Category Archives: Weapons Usage and Employment

Listening / Security Halt: in Domestic Practice

Last night we got a chance, unexpectedly, to reduce  what we preach to practice. In the middle of a wild dream we were awakened by the growling of Small Dog Mark II. A glance at the watch: 01:09.

Whisper: “What is it, boy?” Instantly awake, as that tripped him into full bark mode. A moment later, P-01 in hand, fully alert, door silently opened and positioned at the top of the stairs, we paused to think. At that point, a small idea gnome suggested that this was the perfect time to practice listening security, per our recent post and various helpful comments attached thereto.

The dog shushed himself without any human urging.

Five elapsed minutes later, by watch — yes, time drags when you’re keeping still — we knew a number of things:

  1. It was evident that no other living thing was moving in the house.
  2. The alarm was never armed last night (human error).
  3. Changing modes on the watch produced an audible beep. Uh, maybe this is the wrong watch. We need one for lurking, and another to run the heart rate monitor?
  4. There was a light on downstairs that shouldn’t have been. That could have been human error, or could have been an intruder who was now gone.
  5. We’d have to go downstairs to see.

Down we went. The little doglet, who is usually within feet if not inches, opted not to follow us down. Interesting. He is probably picking up on our emotion.

The extra light was in the office. Mental replay of the shutdown sequence explained why it was still on. We planned to turn it off after giving SDMkII his post-last-relief-pause-of-the-day treat, but we never gave him the treat and went straight upstairs. With the hall and stairway lights on, the office light wasn’t obvious; and when we switched ’em off, we were looking into the master bedroom.

Probably, no intruder. A perimeter check confirmed that the perimeter was secure. Our telltales and sacrificial burglar baits were in place. There was the sound of the fountain in the downstairs, and after the very expensive window upgrade that should have been inaudible (finally determined that the sound was coming through a window AC unit, and only audible because the general ambient noise was so low).

So why did the dog alert? At 0522, when he did it again, we got the answer. Dripping water in the MBR shower was a ringer for steps on the stairs, and creeped the little guy out. Eh, we were getting up at 6 anyway. The shower head didn’t have a drip last week. Wonder how long it would have taken to catch, without canine assistance? Adopt for the companionship, sure, but who expects plumbing benefits from a dog?

Lessons learned:

  1. Gun under pillow beats gun in night stand drawer, especially when stealth is a factor.
  2. Under pillow is a good place for a DA/SA firearm like this CZ or a Beretta or SIG, or an SA/safetied auto like a 1911 or BHP.  Not a good place for a striker-fired, trigger-safety gun like a Glock or M&P. (Trigger work increases this advantage of the old style guns).
  3. The fewer clothes you’re wearing, the less noise your clothes make. And clothes materials make a big difference in the sound or lack of it as you move around.
  4. Five minutes is a long time to stand still but hardly impossible. It should certainly suffice to flush out any prowler.
  5. Just as your eyes adapt to low light smoothly but not immediately, your ears adapt to low ambient sound levels and over that five minutes, your discrimination of discrete sounds improves markedly.
  6. This is a blast of cool hard obvious, but a dog — any dog — is an excellent extension of human senses, apart from all the other things that are splendid about dogs.

Some sounds are ambiguous. Some are distinctly human. No one who has ever heard it forgets the plastic snap of M16A1 handguards on anything, or the sound of an AK clicking off safe.

A Last Great Act of Defiance

We don’t know this cat. We don’t know his name, his history or why he wound up where he was. It was what he did next that assured that his name is written forever in the saga of the great warrior race, the Pathans (Pushtuns).

We don’t even know he was a Pathan, as he says not a word. He might not have been; the ISIL followers in Afghanistan, like the Taliban before them, have made their ate-up religion an excuse for the ethnic cleansing of minorities such as Tajiks, Uzbeks, and especially Hazaras. (Our hero doesn’t look like a Hazara to me, but it’s a crummy video). So the Pathans who remember his story for the centuries may be his own people, or whatever survivors ultimately remain of the doomed tribe he was fighting.

This is what it comes down to: the choice between life, and perhaps death, as a free man, and the slavery inherent in allah hu akbar. 

Some day, that phrase will sound exclusively in the ears of the demons of Hell, because it is incompatible with the existence of free men, and free men shall win.

Ow! Defoor Disses the ACOG

Defoor borrowed this elderly ACOG from the element he was training.

