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Spray and Pray: Why cops should go back to carrying revolvers

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July 25, 2006

Spray and Pray: Why cops should go back to carrying revolvers

By David E. Petzal and Phil Bourjaily

Here are a number of things that don’t fill me with confidence:

  • Condoleezza Rice, on her way to anywhere
  • George W. Bush
  • Dick Cheney wearing a game vest
  • The TSA, doing anything
  • Cops with guns

Since the first four are mostly outside the provenance of this blog, let’s talk about the fifth. What brings it up is a newspaper story revealing that on July 23, three New York City Police officers fired a total of 26 shots to kill a pit bull that was chewing on a fellow officer. The three who did the shooting were grazed by stray bullets.
       
According to police who commented on the incident, time seems to slow down in a violent encounter, and in that time officers keep on sending those rounds out. In this confrontation, one officer fired 13 rounds, another fired 12, and the third officer only one. No doubt he will be reprimanded. The officer who was being chewed on did not shoot, being otherwise occupied.
      
Most police officers nowadays are armed with automatic pistols that hold 16 or 17 shots and have double-action triggers that are guaranteed to prevent accidental discharges but are also guaranteed to prevent accurate shooting. So when it’s time to go to powder city, the average copper is going to rely on volume, not precision, and if you happen to be in the immediate vicinity, God help you.
      
Maybe we should bring back the 6-shot revolver.

Comments (52)

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

I'm curious. Could you expand on which "yuppie shit" in particular you find objectionable?

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from James F Harter wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

Back when I was a kid the big three ruled yea that be Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, and Field and Stream. The articles where about fishing and hunting in a positive light and non of the yuppie shit you folks love to write about today. No wonder your circulation is down. No wonder your reduced to rambleing on the internet. Let the NRA who I belong to tell me which politicians I should worry about since you seem to distrust the one in office though I wonder how you would like a anti gunner in there?

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

"Hey Sugartits"Before Mel Gibson's meltdown, would you have used this salutation? If not, I have to wonder why you would want to parrot the ravings of a drunken anti-semite?If so, thank you for the compliment, but I don't swing that way.

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from Vincent Belloli wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

As a law enforcement officer, police firearms instructor (pistol/combat shotgun/patrol rifle), I would like to share a few thoughts. First, most officers shoot more proficiently with semiauto pistols than with revolvers. Pistols are easier to carry, are MUCH faster and easier to reload under stress, and can of course carry more ammunition.As far as the NYPD incident involving the dog shooting: there were obviously some issues here, the most obvious being a cross-fire situation. One of the officers must have not been watching his background. Also, I do think it seems unreasonable to need so many rounds to incapacitate a dog, but then again I've never had to shoot an angry pit bull with my duty pistol. Also consider that NYPD only authorizes 9mm pistols, and the issued ammunition is Speer 124gr +P Gold Dot. That would not be my first choice of ammo for going after large dogs.I have been to several instructor schools, and I've never seen training on how to kill a dog. If I were faced with that situation, I would choose shot placement based not on LE training, but on my hunting background. Most cops, especially in big cities, are not hunters. They would tend to shoot for center of mass, which is how officers are trained to shoot human targets. This allows the greatest chance of a hit, but not necessarily the best placement for a quick kill on animals such as dogs.Last, shame on all of you who are criticizing this incident without the background to QUALIFY you to critique it.huntingcop4

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from Curly wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

Hey Sugartits,You forgot Joe!!!I know exactly what I am talking about and the point is that the comments about cops using revolvers is just as absurb as Petzal being a leftist liberal. You might as well say you think our soldiers shoot way to wildly and they should go back to using muzzleloaders so the accuracy will go up.I am no GOPbot and I am not a fan of Bush overall but in this world of Kerry, Dean, Gore and the rest you could not have asked for a better president to kick some raghead ass.Smith and Wesson, Clinton and you what is the difference? Nothing.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

"Purple-in-the-face-and- spitting nobodies proudly frothing over how they haven't spent a dime on the magazine in 30 years are scarcely enough of a concern that the publishers will be lining up any time soon for the privilege of kissing your ass."JA Demko - that is one high-class bitch slap. I love it.

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

First off, enraged-Red Zone attacking-animals can take an amazing amount of punishment while in the heat of battle whether it be a baseball bat or firearm. This is not unlike a drug hyped perp,body armored wearing,that can take a number of shots before going down. It goes without saying a brain/spine shot should do the trick for that "one shot stop", but real World shoot outs just don't happen that way. Since 9/11, it has also been more common to see carbine carrying police that at one time would have been unaccetable on our streets--times are changing.In my case,I have served in both military, and civilian, police positions and luckily have never had to shoot anyone in the line of duty, but training does include both the physical and mental state of mind to help deal with a life threatening situation. Having said all that--I prefer an auto pistol for duty carry,but if I were responding to a known situation-out comes the shotgun-when it's MY LIFE on the line, one is NEVER overgunned!

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

"I demand F&S to retract this liberal tirade. F&S and Outdoor life have both been printing this nonsense about having to many rounds or (Hanback)shooting game to far away etc. To the editors of both of these mags and to the authors of the blogs I say you will never get a dime out of me and you should all be fired."This deserves a special place in the Hall of Impotent Rants. You aren't a stockholder in the company, you don't subscribe to the magazine, and you don't even pick up an issue off the rack...yet you are making demands? Maybe you are unaware of this, but in magazine publishing, all the money that really matters comes from advertisers. Income from subscriptions and news stand sales are inadequate to fund a national glossy. Writers, photographers, and other employees like to be paid, you know. Smith & Wesson matter to the publishers. Coors matters to the publishers. Ford and Chevrolet matter to the publishers. Hell, even the advertisers way in the back for things like "Better Sex for Old People" videos matter. They all matter because they are sources of revenue and the publishers, therefore, like to keep them happy. Purple-in-the-face-and- spitting nobodies proudly frothing over how they haven't spent a dime on the magazine in 30 years are scarcely enough of a concern that the publishers will be lining up any time soon for the privilege of kissing your ass. Just some food for thought.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

What do Moe, Larry, and Shemp have to say on the matter? Why is it that Bushistas and other GOPbots automatically call anyone who isn't properly doubleplus goodthinkful a leftist? Do you even know where that term comes from or what it means? I suspect not. Probably you'll do a quick googlesearch on it before replying so as not to look an utter ass.As for your opinion on GWB and the War on Terror...well, it's your opinion. You have a right to it that I will die to defend, however asinine and ill-informed it may be.

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from Curly wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Is Field & Stream paying you to write this leftist drival? This reminds me of the anti-gun, anti-"saturday night special" article that F&S printed in the 70's. I have the magazine around here somewhere to remind me why I will not purchase the magazine.I demand F&S to retract this liberal tirade. F&S and Outdoor life have both been printing this nonsense about having to many rounds or (Hanback)shooting game to far away etc. To the editors of both of these mags and to the authors of the blogs I say you will never get a dime out of me and you should all be fired. The last thing we need is a bunch of pandering leftist trying to make us feel guilty for owning guns, shooting and hunting.I am no friend of wild-shooting, trigger-happy cops but training is the issue not the number of rounds or how fast they pull the trigger you Fing moron.Oh, and by the way, I think President Bush is doing just fine in the war on terror.

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from Matt wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Mitchell, have you had your head dunked in the toilet one too many times in high school?

