Roving Gangs - Counter Tactics?

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Gazrok

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It's a firm belief of mine, that roaming gangs will (after a SHTF event) be the primary threat faced by survivors. The vast percentage are likely to be opportunists, and those can be dealt with in lots of ways, but there are likely to be some that have brains behind them too.

Some of the specific challenges.

1. Large number of armed individuals.
2. Possibly monitoring communications channels.
3. Likely possess vehicles.
4. Well-provisioned.
5. Used to working together.
6. Likely a bit of berserker types here.

So, aside from the obvious (i.e. large armed force of your own or trying to remain undetected), what kinds of tactics have you devised to counter this threat?

______________________________

Things I've come up with.

1. Ruining the paths leading to your place (at least during the chaos period). (fell trees over roads, use other vehicles, dig ditches, etc.) Do this far enough away so they never even see your place (and can't get vehicles there without making a LOT of noise and effort to clear).

2. Booby traps that make a lot of noise and announce there is an intruder. This is a whole other threat all its own, but things to let you know someone is closing in.

3. Booby traps that cause death or harm. While I'd feel bad if these got innocents, during the chaos period, just too risky to have visitors. Both in the outer perimeter and path areas, as well as the outskirts of the property.

4. Scouts, folks who go out on patrol not to engage any enemy, but to report back to the base with intel (and warning).

5. Having a redoubt with supplies (a very hidden place where you can flee to if the group is too large, to then come back in and reclaim, or rebuild when they move on). Attacking from the redoubt will include completely sabotaging any vehicles of the bandits, with complete hit and run tactics until at a manageable number.

6. Large fields of fire, and hardened positions for sentries (so if they approach, they do so over open-ground and where they can be easily shot from a distance). Hardened positions made using cinder blocks (filled with rebar and concrete). Built after the SHTF with stockpiled materials. (or before SHTF, and disguised as something else, like planters, etc., which is my plan.) That way, just dig out the plants, and presto! Pillbox!

7. Posts in the ground every 3' in front of fences, to prevent vehicles from driving into fences to knock them down. (just large wooden fence poles, sunk in to make a vehicle barrier....can get the supplies before hand, then put in after a SHTF event). We always have spares of these for repair anyhow, so this is just having MORE of them.

8. Nightvision. Lots of ways to cheaply keep batteries charged (especially with FL sun). Nightvision will be a big plus (even if only 1st generation). I've done simulated night combat before, and it is simple, the side that has it, if the others don't....wins.

9. If I do have to leave, I plan to leave some goodies behind, but that are poisoned. (mostly booze and the most appealing foodstuffs). Depending on the desired tactics, could be either fast acting or slow acting poisons. Unless time is pressing, the slower acting (matter of days) one is my preference (both are lethal). Long enough to thwart any taste-tester moves by an overly clever bandit, and to spread more throughout their force, but quick enough to get back in soon. The cleanup will suck, and any bandits not partaking may either fight (or flee to return later), but we'd simply assess the situation as needed.

10. Initially trying to establish a dialogue, if they seem willing to do so (and seem too numerous or costly to fight). My usual method for communicating with strangers post SHTF will be this. A remote-controlled truck is sent out, with a two-way radio in the back. Sent to the stranger to use for conversation. I'll try to convince them that leaving us here, to have constant supplies, is a better option, and that for protection from them and other gangs (as now we are a vested interest), we'll pay tribute in what we have to offer (with ground rules). Failing this, we fight anyhow, rather than die on our knees, and enact a scorched earth approach. We'll make this willingness very clear during the negotiations.
 

alabaster

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Wow, man. Good thread. It's a deep one and a toughy too. I think this is somethign that each person will have to think of in terms of their own situation. You can imagine that someone in the inner city will have more to deal with like this than some who live way out in the sticks.

It looks like you've given it quite a bit of thought and have some really good ideas... The only thing that comes to mind that you didn't mention is team members for an ambush. It goes along with the scouting and some other items you mentioned, but it is to deal with them swiftly and harshly. Of course not all "Wanderers" can be dealt with like this, but if you are in comms with neighboring camps, and they have been in a battle, the survivors may be able to alert you, in which case, ambushing them as far from your base camp as possible would be a good idea. I think it'd be human anture to want to be as close to base camp as possible, but then you run the risk of them overrunning you and being so close to camp that your team's survivors can't get out. Even this has to be thought of in fluid manner though, since you may need to be close to ammo supplies and other kit that isn't on your defenders' persons... This is the problem/blessing with tactical situations, IMHO. You have to be able to adapt to situations that you never knew to plan for, adn yet when you know that, it keeps you thinking and teaching your team to adapt and overcome as many oddball things as they can.
 

Roninsensei

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Buy lots of bear spray. It makes it too difficult and costly for them to continue what ever action they are trying. You can debilitate an entire group of 30+ people with one good burst of bear spray. I'm speaking from experience. In Chad and here state side bear spray saved our lives. We had a guy holding 3 children hostage, one good dose of spray and he surrendered, yes we got the kids too but they lived..
 