Defoor borrowed this elderly ACOG from the element he was training.

When the Elcan Spectre DR came online to replace the ACOG TA01NSN, we loved it — for about 30 minutes. It was a beautiful piece of glass (at its staggering price, it should be) and the dual magnification — a flip of a lever migrates you from 1 to 4x and zero holds like a rock — was that rare thing, a marketing feature that action guys could actually use. It was bulkier than the ACOG, but had less stuff to snag on your stuff. But lots of us fell out of love with it nearly as fast. Its weak spot was that, while it was stronger than the typical sporting scope, it was no match for the ACOG’s anvil-like qualities. (Over time, of course, operators could break the early ACOGs too). Trijicon is really good about standing behind these old scopes and will go through one and update the tritium, for example, for a reasonable charge ($150 last we checked).

But that was then, and this is now. And here comes Kyle Defoor to put down our favorite (if elderly) combat optic. He writes:

Getting some time on the ACOG this week. Some dudes still use it/are issued it as their primary. My department is to show them how to use whatever they got as good as they can.

To be a professional in this biz you got to be able to show up and shoot whatever, whenever completely stock and sometimes use the gear of the customer if you don’t have what’s needed……and with that, thanks to the guys for loaning me one to rock while we trained together.

And he accompanied it with the usual entertaining array of hashtags:

#defoorproformanceshooting #acog #training #carbine #5days #runwhatyoubrung #makethebestofit

And therein lies a valid point. There’s always going to be something new and technically a bit better than last year’s (or in the case of  the TA01 ACOG, decade’s) model. Chasing an optimized “best” rig is not worth the trouble for most people. First, if you are a pro user some guy way up the chain from you is probably going to dictate what you use, or if you’re lucky, dictate what options you have to choose from.

This “dictation” isn’t too restrictive in some cases, like if you’re a SEAL, PJ, SF, etc. But in some other cases, like an Army support troop or Marine rifleman, you will be told what you will be carrying and will be ordered to like it. At that point, you can whine about it, sign up for selection (where, should you succeed, you will discover that you’re still working for The Man, just at a higher level), or take Kyle’s advice and run what you brung and make the best of it.

Fortunately, the baseline weapons and optics available to grunts today are quite good stuff. The fact that they don’t have this year’s shine on ’em, or weren’t on the cover of REAL OPERATORS BUY THIS magazine last month, doesn’t matter. Real operators can operate with sticks and stones, hell, with their bare knuckles; any step up from that is gravy. And you too can shoot better and more effectively with the weapons you have now, and money and time spent on ammo and training will almost always have a return on investment far beyond what you get from money and time spent picking out and acquiring new and better gear.

If you’re going to be using a carbine over a wide range of, well, ranges and lighting conditions, etc., the ACOG is still a good choice. If your most likely employment is close up, or even indoors, then a red dot is the way to go. And in both cases, training and practice can let you extend the use of either to ranges where the other selection would have been optimum.

This College PD is Prepared for an Active Shooter

Liberty University, a thriving Christian college in Virginia, is ready for some jerk (or jerks) to attack with a gun (or guns). Or at least, as ready as a college and its college cops can get. While the nature of the shooter: an individual crank, an outbreak of Sudden Jihad Syndrome, or organized Islamic terrorism — makes a big difference in how an event plays out,  it doesn’t make that much of a difference in how an individual can, and should, react.

After the nearby Virginia Tech shooting, Liberty took its name seriously and moved in a contrary direction to many other campuses. Liberty University leaders liberalized campus carry for licensed students, faculty, staff and visitors, and trained the campus police extensively in dealing with the dual complications of active shooters and licensed carriers. Compare this well-crafted video to the panic-and-shriek that seems to be the standard university response to bad guys with guns:

The benefits of this are manifold. Sure, Liberty University is ready for an asshat with a gun. But that also means that Liberty is a lot less likely to have to deal with an asshat with a gun. Deterrence is really a thing, and crazies (Islamic and bipolar alike) have shown a considerable degree of rationality in target selection, if nothing else. They’ll just go down the road to VT, which is still putting forward panic-and-shriek as the response to a shooter.

That, and trying to ban the guns of all the millions of people who didn’t do it and who never would. There are some ideas so stupid, their only native habitat is universities!