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

I stand corrected. And here I thought poor Mitchell suffered from a severe case of penis envy.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

I wouldn't even glorify him by calling him a troll. A troll, you see, is supposed to have some skill provoking people. Our boy Mitchell is more like some unfortunate soul who has both Tourette's syndrome and catastrophic mental retardation. He deserves a certain degree of our sympathy, but we needn't join him as he spouts obscenities and smears himself with his own feces.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Dave, you have a troll on the blog - a troll struggling with his inadequacies.

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Hey JA Demko, neither. So take your liberal DELETED to California and play with your skateboards. And KJ, I was surely successful in flushing out a DELETED like YOU. Only a DELETED like yourself would say something DELETED like "I wonder what Freud would say...". Get real you DELETED and GET A LIFE.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Yep. I wonder what Freud would say about Mitchell's little tantrum...

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

My guess is that Mitchell is either a cop who can't shoot or a man too deeply emotionally involved with an autopistol.

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

How about changing your name to David Putzal cause you're a putz!!

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

The originator of this article/blog should be shot. DELETED like you shouldn't be permitted to start blogs. DELETED!!!

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

I don’t want competent shooters on the police force, I want someone better than I am, at least the guys and gals that get sent out onto the streets. I want the LEOs that write up charges on those arrested to better skilled grammatically than I am so that the charges have a better chance with the DA. I want an end to all this PC BS forced upon LE, I want only the best working for me that I can afford, and they are working for me.I realize that there weren’t a lot of in-depth interviews with gunfighters over the years, but I do remember reading one many years ago where the gunfighter stated his best tool in the box was his head. It’s the spray and pray crowd that might “think” of their selves as gunslingers that cause the problems and the media hype that follows putting a bad mark on law enforcement in general.This blog isn’t the first time I’ve seen the topic of so many rounds needed to hit the target in the NYPD. If these guys aren’t willing to spend time (and yes, money out of their own pocket) training or they aren’t trainable, they should be fired or another home found for them where they aren’t a danger to themselves or others.Shoot what you’re good with, then practice some more. Most departments will allow you to carry a different weapon, albeit at your expense. If you can’t carry what works for you, practice even more, or get off the street. Adrenaline rushes screw with us all at one time or another, but if it’s your job, practice even more. 6, 12, 15, it doesn’t matter, they all come out of the barrel one at a time.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

See, I'm a big fan of anybody who carries a weapon being competent in its use. I'm not a big fan of cops who think of themselves as gunfighters or who think of the gun as the main tool in the box. The basic reason that cops carry guns is the same reason you do and other citizens do: self-protection. The on-going militarization of police in the US is a big part of why so many people don't like them. When they start thinking of themselves as gunslingers, soldiers, or other trigger-pullers instead of peace officers, then things have definitely gone awry.

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from MIKE ANTHONY wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

TO QUOTE THE GREAT JEFF COOPER "GREAT SHOOTING WILL MAKE UP FOR POOR GEAR, BUT GREAT GEAR WILL NOT MAKE UP FOR POOR SHOOTING." PRACTICE-PRACTICE-PRACTICE ! AS FAR AS SERVICE PISTOLS, I'M A HUGE FAN OF THE SIG P229 IN .357 SIG.

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Do you think LE gets very far enforcing the laws against the gang bangers, or even the pit bulls, with a stick?Yes, through the years, I have known several people in LE and only one has had to actually kill anyone. In fact, several officers were involved; his bullet however actually hit its mark. Most have never had to even draw their weapon, but aren’t you supposed to be prepared to use the tools of the trade. Practice, practice, practice! PC attitudes do not decide the winner in a confrontation; in fact, those that are proficient with their weapon tend to have to pull it less frequently. Someone that feels and exudes confidence in his or her martial abilities will have to prove it less often.Superior firepower, what constitutes that exactly? If it’s the number of bullets you can throw out there 5 guys (not an uncommon amount of officers to show up when a call about a gun goes over the air) with revolvers double the firepower of anyone with a semi-auto, plus I should think if they practice enough to hit what they’re aiming at, they have a better chance of hitting their target than an individual does. Most shootings are decided in 2 to 3 rounds, from what I’ve read.It’s not so much the weapon’s capacity as it is the users proficiency. Attitude and practice will decide violent outcomes. Our LEOs need more instruction in the nature of their job so they can feel the confidence required. If that means they have to buy their own ammo and practice on their own time and their own dime, so be it. I would rather have someone that considered his or her skill level to be that of a gunfighter than someone untrained and not confident enough to feel they could control the situation of the moment. I’m much less likely to get hit with a stray that way, which was what the topic of this blog started out as.

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from Roderick Padilla wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Armed police can shoot back, with concern for the perp. Armed citizens can shoot back, with concern for themselves. Perps shoot without concern for anybody. Logically and legally, who should have the superior firepower?

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Gunfighters? Please. LE exists to enforce the law. Sometimes that means use of a firearm, but not often. You may have heard somewhere along the way that most police officers go their entire career without ever firing their pistol in the line of duty. That, sir, is a fact. Further, if I were part of the interview process, I would blackball any candidate who indicated that he did think of himself as a "gunfighter."

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

LEOs don't get paid to train? Again, LEOs don't get paid to train? I don't care! Bottom line, it's no different now than it was a 150-years ago, citizens are hiring gunfighters to stop the criminals should it come to that. That is the bottom line for the job.I just read an article in my local newspaper today that said the starting pay for a CHP is over $60,000 a year (no overtime, education or any other bump is considered in that figure, and the state picks up all of their retirement, courtesy of a new 8% raise to cover their mandatory contribution). Don't you think an LEO is at least somewhat responsible for bringing some qualifications to the job for that kind of starting salary? That is pretty good starting pay for someone with no job experience, shouldn’t they at least be able to handle a weapon.I train for my work, at my own expense, which is how I stay good at what is expected of me and I continue to get work by doing so. If I had a job where I was always expected to be able to protect the public (let alone protect my partner and myself), I would sure as hell train myself and pay for shooting schools until I felt adequately prepared for a gunfight, which is part of the job description. If someone doesn’t like guns, what the hell are they thinking when they take a job that REQUIRES carrying a gun, and, they’re expected to know how to use it? If you like guns, why wouldn’t you practice? I think part of the problem is that an LEOs sensitivity training is paid for, and it’s working. A revolver or a semi-auto doesn’t fit into the equation. These aren’t bus drivers and being an LEO isn’t just a job, it’s a profession, be a professional and do what it takes to be qualified as a professional.

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from Michael wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Having worked for, and with several police departments, including two years as the training officer as well as having managed a number of cities, I have seen the number of LEOs who are gun enthusiests (from shooting to IDPA to hunting)plummet over the years. Far too many now don't practice beyond what is required and many departments do not have adequate budgets to have decent training to simulate real world situations (and not to pick a fight, but IDPA and the rest just isn't real world). Simunition and air-soft type practice, followed up by a letter from the department to the "widow" is needed. Otherwise, we will continue to see this kind of travesty continue!

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

WRT to Ted "Das Boot" Kennedy, the only apprehension I'd feel would be is if I were in the car with him on that bridge. Or drinking with him and his nephews in their Florida compound. Or flying in a small plane piloted by one of his nephews. Whether you think JFK and RFK were good men or not, they were so charismatic that Teddy the Hutt has leeched off their names for about 40 years or so now.

