Thursday, June 12, 2008

Robbery and Shooting in Martinez : A good example

I wanted to share this with you guys, because I think it’s a good case of how things can go wrong, how not ALL criminals are whimpering jerks that run when you fire your airsoft look-alike, with the red plastic insert in the barrel...
This is the kind of thing that puts into perspective the debates we sometimes see about using less than adequate weaponry, or half serious security habits.

It happened yesterday at 9 PM in a wealthy Buenos Aires neighborhood called Martinez. Mr. Mata ( yes, means” kill” in Spanish) was getting back home in his SUV when 5 armed men intercepted him when he got to his driveway.

A note here: Remember what your good old pal FerFAL says about this? Always have your gun ready when you enter/exit your home!
Take no chances, my friends. Your gun is in your hand as you drive the last block to your house, as you open the garage door(remote control, you never leave the vehicle which can also be used as a weapon and provides some protection), as you enter it, and until you close it completely.
If someone advances towards you, you get ready, if you see a gun anywhere you run them over, or you start shooting, and keep on shooting until they go down, they leave or you run out of ammo.
Take grandpa FerFAL ‘s advice on this and you’ll live longer, or at least you’ll die surrounded by dead enemies! ;-)

Back to poor Mr. Mata.

As the bad guys forced him in his house, his 16 year old daughter that was upstairs at the moment manages to call 911 before the bad guys get her.

As usual, these neighborhoods have private security posts on each corner with a guard. But our 5 professional criminals took care of him a few hours before surprising Mr. Mata, kidnapping the guard.

While the criminals robbed the house a patrol car dropped by because of the 911 call.

Our criminals took another caution: They were all wearing nice suits.

One of the criminals (the band leader) answered the door and pretended to be the home owner. When the cop asked if everything was alright he said yes. He almost fooled the cop, except for one thing. It seems he added “ yes, we are fine, and get out of here, we don’t like “gorras” .

“Gorra”, (“hat” in Spanish) is how criminals refer to cops in slang prison language.
The cop noticed this as a bad sign and alerted other patrol cars, which showed up soon.

When the criminals saw the patrol cars, two escaped through the roofs and three tried to escape through the front door using their own car, with Mr. Mata and his daughter as human shields.

But as they try to get into the car, the 16 year old girl desperately pulls away from her captor that held her by her hair. Probably imagining the fate that awaited her in the hands of these criminals.
The bad guy starts shooting her but misses and she manages to run away behind a patrol car, where a cop quickly puts an armor vest on her and hides her inside a car.

Now, all hell brakes loose. The leader of the band, seeing that the girl escaped, executes Mr. Mata shooting him in the back of the head with a Sistema 45, stolen from a military armory.
They start firing and the cops shoot them down. The other criminals have 9mms, including a Bersa Thunder 9 stolen to a cop some weeks ago.
The criminals fire more than 80 rounds, the spent cases can be found all over the sidewalk along with the blood. At first they thought only 50 rounds where fired, but know we know that more than 100 rounds were fired between cops and criminals.
Two criminals make it to the car but are killed there by the cops, and another one lies on the sidewalk , still clenching in his first a chunk of long blond hair from Mr. Mata’s daughter.

According to interviewed witnesses, Mr. Mata’s son comes out of the house and starts kicking the bloody corpses screaming “You ruined our lives!”.

Neighbors agree that “it sounded like Irak”, and the TV images do those claims justice, cars and the family’s house are full of holes. Mr. Mata’s SUV is drilled with 45 slugs.

They later found out that the criminals had their pockets full of magazines, most still fully loaded. They also had radios.

So people,

Lets see:
1) Not all criminals run like sissies when shooting starts, and counting on that is a VERY poor strategy.
2) You want as much ammo as you can fit in a handgun, and you want it to fire the most powerful caliber you can handle.
3) Counting on “most gunfights only last 3 or 4 rounds” is as mistaken as the wishful thinking in 1)

Sources (sorry Spanish only) ;


What’s best? Empty/looted house, or people inside?

Don’t remember exactly where this was being discussed, which “alternative” is better, but I do remember it being discussed a lot.
Also remember people talking about light control, making your place look as if it’s already looted, cover windows so that no one sees light coming from inside or hiding the generator for similar reasons.

I don’t know if any of this ever worked for anyone but I seriously doubt it. In my experience, the empty house gets broken into 10x more than the one with people obviously inside.
Same happens during blackout, holidays, etc.

Around here, you do not leave a house unoccupied for more than a few days or a couple of weeks unless you want to come back to a very unpleasant surprise.

It was fairly common after the crisis for people to come back to their homes after extended holydays or spending some time abroad or in the hospital, only to fin the place picked to the bone or even worse, A FAMILY living inside! With a slow working justice system with bigger fish to fry, it takes months, even years to prove that your house is yours and to have them evicted.

Pretending to be looted doesn’t help either, they’ll still go inside to see if anything was left behind or even do so simply trying to look for a place to occupy permanently or just spend a few days. That happened a lot here.

So, it’s always better to show an occupied, busy house, target practicing ( if viable) in the back yard isn’t a bad idea. And as long as you are armed inside and have good locks and doors, it wont be easy getting in, and criminals and looters know that too.

The empty house is always a better target. Don’t think for one second that pretending your house is empty is a safe strategy.


Monday, June 2, 2008

Alternative fuel for your car

Ok, now that the little guy (my son) and the little pregnant lady ( my wife :) )are asleep, I can sit and write about the current problem many have with increasing fuel prices.

I jumped out of that boat a couple years ago now, and today I don’t care if there’s fuel shortages or not, or the price.

I had a GNC set installed when I saw that the price of fuel could be a problem in the not so distant future.

The GNC set allows your car to run on natural compressed gas, and almost any car or truck can be set with one of these.

Basically you have three components, besides the chipset for the car.
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First, you have a big yellow gas tank in your trunk. This part sucks the most because you do loose some space, and moderate size tanks like mine only allow you to drive 100 km.
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The good thing is that most gas stations now have compressed gas too so there’s a lot of infrastructure around, and that it only costs USD 2,50 to drive those 100 km.
Stopping by the station nearly every day is a pain in the butt, but the saved money is worth it in my book.

Second, you have the gas regulator an valve. This basically adjusts the amount of gas that feeds into the engine, and is connected with the yellow tank. This is where you connect to fill the tank with more natural gas at the station, though some have a setup that allows to fill it up with a connection right next to the fuel cap.
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Inside, you have a switch with a few LEDs that allow you to see how much GNC you have left.
The 3 way switch allows you to instantly go from gas to compressed gas or to auto.
The auto feature starts the car with regular gas, and switches to NCG automatically when you accelerate some.
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If you are serious about not using regular gas, you can go for months without using any, only using the auto feature just to start the car a bit at first and keep the system running and lubricated.

I think eventually people will have to use one form of alternative car fuel or another.

Meanwhile, go diesel, in a fuel efficient car, and choose manual over automatic.

I understand manuals are more common in USA, but a stick allows you to have greater control over your car if you have to bug out, it’s better for pushing other cars, and it’s more fuel efficient, it’s also more rugged from a mechanical point of view.

Look around, wait until something that actually works shows up, and then wait for a few months until you see it actually working on the street, then go for it.

You’ll save lots of money.