The order of the defensive approaches is correct. First, “Run” — get off the dot. Then, “Hide” — if he hasn’t seen you, and you can make yourself invisible, do it. Finally “Fight” is the option of last resort. Fight with the best weapon you can, even if it’s an improvised weapon. Remember that vast numbers of humans have been slain by everyday objects, wielded with hate, rage, or fear. If that’s all you’ve got, that’s all you’ve got: if your blood will be spilled, make its price as dear as you can. Passivity in the face of the threat just gets you killed anyway.

We’ve seen all three approaches — “run, hide, fight” — work for some people. And we’ve seen all three fail. Every situation is unique. One thing that never works is freezing in place, and another high-risk-of-failure mode is ineffectual “hiding” where the victim mostly hid his or her face from impending doom.

The video makes the very good point that “If you cannot run or hide, you must fight.” That is true whether you’re on a campus like Liberty’s where the administration welcomes and the campus PD expects licensed concealed carriers, or whether you’re in a situation where you’ve been disarmed and placed at the mercy of the enemy by security theater, like the passengers on United 93. It may be that some terrorist or criminal decides when your life will end, and the only choice left to you is what it will cost him. 

Be prepared, and make him pay. 

Hat tip, Bob Owens at Bearing Arms, who has (as usual) some good and cogent comments.

If you’re a campus cop or campus police chief, this video shows you ways to make your school safer.

Safety When Undercover

hsi_badgeWe have harped on this before, but not everybody reads, and it happened again — a plainclothes agent (a Fed from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the investigations arm of ICE), joined local cops and a smorgasbord of whatever LEOs were handy in responding to a reported active shooter event at a school in Texas. And he was shot and wounded by a US Marshal. CNN (warning, loud autoplay ads):

In the confusion that followed, numerous law enforcement officers rushed to the scene and a US marshal accidentally shot a Homeland Security agent, Brewster County Sheriff Ronny Dodson said.

Dodson said the agent was in stable condition; he didn’t release the condition of the wounded student. Her injuries didn’t appear to be life-threatening, the sheriff said.

Thing is, by that time it wasn’t an active shooter event any more. One 14-year-old girl shot and wounded another female student, then killed herself. By the time the first cop got on the scene — a deputy who’d been passing by — the shooting was over. Or it would have been over, if not for one Fed blasting another, to the embarrassment of all (and the pain of the wounded dude).

As to the girl-on-girl shooting, so far it beats law enforcement with a stick.

Dodson said the student who died moved about six months ago to Alpine, a community of 6,500 people roughly 200 miles southeast of El Paso. Dodson didn’t identify her or provide a motive but said her family is cooperating.

Mean Girls was not a how-to manual, kids.

Since Columbine, when the massacre rolled on while the cops were running their procedures outside, there’s a new dynamic in active shooter response: everybody goes in, balls to the wall, right down the middle. Fine and good, but consider these things:

  1. There’s little (usually, no) interagency commonality in equipment, uniforms, or — most important — training.
  2. As an armed undercover in the middle of a law enforcement all-call, you might as well be wearing a deer suit on the first day of the rifle season.
  3. As an individual, think about your IFF (Identification Friend or Foe). Raid jacket, at least.
  4. If you have a regional interagency task force, do a little planning now, long before you have to deal with one of the trigger-happy crumbs. For instance, declare a single a distinctive and unmistakeable TF identifying badge or mark, and get the news around to all jurisdictions, but keep the details LE Confidential.
  5. Sneaking through the reported active-shooter zone is a really bad idea if you’re not practically lighthousing “cop!”
  6. Remember that jumpy cops even shoot other uniformed cops. Not just cops, either. Soldiers shoot friendlies all the time, despite always wearing uniforms and pursuing all kinds of control measures.
  7. As an individual, the safest thing to do is wait and stack up with the locals when they go in.
  8. You will never have perfect information. Chaos and Confusion are the handmaidens of combat.

When Army elements used to work the indoor HR/CT mission hard, we had certain control measures we used, most of which are no secret. One key approach was to get and keep the hostage taker talking to the negotiators while the assault leaders planned the takedown. The first thing they did was plan a hasty takedown, which you hoped not to use, but would initiate if the hostage takers started harming hostages.

But the hasty takedown would always come from one direction, in one team, under one command. You might play multiple-entry-points or roof team / ground team in the deliberate assault, but in a hasty assault you kept everyone together. This kept you from killing hostages and each other.