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from Matt wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Lets take this piece by piece. First, one of my biggest pet peeves in this life are hearing the anti-gunners whine about how only the “professional, expertly-trained” law-enforcement officers should be carrying guns, as opposed to us dangerous rednecks. Never mind the fact that the average civilian gun owner practices twenty times as much as the average LEO. I also hear far too many stories such as this one about cops committing such blatant violations of basic gun safety. If anyone acted in a similar manner at any of the gun ranges I go to, they would be blacklisted for life in three second flat. Note to Sarah Brady: a badge does NOT make a person a well-qualified or safe shooter. But somehow I have a feeling you knew that already.Second, what should be done about this? Why not take the guns away from the police and issue them pepper spray or some of other non-lethals they insist are the only protection us civilians need? If they are good enough for us, they should be good enough for them. For those extreme cases where greater firepower would be needed, specially-trained police units will be allowed to carry an atlatl. Naturally, police in John Kerry’s state of Taxachusetts while not be allowed to carry most of these items because civies there can’t have them. Massachusetts LEOs will only be allowed to carry pepper spray after completing a background check, just like the subjects, er, citizens of Massachusetts (I swear to God, people really do have to go through a background check there for PEPPER SPRAY!).Third, as mentioned earlier, during the North Hollywood shootout, half the friggin’ LAPD was there and despite neither of the thugs having any protecting on their heads other than a ski mask, NOBODY was able to register a head shot despite the fact that a lot of the fire happened at close range. Hell, if some civilian with a .300 magnum had been able to put a round in one of their chests it might not have killed them but the shock sure would have taken them out of the fight. Of course in Kalifornia, you have a better chance of seeing a Martian than seeing an armed civilian. Gee, I wonder why we never see any such shootouts in Virginia? Could it be that your average 12 year-old with a .22 could shoot better than the LAPD? There is an idea. Reduce the police forces to a skeleton crew. With all that tax money being saved we can give big tax breaks to everyone. The people can then use said tax breaks to buy a new gun and if we ever have another North Hollywood situation, let THEM handle it.Fourth, beside Condie, Dubya, and the rest, what should really get your confidence meter lowered is seeing Ted Kennedy driving towards you on a bridge.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

WRT not getting paid to train, it's just that nasty ol' budget again. Where I work, most of the deputies have gone through all of their pre-hire training at their own expense. It seems that pretty much all the agencies around here will consider only applicants who are already trained. It's only the State Police, I guess, who still hire primarily untrained people and then put them through the academy at taxpayer expense. After hiring, deputies do get sent to various classes and workshops, I can't think of any of it that was firearms-related. Heck, even the couple hours that it takes to qualify annually is unpaid time for everybody concerned. The Sheriff takes the sting out of that by holding a BBQ (at his own expense) afterward.

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from mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

we as LEO's do not get paid to train with our firearms. that is the problem. very few of us actually do any shooting outside of work, and thats once a year to qualify. there should be a lot more mandatory firearms training. a more offensive weapon would be helpful, but not very practicle in all other aspects of police work (chasing a drug dealer). big department do not budget officers time and recall overtime for officers to fill there spots on the street while in training. i have been in five incidents where i had to fire my weapon. thankfully i have always hit my target and nothing else. then again i have always enjoyed shooting on my off time. until you have the facts, don't make statements like you do. as far as revolver over auto loaders. the auto loader wins hands down. anyone shooting with some skill can get tacticle accuracy with either and the benifits of more rounds is definite advatage police.

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from Jem wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Thank you, backseat shooters.I think it would be nice if ya'll would take your 'highly accurate, better than them' selves down to the local department and get hired. Or offer to do the training...Yes, it would be nice to adhere to the 'one shot, one kill' methodology. But 'til you've been there, keep your opinions to yourself. Or better yet, share what you do for a living so we can point out the ineptitude of you and your ilk.And as far as training... there's certainly not as much as you seem to dream about... often training time is spent learning about the latest complaints from the PC crowd.Sheesh.

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from William Giordano wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

As a retired [revolver carrying ] NYPD street cop; I have this to say. If you get into a dispute involving pistols and you don't accomplish anything by the time you've fired six times, you're in deep dodo my friends. One or two to get his head down, squat as you move to the right, aim and end it with your third shot.

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from Mark wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I dont agree automatics are better.

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from Visitor wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I think that there needs to be more police, that they should go out in groups, not alone, and that there should be more specialized functions for them. There should be police that are the designated shooters, those whose job it is to shoot bad guys if the bad guys start shooting. That person could be armed with a carbine, something better able to engage bad guys with guns. There should also be police that are either not armed or their firearms are more secured on their person so that no bad guy can easily take it (as cops get shot with their guns too much). That person should be the one who gets to meet and greet the public, be that talking with people or physically taking down a bad guy. His mindset should be the opposite of the gun guy, he should be thinking to use his own body or a baton or mace first, that he won't be thinking gun as it isn't easily accessible.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Cheap is the key word there. Police departments have limited budgets to which they must adhere. The money for that budget comes from taxes. John Q. Public may realize on some level that ammunition, arms, and training are necessary, but John also knows that he already has a heavy tax burden. Ammo and real, quality training don't come cheap. When municipal government looks at their annual budget and sets the allotment for the police department, they realistically have to take into account how much they can afford. That's a fact gentlemen. How many of you have unlimited budget for your own shooting? I sure don't. FYI, the Sheriff's Office where I work requires us to buy our own guns and any ammunition above what is used in annual qualification.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Mike and Ted - you weren't there, and neither was I, so saying just how easy it would have been to get close is a matter of conjecture. And were you there, bullets flying, you may not be so inclined to get close. However, you do finally agree with my point that the problem is not revolver vs. semi-auto. Quote: "I reiterate, the problem is lack of training for such situations." However, you are wrong to claim the LEOs were not outgunned. Two thugs prepared for this specific shootout with no regard for the lives of anyone, were heavily armed and armored, and had the element of surprise on their side, and faced police armed with handguns. True, some handguns and handgunners can shoot a nice group, even with open sights - on the range, under good conditions (like no one shooting back at them).Second guessing the police is cheap; properly equipping them AND training them costs - and pays.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Ted Correct....there were MANY officers that responded....yet with all the man-power and firepower not 1 shot scored a fatal hit....body armor or no, a head shot with a little .38 would have ended the skirmish quickly.I dont want to hear the pathetic excuses as to the officers being out gunned...2 men with semi auto AK's showed the glaring ineptness of most LEO's. The scumbags with the AK's were outgunned. PERIODFACT is our police are NOT well trained nor well prepared for such eventualities. Myriad are the reasons for this, but the fact still remains.That being said...I have great respect for LEO's that take thier oaths seriously. Even though my comments may seem contrary. I am NOT anti LEO. Just have issues with those that have no clue how to use the firearms they are issued in a safe and appropriate manner. Especially when they are paid to train and have ammo for training supplied.I reiterate, the problem is lack of training for such situations.

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from Ted Strong wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Sure, two or three officers with dept. issue weapons would have been outgunned, but have you looked at the video--it seems like practically half the department showed up.With that many officers they should have been able to maneuver around the lunatics and kill them.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Mike - your statement: "In the LA bank robber situation, AGIAN, shot placement would have saved the day.......but instead we had spray and pray mindset to no avail." As I recall, the cops had their pistols (I'm not sure if they were revolvers or semi-autos) and the crooks had machine guns. The type of handgun the cops had is not the point, nor was a spray and pray mentality the problem. They were outgunned, plain and simple, and that was the problem. My question during that episode was, "Don't they have a shotgun with buckshot and slugs in the magazine, or a rifle of some sort in their patrol cars?" Arming LEOs with revolvers isn't going to fix the problem, IMO.

