Useful Tips

How to protect yourself if you are attacked

Not always “staying longer” or “I'll go to Uber” is a good idea. Unfortunately, there are more and more stories of sudden attacks on women. The editors WANT chose 7 basic ways to protect themselves from attack, so that you can always stand up for yourself.

Each time, returning home in the dark, every girl catches herself with the thought that the story can end, to put it mildly, “badly”. It doesn’t matter if this is supported by the real fact of the threat or simply by an alarming state - you must know how to defend yourself.

Turn off your favorite Sia song

The sun has long hidden behind the horizon, and you are forced to go along an unlit section of the road. It's time to hide the headphones by turning off the music, because you deprive yourself of vigilance and the ability to hear. The noise that surrounds you should be informative.

Does anyone scream in the back? Are any heavy footsteps heard? Focus on the sounds.

Should I go to self-defense courses?

Self-defense courses can help from two points of view. The first is a psychological readiness to fight back and protect yourself. And not only a person who has the physical strength to take the wallet away can attack, but also a coward who just wants to scare.

There are a lot of examples in books, films and life when the “sly character” successfully resisted the gang of thugs because it could find a common language. But this is not a panacea - it is not always possible to agree, and it is more difficult for a woman to do this. The difference is that men are attacked for money or to resolve the conflict. And from us most often during an attack they want what can be obtained only from a woman. Because of this, it is more difficult to solve everything with words: a woman is not looked at as a person with whom one can talk about something. Secondly, the courses can show how to quickly neutralize the attacker.

What means of self-defense can help give a physical rebuff?

First of all, the rule works here: wear what you are ready to use. You can take a gas can with you - a common and effective way of self-defense. If, in danger, a person knows where he lies and how to use it, then defending himself with his help will be quite simple. If you can get permission to carry a certain type of weapon in the conditions of our legislation, then it is important to use it not from the point of view of the “scarecrow”, but precisely for the purpose of self-defense - but this is an extreme measure.

Speaking of items that can be used for self-defense, we recall the terrible story of Daria Ageny. The girl still does not have a bright prospect, but a difficult prison term for the fact that with a knife for sharpening a pencil she rebuffed the rapist, damaging his internal organs. At the same time, no charge has been brought against the man, and her investigation wants to sentence [imprisonment] up to nine years.

What is the “permissible limit of self-defense” and how not to exceed it?

In Russia, often because of the consequences of self-defense, a person is given a term as a murder. And this is the problem of judicial investigation. Although the law clearly states that if the attack is unexpected, then you cannot assess the degree of danger and have every right to defend yourself as you please. If there is no element of surprise, then self-defense should not exceed the danger that shines on you: "If you are being fisted with fists, then you can’t grab an ax." This is the limit.

Recently, an investigation was conducted on the basis of "Hackathon" from the "Novaya Gazeta", where they analyzed various court cases. It turned out that approximately 80% of the cases in which women sit for murder, in fact, are cases of self-defense in domestic violence. Legislation writes one thing, and the court applies the other.

Some cases are generally striking in their absurdity. Recently there was a court in the Trans-Baikal Territory, which convicted a woman without legs, defending herself against a drunken husband beating her. After two calls to the police, who had not arrived, the woman was forced to stab him until he stopped. She was given 1.5 years [restrictions on freedom]. Once again: this is a woman without legs, who was beaten by a physically healthy man while she called the police. Of all the women who sit under article 105 of the Penal Code “Intentional homicide”, the majority defended themselves from attack.

Then how to protect yourself from rape without exceeding the permissible limit of self-defense?

How to assess the level of danger to life with rape? This question should be asked to our legislators and law enforcement, and the second is worse.

Article 37, paragraph 2, of the Criminal Code states that defense must be lawful. And if it exceeds the limits of the “necessary,” then it is no longer legitimate. That is, actions must be consistent with the nature and danger of the attack.

In 2012, in the Moscow Region, the investigation wanted to institute criminal proceedings against a woman who killed a man who tried to rape her. And there it was said that, according to the investigation, there was no threat to the woman’s life, since you’ll think about her! - just raped. [As if] after this, you can safely go home and live as before.

We have criminal cases in our country where we see how a woman defends herself [against rape], and in response she is beaten for a long time and hard. The knife becomes her only opportunity to defend herself, but again this is considered an excess.

The court does not take into account that without a knife - at the expense of the hands and fists of the attacker - a woman could be dead.

What if the attacker suffered as a result of self-defense?

I would say that what you do at the time of the attack is not so important as what you do after. There are two key points here.