The absence of unity of command in a law enforcement active-shooter all-call is just asking for trouble.

Many Lessons in an on-duty Police Shooting

Oklahoma City. 24 June 2016, afternoon. A crazy dude on the run from the cops tries to bribe a bus driver to take him direct to his destination. The driver refuses.

“This is not a cab, it’s a bus. I gotta stay on the route.”

The nut gets more and more agitated, and the driver finally stops the bus and orders him off. He refuses, and the driver (following policy) orders the other passengers off for their own safety, while calling dispatch for police support.

Two cops appear outside the bus.

“That’s the guy,” the driver says. Seconds later, the man is dead of multiple gunshot wounds. How did he get that way? Pervasive video makes it clear. (It’s primarily his own fault).

Video 1: Bus point of view.

Video 2: All eight of the bus’s cameras, synched. You’ll probably need to watch this one full screen.

LiveLeak (whence we snagged the videos) says:

Oklahoma City Police shot and killed the man on an EMBARK bus, after they say he tried attacking an officer, For the first time, we’re now able to see surveillance video taken on that EMBARK bus, that picked up the suspect.

We see if from eight different angles.The incident happened in the afternoon, on Friday, June 24th. Miguel Chavez-Angles, gets on the bus, on the run from police, after being released from a mental health evaluation, vandalizing a vehicle, and kidnapping two women.

Here’s how we see it:

The part prior to about 2:45 sets the scene and fills in the back story of this nut on a bus. A couple seconds after that, fools rush in. The porky female cop started out in a panic, leading with her pistol as she charged onto the bus, right where the suspect was. He latched onto her gun arm and she fires an unaimed shot wildly and begins shrieking with terror, and then, appears to fall down. Except for provoking the shooting with her lack of self control, rash action, and inability to control her fear, she was not a factor in the fight. She was, apart from those exceptions, functionally a sandbag — deadweight — at best.

It’s hard to make out what she was screaming, but it seems to have included “shots fired,” and something like “he’s got a gun,” which suggests she was so out of it she didn’t even realize she’d fired one reckless shot in the direction of random passersby.

Enter the male cop, who knocks the suspect down and shoots him dead, urging his ineffectual partner to hustle off the bus when she recovers enough composure to stand and flee.

He shoots the suspect quite a few times, but then, anything worth shooting is worth shooting again, and he can be excused for thinking the suspect was armed. Indeed, had his worse-than-useless partner been any worse than she was, the suspect would have been armed. That he didn’t get her gun was simply dumb luck and his ineptitude; it sure wasn’t her weapons-retention skills.

This is what the public voted for when they voted for the bipartisan boondoggle that was deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill. Treatment at 1,200 feet per second.

One doubts that whatever academy OKC’s cops attend includes a block of instruction on clearing the linear target (in this case, bus) by leading with the pistol at max one-arm extension into the space and the face of the adverse party. (If it’s like most academies, it doesn’t include anything on the linear target at all).

That officer needs to be fired for choking on the job. Instead, ever PC, the white shirts probably gave her a decoration. We’re not dinosaurs who believe women can’t be cops; we’ve seen good ones. But we are dinosaurs who believe cowards can’t be cops, no matter what chromosome set they’re packin’.

Do Chicago Cops Shoot Too Many? Or Too Few?

A Black Criminal Lives Matter demonstration in NYC, by communists (International ANSWER, etc.) and supporters of violent crime.

A Black Criminal Lives Matter demonstration in NYC, by communists (International ANSWER, etc.) and supporters of violent criminals.

The Chicago Tribune has been running a series of thumbsuckers about the evil, vile, racist Chicago PD which is gunning down those few African-American choirboys that the choirboys themselves, with a shooting rate many times that of Five-Oh, haven’t bumped off yet.

It comes down,  as badly reported media stories often do, to botched, misapplied, or (in this case) deceptively selected statistics.


The stat the Trib cares about (quoting Jack Dunphy, of, and from, whom, more anon):

435 police shootings that occurred in Chicago between 2010 and 2015… killing 92 people and wounding 170.

If we average the stats over the six years, that’s 73 shootings with 15 killed and 28 wounded (meaning what they’re really tracking is not shootings but shooting incidents. How can it be a shooting if the cops — or crims — don’t hit anybody?)