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from Dave Petzal wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

To O Garcia: You write very well. Enjoyed the story. The best illustration of this point ever put in print is in Glendon Swarthout's novel The Shootist. When its protagonist, the gunfighter John Bernard Books is asked why he has survived so many shootouts, he replies, "Most men will hesitate before they shoot. I won't." Great book that deserved a better movie than the one John Wayne made. For that matter, John Wayne deserved a better last movie.

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from Dave Petzal wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

To O Garcia: You write very well. Enjoyed the story. The best illustration of this point ever put in print is in Glendon Swarthout's novel The Shootist. When its protagonist, the gunfighter John Bernard Books is asked why he has survived so many shootouts, he replies, "Most men will hesitate before they shoot. I won't." Great book that deserved a better movie than the one John Wayne made. For that matter, John Wayne deserved a better last movie.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

The problem isn't the officers. It was that they did not have the correct tool for the job. Their friend, rolling around trying to pry the dog off, the close range --it was the wrong place for a firearm.In anticipation of MORE dogs, maybe the police should carry a machete or spear on that shotgun rack in the patrol car. Want to pry a pit bull off your pal? Ten inches of steel in the pit bull's flank ought to do the job far more precisely than shooting around the officer struggling with the dog.

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from Peter Caroline wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Back in the day, at least on the east coast, when cops carried revolvers, local police departments actively competed in police revolver leagues. Higher pay or status was accorded to superior marksmen, "reserve" or "auxiliary" officers were often recruited for their marksmanship skills, and many departments reloaded their own training ammo. Since the late '60s, however, police weapons skills have been compromised by a number of factors: limited departmental budgets, lack of incentives, liability issues related to departmental reloading facilities, and political correctness issues.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

KJ; In the LA bank robber situation, AGIAN, shot placement would have saved the day.......but instead we had spray and pray mindset to no avail. EXACTLY what we see from LEO's time and again. Luckily no innocents (non-combatants is a better term)were harmed in that debacle.Mark; Full auto weapons in the hands of LEO's freaks ME out as it should politicos......if the LEO's cant hit with revolvers or high cap. semi autos what makes you think high cap. FULL auto would help....other than killing more bystanders.Sheesh, cops should be held to the SAME standards you and I are held to in defensive shootings with same limits imposed upon me and you......they are no different. LEO's are no more than citizens like you and I. Save they get paid to carry a gun. They KNOW the dangers when they take thier oath to enforce the law. That doesn't put them ABOVE the law. PERIODTraining is the key. wether for me and my personal carry 1911, or cops and thier issued 9mm's.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I find this and MANY other stories along this line quite appalling to say the least.First, if I am forced into a defensive shooting situation I and only ME is responsible for EVERY round that comes out of my weapon. Should I miss 1 shot or have a round go thru and kill a bystander with a ricochet I go to prison for life for murder. Why not LEO's?!Second, cops get PAID to train and have ammo PAID for with tax payer moneys. While I must scrimp and go without feed for a week to pay for the ammo to feed my defense weapons for my training. Yet, I am a MUCH better shot than 90% of the LEO's I have met and shot with.Sickening to say the least.

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from Mark wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Good thing those NYPD went up against a dog and not a whacked-out drug gang.My background is military so in some respects I’m confused on some corners believing a handgun is an offensive weapon. It’s really a defensive item, according to military thought. I believe the only offensive weapon allowed "regular" NYS Law Enforcement is the billy club.It would appear arming LE with the large magazine semi-auto’s handguns is good politics by giving the image of issuing something good, but very poor judgment in properly arming police for dramatic events. It would appear the serious way to arm American LE is to follow the European tendency to issue fully automatic, compact machine pistols and military combat rifles to their cops.I’m certain such armed NYPD would have made short work of that dog.This scene, of course, freaks out politicians and bureaucrats in changing the social aspects of the American Law Enforcement Game. Don’t think people are ready to see this.Good luck, LEO’s

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from kj wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

It's a tough issue. The bad guys have high capacity weapons, sometimes fully automatic high capacity weapons. Would revolvers handicap the police? I keep thinking about the LA shootout when the two lunatic bank robbers with body armor and fully automatic rifles dominated the police - and it was captured on video for the world to see. On the other hand, you have high capacity weapons in the hands of people wearing badges - some of whom exercise very bad judgement, and think the badge makes them braver, tougher, "badder" than anyone else.My hunch is we have a society today where most people grow up with little to no experiece with firearms, and that lack of knowledge and experience shows. Some of those people choose to go into law enforcement. Most do their jobs with valor, and are never recognized. Others find themselves in a situation where lethal force MAY be necessary and do not handle the situation well. (I do not want to be too judgmental here. Unless one has been in that situation, one truly does not know how one will react.) Revolvers would limit the amount of lead they could put in the air, but that is only a band-aid solution. Frankly, I don't know what the solution really will be.

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from O Garcia wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

"the three who did the shooting were grazed by stray bullets."that's the scariest part for me. not only did they commit overkill, something tells me they were also standing in each other's firing line. someone other than the poor dog could have been seriously hurt, not the least the police officer the dog was biting.I remember one of Finn Aagard's reminders to his clients, that in case he (Finn) is mauled by a wounded animal, in no case should the client attempt to shoot the animal. Finn said something like: I am less likely to die from a bite or horn wound or a bashing than I am from a bullet in the guts. These cops could have ended up with two or more of them dead, the way they were shooting.

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from O Garcia wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

This reminded me of that in-game fight between Kobe Bryant of the LA Lakers and Charlie Ward, then of the NY Knicks. Bryant was at the peak of his exuberant, precocious powers, fresh from his third straight NBA championship, and had come to training camp (and the new 2002-2003 season) with added muscle and strength. And at a legit 6-7, he towered over Ward, who's probably 6-2. On the other hand, although Ward found his pro sports career in the NBA, he was a Heisman Trophy winner in college football, and definitely was no pushover. Therefore, a few differences aside, it's a wash physically.It was down to their guts and capacity for violence then. Charlie Ward immediately got off a left, which connected to Bryant's jaw. Before the rest of the TV world even knew what was going on, he followed with a right, which was again on the mark. The stunned Bryant did his best (but ultimately lame) impersonation of Ceferino Garcia, launching a bolo punch at his opponent that landed harmlessly on some air molecules and the fibers of Ward's jersey.After this incident, Bryant even said that afterwards he watched Jet Li and the movie "Romeo Must Die", apparently to steel himself for future wars with other players. Something tells me he still couldn't land a punch after that.What I'm trying to say with such a long recount of an incident which took probably less than 10 seconds is this: some of us are born with the ABILITY and WILLINGNESS, call it intestinal fortitude, to deliver harmful force, even lethal force, to others. Some, no matter the state of training and preparation, simply are not. Some of us are from the mold that made William Munny. (Or Wild Bill Hickok, if you prefer a real person.) Some are from a different mold.

