21 Men And Women Who Killed In Self Defense Share Exactly What Life Is Like Knowing They Killed Someone

via Flickr - Geoffrey Fairchild
via Flickr – Geoffrey Fairchild

1. Eight Year Old Saves His Mother

When I was 8 years old we lived out in a farm house in an orchard, the nearest “town” was about ten minutes away and my dad was working far enough away that he stayed away during the week. One morning I heard my mom yelling and I thought I had missed the bus so I got out of bed and saw a naked man hitting her and trying to grab her, he was out in a bender and had just walked to the nearest lights and broken in, our dog was barking and nipping at him but she wasn’t a trained attack dog or anything. I ran back into my room and grabbed a little .22 bolt action my dad had given me and the ammo he made me keep separate and loaded it, it seemed like it took forever to load those 5 shots. I ran outside following the dog barking and saw him dragging my mom by her hair, I remember trying to be steady like I had been taught but I just fired over and over again, I didn’t know it at the time but 3 of the 5 hit him and he was later found by the police after someone dropped him anonymously at a hospital about an hour away with one of the bullets lodged in his lung.

At that age I had a hard time processing it mainly because the state mandated I see a counselor and she kept insinuating I should feel all kinds of emotions I wasn’t, which made me feel like there was something wrong with me. In the end I just feel lucky that I was brought up by parents who trusted me and spent time teaching me never to panic.


2. Teen Stops Home Invasion

This was back in 2003, I was 14 at the time. I was visiting my aunt & uncle in Texas for my 2 week christmas break. We were all supposed to go out to my cousins baby shower but I came down with the chicken pox. Being young at the time, I didn’t want to go anyways. I convinced them to go without me. Ended up playing halo for a few hours in the master bedroom when I heard a window shatter and the alarm start going off. I remembered that my uncle kept a gun behind the TV so I grabbed it. It was some kind of revolver, no idea what kind. All I know is that the hammer was really hard to pull back.

What seemed like 5 minutes later I hear someone coming up the stairs and yelled at him to go away and that I had a gun, Being so young though I had the voice of a little bitch and the guy probably thought I was bullshitting. When he got to the top of the stairs I fired once and the recoil made me drop the gun, But I think I hit him somewhere since he fell backwards down the stairs. I never found out how the guy died, but I hope it wasn’t from the gunshot. I called 911 and some time later the police came.

It turns out that this guy got out of prison a few days before. The guy was a drunk and managed to hit some delivery guy on a bike during one of his drunk driving routines, my uncle was his defense attorney, Turns out that its pretty hard to defend someone when there is security camera footage of you running some guy over and driving away. Guessing that he blamed my uncle for the 5 years he spent in jail and decided to get revenge.


3. Zero Regrets

Back in 2012 two men busted in my back door. It took them a few minutes as it was a metal door on a metal frame with sturdy hinges and a lock. One of the guys was probably 6′ 6″ and pretty large; he was finally able to break it off the hinge with a crowbar. When I heard them start hammering on the door I told my wife to call the police and lock herself and our baby behind two doors and I went out into the hallway with a shotgun. I kept yelling at them to leave and that the cops were coming and that I was armed – they kept coming. Eventually I heard a pop and the banging stopped and I knew they were through. I told them in no uncertain terms that if I saw them in my house, I was going to kill them.

A few seconds later they came around the corner both holding what appeared to be weapons and I shot the bigger one twice in the chest. The other one just stood there confused, probably trying process what in the hell had just happened. He took one step towards me and I shot him as well. Police showed up about two minutes later – both died at the scene. One had a knife and duct tape, the other had the crowbar. I later found out that the larger one was wanted for some sort of manslaughter charge because he killed his girlfriend a state over.

I have zero regrets about that night. They had multiple chances to leave and I have no doubt that they would have hurt my family if I had not stopped them.


4. Wife Beater Meets His Match

This was about 2004-2006. I don’t remember the exact year anymore.

I killed a guy that tried to break into my apartment because he was wanting his wife that he had just beat the shit out of.