Gazrok

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Interesting on the bear spray, will have to check into that.

Good point on ambush. That is certainly one of the reasons for scouts and communications. If the SHTF, I'll definitely be "armoring up" at least one truck A-Team style. Mine already has the cattle guard and all that, but we'd definitely add to it (and make the bed area into a tank-like area. I've already got some friends on the lookout for good pieces of scrap that are light, but strong, that I can store for such a purpose. I just keep it up in the beams of the garage until/if needed.
 

realisticdude

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Best if you city dwellers bug out before things get too bad. Folks in the suburbs probably will not be safe for too long either. Gangs of armed rats will eventually spill out of the inner cities.
 

Gazrok

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Best if you city dwellers bug out before things get too bad. Folks in the suburbs probably will not be safe for too long either. Gangs of armed rats will eventually spill out of the inner cities.
Yep, I think there will be a period of at least 6 months or so, while they vie for all of the resources within major cities. Smaller groups in smaller towns will form too, but they'll be easier to deal with. I think the big thing is that such groups will be opportunists, so if you can mitigate the opportunity before they even know you are there, that is really the best way... (hence ruining the paths leading to where you are).
 

realisticdude

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They will prey on the weakest for sure. Tree across the road , barking dogs,gun shots, any deterrent will probably send them on down the road to easier pickings.
 

sharkbait

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We are thankful for where we live and I do belong to a group that will impose guard/watch duty if needed.Hoping many will not head our way at all though,especially if traveling on foot as I would think most would head towards other towns and cities in search of food/supplies.We live on the edge of a national state forest so heading out our way would just take them farther into nowhere.But we still have plans for if things do get crazy.I also stock "specialty" ammo to be used as deterrents.We'd rather chase a group off than have to clean up a big mess on the road,but push come to shove will decide those actions.
 

Gazrok

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Some hints I read in an article:
http://readynutrition.com/resources/week-52-of-52-long-term-security-and-defense_05102012/

They raise a lot of good points: (wish I had read this instead of devising my own...nice to see it basically reiterates it though. :) So, at least I know I was on the right track).

The worst case is some sort of organized paramilitary style force with heavy equipment bent on forced redistribution. Therefore, remain flexible and have an emergency rally point and extraction route should you be overmatched. Know when you have no alternative but to bug out. You can make this decision if you have the information before the threat arrives and conduct the bug out in good order. Alternatively, you may be forced to make the decision as the attack progresses and have to ‘break contact’ and withdraw under enemy fire; this is one of the most difficult tactical maneuvers.
Remember, the best form of defense is to avoid the fight. But that may not be possible and you have to always plan and prepare for that fight. You can better avoid the fight by adopting a lower profile at your location, attempting to conceal your supplies and capabilities. The opposite of this is to have a high profile and try to use threat of force as a deterrent. But remember that a good rifleman could sit out at long range and simply shoot your defenders in their sentry positions. In my opinion, the best approach for a small survivor group is to adopt a lower profile while maintaining the capability to defeat threats as they are encountered.
Most modern family homes do not lend themselves to defense. The structure is vulnerable to high velocity rounds which will pass through multiple frame, wood and plasterboard walls, and also simple mechanical breaches are possible with tools and even vehicles used as rams. They are also very vulnerable to fire. If you try and defend your house from the windows, then you will not be protected by the walls framing those windows and the room can be filled full of high velocity rounds by an attacking group. There is a real danger of being suppressed by superior firepower. If you stay back from the windows as you should, then you limit your fields of fire and unless there are enough of you defending then the enemy will be able to take advantage of blind spots to close with and then breach the house. You need a basement or other ballistic protected safe room for your noncombatant personnel (kids etc.) to shelter in; otherwise they will not be protected from the violence and from the high velocity rounds ripping through the walls
One of the key things for a prepper defense of a location is to have an appropriate number of trained personnel with appropriate firearms, ammunition and equipment. You will also have to take measures to harden the building to slow down attempts to breach. You need to consider whether or not you want your property to look derelict; this could be good or bad in the circumstances. It would be worthwhile to consider boarding up or shuttering at least the ground floor windows and think about putting up door bars or even board up some of the doors. This will also help with light discipline. External boards can make the place look derelict, but looking derelict could also encourage approach by potential squatters. You could put up the boards internally, or something similar, in order to maintain a low profile and slow any breaches. There a lots of pros and cons each way.
Boarding up your windows and doors does not make them ballistically hardened. You could have sandbags ready to go, and you will need to consider a big pile of dirt to fill them from. Consider the benefits of simple mass of soil in protecting you from high velocity rounds, and for the construction of fighting positions. Sandbags need to be at least two deep to protect against high velocity rounds.
establish a plan which provides early warning, all round defense and mutually supporting sectors of fire. We also need to create depth, which is best utilized outside the building rather than with fall back positions inside the house. We can create depth using external fighting positions to keep attackers away from the house, which will also aid mutual support. A key thing that will really help defense of a house is to have a second or more positions outside of the main building that can provide fire support, thus these positions support each other by keeping enemy away from the house and each other. This position(s) could also be another house or cooperating neighbor if it works out that way.
A very important concept is that of ‘stand-off’. This can be created with a combination of fighting positions in depth and cleared fields of fire with obstacles. If you have an obstacle, such as wire, it must be covered by fire to be effective. Utilize stand-off distances to keep enemy away from the property, combined with obstacles to slow vehicle and dismounted approach.
Note that you need to have fire-extinguishers and buckets of water and /or sand available at hand during a defense to put out any fires.
 

