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http://www.11alive.com/local/local_top_story.asp?storyid=4831

There was a shootout last night in Roswell, GA between the Roswell Police and an active U.S. Army soldier. The soldier shot first and hit a policeman in the body armor, then the police returned fire and killed the shooter. The officer was saved by his body armor and I'm glad for that. The police shot about 15 rounds at the guy who was still in his car. So it's not like he was running around or anything and made a harder target to hit. Some of the police bullets hit the convenience store and shattered the plate glass windows and doors. Luckily no innocents were hit. I was wondering if the officers were using their sights or were they point shooting?
 

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Okay, so I am still trying to figure our why Ricky T used the subject of "Sights will get you killed II" when there was no information about the use or non-use of sights in the article. Given the amount of debate this topic has created in the past, I thought there would be something relevant in the article for the topic to be brought up again like this.

Ricky T, I think that every time there is a shooting, people want to know if the shooters used their sights or not.
 

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Let's not forget about richochets, as well. Wierd things can happen when bullets hit metal or glass at just the right angle.
 

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I guess I should have said that I was being facetious in my "sights will get you killed" comment. A friend mentioned to me that he was told by his training sergeant that there is not enough time to aim and use the sights. The sergeant said that in combat shooting it is one gets better result when you point shoot.
 

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Just a hunch, but I'd bet at least some of the officers' shoots were fired in panic. Unless your training is pretty intensive, it seems like a lot of gun battles regress to point shooting pretty fast.
 

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After having seen a few episodes of real life cops shooting at a person in a car, moving and stationary, I am actually convinced that the cops are essentially using the swarm effect whereby they try to land as many shots as possible on the car. That is not to say that all the shots are aimed at the person in the car, but mostly at the occupant compartment area. Given enough shots, either the occupant will be hit or will be so overwelmed by noise, metal, and glass fragments that he will give up. It is not a brilliant plan, but in shooting the car in that manner, it makes it difficult for the person in the car to return fire. Besides, the compartment area is a much bigger target than what might be visible of the occupant.

Don't get me wrong, I am not suggesting this is some sort of departmental policy, just what I see as appearing to happen in several cases that have been caught on video. It may be panic or crisis shooting on the part of the officers. They may be aiming their shots as well, but not necessarily directly at the occupant who may not be visible, but at the occupant compartment of the car.

Hey, even aimed shots sometimes go astray.
 

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A trainer I've trained with named Pat Goodale ( www.pgpft.com ), and who I respect a lot, says that you can bet that in a shooting your skills will degrade by 30-50% under the intense stress that most of us are NOT used to.There are a lot of factors: loss of fine motor skill, tunnel vision, OODA loop, tachypsychia (cq), regressing to bad training habits under stress, etc. The saying goes "You don't rise to the occasion... you fall back on your level of training" or something close to that (Clint Smith? Jeff Cooper?) That includes using your sights.

Let's use an illustration in practical terms: if you're an IDPA Master, in a shooting you might become a Sharpshooter. Probably still good enough.

If you're a Marksman or lower in match skill, which (no insult intended) the majority of LEO's likely are, you're skills degrade to a level that can be inadequate. This is why you hear of police shootings where 30+ rounds are fired at close range, and the suspect is hit only a few times, and may even live. The hope in this case is that your opponent's skills, tactics, luck, and ferocity are less than yours.

Of course, combat veterans and others who've been under the gun for real may experience much less degradation in their skills in many cases.

IMHO

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By the way, I've been privy to being at a real-life CQB shooting. The cop I was with was 3 feet away from me, and the gang-banger was 10-15 feet awaw from us, when he reached for a gun in his waistband. The officer drew and fired twice, hitting him once in the hip. I'm sure that rather than aim for center-of-mass, he was fixated on the BG's hands and gun, and his point of aim went there instead. The BG said "You shot me!" and stood there, as the cop tackled him. Not sure why he didn't shoot him to the ground, which would have been justifiable but would have no doubt caused a community uproar. The DA reduced the charges to "illegal possession of a firearm" if you can believe that, partially because the idiot BG's pistol had no round chambered, so the DA decided that the threat wasn't fully developed. Idiot DA.

It all happened in a matter of 2-3 seconds, btw... and then was over. Extremely fast. To naive non-LEOs who say stupid things like "Why couldn't they just shoot the gun/knife/bat out of his hands..." I say, "You're don't have a clue."

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I understand it is a lot easier to shoot the gun out of their hands after they are already dead.

Several months back, I read a newsclip where a higher ranking policemen commented on a shooting and the specific question as to why officer's did shoot the gun out of the guy's hands. The cop made the most honest statement I have ever seen be released. He essentially said something like, "Shoot the gun out of his hands? We are lucky if we get most of the shots on the body under those conditions."
 

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Ninja de la mall wrote:
You don't rise to the occasion... you fall back on your level of training" or something close to that (Clint Smith? Jeff Cooper?)
Barrett Tillman; but he trained under Jeff Cooper. Cumberland Tactics (Randy Cain) uses the quote on its home page. It's out of The Sixth Battle.
From the same segment:
1) You can only do what you can do.
2)You won't rise to the occasion-you'll default to your level of training.
5) At 90 degrees angle of bank, the lift slides off the wings.
8) When the BBs are flying, it's time for your Last Best Move.
9) Think big-think basics-and cheat like hell.
10) When planning a fight, see Rule #1.

It's about carrier pilots, but a lot of the Rules apply to gunfights.

TB., NC



[This message has been edited by Tim Burke (edited 03-20-2001).]
 

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Tim,

Thanks for the source on that quote. I've seen it used and paraphrased a lot, and it's a great thought applicable to almost any stressful activity, imho.
 
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