Ms. Cross was on her way to Wal-Mart with her mother when she noticed a man attacking a
That’s the story. Now read it at the link, and let’s look at what Tanisha Cross did right:
She asked to intervene: She got the officer’s okay before jumping in. This is important. Situations with police can escalate into life and death struggles, and the officer doesn’t necessarily know who you are. Furthermore, his duty to protect you may outweigh any benefit you can provide. Ms. Cross asked to help, making it absolutely clear whose side she was on, and ensuring that the officer really needed help.
Multiple strikes: Tanisha Cross didn’t treat the stun gun like a “magic wand.” She struck the attacker’s limbs multiple times to keep him from closing in, hitting or grappling with either herself or the officer. This highlights one of the main assets of a stun gun: its ability to prevent a stronger person from taking hold of you.
Weapon retention: Weapon retention was a major element in this altercation. At the time of the attack, the officer was trying to keep the perpetrator from grabbing his gun after losing his radio and in all likelihood (reports aren’t clear) having his own pepper spray used against him. Ms. Cross attacked the limbs, keeping the attacker from grappling for the stun gun while protecting the officer’s firearm: the most dangerous element in the conflict.
If you carry any sort of weapon you must always think of the consequences if somebody else gets it. Police need to carry firearms and you might choose to do so yourself, but having the option of a worst case scenario where someone shocks you with your own weapon instead of shooting you is a welcome option when you exercise your rights.
In short, we salute Tanisha Cross for her bravery, but more than that, we congratulate her form being smart. Applied intelligence is the most important self defense tool in anyone’s arsenal.