.
    But, in brief, I don't think your eye-contact will trigger aggressive action. If anything, you might prevent it...There is a difference between being alert with your eyes and "mad-dogging"....While I'm carrying, I do feel comforting & confident....:)
     
  11. KevinG

    KevinG New Member

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    One thing for sure is if possible, do not be a static target but be moving and not in a manner to lose sight of the attacker(s). Hopefully if any of you are in a bad situation you see it coming rather then being blind-sided.
     
  12. Declaration Day

    Declaration Day New Member Supporter

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    Last summer, I was heading in to work and stopped at a gas station. While fueling up, I noticed two shady-looking characters hanging around just outside the gas station door. They were teenagers, it was 4:30 in the morning, and they were dressed like typical street scum. As I filled my tank I saw them whisper something to each other, and one of them pointed at me. It was then that I decided to make them aware that I'm a poor choice for a target. I made stern eye contact with them, much like a cop would. They turned and walked the other way.

    My bank devised an interesting strategy to deter criminals. Shortly after they had been robbed twice, they hired a door greeter. This man has a clipboard and bank forms ready to hand out as people walk in the door, but I'm sure that's not their reason for hiring him. When you walk in, he makes eye contact, asks how you're doing and if you need anything. I'm certain the idea is to make a would-be robber uncomfortable, because nobody walks in without being noticed and spoken to.
     
  13. Spartan

    Spartan New Member

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    eye contact

    eye would agree that people who dont have the best intentions tend to get a little uncomfortable with eye contact. but bottom line, if you are carrying, either get the confidence or stop carrying, because carrying allows you a certain amount of confidence which you may not have had before, and not all eye contact is bad eye contact, people say hi through eye contact, some people can even say i love you through eye contact, i am deviating from the point though, if it is eye contact with a possible subject that may attack, hold that eye contact, never take your eyes off of him. if he advances in a hostile manner, draw on him, provide the warning, and if it is not heeded, then fire if its a life threatening situation. you have no other recourse. and as previously stated, when drugs are involved all bets are off. i once encountered a guy that was drugged up on only god knows what, not only did i spray him twice and almost point blank range and get him in the eyes and mouth, but he continued to advance blindly, and i had to resort to my baton. my partner and myself both utilized batons, i stepped in front of my partner initially because he drew his baton first, but i was hoping the pepper spray would stop the suspect and it didnt, we both defended with batons, i bending mine around the suspects knee. had to buy myself a new baton after that. but it was amazing that the suspect still managed to stagger away and even made an attempt to leave the scene. I was surprised he could even stand after being hit in the knee and arm the way he had. thank god neither of us drew our weapons, but as eratic as his behavior was and as uncontrollable as the situation was, he was too close for a firearm to be anything other then a danger to use. subduing him was our only concern and a firearm wouldnt have done it. that is why I always carry pepper spray, a baton, and a punch knife, because sometimes a firearm just isnt necessary, sometimes there no time, sometimes its more of a threat then it is a savior. for close quarters, always have a knife, it allows you to stab and then retreat. which allows you the distance to draw without the firearm being a threat. trust me, after you've put a knife into someone, it changes the dynamics of everything. blood can be very persuasive, it reminds us of our mortality, drugs or no drugs, pain is not always an indicator that we are alive, it lets us know that things are not going as planned. personally, if you can fire off pepper spray as the subject is advancing, even better, they cant see when you draw on them.
     
  14. ScottG

    ScottG New Member

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    If that happens, it's either time to move out of that area or begin utilizing open carry.
     
  15. rachilders

    rachilders New Member

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    +1. You probably don't want to come across as challenging to someone who's a possible threat, simply aware and alert. If they know that YOU know they are there, most BG's will move on to easier pickings.
     
  16. Gun Looney

    Gun Looney New Member

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    I think young punks looking for a fight will likely find one with YOU if you lock onto their stare. It's as if they're daring someone to stare back at them. They're not really interested in what you've got in your wallet as much the joy they'll feel in potentially beating your azz. A bonified "mugger" is a predatory pile of cow dung who's looking for a victim. Folks who walk around looking six feet in front of them like they're looking for pennnies have VICTIM written right across their foreheads. They'll more likely be mugged.

    Depending on the situation I both make eye contact and avoid it, depending on which of the two scenarios I've described above. IMO there's no hard and fast rules. You need to constantly evaluate your situations.
     
  17. Max

    Max New Member

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    Depends on what stage you are in during an encounter. With distance involved, ensuring a potential threat recognizes that you are aware of your surroundings, and them, theres a good chance they may look for an easier (unaware) target. But once a threat is in your face, direct eye contact does 2 things; 1) it challenges them which only serves to fuel a confrontation and 2) if they are experienced they'll be looking to read your eyes. Most of us will give away our intentions immedately before taking action giving our attacker time to initiate action of their own. Try to read their face through your peripheral vision: Besides, being a wolf in sheeps clothing isn't necessarily a bad thing. Gives you the element of surprise.
     
  18. Luvs2hunt

    Luvs2hunt New Member

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    Very well said!

    I keep my eyes wide open all the time & I hope that the predators see that I won't allow myself to be their prey. They need to see my confidence though my eyes & in everything I do. They will need to find other prey that won't fight back.
     
  19. mortpes

    mortpes New Member

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    I make immediate and locked in eye contact. There are less than two seconds from pull to fire so I need all the information I can get and as quickly as possible. Because although I pull to fire, they do have the option to break it off. Also I observe body language. Anything that I can use to tell me to stop the fire.
     
  20. Tex in Maine

    Tex in Maine New Member

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    I think direct eye contact could be a double edged sword, sure it make the person know you are aware of them but like someone else stated it also serve as a challenge to some young punk. only a few times have I ever got that just not right feeling about someone, so I would just look in there general direction and if we did make eye contact i would give a nod, this way I do not come off as aggresive but they now know I am aware of thier presence, of course it also helps that I am 6'4" and 260lbs, and if worse comes to worse I usually have some sort of firearm on me. since it is winter and the clothes are bulkier I usually have my XD 45 compact on me.