The stat the Trib doesn’t care about (quoting; the numbers will be higher tomorrow, or even later today):

2,888 shootings with 2,446 wounded, 442 shot dead, and an additional 442 killed without using guns,

And that’s just in 2016. To date. Against that, the Chicago law enforcement community (not just CPD)’s score that has the  has shot 17 people: 11 wounded and 6 killed. The criminals, in turn, have wounded 8 cops (they haven’t killed any, answering the question, “Who shoots worse than the average cop?” Answer, thank a merciful God: “The average crook.”

The cops shoot mostly, the Trib bemoans, young black males. Of course, that’s who the young black males mostly shoot, too.

kentrell-pledger-black disciplesMeanwhile, when the cops do restrain themselves and don’t shoot the (almost always black) crumb that takes them under fire, like the Black Disciple gang member illustrated right, they get this, and better yet — from a guy who told the arresting officers, “Thank you for not shooting me”:

“Chicago Police shot at me first,” Kentrell Pledger, a reputed Black Disciple gang member, pleaded with Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr.

As sheriff’s deputies led Pledger away, his protests grew louder: “He shot at me first. So get your story straight, dog. And for that, I should have smoked his ass.”

Pledger then told Bourgeois, who is African-American, “You ain’t black, you’re white, b ‑ ‑ ‑ ‑ ‑.”

Anybody know what obscenity begins with “b” and has six letters? Or is it that Pledger and his fans in the media can’t spell?

Anyway, maybe Pledger was innocent. Uh…

A picture of Pledger holding the same weapon used in the shooting Monday in the 300 block of West 106th was posted on social media two hours earlier, Assistant State’s Attorney Guy Lisuzzo said.

Sure, courts work on a presumption of innocence, but everyone involved understands that it is a legalism, a fiction. Not being Judge Bourgeois, we can say what everybody, including the judge, Pledger, and Pledger’s public defender, know to an absolute certainty: he’s guilty.

Who should have smoked whom’s ass? But the Pledgers of the world are the particular pets and projects of the sort of people that dream of joining the Chicago Tribune and “changing the world.” To see what they would “change the world” to, Chicago is Exhibit A.

Comes Jack Dunphy (pseud.), an LA-area cop who’s a gifted writer on crime and punishment issues, and takes the Trib to the woodshed on the subject.

[D]o Chicago police officers really shoot too many people? One could make the case that they shoot too few, an assertion Nykea Aldridge’s loved ones might make. On Saturday afternoon, Aldridge, a cousin of Chicago Bulls guard Dwayne Wade, was pushing a stroller containing her infant daughter down Calumet Avenue when she was shot and killed.  Two brothers, Darren and Darwin Sorrells, have been arrested and charged with her murder. To the surprise of exactly no one, both have lengthy arrest records and were on parole at the time of the killing.

Had some Chicago police officer spotted the Sorrells brothers in the moments before they made their fatal choice, had that cop killed them before they could kill Aldridge, today that officer would be vilified as a racist while the brothers were hailed as good fathers who were “getting their lives together,” and the local Black Lives Matter chapter would be mustering to shut down Michigan Avenue this weekend.

But Nykea Aldridge is just another name on a lengthening list of Chicago’s murder victims, noteworthy only for her relationship to a famous athlete. She will soon be forgotten by all but her family and friends – and the police officers and detectives who investigated her murder and will see it through what passes for a justice system in Chicago. Nothing to see here, Michigan Avenue will be open for business as usual this weekend.

There’s a key in that story as to why “gun violence” is so high in Chicago, where guns were, for decades, banned for normal non-criminal humans (and remain very hard to get — legally).

both … were on parole at the time of the killing

Why? Why does parole even exist? It’s simply a way for criminals to get back to crime sooner. 10-20-Life for felonies, no probation, no parole. Yes, more of these guilty crumbs will gum up the courts with forlorn-hope cases, and it will inconvenience lots of lawyers and judges. Or we can keep paroling them and reading the reports of their progress at

Badge Stops Bullet — Twice in One Day

In two separate incidents Sunday, would-be cop killers were thwarted, not by body armor, Stingray mass-surveillance boxes, the FBI’s PR budget, perfect police training, or any of that jazz.

Their bullets ricocheted off the cops’ badges, leaving the cops safe at home at the end of the day despite the criminals’ kinetically expressed intent.