2am. I hear them arguing. I could hear it through my bathroom wall. I shut my bathroom then bedroom to drown it out.

2:15am. She’s banging on my door, broken nose, left eye swollen, and limping from tripping and falling to get out of the apartment. Told her to go to the bathroom, clean herself up, then hide in my bedroom.

Husband comes out of the apartment, yelling her name, and he notices her blood trail to my apartment. Starts banging on my door, yelling to let him in. I warned him 3 times that he doesn’t stop, I will kill you. He kicks the lock on the door, door swings open, and I swing my baseball bat down onto his head.

He falls to the ground stunned. He lands stomach first and I see a handgun tucked into the back of his shirt. I grab it, throw it into my apartment, and warned him one more time.

He got up, came at me, I slam my bat into his stomach, then slam my bat over his head one last time which caved his skull in. I knew from the blood spatter from when I hit, he was dead. Thankfully, the neighbors had called the police when it started and the second he fell to the ground dead, police had made it to the top of the steps.

It never affected me as much as it should have. I reacted the best way I could for the situation I was in.

I don’t think about what I did anymore. I can’t fix the past.


5. Four On One

I was jumped by 4 guys about 10 years ago. I was down on the ground and they were kicking and punching me. I grabbed my knife from my pocket, reached up and stabbed one of them in the stomach. Blood everywhere. some mine, mostly his. they all ran. One of them yelled back that he would find me later and kill me. He later died at a hospital because he took too long to get help.

Basically I never really felt bad about it and I don’t regret it. It has popped into my head randomly from time to time and it weirds me out that I took a persons life but thats about it.. doesn’t last long. My thoughts about it are that I was protecting myself and whether or not they would have killed me I feel it was not just justified but exactly what I should have done.


6. Senior Year, Off Campus Invasion

My senior year of college, I had an off campus apartment in a really shitty part of town. I often went to the batting cages with my roommates just for fun, so we each had our own baseball bat.

It was a Friday night and I heard a bang at the backdoor. I honestly thought it was just one of my roommates who had locked themselves out drunkenly. Well I get down there and there’s a guy in the kitchen wearing a ski mask. I just grabbed one of the baseball bats and swung at this guy as hard as humanly possible.

Well I hit the guy square in the head. He fell back, broke down the sliding closet door. Two of my roommates came running out, and I was just standing over this guy, who was profusely bleeding on our kitchen floor. One called 911 and the other one took off the guys ski mask and we tried to stop the bleeding with it. At this point the lights were still off and I didn’t actually realize how much blood was everywhere.

Two cops show up what felt like an eternity later, and then an ambulance wheeled him off. He died not too long after that. Our last roommate showed up while police were still taking statements. He just walks in and gives us this look like “what the hell happened?” And I just said “I broke your bat, I’m sorry”. He didn’t really give a shit about the baseball bat, I just didn’t know what else to say.

None of us slept that night. We just watched south park on Netflix and all called out of work the next day. I remember there was a lot of disbelief. I mean I couldn’t believe that had just happened. Never felt bad about it though. I did often wonder for awhile what led that guy to break into our place.

I do however own a .22 revolver now.


7. A Father And Husband’s Worst Nightmare

Back in 1995 I lived in a quiet neighborhood in the SF East Bay with my wife of a few years and our 20 month old daughter. We had a small 3 bedroom two story house, and one of our second floor bedrooms doubled as my home office. One quiet Saturday morning I was in my office playing Command and Conquer on my computer with my headphones on, oblivious to the sounds of the outside world.

I’d probably been playing for an hour or so when, during one particularly quiet moment, I faintly heard my wife cry out downstairs. Knowing that she was down there with our daughter, I pulled my headphones off to see if she needed help with anything. Until the day I take my last breath, I’ll never forget what I heard when I pulled them off. I heard the voice of a man, with a thick Mexican accent, shout, “Quit yelling bitch, or I’ll fucking cut your head off and fuck your fucking daughter!” My daughter was crying hysterically.

