Don’t Forget To Run

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(By Deborah A. Culp)

Yolanda R. Sparrow of the Wilmington, NC Police Department

“Don’t forget to run” is one of the key tips that Lt. Yolanda R. Sparrow of the Wilmington, NC Police Department offers her listener’s when she is teaching this self defense class. Lt. Sparrow offers an array of  do-able, highly practical self defense tips for women or anyone wishing takes the class and her advice.

The whole concept of “don’t forget to run” is that she is teaching self defense tactics and skills to give the victim an opportunity to get away with their lives and to stay safe. Lt. Sparrow strongly suggests that no one has to be a hero and if these tactics work, there would be a lot less victims of targeted or random crimes.

These are suggestions from a trained professional who has firsthand knowledge about victim attack crimes.  Cautionary defense methods suggest that one should constantly be aware of their surrounding, be prepared to unlock the vehicle before you get to the care and have the car keys in hand prior to approaching the vehicle.  If possible, unlock the vehicle door just a few feet prior to getting into said vehicle and enter the vehicle by backing in, Butt first instead of the usual way you’d normally get in.

More of her food for thought includes “Something to think about:” Like if the attacker attempts to get you into a car or other vehicle, to take you to another location, simply do not go!  Chances are if they have plans to further harm, hurt or even kill you, an offsite location is the better option for them, not you. Your attitude should be “if you are going to do something to me, this is where it is going to go down at… I am not going anywhere with you!” At this point, you may have already increased your odds of coming out of the situation alive.

Lt. Sparrow went on to say, if the attacker does manage to get you into a car or they get into the car with you that you are driver of, immediately check you surrounding. Fasten your seat belt, and then plan to take the attacker on the ride of their life. Ram the vehicle into something (preferably on the attackers side) to get the attention of others. This may be the last thing that the attacker thinks of.

For verbal and audible defense techniques, scream, purchase a loud whistle and blow it if in distress and sound the car alarm. All of this helps to call attention to you and to ward off attackers. Have your mind made up to fight to the finish! This doesn’t mean to competitively fight, fist to fist, just enough to distract the culprit so you can get away safely with your life. Doing all you can to save your life and perhaps the lives of others in your vehicle or home at the time of an attack on your person, also suggests that one is “fit for the fight.” By having some type of exercise regiment, the odds increase your success of your winning the fight to keep your life intact. Cardio exercise of any kind is key for endurance and your strength is your key stamina, says Lt. Sparrow.

The seminar also covered having a defensive strategy in your home in case an attack is targeted for the home.  Pre-plan and even rehearse an escape route, hiding places for both children and adults, extra keys, telephone, a whistle an air horn and other weapons as well. Stun guns, tasers, pepper spray and fire arms are a few choices of self defense weapons. However, you may want check to see what your state laws mandates are on possessing any of these items.

Firearms like hand guns, stun guns, taser’s or even pepper spray may be legal but require background checks and/or finger printing as a part of the application process. This qualified professional also shared information on both the Rear Bear Hug and the Front Bear Hug techniques. As well as the most effective places to kick an attacker; the groin, shins, front of the knees, throat or face. Once you are successful in implementing any of these self defense tactics, keep the key thing in mind to increase your survival chances – “don’t forget to run!” 

Deborah A. Culp ( Contributing Writer)

About Deborah A. Culp ( Contributing Writer)

Deborah A. Culp is a Freelance Journalist & Consultant with over 20 years of hard earned experience in the business. This includes Print & Broadcast Media. Originally from Detroit, Michigan, she now lives in Wilmington, NC. She is a Correspondent to Divine Caroline, TPEPost News, The History of Jazz Music, and For ColoredGurls and formerly with the Wilmington Star News Online. Deborah recently became the Parent & Family Expert for the, Wilmington/Fayetteville, and NC. Still operating as a Freelance Writer/Photographer. She is working on her first book; “Then there was laughter” and has a few business endeavor irons in the fire. She is a staunch volunteer and loves her family & friends.