The outcome for the would be cop killers was a bit different. The guy who shot a Nevada Highway Patrol officer was killed by gunfire from backup officers, and the other guys from his car sit in cells; while the domestic-abuser-turned-cop-attacker from Anaheim, California let cops and Highway Patrol troopers on a merry 85-mile chase before losing control of his car — and burning to death in the wreck.

Good preparation for his eternity, that.

About once every five years, a policeman in the US is saved by his badge, when the badge deflects a bullet. The last time was in New York City in 2010, reporte the New York Times. Last night, however, it happened to two different policemen in two states.

In Huntington Beach, California, officers were involved in a high-speed pursuit when gunfire broke out. A 10-year veteran of the Huntington Beach Police Department had bullets shoot through his windshield and strike him. But his badge stopped the bullets. The suspect veered off the road, crashed his vehicle and died of his injuries.

That’s a very telegraphic version of the story. The Orange County Register has more detail, including these photos, some of which are HBPD handouts and some of which are OCR staff photos:

A hole in the windshield shows how a suspect shot at a Huntington Beach police vehicle, hitting an officer, but it deflected off his badge. "The round came through the front windshield of the officer’s car, struck the officer’s badge and deflected off," said Jennifer Marlatt, a department spokeswoman.

A hole in the windshield shows how a suspect shot at a Huntington Beach police vehicle, hitting an officer, but it deflected off his badge. “The round came through the front windshield of the officer’s car, struck the officer’s badge and deflected off,” said Jennifer Marlatt, a department spokeswoman.

If that doesn’t give you the creeps….

HBPD Statement:

Around 12:30 a.m. Friday morning, Huntington Beach Police initiated pursuit of a suspect for an unknown want.

He jumped in the car and fled from being arrested at a domestic violence situation, although the cops didn’t all know the “why” at the time they were chasing him.

During the pursuit the suspect opened fire on officers, striking one of the officers in his badge. Costa Mesa Fire was requested to evaluate the officer.

Apparently, Wife-Beatin’ Willie spun around in a U-Turn and fired at the approaching cops — that’s where he put the slug through the windshield and into the officer’s badge. Fortunately he was using a pistol and not a long gun with barrier blind ammo.

Officers lost sight of the suspect but were able to relocate the suspect as he entered the southbound 405 Freeway. The pursuit continued to the northbound 55 Freeway, Eastbound 91Freeway and then onto the northbound 15 Freeway where the suspect lost control of his vehicle and crashed down an embankment at Cleghorn Road, bursting into flames. The suspect was pronounced deceased at the scene. Huntington Beach Police and CHP are investigating. The pursuit lasted over an hour.

A Huntington Beach Police officer is checked out by Costa Mesa Fire after being shot in his badge during a vehicle pursuit of a suspect. The pursuit ended on the Northbound 15 Freeway when the suspect lost control of his vehicle at Cleghorn Road bursting into flames and killing him around 1:30 a.m. Friday morning in San Bernardino County.

A Huntington Beach Police officer is checked out by Costa Mesa Fire after being shot in his badge during a vehicle pursuit of a suspect. The pursuit ended on the Northbound 15 Freeway when the suspect lost control of his vehicle at Cleghorn Road bursting into flames and killing him around 1:30 a.m. Friday morning in San Bernardino County.

They zoomed in on the badge:

A Huntington Beach Police officer is checked out by Costa Mesa Fire after being shot in his badge during a vehicle pursuit of a suspect. The pursuit ended on the Northbound 15 Freeway when the suspect lost control of his vehicle at Cleghorn Road bursting into flames and killing him around 1:30 a.m. Friday morning in San Bernardino County. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: KEVIN WARN, CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER Around 12:30 a.m. Friday morning, Huntington Beach Police initiated pursuit of a suspect for an unknown want. During the pursuit the suspect opened fire on officers, striking one of the officers in his badge. Costa Mesa Fire was requested to evaluate the officer. Officers lost sight of the suspect but were able to relocate the suspect as he entered the southbound 405 Freeway. The pursuit continued to the northbound 55 Freeway, Eastbound 91Freeway and then onto the northbound 15 Freeway where the suspect lost control of his vehicle and crashed down an embankment at Cleghorn Road, bursting into flames. The suspect was pronounced deceased at the scene. Huntington Beach Police and CHP are investigating. The pursuit lasted over an hour.