After that, it was like some switch was thrown in me and my higher brain just shut off. I wasn’t making decisions. I just acted. I don’t even remember pulling the .45 from the lockbox in my desk, I just remember walking down the stairs slowly, scared as hell that I was going to see my wife dead when I reached the bottom. Instead, when I reached the bottom, I saw my wife half naked, bent over the couch, bleeding from somewhere in her upper body, while being raped from behind by some burly guy with a knife in his hand. He wasn’t TRYING to rape her, he was in the middle of the deed and was probably nearing climax.

I never said a word to the guy. Not while I was upstairs, not while I was coming down the stairs, and not when I walked into the room. His back was to me, so he had no idea I was even standing there.

He was holding his knife in his right hand, so that was the arm I grabbed with my left when I pulled him off. He spun away from her and me with a confused look on his face, and I shot him square in the chest at nearly point blank range before he had a chance to say a single word. His face went pale as he went onto one knee, and I fired twice more. One hit his neck, and the second missed entirely. I was told later that the first shot was the fatal one.

What happened next has always been a point of shame for me. The only thought going through my head at that point was that I couldn’t let my daughter watch this man die. Without even checking on my wife, I scooped my daughter up and walked out my front door. As I walked out to my driveway, I saw one of my neighbors standing there staring at my house (he’d heard the gunshots). The poor guy went pale when he saw me walk out, and I vaguely remember asking him to hold my daughter while I went and checked on my wife. The neighbor asked me if I’d shot her, and I told him, “No, I shot the man who was raping her.” I didn’t realize at the time that I had the guys blood spray covering half my body, and that I looked like something out of a horror movie. I then handed him my daughter and my gun (I also have no idea why I gave him my gun), and went back into my house to help my wife.

The police and DA gave me some flak about the exact circumstances of the shooting (one of the detectives told me that it was more of an “execution” than a “defense”), but in the end they declined to pursue any charges. The man who attacked her turned out to be a guy with serious mental issues who had been previously convicted of two violent rapes, one of which was against a 9 year old girl. Under California’s then-new 3 Strikes law, he’d have gone to prison for life if I hadn’t killed him.

As for recovery; I like to think that I’ve recovered from it, but it certainly induced a few behavioral changes. To this day, for example, I can’t wear headphones that block out background noise. Even after years of counseling, over-ear and noise cancelling headphones give me panic attacks because I can’t hear what’s happening around me. I found out later that he’d been raping my wife for nearly 10 minutes before I heard him, and that he’d actually told my wife THREE TIMES that he was going to rape my daughter when he was finished with her. I was sitting 30 feet away and had no idea it was going on, and that fact has fucked with me for years.

My wife had a much worse time of it though. In addition to two stab wounds to her shoulder and upper arm, and the bruising and injuries from the forceful rape, she ended up having a mental break and took years to really recover. For the first 6 months, she absolutely could not be in any room by herself. For more than a year, she couldn’t be in a house by herself (and she NEVER reentered the house where this happened). For several years, she’d break out in a sweat when she heard men with deep hispanic accents talking, because she’d hear his voice again. Even now, decades later, she starts shaking if you try to talk to her about it. She’s fine in every other sense, but even discussing it freaks her out.


8. The Dark Side Of New Orleans

I got assaulted in an alley in New Orleans 20 years ago. The guy hit me in the back of the head, cut me a few times with a knife, put the knife to my throat and told me that he was going to rape and kill me. I choked him to death. Felt his windpipe crumble in my hands. I’ve had PTSD ever since. Constant nightmares. I see his face turn red, blue, and purple. I hear the crunch of his windpipe. I feel him struggle against me. I have scars I see every time I get out of the shower. I did what I had to do and don’t regret it but killing a man with your bare hands is a lifelong struggle.


9. An Inside Job Gone Wrong

My house had been robbed twice while I was at work. One day I had to call out sick and while I was sleeping I heard someone downstairs. I called out “Who’s there?” When we’re sick, our supervisors come to see if we’re actually home, but I was worried because they always knock first, and I was sure I didn’t hear any knock or doorbell.

