Boost in defence courses after US mass shootings

  • 27/12/2015
Boost in defence courses after US mass shootings

A new poll in the United States shows Americans think mass shootings are among the most important news stories of the year.

And with the threat of such shootings weighing on their minds, it seems some are preparing in case it happens to them.

Aaron Jannetti runs Endeavor Defense and Fitness, which holds a free active shooter response training course.

"Right now there is a big buzz going around in the wake of Paris, San Bernardino," he says.

Since the recent terrorist attacks, demand has skyrocketed.

"We filled the January course that's going to be coming up here in a couple of weeks. We have 40 people already, and I have a waitlist of about 20 more."

Amid heightened fears of terrorism and mass shootings making headlines just about every day, Mr Jannetti's course, just outside of Columbus, Ohio, is one of many being offered across the country.

As the year draws to an end, mass shootings are weighing heavily on people's minds. A new poll shows that 68 percent of Americans listed mass shootings in the US as very or extremely important news events this year. 

Linda Gause was among the nearly three dozen participants earlier this week who spent the majority of the three-hour course learning to tackle, disarm and fight back when and if possible.

"I'm older than a lot of the people here, and for me it's a matter of having confidence as I go forward," says Ms Gause.

"Generally when we think about guns, knives and scary things, we think about running, we think about hiding, we think about shutting back and letting the others come in and deal with it, and unfortunately that reality is just not there."

The FBI encourages people who find themselves in an active shooter situation to run, hide or, as a last option, fight. Mr Jannetti is certified in defensive firearms tactics.

"If you just had people holding up their fingers saying, 'peow, peow', I don't think that you would feel nearly the adrenaline rush that you feel when people come in hi gear with things that look like rifles," says Ms Gause.

"We try to get them in the action," says Mr Jannetti. "We try to get them in there fighting and make them at least understand that if that's where you will find yourself then you need to be able to do it and you're capable of doing it."

He is preparing people for the worst-case scenario.

CBS News