HBPD’s badges are, unusually, made of steel, not bronze or aluminum.

You know, a fellow could get hurt doing that job. Of course, a fellow shooting at the people doing that job is almost certainly going to get hurt, and soon enough the suspect’s driving speed exceeded his driving skill, resulting in a rare literal crash and burn.

If there was ever a time cops were unenthusiastic about rescuing an MVA victim, this was the time.

If there was ever a time cops were unenthusiastic about rescuing an MVA victim, this was the time.


Does anybody get paid enough to smell that smell?

Does anybody get paid enough to smell that smell?

The crispy critter remains identified, as far as we know, at press time.

In Las Vegas, a Nevada State Trooper was conducting a traffic stop when the suspect began to flee the vehicle. During a foot pursuit, gunfire broke out and the trooper was struck in the chest. His badge saved him. The suspect died in the gunfire exchange.

The NHP Tweeted out this picture of the struck badge.

Nevda HP Badge

Two other occupants of the Nevada shooter’s car are in custody.

via Cops Badge Stops Bullet in Separate Shooting Incidents in Nevada, California: Remarkable Coincidence! – Santa Monica Observer.

So, what are the lessons learned here?

  1. It is better to be lucky than to be good.
  2. It is stupid terminally stupid to shoot at the po-po. In case you haven’t noticed, they come in whole troops or precincts.
  3. Maybe if you’re the reincarnation of Fireball Roberts, you can outrun the police car, but you can’t outrun the police radio, or the helicopter that the CHP had following the runner. These things usually end in the reincarnation of no-fireball-in-particular. QED.
  4. Something has gotten into the water (or the media air), and lots of scroungy urban mopes and suburban wildsiders who would never have thunk of it, are down with firing up Officer Friendly in 2016. Is it the Black Criminal Lives Matter movement? The police “going fetal” in urban hellholes? The DOJ lining up behind the violent criminals? Hell, is it sunspots? Or does it even matter? It’s a fact out there.


Worried About “Printing?” Don’t.

Chris Baker set up this grossly obvious example of "printing" for an article at LuckyGunner that pretty much agrees with this article.

Chris Baker set up this grossly obvious example of “printing” for an article at LuckyGunner that pretty much agrees with this article.

The secret to not being obvious about carrying is to just do it and get used to it. Yes, cops nab gangbangers all the time because they can see the kid futzing with his holsterless appendix carried gun. Don’t be that guy and you’re OK.

Here’s the big secret: nobody cares that you carry. Only you, and whatever subset of “yours” that you tell. (Our advice: that subset should start at “nobody,” and only change if you have a really good reason to). Seriously. Cops don’t care, in most jurisdictions. They’re not looking for your gun — they’re looking for nervous patterns of behavior, yes, which are often seen in people carrying unlawfully. 

Cops are aware that a lot of people carry guns legally. Even in a place like Boston or LA where a mere citizen can’t get a permit, the streets teem with official carriers from over a hundred Federal agencies (even Amtrak), not to mention state and local fuzz, judges and prosecutors (some of whom carry because they really fear people they’ve put away, and some of whom have a Walter Mitty thing going).

Cop attitudes to lawful carriers range from “nobody should carry but the Thin Blue Line” (a smaller set than you think, but it exists) to “the more lawful carriers out there the better” (which is a common opinion in law enforcement, even in places like Massachusetts and California). Like the rest of society, cops disagree about these things, but the cop that’s going to hassle a lawful carrier is rare. (True, he’s more common in a place like those mentioned above, or New Jersey).

Criminal attitudes to lawful carriers are easier to explain; to the extent that they think of them at all, they’re frightened of them, but mostly they don’t even think of them. The average criminal expects the possibility of armed resistance if he jacks, say, a drug dealer or gang member, but it never occurs to him that he might meet it from a little old guy or a young lady.

The criminal that jacked an open carrier recently is illustrative. We can’t ask him, being as he’s dead, but it’s likely he never saw the compact Glock on the petite woman’s belt. We suppose you could say he felt its sting, before he ever saw it. We have observed that often, where someone is open carrying and the people around him or her are completely unaware of it. (OC has long been legal here, although it’s still very rare). We’ve also seen the knowledge cascade, where one person notices the firearm and nudges those nearby, until they’re staring at the carrier. After a while, when they see he’s not bent on bloodshed, they go back to what they were doing and more or less forget him or her.