I heard footsteps running up the stairs and I called out that I was armed. My supervisor definitely would have stopped, but the footsteps got louder. I got behind the door and two men charged into my room with guns. I moved my arm and they turned around. I shot one of them in the neck while he shot the wall behind me, the other man ran downstairs.

It turns out I shot my coworker’s cousin, who knew my schedule of when I wasn’t going to be home. The coworker was not in on anything. The other man was the cousin’s friend.

I was not charged. I do not feel guilty because the last two months made me feel very violated. I changed jobs because I was uncomfortable working with people who knew about it.


10. Suicidal And Fearless

Happened about a decade ago. I was walking back home and these 2 kids tried to rob me. I don’t necessarily know what age they were, but they were somewhat short (I live in a country in which the average person isn’t very tall) and pretty scrawny. I was pretty deep into depression that had me at a point in which I didn’t really care about much of anything.. and was contemplating suicide constantly, so as weird as it might be to say, I wasn’t particularly scared, which is probably why he kept getting even more agitated.

Both were probably on drugs, one with the gun was yelling more and more and for some reason I reached out for his gun, in the struggle the gun fired twice, both times he got shot and died. The other one started yelling for his brother, charged me with the knife he had, I shot and kept shooting until the gun ran out.

Called the police, they couldn’t pretend to care less, two junkie kids on drugs, yeah. Would probably be different in the US.

At the time the only thing that freaked me out was the fact I wasn’t freaking out. I kept thinking I was some kind of monster, yet was mostly indifferent towards it.

A year later after I got on meds for my depression and it felt like it crashed on me pretty hard. Got heavily into drinking.


11. Graveyard Shift At The Gas Station

I work graveyards at a gas station in that grey area part of my town where a good neighborhood is immediately bordered by an extremely bad one, so I see all sorts of shit, both good and bad.

A couple years ago (4-5 now maybe? I usually try not to think about it.), I was in the back room stocking, and hear the front door open, so I come out face first into two younger guys running in with guns drawn. I carry, but I’m not the idiot that thinks he can draw, ready, aim and fire before someone with a ready weapon kills me, so I put my hands up and stop moving. Guy 1 keeps coming and grabs me by the back of the shirt while Guy 2 peels off and starts grabbing all of the Newports and scratch tickets. Guy 1 puts the gun to the back of my head and brings me around to the register area, where I open the register. He pulls me to the back of the register area by the cigarette display and his friends moves over to empty the till.

While they’re changing places, Guy 1 says “Hurry up blood let’s merc this fool” (or something very similar), and gestures with his gun in such a way that I got a look at it. He. Had. No. Magazine. His friend may have, but he was facing away, on one knee, with his weapon stuffed in his rear waist band with his fucking comically long shirt over it. Unfortunately for them my CZ-75 compact most certainly did. I smacked Guy 1 in the head with right hand as hard as I could, and drew while shooting upwards at him. I wasn’t really aiming, just fired twice into center of mass from just above my hip. First round caught him in the upper sternum/collar bone area, and the second caught him in the base of the neck and travelled upwards through his skull, before finally ruining the Marlboro light display with bits of his head. (Oddly, those cigarette cartons with the red on the white and gold are my clearest memory of that night.) I spun towards Guy 2 and fired three more times, catching him once in the upper abdomen and twice in the chest.

I immediately called 911, and then proceeded to sit on the floor in silence for the ten minutes it took them to get there, shaking. After all, the adrenaline was wearing off. All said and done, I was questioned for about twenty minutes, and my weapon was confiscated for the duration, but other than that and ~a month of nightmares I was fine. Nightmares stopped once the detective in charge of the case let me know that I was wasn’t the first store they’d robbed, and killed or severely beaten the other checkers. Then I was just glad that I’d removed trash like that from the world. Can’t hurt anyone now.


12. Returning Fire

I was in an incident where I shot and killed a squatter during an eviction. In all honesty, he shot me first, and I dont really remember all the details which is probably a good thing. I was also present with a marshal at the time, so there wasnt much of a report to take.

