Be physically and psychologically prepared to defend yourself. Start by preparing an inventory of your personal skills. Think about how you usually respond during a confrontation. What is your style? Do you fight, run, cry or freeze? Think through various strategies. Talk with other people about ways to handle confrontations and rehearse alternatives. By preparing, you will have more options to choose from if you ever find yourself in a confrontation. Consider participating in the Millis PD’s RAD Self Defense Program. Call for details.
Every confrontation is different. The best response depends on a combination of many factors, such as the location of the incident, characteristics of the assailant, the presence of weapons and your personal skills and available resources. Your most effective weapon in a confrontation is your own judgement.
Only you can decide how you will respond to a given situation. When faced with danger, trust yourself. Stay as calm as possible. Think rationally, without panic. Find a way to escape.
Evaluate the situation and the options available to you.
The following strategies may be effective in confrontations:
- Stalling for time
- Distracting or diverting the assailant and fleeing
- Verbal assertiveness
- Screaming or using a personal alarm to attract attention and help from people nearby
- Physically resisting and fighting off the assailant
Keep assessing the situation as it is happening. Never give up. If the first strategy you choose does not work try another strategy. Observe as much as you can about the identity, clothing and behavior of the assailant. This information will be important and useful for the police investigation.
Be alert and observant wherever you are and learn to recognize signs of criminal behavior. Report all crime to the MPD even if it is only an attempt. Crime cannot be controlled or prevented if it is not reported. By reporting crimes and suspicious activities you can protect yourself and others.
Get a good description of the assailant. Carefully observe and remember as much as you can about appearance and behavior. Try to memorize details of the assailant's identity such as age, height, weight, eye and hair color. Look for any distinguishing personal characteristics, such as scars, tattoos, hairstyle, or other prominent features. Observe the assailant's clothing style and colors, jewelry, gait and manner of speech. If a car is involved in the crime, note the make, model, color and license number. Call the MPD immediately to make a crime report. The sooner you report the crime, the more likely the MPD will be able to collect important evidence and apprehend the offender. If the crime occurred in your home or neighborhood, it is a good idea to notify neighbors and the landlord so they may take extra precautions.