Assuming that it’s lawful for you, carry now. Carry always; get used to it. Carry securely, and don’t draw the pistol unless you mean to use it — think of it like a Gurkha’s kukri: if the situation does not call for drawing blood, don’t take it out.

The sooner you’re blasé about it, the sooner that small percentage who did notice you at first when you were nervous and kept touching it, tunes you out also.

Usage: Open Carry Saves Her Life

Frank Taylor_mugshotMeet Frank Taylor. Don’t get too attached to him, because he’s a crumb, a violent criminal, and he’s already dead, dead, dead — where he can’t hurt anybody any more. Maybe he was a lovely guy 99% of the time, or maybe he was always prone to the kind of dyscivic activity that characterized the last hours of his life. We don’t know, although the fact that he already had a scowling mugshot on file is what intelligence officers call “an indicator.”

Moms Demand Action records his demise as a “gun death.” And it was, but not quite the way they mean.

As it happens, he took his chances on robbing a woman a fraction of his size (4’11″/85 lbs, aka 1.5m/39 Kg), and the gamble came up snake eyes for him, as he coughed out his last blood on an operating table soon thereafter. (We can just feel the groundswell of sympathy for the guy, all the way from Arizona).

Now, we’re not big fans of open carry, here. Why advertise? In summer months, when our service pistol would be hard to conceal in shorts and t-shirt, we downsize. (First Rule of Gunfights: Bring a Gun). But some people, like Carolann Miracle of Glendale, AZ, are built so lean that even a Baby Browning is going to print. You might as well carry the horse pistol, exposed, then.

A news channel tells part of the story:

The suspect, Frank Taylor , tried to bum a cigarette. She told him that she didn’t have one, and then seconds later, Miracle said, she could feel the barrel of the gun against her skin.

“He put the gun up to my neck and said, ‘It’s loaded, don’t move,’” Miracle said. ”I think he thought, ‘She’s a little girl. Maybe she doesn’t know how to use her weapon.’”

Miracle said, “I dropped my soda, released my gun from my holster and cocked it. I shot him and ran in the opposite direction.

She called the cops from home; meanwhile, others responded to the scene, where they called paramedics who transported Taylor to the ER, where attempts to save him — why? Not because he was worth saving, but out of sheer force of habit; it’s what they do — were unavailing.

“Every time you hear a peaceable carrier’s gunshot, a devil gets his bat wings.” Now Frank Taylor hangs, upside down, alongside his brethren in the Surprised Scumbag Hall of Infamy.

Carolann Miracle. From Dean's screen cap of a TV interview.

Carolann Miracle. (Note her Glock). From Dean’s screen cap of a TV interview.

Dean Weingarten has done some work on this story, and reached some conclusions we generally agree with:

Carolann’s father was a Marine.  He taught her well. …

Carolann did many things right.  The first was to instantly recognize the threat.  Many become mired in the thought that “this cannot be happening”; “this is not real”.  People who carry are much less likely to do that because they have considered the possibility of attack and prepared for it.

She did the right thing when she dropped her drink.  Dropping things to access your weapon or to fight better is not an instinctive reaction.  Many people instinctively hang on to useless things that impede their ability to fight.  I taught my students to practice dropping things at the beginning of a fight so that they could draw their firearm, and fight more effectively.

She did the right thing when she fled the area in the opposite direction from the way the attacker was going.  Many attacks, perhaps 50%, involve an accomplice.  She purposefully made the decision, moved to safety, then called the police.

Carolann’s response is common.  She did not want to kill her attacker. It was a consequence of what he forced her to do.  She would have preferred that it never happened.

Indeed, if Frank Taylor decided to get a job framing houses or working in a car wash, he’d be ahead, not dead, and poor Ms. Miracle wouldn’t have his soul, blackened and crabbed though it may have been, on her conscience.

But he didn’t. He decided he wanted to be an urban predator — the U-Boat of the modern urban environment. If Carolann hadn’t gone home to her three-year-old, if it’d been her vapor-locking on that operating table, that probably wouldn’t have troubled Taylor’s atrophied conscience at all. But she wasn’t the complacent victim he expected. The only problem with the lesson he learned from running into a Q-Ship is that his ability to pass the message on is somewhat curtailed.

Dean has a lot more; go Read The Whole Thing™. (His whole site is excellent).