I think about it sometimes, especially when my shoulder hurts. Hard not to honestly. I’m alive, and he isnt, and at the end of the day I feel pretty good about that. I never knew his name, or why he fired his weapon at me instead of just walking out peacefully. He’s probably in an unmarked grave somewhere in Michigan, and that doesnt bother me too much. I don’t intend to end up like that man.


13. “He’s Gonna Rape Me”

Having lived in a more dangerous neighborhood growing up, I was taught as a teen gun safety and was at the shooting range regularly with my dad and brothers. One day I arrived home after college to find someone going through my things in my bedroom. He came at me with a knife as soon as he saw me. I pulled my gun out of my purse and shot him in the chest.

It happened so quickly, all I could think of was the knife and his proximity and that he had physical advantage over me and I needed to do something before he got within arms length and could use his strength to rape me. I didn’t take time to aim, I certainly didn’t intend to kill him. I wanted him to not be able to come near to me.

I don’t regret pulling the trigger. I do have nightmares about it and what would have happened if i didn’t have a gun that day.

In regards to the “he’s gonna rape me” mentality. I live in South Africa, where some believe (incorrectly) that sex with a virgin cures AIDS. There were a number of reports of rapes in my neighborhood at the time.


14. Home From The Army

Was getting out of the Army a few years ago. I took my wife and kids home early in order to focus on getting out and finish selling the house before I completely left the area. I left both of my cars at home with my wife (had a buddy who was also leaving the Army, drive me around) so there was zero cars at my house. Anyways, the front door opened to a hallway to go to the kitchen and backdoor and the stairs to go upstairs. I was sleeping on the floor in the master bedroom where the top of the stairs led because all my stuff had been packed except for a few knick knacks… and my .45 S&W M&P.

Three guys broke in that night, shattered my back door (big center window in door) which woke me up. I didn’t have much to take.. but my laptop and tv was the only thing downstairs. I heard them talking.. heard them say stuff about not having much and taking the laptop and tv. Then heard them talk about looking upstairs. As soon as I heard the first step creak, I yelled out that I have a gun. No movement… then they pretty much bum rushed the stairs and into my room. I shot the first guy in the neck, his buddy took a shot at me and missed where he then was shot in the shoulder. The third guy rushed back outside and left his buddies. The guy shot in the neck was dead instantly, guy with a gsw in shoulder was withering in pain. Kicked their guns down the stairs and called 911. Cops were there in about 10 minutes. Took my statement, took my gun and offered an ambulance. Don’t think they ever found the third guy also.

3 years later and I think about it from time to time. What bothers me most is that I didn’t kill the guy I shot in the shoulder so I do fear he could find me again and also… that the house was nearly empty.. so that dude lost his life over nothing. I’m pretty much fucked in the head from deployments and such.. so this just adds on to it. I just smoke a lot of weed to deal with it.


15. Being Too Nice Will Get You Robbed

Well, I was sitting in a gas station parking lot when a man knocked on my passengers side window. I was waiting while my friend grabbed some beer and he had just walked in. I live in an area with a lot of homeless people and being the too nice person I am I rolled the window down to give the guy some of the change sitting in a cup holder. He pulled a gun on me and unlocked the door to get in. I had a gun but it was in an awkward position. I had never had to pull it before so I didn’t really know how well it would work but it was the most reasonable place I could think of, not to mention I was a newbie gun owner at the time (left side in the cup holder on the door). You never really know what the best course of action is until it happens to you.

I do exactly as he says and pull away. I didn’t know what the hell was going to happen but I was scared shitless and I really hoped he wouldn’t see my gun. We end up pulling into an old dark parking lot.

To give a little context on why what happened next happened how it did, I drive a little kia soul stick shift and it jumps speed bumps. Like jumps them. I see one and at this point the guy isn’t really paying attention to me so I put my foot to the floor, jump this speed bump, he hits his head on the roof and his gun falls in my lap so I grabbed it and pointed it at him.

At this point I expected him to get spooked and get away but I was wrong. The guy had a pocket knife and he pulled it. He stabbed me 2 times before I could get a shot off. Everything went dark and that’s all I remember.

