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Local Veteran arming Southington with self defense following carjackings

SOUTHINGTON – Just days after a grandmother and two children were abducted in a carjacking in Southington, a local Veteran is arming his community with self-defense.

Head instructor and owner of Alpha Krav Maga in Southington, Robert Rand, is helping residents be ready for “worst case scenario.”

At a carjacking defense training class, Friday, Rand showed students how to spot a would-be attacker, how to mentally deal with a person approaching a vehicle and how to react if an attacker gets inside the car.

“The biggest thing a criminal is going to look for is someone they perceive as weak someone that's submissive and somebody that's not gonna put up a fight,” he said.

Rand said about 74 percent of the time the criminal is armed and 45 percent of the time it is with a hand gun so those in attendance went through carjacking scenarios using mock weapons.

At the training, Rand also stressed situational awareness saying we live in a day and age when many people are distracted by their phones.

“When you're walking to your vehicle look around and if something sits in your gut that doesn't feel right, go with that feeling,” he said.

Rand said individuals between the ages of 25 and 49 are more likely to be carjacked, citing The United States Justice Department, also noting an average of 50,000 carjacking’s happen across the United States per year, and that number is increasing.

Hartford police recently made an arrest in a carjacking from March.

Rand began his training in hand-to-hand combat while serving in the United States Army more than 15 years ago. He continued training in Krav Maga, eventually opening his own location on Canal Street in Southington.

“There is a lot more with bullying going on and I just, I don’t like to see people be the victim,” he said. “I think everybody deserves to have a voice and deserves to be able to stand up for themselves.”