The first is how our police behave. They come and see that in the course of self-defense a person was killed, after which they say to the woman: "You killed - write a letter of appreciation." She writes: “I killed” - and in the end [they present her with “intentional murder”, which, of course, is not so. After all, she defended her life, as a result of which there was a fatal outcome. Therefore, it is important to wait for the lawyer and not write anything under the dictation of the investigator.
The second is what we tell the police. In any situation - not only when the attacker was seriously or fatally wounded - there is no need to hide details from the investigation. It is necessary to communicate everything as detailed as possible: any little things, traces of the fight, bruises, testimony. To demonstrate as much as possible that self-defense was necessary in the context of protecting one's health.

Of course, we live in a country where the police have to literally be forced to work in accordance with the law that is prescribed to them. Not because they want to intentionally do something against you, but because the whole system works: it’s convenient when a man came and himself confessed to the deed. In addition, the court does not recognize the problem of violence against women.

But it’s worth going to the police anyway, because this is the only body that can help in this situation. It is important to contact the police in a prepared condition and with people who can support. Or go with a lawyer who understands how to behave and what to do. If you interact with the police in the wrong state and using the wrong words, you can do even more harm.

How can doctors and relatives help?

It is very important to record the beatings in the police and in the emergency room. If something hurts you, insist on recording your complaint. If you do not, the court will decide that the bruise is an accident. Insist that you record all the pain, because then traumatic brain injury or concussion can be detected. This is something that can not always be determined in the first hours after injury. The document from the doctor should be as clearly written as possible, it should display everything that hurt you.

Neighbors and relatives must also be made aware of what happened: this will not always bring concrete benefits, but will become additional evidence in court of the outgoing danger. The complaint will show the consistency and danger in the behavior of the rapist.

The first hours are the most important and most dangerous: the further outcome of the case depends on the data that will be reported immediately after the incident. Now we see recordings of the interrogation of the Khachaturian sisters who penetrated the Internet. These are the testimonies in which the text is written like a carbon copy - 90% the same thing. It can be seen that the investigator dictated the words and that this was before the girls were provided with lawyers. Now the lawyers of the sisters are asking the investigation to check these evidence for reliability.

When is it worth calling human rights organizations?

We have a very poorly developed information system for such organizations and help centers. I don’t remember a single case when a call was made to us [to the Violence.net center] with the words: “I hurt a person, what should I do?” In this case, the probability of a call to any help center is very small: either to the police, either close. And if relatives tell you how to behave correctly, then this is good. Although it is better to first call human rights organizations in which they would be told about article 51 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, which reads: "No one is obliged to testify against himself, his spouse and close relatives."

More often women call for psychological or legal assistance. In Russia as a whole, information about human rights organizations and foundations is very poorly developed.

On our site you can find the "Security Plan". If a woman lives in relationships that are dangerous, you need to get out of them - and this is hard to do without professional help, especially in the context of an abuse. In such situations, you need to contact special organizations for help (this link can be found "Help Card" from the center "Violence.net"), in order to gain the courage to leave such a relationship - always with extreme caution and accuracy. This is dangerous for the simple reason that our police system does not work: we do not have a law on domestic violence and there are no security orders. Therefore, when you do something after violence, you should put your safety first.

Be creative

Not only a gas spray can save you from an attack. And seriously, how many girls really bought such a thing?

But the presence of keys or a pen in a purse - can save your life. The main thing is not to throw these things at the bottom of the bag, but to keep them closer (in small pockets, for example).

Assess risks

If the criminal asks you to give him a purse or bag - watch. Are there any other people nearby? Do they threaten you with weapons? Do you feel the strength to repulse him?

In this situation, you have several options:

  • to give what the villain asks
  • call for help (if he is without a weapon),
  • to run (if you are confident in your abilities).

"Another car was coming for me"

The best defense is intuition and reinsurance. If you have suspicions of a taxi driver or a neighbor from the elevator (you have been living in the porch for 5 years, and you see him for the first time) - do not risk it.

You can easily refuse a taxi ride, but you can do differently - call someone and say a phrase like: “Meet me? Great! I sent you an SMS with the numbers and color of the car. I'll be there in 15 minutes.”

In the elevator, stand with your back to the buttons. This will help to avoid a situation in which the attacker will have access to block the movement of the elevator. Although, nevertheless, with suspicious people it is better not to stay in a confined space.

"I'm a girl"

Minimize attacks and less often go through the gateway itself. In the end, nothing can protect you better than a man accompanying you (husband, boyfriend, girlfriend's lover).

Remember, we talked about nobody buying cans? So here. Perhaps it’s worth buying. And we all will be a little calmer.