When I woke up I found out he died in my car and I actually shot him 2 times. It turned into a huge legal battle because the gun was stolen and he had drugs on him. Everyone thought it was a drug deal gone bad. I’ve dealt with it for years and to this day I’m still not the same. My family disowned me because of it. Ive also turned into a hermit that lives in the woods away from everyone because I don’t trust anyone. It can get lonely sometimes but its alright.

The one question I saw a lot “why did your family disown you?” They thought I was dealing drugs along with the rest of the city. I lived in a small Southern town where everyone talks at their tea parties and spread the rumors/drama. Also, my friend at the gas station is the reason I didn’t get locked up for murder. He testified and I got out of trouble. It still took forever. I mean, it was a death not just a gunshot wound. Everyone had a lot of questions and didn’t feel they were getting the answer they wanted to hear.


16. Female Student Refuses To Be Raped

I am female, 5’2 and weigh a little south of 100 lbs. I’ve always been on the smaller side and I used to always have earphones on. I was always decked out in “nicer clothes”. Looking back, I was probably an easy target.I’ve always grown up on the “greener grass”. My parents are both successful and I’m an only child. It was a huge culture shock for me when I decided to go to college in a not-so-safe area. My school is a fairly high ranked private school in probably the worst location of SoCal. Really high crime rates & all that fun stuff.

I was walking to my apartment after a long day at the library – it was around 1 am or so. I normally drive, but that day I had lent my roommate my car so I decided to walk to school instead. I could’ve taken the shuttle, but I figured I should exercise and all that fun stuff. I was young and reckless.

I think I was about 10 minutes away from my place when I noticed I was being followed. I didnt think much of it, so I kept going. There are a lot of homeless people in the neighborhood and they’re fairly harmless, so I figured it was one of them panhandling or something. What I didn’t know was that there was someone else in front that was “following” me too. The cops said they had planned it from the start – I wasn’t a random target. They were herding me to a location they wanted me to be in. I dont really remember how it happened, but I turned the corner and everything went black. When I woke up I was sitting on the floor of the alleyway in the corner and there were about 3 guys towering over me. Two of them had a knife and they told me if I screamed they would make sure the cops wouldn’t be able to identify my body.

I remember them grabbing me by my hair and dragging me further down the alley, and being forced on the floor on my stomach. One of them held on to my hair and my hands so I couldnt move my head and I felt strong pressure on the back of my calves & thighs. I imagine they were probably stepping on my legs so I couldnt move. I remember crying and choking on my snot & tears while trying not to make a sound. I also felt something really cold on my neck – I knew it was the knife so I kept quiet. They rummaged through my bag and took everything worth while, and threw the rest in the giant trash bins. Whoever was stepping on my legs bent down and started patting me down to make sure I didnt have anything on me that was worth stealing. They took my iPod, iPhone& around 200 in cash from my pocket. I felt really strong pressure on my side after that knocked the wind out of me – I felt like I was going to die. I imagine they kicked me. I couldnt curl up into a ball and cry though, they were still holding on to me. The part after that is a blur – I remember one of the guys saying “lets bounce” and another voice saying “lets have some fun with this asian bitch”. I think there was a small debate whether or not I was asian (I’m half) but I dont really remember. I think my adrenaline kicked in when I felt pressure on my lower back and someone pulling down my jeans. I started flailing and screaming then. They kicked me a lot more and cut my shoulder from my flailing. I think that scared them – they weren’t really planning on hurting me. I got an arm free and grabbed the knife by the blade. I remember it stinging and thinking “YES”. It was more of a “I’m still alive” than a “yes, I can hurt these guys”. I managed to wrestle the knife away from the guy holding my hair and tried to stab him. I felt some pain in my back (which later turned out to be stab wounds).

