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Mental/Emotional States. Certain mental and emotional states exist in most confrontations.
- All participants in a confrontation will be in a heightened emotional state, ranging from anxious, fearful, or agitated to panicked, angry, or enraged. These emotional states impair the ability to think clearly and perform complicated actions.
- Since confrontations are unusual for most people, victims usually are confused as they try to make sense of the situation and decide how to respond. Because of this, most reactions are usually instinctive, which may be the wrong responses to a situation.
- Excessive alcohol drinking and high boredom by both the victim and offender add to the chances of a confrontation.
- The intentions and abilities of assailants are usually unknown. Participants may be operating by a different set of “rules,” with differing abilities, motivations, and intended outcomes.
How Conducted. This pertains to the way a confrontation unfolds and how it is carried out.
- The only “rules” are the law (generally not obeyed), social norms, and the personal belief systems of the participants; however, there is no requirement to adhere to these rules. Some o f these rules are vague and participants generally do not know what the others' belief systems are, so in effect, there are no rules.
- Participants in a confrontation are free to choose any outcome that in their view will conclude the confrontation. For the victim, the desire outcome is usually to leave peaceably. While, for the assailant, the outcome could b ea successful robbery, rape, or murder. Participants may also change their intended outcome as the confrontational progresses; if challenged an obnoxious drunk may decide to kill.