I work nights and my current gig gives me a lot of down time. I spend at least part of my shift every night reading articles by reputable trainers and SMEs. I read articles by people like Kathy Jackson (AKA Cornered Cat), Claude Werner, Masaad Ayoob, Greg Ellifritz and John Lovell among others. I've had some chances to interact with some of these people and ask them questions directly. And one thing that I've noticed is that all of them, with no dissent, agree that you're better off avoiding a criminal encounter than winning one. I've also noticed that they all talk about the concept of "Watering Holes". "Watering Hole" isn't a term that I made up. I learned it from reading these people's articles. A Watering Hole is a known trouble spot. It's a place where predators are known to gather because they know prey gathers there. They're all also in agreement that you're better off avoiding those places if possible. I realize that sometimes you don't have a choice, Walmart is watering hole but groceries are a necessity. I've also noticed that there are certain locations that get mentioned repeatedly every time the topic comes up. ATMs are a good example. Criminals literally go there looking for people to rob. Convenience stores are another one. I mean, they call them "Stop and Robs" for a reason. A common topic on every single gun forum on the internet is what do you do if you're in a convenience store and somebody tries to rob it. That should tell you something. FWIW my answer to that question is always Stay The Hell Out Of Convenience Stores!!. Why would I deliberately put myself in that position? Every time this topic comes up somebody responds by saying "By Gawd I refuse to live in fear." and if that's how you see it fine. I'm not trying to change your mind because I know I'm not going to but I don't see it that way. I see it as looking for trouble that I could have avoided. I remember reading a discussion on another forum in which the poster actually said that he drove his wife to Walmart at like 2 a.m. to get Moon Pies for his kid's lunch. The guy even claimed that he parked at the far end of the parking lot and let his wife walk into the store alone so she could "get her steps in". The whole point of the guy's post was how surprised he was does the Walmart parking lot was full of crackheads and Street Rats at that time of night. To me, that behavior is so over-the-top stupid that I literally thought the guy was trolling. I make it a rule to avoid places that I know are trouble. I realize that I can't avoid all of the trouble spots but I don't do rest areas, I don't do ATMs (really always but especially after dark.) I don't close bars and even when I'm working nights I stay out of convenience stores in the wee hours. I realize this isn't exactly the same thing but when I was working nights as a roving guard there was a place way out in the Southeast corner of the county that I had to go check every night and every night I planned my route so that I would head out there at around 0145 and stay there till about 0230 and be getting back to town around 0300. After the bar rush was off the road. There are certain things that I don't do no matter what. Especially now that I'm getting older and I'm moving into that target demographic (old white dude).