What they don’t tell you in movies is how hard it is to stab someone. I think I tried to stab his legs, his arms, stomach, anything I could reach. I couldn’t fully get it in but I knew he was hurting because he kept screaming. I think when I realized I had done something was when I felt the knife slide in and the other guys yelling and running. When there was no more pressure on me I looked up and saw that I had managed to stab the guy in the eye. He stopped moving and just fell. I don’t know if he was dead then – I want to imagine it was the shock that caused him to pass out. I started screaming and crying and yelling. I think I passed out too. I remember waking up to sirens and going to the hospital. I had multiple stab wounds and had to go through intensive surgery. I also had 3 broken ribs, a fuck ton of fractured bones and all that fun stuff.

A couple days later the detectives on my case told me that the guy didn’t make it and that they were sorry his shitty ass couldn’t rot in prison. I just remember thinking “Good, I hope he rots in hell.”


17. Refugees Take Advantage Of A Disaster

Attempted carjacking by two “refugee” fucks in the wake of a massive natural disaster. Far enough away to avoid being completely destroyed, but close enough that practically all law enforcement and EMS were sent out of the area to assist in the worst spots. Rather unscrupulous individuals took advantage of this. Waves of people fleeing the worst of it, no electricity, awful heat, break-ins, theft, rapes, lady down the street found with her head stove in; pleasant time.

Made a run into town to obtain some supplies, and was hauling gas and food back to the house in a pickup. Probably should have covered the bed, but in any case, got jumped at a stop sign by two guys, one with a machete and the other with what looked like a HiPoint handgun. Both waving their weapons about and screaming “Get the fuck out of the car” and related pleasantries.

Fortunately, the Glock was right in the door. Felt like time slowed down, remember seeing the gunman’s eyes widen at the sight of it. Shot the gunman in the stomach and chest and hit the other in the chin. Bled way more than a deer would, the teeth were a rather unpleasant sight, and they never really mention people shitting or pissing themselves on death in the movies. Machete died extremely fast, gunman curled up and was making some kind of noises (gunshots had fucked up hearing). Took ages for the deputies and EMS to show up, with the gunman dying shortly afterward. Cut and dried affair legally speaking, deemed clear case of a justified shooting.

Didn’t exactly shed any tears over them. When you attack someone, that is an outcome you can expect. Been more on my guard in the years since, and had random adrenaline rushes and unprovoked feelings of extreme danger present for a few weeks afterwards.


18. Turning The Tables Out Of Desperation

About 11 years ago (late 1999) I was jumped by two guys at a small park in Whitney, WA. It was 8:45 – 9:00 PM, I had just gotten off of work and was going to run a few laps to burn off some excess energy. The sun was just about set as it was summer time, but there was a little bit of natural light left. The park was located on top of a plateau-type land formation and there was only two ways in or out — the road leading up and a small dirt trail at the opposite end of the park. I had been there for about 15 or 20 minutes when I realized that I not only was being watched by two men, I was being ‘herded’ into a corner away from both exits.

Initially, I told myself I was being paranoid. I picked up my pace in the direction of the dirt path and that’s when one of the guys started running at me and I knew shit was really going down. I started running full tilt toward the dirt path at the end of the park. Unfortunately, he had a good angle on me and slammed into my hip/lower body and took me to the ground. At this point, my memory gets very hazy. The first guy who got to me was unarmed — we struggled on the ground for a few moments (years). One thing I remember specifically about this moment was that when you’re in a life or death situation all bets are off — I was scratching his face and gouging at his eyes and pulling his hair and was basically just going ape shit to get away. Shortly after getting tackled, the second guy arrived and he WAS armed with a knife. I was still struggling with the first guy when I was first stabbed (total of 3 times) in the right thigh. I’m not sure if didn’t want to kill me or if he had poor aim, but I was fortunate I was not stabbed in the throat or stomach.

The third time I was stabbed I thrashed and my second assailant lost hold of the knife. I picked it up on impulse and hit him with the butt of the knife in the temple repeatedly until he stopped moving. To be honest, my memory of actually ending his life is almost non-existent. It happened very quickly. His ‘buddy’ booked it after his companion went down and I was left at the park with 3 serious stab wounds and a body (this was before I had a cell phone). It was the two hours it took for me to get help that have stuck with me over the years. I remember being so so so scared that I was going to jail, being so so so scared the other guys was coming back, and overall just being so so so fucking scared.

