Surviving Flash Mobs

An Interview with Michael Banemichael bane 400

Interview by Gila Hayes

Perhaps the latest symptom of the deterioration of law and order, is the evolution of what a Los Angeles County deputy chief termed “Flash Robs.” Multiple thieves coordinate to loot stores in a matter of minutes before police can arrive. Two common variations are multiple looter smash-and-grab robberies of smaller stores like 24/7 convenience markets or the neighborhood Walgreens or CVS Pharmacy, often carried out by teens or even homeless recruited shortly before the attack or, as occurred several months ago in the Topanga Mall flash mob robbery in CA, well-organized mob crime targeting high-end merchandise, which can profitably be resold.

In response to Network members concerned about getting caught in flash rob violence, we sought the perspective of a long-time journalist and commentator, Michael Bane. We now switch to Q&A so readers can learn from him directly. Browse to to view a lengthier video of our interview or click on the adjacent picture.

eJournal: Readers may remember you, Michael, from the Outdoor Channel’s The Best Defense or Shooting Gallery television programs to which you brought a wide range of experience – from journalism, writing magazine features, to extreme sports like cave diving, mountain climbing, competitive shooting, and probably other adventures you haven’t told us about.

These days, I absorb a lot of your programming on video and podcasts ( For me, much of the value is your perspective on current events. Michael, how does today’s civil unrest differ from the protests that turned violent while you were a young journalist?

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President’s Message

Marty Hayes

by Marty Hayes, J.D.

In September, I had the pleasure of assisting Mas Ayoob in putting on a Deadly Force Instructor course, hosted by Will Dougan at his Top Gun Academy, in Memphis, TN. It was a pleasure to “get back in the saddle” after having to skip the last two offerings due to medical issues. This class, with 18 eager students was particularly homogeneous, with folks coming from all over the country to come together to be certified as deadly force instructors. The course was developed back in about 1997, when Ayoob and I put our heads together and came up with a curriculum to train police firearms instructors in this discipline, to better advise and train their students. Over the next few years, we held a couple more classes at the Firearms Academy of Seattle (the training range my wife Gila and I owned), then took a break for several years, and then brought the program back several years ago. With the passage of time, the curriculum changed, and instead of targeting law enforcement firearms instructors, we changed the curriculum to be more relevant to the growing industry of the concealed carry license instructors, now literally hundreds of times larger than it was in the mid-1990s. 

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Attorney Question of the Month

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In the early 2000s, Glenn Meyer, PhD conducted several studies of mock juror sentencing severity affected by firearms’ “aggressive or menacing” appearances compared against sporting or less militaristic guns. A recent YouTube video mention of his study has members asking whether juries still apply those prejudices to verdicts, so we asked our Affiliated Attorneys to weigh in.

In your experience, are jurors biased against self defense with a firearm that a prosecutor may say has an aggressive or menacing appearance, like an AR-15 rifle?

If choosing a jury for a trial pertaining to armed self defense, what questions, if any, would you ask potential jurors about gun ownership or experience and training with firearms?

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News From Our Afilliates

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Pat & Norm Hood

by Gila Hayes

In this month’s Networking column, the space in which we get to chat with friends and supporters all across the nation, we speak with 11-year Network affiliated instructors Pat and Norm Hood, owners of Defensive Solutions in South Bend, IN. If you enjoy streaming video,there’s a slightly longer video version at .

eJournal: Let’s introduce you by asking about your backgrounds in self-defense skills and how you came to be instructors.

Pat Hood: I came to this because of Norman. As a military policeman and early-married, he introduced me to weapons and I enjoyed it, and I shot better than he did sometimes. We decided that we needed to start a business and it was important that I be a part of that because of the lady’s point of view. It has been just an incredible journey. We’ve made a difference in people’s lives and that’s what’s great.

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Book Review

JCruz Bk Cvrustice Corrupted: How the Left Weaponized Our Legal System

By Ted Cruz
Oct. 2022 by Regnery Publishing
ISBN-13: 9781684513611
$14.99 hardcover or Kindle

Reviewed by Gila Hayes

“The corruption of the Department of Justice and the FBI is a terrible thing, deeply corrosive to our nation,” observes Senator Ted Cruz in his book about the devastating result of government bureaucracies persecuting opponents of the party in power. There’s no shortage of examples by both Republican and Democrat presidents.

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Editor’s Notebook

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News We’re Watching

by Gila Hayes

U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez has once again struck down California’s magazine ban as unconstitutional. His decision makes interesting reading and includes, among other noteworthy statements, his observation on magazine capacity limits: “One government solution to a few mad men with guns is a law that makes into criminals responsible, law-abiding people wanting larger magazines simply to protect themselves.”

Benitez’ ruling against the magazine ban was subject to a 10-day stay for CA’s Attorney General Rob Bonta to appeal to the 9th Circuit Court and ask them to again strike down Benitez’ decision. As seems to be true these days, a favorable decision does not mean the fight is won yet. I have to wonder how many more hearings, stays, and appeals are required to get rid of what Benitez skewered as a law that makes law-abiding people who just want to protect themselves into criminals.

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About this Journal


The eJournal of the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network, Inc. is published monthly on the Network’s website at Content is copyrighted by the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network, Inc.

Do not mistake information presented in this online publication for legal advice; it is not. The Network strives to assure that information published in this journal is both accurate and useful. Reader, it is your responsibility to consult your own attorney to receive professional assurance that this information and your interpretation or understanding of it is accurate, complete and appropriate with respect to your particular situation.

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