realisticdude

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Four black males driving slowly through a predominantly white neighborhood at night ,might be seen as being opportunists. But that would be racial profiling and a cop pulling them over, infringing on their civil rights. Are we planning to infringe on someones rights ? Maybe that roaming gang are just some poor hungry misunderstood boys , looking for some skittles and iced tea.Would all the real ambushing-teabagger-racist-instigating haters...please stand up !
 

Gazrok

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We're talking SHTF scenario here. ANY group of people, with any racial makeup is going to be suspected as a group of opportunists.
 

realisticdude

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We're talking SHTF scenario here. ANY group of people, with any racial makeup is going to be suspected as a group of opportunists.
Just having a little poke at YOU, at Treyvon's expense. Lighten up , dude.... 489 messages since Aug. 15...........get yourself some skittles , LOL..................my sarcasm has no boundaries ! In all seriousness , roaming gangs will be a definite problem and needs to be prepped , I've been talking about this scenario for years.
 

Tyler

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Personally my road only has 1 road leading to it (without driving through a ton of famr feilds, which will be bobby traped and ditches dug and scouts will be placed to defend an outer area) which we will block off with a few cars. I've also learned quite a few traps which will be in place. Our idea is hold our home and defend it from groups
 

Gazrok

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Definitely part of my strategy too (blocking off the roads) at least during the initial chaos period. Downed trees, vehicles, etc. Anything to prevent a mobilized force coming through.
 

RangerBob73

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Prepping a bunker and having some hasty fighting positions to funnel them in to try and control random firing.
 

SWCCMAN

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Lots of great and interesting ideas. I think I'll only trust family members and friends met BEFORE the SHTF. I'm looking forward to a meet to meet other likewise preppers, and to build a trusting friendship with some.
 

realisticdude

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Lots of great and interesting ideas. I think I'll only trust family members and friends met BEFORE the SHTF. I'm looking forward to a meet to meet other likewise preppers, and to build a trusting friendship with some.
A friend , in need........is a friend , indeed.............................depends on where the commas are !
 

X-cop

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The true Outlaw Bikers already know how to do all this stuff your worried about facing now. They're more organized and frankly behave "smarter" than your average banger thug in the street. They're mobile have a preexisting paramilitary command structure, they can build and maintain their own gear, they are HEAVILY armed, used to prolonged outdoor living on long rides, many have coms set up now via CB and shortwave. Lots of them have military backgrounds as well. They will be a group to avoid if possible.

Your run of the mill "gang bangers" most of them couldn't fnd their way across the street outside a major city, they don't stock food or water...or ammo for that matter. They also will be starving and going through DT's badly as a group. IF you are more than 30 miles outside a major city, your typical gang banger will probably starve or die from dysentery, get lost, kill each other, dehydrate etc before they ever get there.

Being off the beaten path will be helpful, hardening your position would be good and having a network of people to help would be a must.

"normal" people will get CRAZY should shtf though. They'll be desperate and panicked and violent. Most of them will be also, untrained non equipped and unorganized. They will do insane stuff.
 

Gazrok

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The true Outlaw Bikers already know how to do all this stuff your worried about facing now. They're more organized and frankly behave "smarter" than your average banger thug in the street. They're mobile have a preexisting paramilitary command structure, they can build and maintain their own gear, they are HEAVILY armed, used to prolonged outdoor living on long rides, many have coms set up now via CB and shortwave. Lots of them have military backgrounds as well. They will be a group to avoid if possible.
Yes, this is EXACTLY the kind of group I envision being the most likely encountered. While I'm rural, I'm not so far off the main Interstate that I could escape the notice if they are scouting each exit and going down a few roads. Of course, they'll encounter staged car crashes and downed trees to impede, but that may just make them more curious.

Nothing is fullproof, but having a plan is better than not having one.
 

realisticdude

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Yes, this is EXACTLY the kind of group I envision being the most likely encountered. While I'm rural, I'm not so far off the main Interstate that I could escape the notice if they are scouting each exit and going down a few roads. Of course, they'll encounter staged car crashes and downed trees to impede, but that may just make them more curious.

True that .................... (as they say in the 9th Ward )
 

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