At the end of the day, I don’t regret what I did. I was not only threatened, I was actually attacked and wounded. I simply defended myself to the best of my abilities. The long term damage mostly has to do with paranoia in concerns to be followed and watched.


19. “He Still Looked Surprised”

My parents went out for date night when I was 10. Got me a babysitter from the neighborhood who was 14 or 15. He’d been my babysitter a few times before. I always wanted an older brother. Both my parents worked and my brother is 7 years younger than me, so I never got to have much playtime. He and I would play video games, play with lego, stuff like that. It was a lot of fun.

This night he tried to molest me. He got on top of me and started touching me. He wasn’t much bigger than me so I was able to get away. We were in the TV room and I ran to my room on the other side of the house. I got my baseball bat and hid behind the door. When he came in I hit him in the knees and he fell down. I just kept hitting him on the ground. Don’t know how long. Eventually I ran away and called the police and told them to come over. I remember being really scared that he was going to get up and chase after me when I was making the call. Once the call was done and I went over to watch him I realized he was dead. His face was all mushed up and bleeding but he still looked surprised.

Not really recovered psychologically. I try not to think about it too much. I think about it a lot.


20. “Don’t Be Afraid To Get Cut”

Someone tried to rob me with a knife. I was on my way home from my shitty job at college where I got paid under the table. It was Friday and I was walking the three blocks to my house with a wad of cash in my pocket that I needed. He stepped out and waved the knife and told me to empty my pockets. My immediate thought was Fuck no you junkie. My second thought was the words of my friend, a black belt in kyokushin karate, “If you get in a knife fight don’t be afraid to get cut. It’s gonna happen anyway, just don’t let it be bad.” We were half joking when he said that. When was I ever gonna get into a knife fight?

I said “No” to emptying my pockets. He stepped forward brandishing the knife. So I threw all 230lbs of myself at this spindly man that should probably weigh 170-ish but was instead closer to 140 lbs. I did get stabbed. Honestly, with my adrenaline running I hardly felt it. It felt like a hard punch at first. I eventually tackled him, and from on top slammed his head into the sidewalk once and he went limp.

He was still alive at the time, if unconscious. The problem was actually that he actually started a brain hemorrhage (or some sort of brain bleeding) and died after reaching the hospital.

Anyway, right after he went limp and I started to calm down a bit did I realize that my side hurt really fucking bad. Far more pain than I remember ever feeling. That was when I noticed I had been stabbed. Which was weird, because I remember that when I took the slash on my arm it hurt really bad the second it happened. Anyway, I also had a trip to the hospital.


21. Touring The Crack Houses Of Newport News

I got carjacked almost 25 years ago in Newport News, VA when it was all the rage in certain shithole eastern US cities. Instead of just shooting me with the little semi the guy had, he had me drive him to a couple of crack houses (also all the rage 25 years ago). Dragged my ass inside to two or three, used cash he made me pull out of an ATM to buy for him, back in the car for another go around.

Seems like this went on all night, but it was probably only an hour or two. Regardless, at some point the guy started to bug out and wasn’t paying attention to me when we got back in the car for round number whatever. My tire iron was under the front seat of my car, and I flat out smashed his face in with it. Heard bone break, blood all over, the whole nasty deal. Pushed him out the door and drove home.

Honestly, I puked a bunch, got shitfaced drunk, puked some more, raged quite a bit, and then passed out. Never called the cops, never got questioned, and talked about it with only a couple of friends. Since maybe the first couple of days, when the adrenaline come-down felt like it was going to kill me, I haven’t though that much about it. It’s possible I didn’t kill him, although I doubt it and always assumed he died.

Sounds weird, but I haven’t lost much sleep over it either. I’m fairly certain he would have killed me if I hadn’t hit him. Anyhow, it lurks in the back of my thoughts, and if nothing else I know that I could kill someone if necessary, because I certainly tried to kill that guy, and to the best of my knowledge I did.

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Eric Redding

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