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from jstreet wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I think they should all use the colt 1911 (or one of the million clones). Single action, good triggers, plenty of stopping power, reliable, proven. Good weapons and continual training would be the answer to the spray and pray methods on display now.Jim

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I come from a family that has been involved in law enforcement since about 1960. Dad, an uncle, and an aunt were all LE. I've played around a little at being a deputy sheriff, myself. Now I'm going to tell you a little secret: Back when they used revolvers, most cops were still lousy shots. Training and practice, after leaving the academy, tended to be nearly nonexistant. Officers were trained, usually, to fire their revolvers in the double action mode which meant that accurate placement was more difficult just as you describe with DAO autoloaders. Going back to revolvers would reduce the number of shots fired, to be sure; I don't think it would do much to improve accuracy, though.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

I'm curious. Could you expand on which "yuppie shit" in particular you find objectionable?

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from James F Harter wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

Back when I was a kid the big three ruled yea that be Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, and Field and Stream. The articles where about fishing and hunting in a positive light and non of the yuppie shit you folks love to write about today. No wonder your circulation is down. No wonder your reduced to rambleing on the internet. Let the NRA who I belong to tell me which politicians I should worry about since you seem to distrust the one in office though I wonder how you would like a anti gunner in there?

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

"Hey Sugartits"Before Mel Gibson's meltdown, would you have used this salutation? If not, I have to wonder why you would want to parrot the ravings of a drunken anti-semite?If so, thank you for the compliment, but I don't swing that way.

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from Vincent Belloli wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

As a law enforcement officer, police firearms instructor (pistol/combat shotgun/patrol rifle), I would like to share a few thoughts. First, most officers shoot more proficiently with semiauto pistols than with revolvers. Pistols are easier to carry, are MUCH faster and easier to reload under stress, and can of course carry more ammunition.As far as the NYPD incident involving the dog shooting: there were obviously some issues here, the most obvious being a cross-fire situation. One of the officers must have not been watching his background. Also, I do think it seems unreasonable to need so many rounds to incapacitate a dog, but then again I've never had to shoot an angry pit bull with my duty pistol. Also consider that NYPD only authorizes 9mm pistols, and the issued ammunition is Speer 124gr +P Gold Dot. That would not be my first choice of ammo for going after large dogs.I have been to several instructor schools, and I've never seen training on how to kill a dog. If I were faced with that situation, I would choose shot placement based not on LE training, but on my hunting background. Most cops, especially in big cities, are not hunters. They would tend to shoot for center of mass, which is how officers are trained to shoot human targets. This allows the greatest chance of a hit, but not necessarily the best placement for a quick kill on animals such as dogs.Last, shame on all of you who are criticizing this incident without the background to QUALIFY you to critique it.huntingcop4

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from Curly wrote 7 years 35 weeks ago

Hey Sugartits,You forgot Joe!!!I know exactly what I am talking about and the point is that the comments about cops using revolvers is just as absurb as Petzal being a leftist liberal. You might as well say you think our soldiers shoot way to wildly and they should go back to using muzzleloaders so the accuracy will go up.I am no GOPbot and I am not a fan of Bush overall but in this world of Kerry, Dean, Gore and the rest you could not have asked for a better president to kick some raghead ass.Smith and Wesson, Clinton and you what is the difference? Nothing.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

"Purple-in-the-face-and- spitting nobodies proudly frothing over how they haven't spent a dime on the magazine in 30 years are scarcely enough of a concern that the publishers will be lining up any time soon for the privilege of kissing your ass."JA Demko - that is one high-class bitch slap. I love it.

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from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

First off, enraged-Red Zone attacking-animals can take an amazing amount of punishment while in the heat of battle whether it be a baseball bat or firearm. This is not unlike a drug hyped perp,body armored wearing,that can take a number of shots before going down. It goes without saying a brain/spine shot should do the trick for that "one shot stop", but real World shoot outs just don't happen that way. Since 9/11, it has also been more common to see carbine carrying police that at one time would have been unaccetable on our streets--times are changing.In my case,I have served in both military, and civilian, police positions and luckily have never had to shoot anyone in the line of duty, but training does include both the physical and mental state of mind to help deal with a life threatening situation. Having said all that--I prefer an auto pistol for duty carry,but if I were responding to a known situation-out comes the shotgun-when it's MY LIFE on the line, one is NEVER overgunned!

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

"I demand F&S to retract this liberal tirade. F&S and Outdoor life have both been printing this nonsense about having to many rounds or (Hanback)shooting game to far away etc. To the editors of both of these mags and to the authors of the blogs I say you will never get a dime out of me and you should all be fired."This deserves a special place in the Hall of Impotent Rants. You aren't a stockholder in the company, you don't subscribe to the magazine, and you don't even pick up an issue off the rack...yet you are making demands? Maybe you are unaware of this, but in magazine publishing, all the money that really matters comes from advertisers. Income from subscriptions and news stand sales are inadequate to fund a national glossy. Writers, photographers, and other employees like to be paid, you know. Smith & Wesson matter to the publishers. Coors matters to the publishers. Ford and Chevrolet matter to the publishers. Hell, even the advertisers way in the back for things like "Better Sex for Old People" videos matter. They all matter because they are sources of revenue and the publishers, therefore, like to keep them happy. Purple-in-the-face-and- spitting nobodies proudly frothing over how they haven't spent a dime on the magazine in 30 years are scarcely enough of a concern that the publishers will be lining up any time soon for the privilege of kissing your ass. Just some food for thought.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

What do Moe, Larry, and Shemp have to say on the matter? Why is it that Bushistas and other GOPbots automatically call anyone who isn't properly doubleplus goodthinkful a leftist? Do you even know where that term comes from or what it means? I suspect not. Probably you'll do a quick googlesearch on it before replying so as not to look an utter ass.As for your opinion on GWB and the War on Terror...well, it's your opinion. You have a right to it that I will die to defend, however asinine and ill-informed it may be.

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from Curly wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Is Field & Stream paying you to write this leftist drival? This reminds me of the anti-gun, anti-"saturday night special" article that F&S printed in the 70's. I have the magazine around here somewhere to remind me why I will not purchase the magazine.I demand F&S to retract this liberal tirade. F&S and Outdoor life have both been printing this nonsense about having to many rounds or (Hanback)shooting game to far away etc. To the editors of both of these mags and to the authors of the blogs I say you will never get a dime out of me and you should all be fired. The last thing we need is a bunch of pandering leftist trying to make us feel guilty for owning guns, shooting and hunting.I am no friend of wild-shooting, trigger-happy cops but training is the issue not the number of rounds or how fast they pull the trigger you Fing moron.Oh, and by the way, I think President Bush is doing just fine in the war on terror.

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from Matt wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Mitchell, have you had your head dunked in the toilet one too many times in high school?

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

I stand corrected. And here I thought poor Mitchell suffered from a severe case of penis envy.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

I wouldn't even glorify him by calling him a troll. A troll, you see, is supposed to have some skill provoking people. Our boy Mitchell is more like some unfortunate soul who has both Tourette's syndrome and catastrophic mental retardation. He deserves a certain degree of our sympathy, but we needn't join him as he spouts obscenities and smears himself with his own feces.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Dave, you have a troll on the blog - a troll struggling with his inadequacies.

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Hey JA Demko, neither. So take your liberal DELETED to California and play with your skateboards. And KJ, I was surely successful in flushing out a DELETED like YOU. Only a DELETED like yourself would say something DELETED like "I wonder what Freud would say...". Get real you DELETED and GET A LIFE.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

Yep. I wonder what Freud would say about Mitchell's little tantrum...

