Active shooter. In today's climate, you would be hard-pressed to find two words that could generate more fear and anxiety when spoken.
Most people have no idea what they would do if a gunman entered their business, church or school. But they don't have to be a victim. A new company called Precision Tactics LLC gives churches, businesses, schools and individuals the skils and knowledge they need to survive in crisis situations.
Precision Tactics LLC is owned by the husband and wife team of Charles “Zack” and Julia Christie. The couple says that they teach “strategies for defense, and courage for life.”
Zack and Julia met as students at Columbia High School, but they didn’t start dating until both were students at USC. After they graduated from USC in 2012, Julia became a Licensed Master Social Worker, and Zack got a job working in Information Technology (IT) for a trucking company. After a year, he moved into an IT role at Blue Cross Blue Shield.
Zack enjoyed working in IT, but his first love has always been self-defense and firearms.
“He has been around firearms his whole life,” says Julia. “He is also a black belt in Korean martial arts, and does hunting and competition shooting. He is nationally certified to teach firearm training.”
“I am a NRA-certified pistol instructor, which allows me to teach Concealed Weapon Permit (CWP) courses,” Zack said.
Zack wanted to open a business centered on his skills. The couple launched Precision Tactics in 2017. Initially, they taught concealed weapons permit training. But they quickly realized that there was a greater problem that needed to be addressed.
“”We saw a need where churches, schools and businesses were vulnerable,” said Julia. “People needed more training.”
“We want people to be able to protect themselves more than just having a CWP,” Zack said. “With all the active shooter situations going on, you need to be able to emotionally handle that situation. We wanted people to understand how to handle those situations more effectively – and how to handle themselves around innocent bystanders.”
“We wanted to do something for God and with firearms,” added Julia. “God has blessed us to be able to do that. We want to keep people safe whether they have firearms or they are unarmed.”
The couple originally planned to open a gun range. They even had a location in mind. But a larger company came in and secured the space. Zack says that losing that location turned out to be a blessing.
“We originally wanted to open a gun range,” Zack says. “But that door got closed, thank God. That would have been all business and no ministry. This is ministry. We get to do the training, but we also get to help people learn how to protect themselves and be safe. Active shooters are not going to stop, so we need to prepare.”
“As a result of that door closing, our team developed more,” said Julia. “We have psychologists on our team, firearm and tactical training people on our team – our team has helped us become effective without doing the gun range thing.”
One night, Zack had a dream that he owned a gun range – but the gun range was in a movie theater. The dream became a reality when Julia found a portable firearm training system that utilized video screens. The video screens enabled instructors to train clients in a variety of different scenarios. And more importantly, it allows Precision Tactics to train clients in their own buildings – businesses, schools, churches and government facilities.
“The gun range is nothing compared to the knowledge we share,” said Zack. “A gun range teaches one thing – how to shoot a gun at a target. We get to put you in scenarios such as someone trying to rob you at an ATM or an active shooter at a church or business. We teach you how to respond in those situations. That is what makes us unique and different.”
“We have a complete curriculum that’s really intense,” Julia says. “We come to your location.”
In the wake of several recent shooting incidents in churches nationwide, Precision Tactics decided to initially focus on helping church congregations to protect themselves. The company offers a variety of church security packages, from security assessments to developing and training a church’s security team – both armed and unarmed.
“If a church doesn’t have a team, we help them develop a team. We come up with a security plan and develop what each person’s role is going to be. It’s not just training you how to shoot, we cover the full scope so that they can be fully prepared and confident. The last thing they need is everybody getting up and shooting during an active shooter situation, because every bullet that leaves a gun is a liability.”
Say, for example, that the congregation doesn’t want guns in the church. We use object management – how to use the objects around them for defense. We also teach ‘run hide fight’ tips that law enforcement teaches.”
“We have seven levels of training that churches can go through,” Julia says. “We can come up with plans for them. We are a business, but we are also a ministry. We never turn a church down over their ability to pay.”
“It’s like Nehemiah building a wall around the city,” Zack added. “We are trying to build another layer of protection around the churches.”
In addition, Julia works with women-based organizations to teach women how to defend themselves. Contact Zack or Julia Christie at Precision Tactics, LLC 803-206-1081 or by email email@example.com.