He May Be In A Wheelchair, But Don't Think He's An Easy Target

Gun Talk Media’s First Person Defender series of video have been a wonderful opportunity to watch and learn from people with varied levels of training thrust into force-on-force scenarios.

Unlike most First Person Defender scenarios we’ve covered so far, this one features a defender who has a considerable amount of firearms training. He’s also in a wheelchair, which both limits his mobility and creates the impression that he’s an easy target for criminals.

As both scenarios show, Tommy is anything but an easy target.

In the first scenario, Tommy is approached by a man asking for money.


His verbal commands and attempt to deescalate were on point, as was his decision to try to move to a better position. While the guy got much closer than I would have liked under the circumstances, he never presented as a clear threat before walking away, so Tommy never drew his gun.

It was a good call, and when reflecting on the way the scenario played out, Tommy was the first one to mention that the guy got too close. From his response during the scenario to his self-critique of what he might have done better, Tommy was clearly squared away.

It was therefore time to add some more complexity for our defender.


A very nice lady in a purple shirt engaged Tommy in polite conversation, before the man in the red shirt came up aggressively asking for money. Tommy quickly pulled her behind him, so that he could have an unobstructed field of view and potentially protect her if things got weird. Then things were made even more complex by the entrance of the guy in the blue shirt. Was he another potential threat, or just a guy walking through?

We don’t get to find out.


The aggressive panhandler goes for a gun thrust in the middle of his waistband, and Tommy, who already had his hand on his gun, was able to draw and fire two accurate shots that put him down.


Tommy then immediately turned his attention to the other guy, and not knowing if he was a threat, ordered him to the ground, and had the woman he was protecting call 911.

I think Tommy did the best job of solving the problem at hand of any of the people I’ve seen on first Person Defender so far. His decision-making was solid, and his communications with everyone he encountered was clear and precise. He also was able to clearly articulate every decision he made after the fact, which you must be able to do after the fact if you are involved in a defensive shooting.