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

My guess is that Mitchell is either a cop who can't shoot or a man too deeply emotionally involved with an autopistol.

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

How about changing your name to David Putzal cause you're a putz!!

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from Mitchell Gregg wrote 7 years 36 weeks ago

The originator of this article/blog should be shot. DELETED like you shouldn't be permitted to start blogs. DELETED!!!

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

I don’t want competent shooters on the police force, I want someone better than I am, at least the guys and gals that get sent out onto the streets. I want the LEOs that write up charges on those arrested to better skilled grammatically than I am so that the charges have a better chance with the DA. I want an end to all this PC BS forced upon LE, I want only the best working for me that I can afford, and they are working for me.I realize that there weren’t a lot of in-depth interviews with gunfighters over the years, but I do remember reading one many years ago where the gunfighter stated his best tool in the box was his head. It’s the spray and pray crowd that might “think” of their selves as gunslingers that cause the problems and the media hype that follows putting a bad mark on law enforcement in general.This blog isn’t the first time I’ve seen the topic of so many rounds needed to hit the target in the NYPD. If these guys aren’t willing to spend time (and yes, money out of their own pocket) training or they aren’t trainable, they should be fired or another home found for them where they aren’t a danger to themselves or others.Shoot what you’re good with, then practice some more. Most departments will allow you to carry a different weapon, albeit at your expense. If you can’t carry what works for you, practice even more, or get off the street. Adrenaline rushes screw with us all at one time or another, but if it’s your job, practice even more. 6, 12, 15, it doesn’t matter, they all come out of the barrel one at a time.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

See, I'm a big fan of anybody who carries a weapon being competent in its use. I'm not a big fan of cops who think of themselves as gunfighters or who think of the gun as the main tool in the box. The basic reason that cops carry guns is the same reason you do and other citizens do: self-protection. The on-going militarization of police in the US is a big part of why so many people don't like them. When they start thinking of themselves as gunslingers, soldiers, or other trigger-pullers instead of peace officers, then things have definitely gone awry.

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from MIKE ANTHONY wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

TO QUOTE THE GREAT JEFF COOPER "GREAT SHOOTING WILL MAKE UP FOR POOR GEAR, BUT GREAT GEAR WILL NOT MAKE UP FOR POOR SHOOTING." PRACTICE-PRACTICE-PRACTICE ! AS FAR AS SERVICE PISTOLS, I'M A HUGE FAN OF THE SIG P229 IN .357 SIG.

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Do you think LE gets very far enforcing the laws against the gang bangers, or even the pit bulls, with a stick?Yes, through the years, I have known several people in LE and only one has had to actually kill anyone. In fact, several officers were involved; his bullet however actually hit its mark. Most have never had to even draw their weapon, but aren’t you supposed to be prepared to use the tools of the trade. Practice, practice, practice! PC attitudes do not decide the winner in a confrontation; in fact, those that are proficient with their weapon tend to have to pull it less frequently. Someone that feels and exudes confidence in his or her martial abilities will have to prove it less often.Superior firepower, what constitutes that exactly? If it’s the number of bullets you can throw out there 5 guys (not an uncommon amount of officers to show up when a call about a gun goes over the air) with revolvers double the firepower of anyone with a semi-auto, plus I should think if they practice enough to hit what they’re aiming at, they have a better chance of hitting their target than an individual does. Most shootings are decided in 2 to 3 rounds, from what I’ve read.It’s not so much the weapon’s capacity as it is the users proficiency. Attitude and practice will decide violent outcomes. Our LEOs need more instruction in the nature of their job so they can feel the confidence required. If that means they have to buy their own ammo and practice on their own time and their own dime, so be it. I would rather have someone that considered his or her skill level to be that of a gunfighter than someone untrained and not confident enough to feel they could control the situation of the moment. I’m much less likely to get hit with a stray that way, which was what the topic of this blog started out as.

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from Roderick Padilla wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Armed police can shoot back, with concern for the perp. Armed citizens can shoot back, with concern for themselves. Perps shoot without concern for anybody. Logically and legally, who should have the superior firepower?

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Gunfighters? Please. LE exists to enforce the law. Sometimes that means use of a firearm, but not often. You may have heard somewhere along the way that most police officers go their entire career without ever firing their pistol in the line of duty. That, sir, is a fact. Further, if I were part of the interview process, I would blackball any candidate who indicated that he did think of himself as a "gunfighter."

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from Pat wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

LEOs don't get paid to train? Again, LEOs don't get paid to train? I don't care! Bottom line, it's no different now than it was a 150-years ago, citizens are hiring gunfighters to stop the criminals should it come to that. That is the bottom line for the job.I just read an article in my local newspaper today that said the starting pay for a CHP is over $60,000 a year (no overtime, education or any other bump is considered in that figure, and the state picks up all of their retirement, courtesy of a new 8% raise to cover their mandatory contribution). Don't you think an LEO is at least somewhat responsible for bringing some qualifications to the job for that kind of starting salary? That is pretty good starting pay for someone with no job experience, shouldn’t they at least be able to handle a weapon.I train for my work, at my own expense, which is how I stay good at what is expected of me and I continue to get work by doing so. If I had a job where I was always expected to be able to protect the public (let alone protect my partner and myself), I would sure as hell train myself and pay for shooting schools until I felt adequately prepared for a gunfight, which is part of the job description. If someone doesn’t like guns, what the hell are they thinking when they take a job that REQUIRES carrying a gun, and, they’re expected to know how to use it? If you like guns, why wouldn’t you practice? I think part of the problem is that an LEOs sensitivity training is paid for, and it’s working. A revolver or a semi-auto doesn’t fit into the equation. These aren’t bus drivers and being an LEO isn’t just a job, it’s a profession, be a professional and do what it takes to be qualified as a professional.

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from Michael wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Having worked for, and with several police departments, including two years as the training officer as well as having managed a number of cities, I have seen the number of LEOs who are gun enthusiests (from shooting to IDPA to hunting)plummet over the years. Far too many now don't practice beyond what is required and many departments do not have adequate budgets to have decent training to simulate real world situations (and not to pick a fight, but IDPA and the rest just isn't real world). Simunition and air-soft type practice, followed up by a letter from the department to the "widow" is needed. Otherwise, we will continue to see this kind of travesty continue!

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

WRT to Ted "Das Boot" Kennedy, the only apprehension I'd feel would be is if I were in the car with him on that bridge. Or drinking with him and his nephews in their Florida compound. Or flying in a small plane piloted by one of his nephews. Whether you think JFK and RFK were good men or not, they were so charismatic that Teddy the Hutt has leeched off their names for about 40 years or so now.

