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The Correct Way to Intervene as a Third Party

Posted on December 06 2018

When you find yourself in a situation to intervene in a conflict as the third-party, it’s imperative that you fully recognize the situation that you are stepping into. Hastily acting without situational awareness or a proper understanding of your surroundings can end in becoming a secondary victim, or even death.

The video you are about to watch was recorded on the CCTV footage of a gas station and shows the moment a third-party individual steps in to end a mugging that was happening outside of the store’s front. Take careful note of the man’s actions before, during, and after he intervenes to help the individual who was being mugged.



Notice how the third-party who intervenes eases himself into the situation while gathering as much situational awareness as he can. First, he assesses if the two attackers are armed, and what their intentions are. The first thing he attempts to do is de-escalate the situation verbally. This fails, and the second attacker tries to intimidate him away using an aggressive posture.

The second attacker’s aggressive posture with empty hands is a clear indication to the third-party person intervening in the attack that neither mugger is armed. This is when he makes the decision to intervene physically by kicking the first attacker in the side of the head, and not backing down from the fight which ultimately pushes both attackers into a full retreat.

Actions after the attackers leave are also just as important for the third-party individual. Notice how while the third-party individual who intervened is checking on the person who was being attacked, he keeps his head up and eyes oriented in the direction the attackers retreated in. This shows that he was conscious of the very real possibility that they may return with a firearm or weapon. Keeping his guard up shows that he understood that the fight isn’t over until the fight is completely over.


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