Mugging/Theft Diversionary Device - ITS Tactical

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Mugging/Theft Diversionary Device

By Bryan Black

Mugging / Theft Diversionary Device

I’ve been getting a few emails since posting my Every Day Carry kit in our newly created ITS Tactical EDC Flickr Group.

Most have been requesting more information about my secondary “giveaway” wallet.

I came up with this idea a few years ago, but have only recently gotten around to carrying it on a regular basis.

The premise is that in the event of a mugging, or the old “gimme your wallet” routine, I’d reach back to my left rear pocket and pull out the giveaway wallet (I’m right handed and carry my real wallet in my right rear pocket).

My theory is that the person “requesting” my wallet would most likely be doing so at gunpoint or using a knife, and is going to want to leave the area as soon as possible.

They’re not going to sit there and dig through it to see what the contents are. Even if they do, I have a few bucks in there just to make the illusion more plausible.

Don’t get me wrong, just like you I don’t want to ever be the victim, but if this simple diversionary technique can give me the upper hand or allow me to fight another day, then I feel it will be worth it.


My secondary wallet is just a cheap black faux-leather wallet I picked up for a few bucks, nothing that I don’t mind losing.

I’ve also been collecting those fake credit card offer cards for some time now, you know, the ones that say “your name here.”

My giveaway wallet is filled with about five of those cards, and as mentioned above, a few dollars in cash.

That’s just in case I wind up face to face with a Steve Miller Band mugger who just wants to take the money and run…

Let me know if you have any questions or comments, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

And if you haven’t joined our EDC Flickr Group, what are you waiting for?

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  • TJK

    I found it an excellent idea, and just this morning I added a fake wallet to my EDC.

    Just a cheap wallet, 2 fake cards and some shopping receipts.

    Why no money? 1.- if he just grabs the wallet and runs, it’s a win for me

    2.- if he opens it looking for money, I think he will get distracted enough for me to try something, be it running, spraying him with OC or reaching for my knife (in that order)

    3.- thieves around here are more interested in cell phones than in wallets

  • Ive seen these in the EDC Kits that got posted here on ITS/Flickr. what a great Idea dont know why I haven’t done this a long time ago. I’m going to work on getting one put together ASAP. Regardless of My Martial Arts Background. If Im with My Girlfriend or Loved ones when getting Mugged its easier just to hand over the “Ringer Wallet” & Like you said (spot on!)
    “Don’t get me wrong, just like you I don’t want to ever be the victim, but if this simple diversionary technique can give me the upper hand or allow me to fight another day, then I feel it will be worth it.”

  • This trick is handy for anyone who cares a badge for a living. Last thing you want to reveal is your true idenity in situations mentioned above and no one wants there badge ending up in the hands of the bad guys.

  • What an awesome idea! I’m going to set one of these up for my wife and I. Not a bad idea at all.

    • Marcos

      I’ll set one up in case my wife asks me for my wallet…

    • Raven


  • H.J. Simpson

    Another great job guys. Thanks a metric ton for your efforts!

  • waykno

    I’ve been carrying one of these 3-4 years now. I wait till a credit card expires and use the old one (after messing up the strip). Yes, my name is on it but better that than if he/she should take time to look at one and see “your name here.”

  • Brandon Hooper

    I’ve been carrying one of these for a while now with a couple of old ATM cards that are from closed accounts and luckily I haven’t had to use it yet, but it’s there.

  • Pat

    This is a great idea. Personally this will be good so that i can give up the fake wallet, I think it’s important to practice acting extremely nervous and scared to the assailant; right before i put two .45 hydrashoks in someones chest of course 🙂

    • Agreed Pat, Thankfully I’ve never had to use mine, but I’ve rehearsed how I’d act as well. Create a diversion with nervousness and fear and go to guns if the situation dictates it 🙂

  • fastmover

    Grip the fake wallet in the throwing hand.
    Decoy Wallet Instuctions:
    Grasp the pull ring with the index or middle finger of the nonthrowing hand. Remove the safety pin with a pulling and twisting motion.
    Throw the grenade (I mean wallet) using the overhand method so that the grenade (I mean wallet) arcs, landing on or near the target. Seek Cover…

  • Random Guy

    Why not hide a pocket pistol inside the fake wallet with the trigger hole cut out so that the gun could be fired inside the wallet? So when you are handing the wallet to the punk, you aim and shoot him in the face.

    • Fresnel

      DeSantis makes a holster that, when fitted with a pocket-pistol like a Ruger LCP or SIG P238, looks just like a wallet. It’s called the Pocket Shot. I fired another maker’s model a couple years back, before DeSantis got the idea, with a Kel-Tec P-3AT in it, and I found it actually quite enjoyable to shoot. Though you can only get two fingers on it, the larger grip allowed the ring finger alone to easily tame the little .380. I’ve vaguely considered getting one someday and duracoating the gun the same color brown as the leather of the holster, to further the ruse.

  • Luke Ward

    I had 2 giveaway wallets went I went on holiday to New York City last year. Thankfully I never had to use them, but it was always reassuring to know I had them. I was not going to allow a mugging wreck my trip from Australia to the USA. I definitely recomend this trick to my friends who plan to travel anywhere.

  • Brandon

    I’ve carried a second wallet since I was 15 because the school I went to. Never thought I’d ever need it till 3 am. Day after last Easter. Some punkass kid with a ski mask ringerless gloves completely I. Black decided he was goin to rob the gas station I happened to be in. All he had was a pump action twelve gauge and I couldn’t stop smiling about it. I’ve never been robbed before and he o e to
    E I do it’s by some punk looking like he was out of a cheap ass movie he asked for my wallet and if I had a cell phone. Gave him the wallet and told him I didn’t have a phone he said grab what you wan. And run instead I walked out to the side and called the cops. My second wallet had two fake cards and a note that said up yours on half of a dollar.

    • Awesome comment Brandon! Thanks for sharing!! A little hard to understand, but I think I get the gist of the story 🙂

    • Clay

      Something I do is carry around an extra cell phone. For me, it’s my old cell phone.

      If worst comes to worst, and I’m in a hostage situation, I can hand the aggressors one of two phones, I figure most people will not expect someone to have two phones on them at any given time. The old cell phone is off and fully charged at all times, and set to dead silent, so if I have to turn it on, there is no cheesy jingle or vibrate to make a noise.

      By law, at least in the US, service providers have to let a 911 call go through, even if the phone does not have a plan.

  • nobody

    ive heard of this idea many moons ago, and its a solid idea. i use one of those micro wallets to save weight and space. i did think about using photo coppied money, but on second thoughts, it is a great way of storing back up real money!

  • Good idea for those who CC as well too. Not every situation needs to be defused by drawing and firing. I’ve defused two situations without having to draw. And if you think the person is a serious threat, it could act as the perfect diversion to put distance between you and the individual while drawing.

  • Chris

    Another important thing to remember if you’re ever in a mugging situation- never hand the wallet, diversion or real, to the mugger. Toss it on the ground a few feet away; far enough to put some distance between you, but not so far as to aggravate them (especially if they’re armed). Like that old email with the “Rules of Gunfights” said, distance is your friend!

  • rugercat45

    Someone needs to resurrect the “Fang” anti-mugger device from Poor Man’s James Bond. Which is basically a syringe loaded with homemade potassium cyanide. When the dumbass asks for “yo wallet” give it to ’em-right in the gut, Fang first, hidden under the wallet and run the plunger to the hilt. The onlookers will just think the dirtbag had a heart attack (hey! mugging is high-stress work, right?) Cleans the gene pool and saves your bacon all at the same time!

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