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from Matt wrote 7 years 37 weeks ago

Lets take this piece by piece. First, one of my biggest pet peeves in this life are hearing the anti-gunners whine about how only the “professional, expertly-trained” law-enforcement officers should be carrying guns, as opposed to us dangerous rednecks. Never mind the fact that the average civilian gun owner practices twenty times as much as the average LEO. I also hear far too many stories such as this one about cops committing such blatant violations of basic gun safety. If anyone acted in a similar manner at any of the gun ranges I go to, they would be blacklisted for life in three second flat. Note to Sarah Brady: a badge does NOT make a person a well-qualified or safe shooter. But somehow I have a feeling you knew that already.Second, what should be done about this? Why not take the guns away from the police and issue them pepper spray or some of other non-lethals they insist are the only protection us civilians need? If they are good enough for us, they should be good enough for them. For those extreme cases where greater firepower would be needed, specially-trained police units will be allowed to carry an atlatl. Naturally, police in John Kerry’s state of Taxachusetts while not be allowed to carry most of these items because civies there can’t have them. Massachusetts LEOs will only be allowed to carry pepper spray after completing a background check, just like the subjects, er, citizens of Massachusetts (I swear to God, people really do have to go through a background check there for PEPPER SPRAY!).Third, as mentioned earlier, during the North Hollywood shootout, half the friggin’ LAPD was there and despite neither of the thugs having any protecting on their heads other than a ski mask, NOBODY was able to register a head shot despite the fact that a lot of the fire happened at close range. Hell, if some civilian with a .300 magnum had been able to put a round in one of their chests it might not have killed them but the shock sure would have taken them out of the fight. Of course in Kalifornia, you have a better chance of seeing a Martian than seeing an armed civilian. Gee, I wonder why we never see any such shootouts in Virginia? Could it be that your average 12 year-old with a .22 could shoot better than the LAPD? There is an idea. Reduce the police forces to a skeleton crew. With all that tax money being saved we can give big tax breaks to everyone. The people can then use said tax breaks to buy a new gun and if we ever have another North Hollywood situation, let THEM handle it.Fourth, beside Condie, Dubya, and the rest, what should really get your confidence meter lowered is seeing Ted Kennedy driving towards you on a bridge.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

WRT not getting paid to train, it's just that nasty ol' budget again. Where I work, most of the deputies have gone through all of their pre-hire training at their own expense. It seems that pretty much all the agencies around here will consider only applicants who are already trained. It's only the State Police, I guess, who still hire primarily untrained people and then put them through the academy at taxpayer expense. After hiring, deputies do get sent to various classes and workshops, I can't think of any of it that was firearms-related. Heck, even the couple hours that it takes to qualify annually is unpaid time for everybody concerned. The Sheriff takes the sting out of that by holding a BBQ (at his own expense) afterward.

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from mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

we as LEO's do not get paid to train with our firearms. that is the problem. very few of us actually do any shooting outside of work, and thats once a year to qualify. there should be a lot more mandatory firearms training. a more offensive weapon would be helpful, but not very practicle in all other aspects of police work (chasing a drug dealer). big department do not budget officers time and recall overtime for officers to fill there spots on the street while in training. i have been in five incidents where i had to fire my weapon. thankfully i have always hit my target and nothing else. then again i have always enjoyed shooting on my off time. until you have the facts, don't make statements like you do. as far as revolver over auto loaders. the auto loader wins hands down. anyone shooting with some skill can get tacticle accuracy with either and the benifits of more rounds is definite advatage police.

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from Jem wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Thank you, backseat shooters.I think it would be nice if ya'll would take your 'highly accurate, better than them' selves down to the local department and get hired. Or offer to do the training...Yes, it would be nice to adhere to the 'one shot, one kill' methodology. But 'til you've been there, keep your opinions to yourself. Or better yet, share what you do for a living so we can point out the ineptitude of you and your ilk.And as far as training... there's certainly not as much as you seem to dream about... often training time is spent learning about the latest complaints from the PC crowd.Sheesh.

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from William Giordano wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

As a retired [revolver carrying ] NYPD street cop; I have this to say. If you get into a dispute involving pistols and you don't accomplish anything by the time you've fired six times, you're in deep dodo my friends. One or two to get his head down, squat as you move to the right, aim and end it with your third shot.

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from Mark wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I dont agree automatics are better.

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from Visitor wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I think that there needs to be more police, that they should go out in groups, not alone, and that there should be more specialized functions for them. There should be police that are the designated shooters, those whose job it is to shoot bad guys if the bad guys start shooting. That person could be armed with a carbine, something better able to engage bad guys with guns. There should also be police that are either not armed or their firearms are more secured on their person so that no bad guy can easily take it (as cops get shot with their guns too much). That person should be the one who gets to meet and greet the public, be that talking with people or physically taking down a bad guy. His mindset should be the opposite of the gun guy, he should be thinking to use his own body or a baton or mace first, that he won't be thinking gun as it isn't easily accessible.

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Cheap is the key word there. Police departments have limited budgets to which they must adhere. The money for that budget comes from taxes. John Q. Public may realize on some level that ammunition, arms, and training are necessary, but John also knows that he already has a heavy tax burden. Ammo and real, quality training don't come cheap. When municipal government looks at their annual budget and sets the allotment for the police department, they realistically have to take into account how much they can afford. That's a fact gentlemen. How many of you have unlimited budget for your own shooting? I sure don't. FYI, the Sheriff's Office where I work requires us to buy our own guns and any ammunition above what is used in annual qualification.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Mike and Ted - you weren't there, and neither was I, so saying just how easy it would have been to get close is a matter of conjecture. And were you there, bullets flying, you may not be so inclined to get close. However, you do finally agree with my point that the problem is not revolver vs. semi-auto. Quote: "I reiterate, the problem is lack of training for such situations." However, you are wrong to claim the LEOs were not outgunned. Two thugs prepared for this specific shootout with no regard for the lives of anyone, were heavily armed and armored, and had the element of surprise on their side, and faced police armed with handguns. True, some handguns and handgunners can shoot a nice group, even with open sights - on the range, under good conditions (like no one shooting back at them).Second guessing the police is cheap; properly equipping them AND training them costs - and pays.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Ted Correct....there were MANY officers that responded....yet with all the man-power and firepower not 1 shot scored a fatal hit....body armor or no, a head shot with a little .38 would have ended the skirmish quickly.I dont want to hear the pathetic excuses as to the officers being out gunned...2 men with semi auto AK's showed the glaring ineptness of most LEO's. The scumbags with the AK's were outgunned. PERIODFACT is our police are NOT well trained nor well prepared for such eventualities. Myriad are the reasons for this, but the fact still remains.That being said...I have great respect for LEO's that take thier oaths seriously. Even though my comments may seem contrary. I am NOT anti LEO. Just have issues with those that have no clue how to use the firearms they are issued in a safe and appropriate manner. Especially when they are paid to train and have ammo for training supplied.I reiterate, the problem is lack of training for such situations.

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from Ted Strong wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Sure, two or three officers with dept. issue weapons would have been outgunned, but have you looked at the video--it seems like practically half the department showed up.With that many officers they should have been able to maneuver around the lunatics and kill them.

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from KJ wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Mike - your statement: "In the LA bank robber situation, AGIAN, shot placement would have saved the day.......but instead we had spray and pray mindset to no avail." As I recall, the cops had their pistols (I'm not sure if they were revolvers or semi-autos) and the crooks had machine guns. The type of handgun the cops had is not the point, nor was a spray and pray mentality the problem. They were outgunned, plain and simple, and that was the problem. My question during that episode was, "Don't they have a shotgun with buckshot and slugs in the magazine, or a rifle of some sort in their patrol cars?" Arming LEOs with revolvers isn't going to fix the problem, IMO.

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from Dave Petzal wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

To O Garcia: You write very well. Enjoyed the story. The best illustration of this point ever put in print is in Glendon Swarthout's novel The Shootist. When its protagonist, the gunfighter John Bernard Books is asked why he has survived so many shootouts, he replies, "Most men will hesitate before they shoot. I won't." Great book that deserved a better movie than the one John Wayne made. For that matter, John Wayne deserved a better last movie.

