Your Tactical Training Scenario…Molested at the Beach

Written by Greg Ellifritz

Topics: Tactical Training Scenarios

  • SumoMe


You are relaxing on a public beach.  Your eyes are closed and you are lying in the sand, enjoying the sun.  You feel something touch your leg and open your eyes.  You see a large man (6’1” and 200lbs) squatting down beside you.  He is stroking your leg with one hand and stroking his exposed genitals with the other.


What would you do?


The suspect


A woman in Myrtle Beach South Carolina was confronted with that very same scenario.  Read about what happened at the link below:


Sexual assaults committed by strangers in public are relatively rare, but they do occur.  Have you thought about what you might do in a case like this?  If you aren’t a woman, think about what you might do if you saw the assault taking place.  Would you intervene?  Here are some things to think about:


1) It’s difficult to carry weapons to the beach.  You can’t take firearms into the water and it isn’t safe to leave them unattended while you swim.  Unless you have a babysitter for your gun, you likely won’t have it with you.  What weapons do you carry to the beach?  Most of you likely won’t be carrying a gun in your swimsuit.  If you do take a gun to the beach (and have someone to constantly be with it), a good place to hide it is in a small cooler.  Criminals know beach bags and backpacks contain valuables.  They are often targeted for snatch and run attacks.  Criminals never bother with drink coolers.


If you don’t carry a gun, pepper spray might be a viable option.  I personally also carry the Spyderco Salt knife.  I spend a lot of time in and around the water during my travels and that’s the only steel blade I’ve found that won’t rust after salt water exposure.  You may also consider a ceramic bladed knife.  It won’t rust either.


2) If you don’t carry a weapon at the beach, how good are your empty hand fighting skills?  Good enough to defend against a 6 six-foot tall, 200 lb. man?  Maybe some empty hand fighting training is in order.


3) With what level of force would you respond to such an attack?  The man is clearly out of line, and definitely should be considered a threat, but he hasn’t physically hurt you in any way.  Would you strike him?  Spray him with pepper spray?  Shoot?


4)  If you were unarmed, how could you quickly get the assistance of other people on the beach?  What words would you use to marshal help in the quickest amount of time?


5) If the assailant fled, would you give chase?  If not, what would you do?


6) If you were witnessing a similar assault, would you intervene?  If so, how would you do it?


Days at the beach are supposed to be fun and relaxing.  We don’t often consider that there is potential for violence as well.  Think about this scenario and come up with some answers to the questions I posed.  Your next beach outing will be much safer.




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6 Comments For This Post I'd Love to Hear Yours!

  1. JohnnyB says:

    I think a possible defense might be a face full of sand. Then get up and start screaming about the pervert next to you. If done quickly enough, you could probably get a good amount of sand in the guys eyes and that would surely slow him down a bit. The screaming would get the attention of everyone around. Perhaps a good kick in the nuts to slow him down as well would help. You’re right that it would be hard to carry on the beach, and I don’t think too many men in their board shorts would have this problem. It would be kind of hard to carry a knife in a bikini. Good article. Anything that makes you think of possible scenarios can be helpful.

  2. Kevin says:

    I usually carry my Ka-bar clipped to my trunks pocket. I’ve found that knives won’t rust if you go swimming in a lake (maybe you guys already knew that). You could probably carry OC spray in a ankle or thigh holster, same thing with a fixed blade if you’re a women on the beach.

  3. charley says:

    this is really GREAT work
    best wishes

  4. Mike says:

    An old school trick for preventing knives from rusting in saltwater- use clear fingernail polish to coat the blade. Reapply as needed. Petroleum based products like grease tend to not play well with sheaths, whether plastic, nylon, or leather. Leather doesn’t deal well with saltwater either.

    If you’re carrying a folding knife, using grease on the internals is fine.

  5. TV says:

    From behind b-slap his ear with a slight cup to the hand.

    Tell lady to run for police.

    Give ground, pull knife, suggest he back off

  6. df says:

    Start videoing him on a cell phone.
    In Boston, transit police tell everyone to photograph inappropriate behavior.
    If you want to see stealth videoing, challenge a millennial to film you without getting caught.