“Kudos to you,” said self-defense expert Brannon Lebouef to musician Max Brabner.
The two were speaking in the 2000 block of Burgundy just days after Brabner more than survived the scare of a lifetime — he owned it.
“The anger kicked in, and I just wanted to beat the tar out of him,” Brabner said referring to the robber who stuck a shotgun in his face. Brabner grabbed the shotgun and sent the robber running. Security camera footage of the attempted robbery went viral on the web and led to cheers from many of the people who viewed it.
“It is perfectly normal,” Lebouef said of Brabner’s emotions. “That is an absolutely normal and rational response to get angry.”
Lebouef gives Brabner high marks for his ability to grab the shotgun and take it away from his attack. But the self-defense expert is a little more critical of what happened next.
Moments after Brabner got the gun, he had a second confrontation with the robber and at least one other person inside a black sedan. Brabner had apparently lost his cellphone in the scuffle over the gun; the bad guys had it and offered to trade it for the shotgun. Brabner responded by using the gun to smash the back window of the car.
Lebouef told Brabner that crime victims need to be careful any time they turn the tables on their attackers. Depending upon the circumstances, they could actually be viewed as the aggressors. Lebouef says chasing after suspects could lead to a whole new set of legal and life consequences.
“His buddy could have been sitting in a car right there and right when you went by, boom,” Lebouef said while using his hands to mimic the firing of a gun.
Lebouef also wanted to get a good idea of Brabner’s prior experience with firearms. The musicians band is called Gunsy Reynalds, but that was Brabner’s grandfather’s name. The musician said he had some prior hunting experience. But then he revealed what may have really given him the confidence to respond so quickly.
Brabner says about five years ago he was standing on Oak Street when he saw a man pull up in a car and pull a gun on a woman who was also standing in the area. Brabner hurried to help the woman by rushing the car and slamming the door on the gunman’s hand.
“ Human instinct,” he said. “Maybe something that we all have somewhere deep down.”
Brabner said he is usually more self-aware when walking in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood. Lebouef also added that sometimes fighting back is a victim’s worst option.
To learn more about self-defense tactics, consider taking a course from a trained expert.