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from Dave Petzal wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

To O Garcia: You write very well. Enjoyed the story. The best illustration of this point ever put in print is in Glendon Swarthout's novel The Shootist. When its protagonist, the gunfighter John Bernard Books is asked why he has survived so many shootouts, he replies, "Most men will hesitate before they shoot. I won't." Great book that deserved a better movie than the one John Wayne made. For that matter, John Wayne deserved a better last movie.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

The problem isn't the officers. It was that they did not have the correct tool for the job. Their friend, rolling around trying to pry the dog off, the close range --it was the wrong place for a firearm.In anticipation of MORE dogs, maybe the police should carry a machete or spear on that shotgun rack in the patrol car. Want to pry a pit bull off your pal? Ten inches of steel in the pit bull's flank ought to do the job far more precisely than shooting around the officer struggling with the dog.

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from Peter Caroline wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Back in the day, at least on the east coast, when cops carried revolvers, local police departments actively competed in police revolver leagues. Higher pay or status was accorded to superior marksmen, "reserve" or "auxiliary" officers were often recruited for their marksmanship skills, and many departments reloaded their own training ammo. Since the late '60s, however, police weapons skills have been compromised by a number of factors: limited departmental budgets, lack of incentives, liability issues related to departmental reloading facilities, and political correctness issues.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

KJ; In the LA bank robber situation, AGIAN, shot placement would have saved the day.......but instead we had spray and pray mindset to no avail. EXACTLY what we see from LEO's time and again. Luckily no innocents (non-combatants is a better term)were harmed in that debacle.Mark; Full auto weapons in the hands of LEO's freaks ME out as it should politicos......if the LEO's cant hit with revolvers or high cap. semi autos what makes you think high cap. FULL auto would help....other than killing more bystanders.Sheesh, cops should be held to the SAME standards you and I are held to in defensive shootings with same limits imposed upon me and you......they are no different. LEO's are no more than citizens like you and I. Save they get paid to carry a gun. They KNOW the dangers when they take thier oath to enforce the law. That doesn't put them ABOVE the law. PERIODTraining is the key. wether for me and my personal carry 1911, or cops and thier issued 9mm's.

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from Mike wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I find this and MANY other stories along this line quite appalling to say the least.First, if I am forced into a defensive shooting situation I and only ME is responsible for EVERY round that comes out of my weapon. Should I miss 1 shot or have a round go thru and kill a bystander with a ricochet I go to prison for life for murder. Why not LEO's?!Second, cops get PAID to train and have ammo PAID for with tax payer moneys. While I must scrimp and go without feed for a week to pay for the ammo to feed my defense weapons for my training. Yet, I am a MUCH better shot than 90% of the LEO's I have met and shot with.Sickening to say the least.

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from Mark wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

Good thing those NYPD went up against a dog and not a whacked-out drug gang.My background is military so in some respects I’m confused on some corners believing a handgun is an offensive weapon. It’s really a defensive item, according to military thought. I believe the only offensive weapon allowed "regular" NYS Law Enforcement is the billy club.It would appear arming LE with the large magazine semi-auto’s handguns is good politics by giving the image of issuing something good, but very poor judgment in properly arming police for dramatic events. It would appear the serious way to arm American LE is to follow the European tendency to issue fully automatic, compact machine pistols and military combat rifles to their cops.I’m certain such armed NYPD would have made short work of that dog.This scene, of course, freaks out politicians and bureaucrats in changing the social aspects of the American Law Enforcement Game. Don’t think people are ready to see this.Good luck, LEO’s

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from kj wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

It's a tough issue. The bad guys have high capacity weapons, sometimes fully automatic high capacity weapons. Would revolvers handicap the police? I keep thinking about the LA shootout when the two lunatic bank robbers with body armor and fully automatic rifles dominated the police - and it was captured on video for the world to see. On the other hand, you have high capacity weapons in the hands of people wearing badges - some of whom exercise very bad judgement, and think the badge makes them braver, tougher, "badder" than anyone else.My hunch is we have a society today where most people grow up with little to no experiece with firearms, and that lack of knowledge and experience shows. Some of those people choose to go into law enforcement. Most do their jobs with valor, and are never recognized. Others find themselves in a situation where lethal force MAY be necessary and do not handle the situation well. (I do not want to be too judgmental here. Unless one has been in that situation, one truly does not know how one will react.) Revolvers would limit the amount of lead they could put in the air, but that is only a band-aid solution. Frankly, I don't know what the solution really will be.

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from O Garcia wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

"the three who did the shooting were grazed by stray bullets."that's the scariest part for me. not only did they commit overkill, something tells me they were also standing in each other's firing line. someone other than the poor dog could have been seriously hurt, not the least the police officer the dog was biting.I remember one of Finn Aagard's reminders to his clients, that in case he (Finn) is mauled by a wounded animal, in no case should the client attempt to shoot the animal. Finn said something like: I am less likely to die from a bite or horn wound or a bashing than I am from a bullet in the guts. These cops could have ended up with two or more of them dead, the way they were shooting.

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from O Garcia wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

This reminded me of that in-game fight between Kobe Bryant of the LA Lakers and Charlie Ward, then of the NY Knicks. Bryant was at the peak of his exuberant, precocious powers, fresh from his third straight NBA championship, and had come to training camp (and the new 2002-2003 season) with added muscle and strength. And at a legit 6-7, he towered over Ward, who's probably 6-2. On the other hand, although Ward found his pro sports career in the NBA, he was a Heisman Trophy winner in college football, and definitely was no pushover. Therefore, a few differences aside, it's a wash physically.It was down to their guts and capacity for violence then. Charlie Ward immediately got off a left, which connected to Bryant's jaw. Before the rest of the TV world even knew what was going on, he followed with a right, which was again on the mark. The stunned Bryant did his best (but ultimately lame) impersonation of Ceferino Garcia, launching a bolo punch at his opponent that landed harmlessly on some air molecules and the fibers of Ward's jersey.After this incident, Bryant even said that afterwards he watched Jet Li and the movie "Romeo Must Die", apparently to steel himself for future wars with other players. Something tells me he still couldn't land a punch after that.What I'm trying to say with such a long recount of an incident which took probably less than 10 seconds is this: some of us are born with the ABILITY and WILLINGNESS, call it intestinal fortitude, to deliver harmful force, even lethal force, to others. Some, no matter the state of training and preparation, simply are not. Some of us are from the mold that made William Munny. (Or Wild Bill Hickok, if you prefer a real person.) Some are from a different mold.

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from jstreet wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I think they should all use the colt 1911 (or one of the million clones). Single action, good triggers, plenty of stopping power, reliable, proven. Good weapons and continual training would be the answer to the spray and pray methods on display now.Jim

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from JA Demko wrote 7 years 38 weeks ago

I come from a family that has been involved in law enforcement since about 1960. Dad, an uncle, and an aunt were all LE. I've played around a little at being a deputy sheriff, myself. Now I'm going to tell you a little secret: Back when they used revolvers, most cops were still lousy shots. Training and practice, after leaving the academy, tended to be nearly nonexistant. Officers were trained, usually, to fire their revolvers in the double action mode which meant that accurate placement was more difficult just as you describe with DAO autoloaders. Going back to revolvers would reduce the number of shots fired, to be sure; I don't think it would do much to improve accuracy, though.

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