Police Trainee Accidentally Killed By Instructor


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erik the bold
September 14, 2005, 01:10 PM
Link here: http://www.clickondetroit.com/news/4970707/detail.html

Police Trainee Accidentally Killed By Instructor

POSTED: 7:46 am EDT September 14, 2005

AUSTELL, Ga. -- A trainee at a Georgia law enforcement academy has been accidentally shot and killed by her instructor during a classroom exercise.

No details have been released.

The police trainee was among about 30 students in the seventh week of a state-mandated, 10-week training course at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy.

A Cobb County police spokesman said the veteran instructor was "very traumatized" and had to seek medical attention.

The academy is one of 10 regional training centers for law enforcement officers in Georgia.

:banghead:

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pax
September 14, 2005, 01:53 PM
The problem with that article is that there's not enough information given to enable us to intelligently discuss anything about this incident.

Accidents like this are a good opportunity for folks to review their own safety practices.

Meanwhile, it would be really, really good if people could refrain from jumping to conclusions, making inappropriate jokes, or griping about other members.

pax

treeprof
September 14, 2005, 01:54 PM
More details on the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website (ajc.com) but you need to register for access. It was the 1st day of the firearms training sequence.

I think that this same trainer was in a firearms course I took a few yrs back. If so, he was a very capable shooter. This is the worst possible outcome for a ND, though, and I would guess that it'd be nigh on impossible to recover, mentally or professionally, from this.

Optical Serenity
September 14, 2005, 01:59 PM
Without knowing the full story or those involved, its ridiculous to make comments. This particular instructor is a very capable SWAT instructor... Very high speed, and has probably put more rounds down range than 99% of those even on here.

Either way, its a very bad situation. Prayers are needed for those involved.

Tom Servo
September 14, 2005, 02:22 PM
I live in Kennesaw, and I haven't heard anything beyond what's on the news. They're being very tight-lipped about what happened.

My knee-jerk reaction was, "what the #$&* was this instructor doing?," but from what I've heard, he's quite experienced, and this was, according to an officer, "a really freak thing."

This is just unbelievably sad, and it's a good time to reflect on the fact that it could happen to any of us, at any time, if we get even slighly careless.

chris in va
September 14, 2005, 02:26 PM
Wow, I feel really bad for the instructor. He's never going to outlive the grief. I couldn't live with that burden. :(

El Tejon
September 14, 2005, 02:41 PM
If anyone down there hears anything further, please let us know.

Technosavant
September 14, 2005, 03:23 PM
Remember:

Even the most highly trained and respected shooters and trainers can make tragic mistakes with fatal consequences.

The rules of firearms safety exist for a reason: there is a danger involved with firearms, and those rules are our means of mitigating that danger. Violate them, and people can be hurt or killed. Be careful out there.

My condolences to all involved.

farscott
September 14, 2005, 03:42 PM
Here is the latest AJC article.

A trainee at a Cobb County police academy was killed Tuesday when the instructor's gun accidentally went off during the first day of firearms training, authorities said.

The woman, a new recruit with the Kennesaw police department, was identified today as Tara Drummond, 23. She was among 30 rookie officers in the seventh week of a 10-week program at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Austell.

The trainees were in a classroom in the basement of the academy, located in a converted textile mill, when the gun discharged about 4 p.m., said Carol Morgan, the academy director.

County Sheriff Neil Warren, whose office administers the program for Cobb, declined to discuss details of the shooting.

Drummond was taken to a local hospital where she died a short time later.

She was the first Kennesaw police officer killed in the line of duty, said department spokesman Scott Luther.

Kennesaw police Chief Tim Callahan called the death "a tragic accident," and added: "For the next few days, we want to honor the life of this young officer who would have been a great officer one day."

The class instructor is an "experienced veteran" of the county sheriff's office who has been teaching at the academy for 10 years, Sheriff Warren said.

Shaken up by the shooting, the instructor was also taken to a hospital but later released, Warren said.

The instructor, who was not named, has been placed on administrative leave until an internal investigation by the sheriff's office, the county police department and Austell police.

SpookyPistolero
September 14, 2005, 04:12 PM
Scary stuff. A good reminder to always remember our rules. There but for the grace of God go I...

Reminds me of a while back when two students to Thunder Ranch or Gunsite, I believe, were practicing in their hotels one night and one shot the other. I'd say traumatizing would be an understatement.

Henry Bowman
September 14, 2005, 04:15 PM
when the instructor's gun accidentally went off :banghead: when the gun discharged about 4 p.m., :banghead: County Sheriff Neil Warren, whose office administers the program for Cobb, declined to discuss details of the shooting. In all fairness, the otherwise unknowledgeable "journalist" is probably using what he/she believes to be "neutral" language to avoid assignment of blame when we really don't know what happened. There are such things as "accidental dischages" even though they are very, very rare.

oh blanky
September 14, 2005, 04:16 PM
The freaky thing was there's this here hole in this pipe thingy in the gun and noise and light and stuff comes out of it. Things it front of it seem to git kilt.

Janitor
September 14, 2005, 04:18 PM
I keep on trying to write something, but coming up empty.

I continually end up in a place where I cannot possibly imagine how horrible the instructor must feel in this. My heart goes out to him as much as to the trainee's family.

This is simply awful (he says, once again stating the obvious).

Zrex
September 14, 2005, 04:43 PM
A Cobb County police spokesman said the veteran instructor was "very traumatized" and had to seek medical attention.

If you think this guy is "traumatized", think of the poor girl he killed.... er.... I mean - think of the poor girl accidentally killed by his gun. Then think of her family. My prayers are with them.

CAS700850
September 14, 2005, 04:50 PM
My prayers are with all of them.

Come on, who among us has not had an accident? I can tell you I damn near shot out the t.v. when I went to take down my Glock, only to hesitate an instant before pulling the trigger, just because I hadn't shot the gun last before it was cased up. Jack the slide, and there's a round in the chamber. I also may have put one over the backstop one time, with a friend's Smith Model 15, trying his style of one hand target shooting (lower the barrel to the target, don't raise it). Bumped the trigger with my finger and it fired. Single action trigger weight was unbelievably low.

Sorry, it just makes me a little mad to hear everyone indict the instructor in this situation, when we have no idea what the facts were, much less to know if he deserves our contempt for his actions.

Janitor
September 14, 2005, 04:54 PM
Sorry, it just makes me a little mad to hear everyone indict the instructor in this situation
Who has indicted the instructor?

Buck Snort
September 14, 2005, 05:08 PM
I don't believe there is any such thing as an "accidental discharge", there is only negligent gun handling. The instructor is probably traumatized because he screwed up big time and he knows it. I'd be too under those circumstances.

buzz_knox
September 14, 2005, 05:13 PM
Reminds me of a while back when two students to Thunder Ranch or Gunsite, I believe, were practicing in their hotels one night and one shot the other.


It was Gunsite. I had a course this weekend with someone who was in that class.

Black Majik
September 14, 2005, 05:15 PM
Well thats too sad to hear. She died so young... :(

But, isn't one of the 4 rules, dont point at anything or ANYONE you do not intend to destroy?

Seems like, although an AD/ND, whichever it may be, the instructor sweep the student causing her to get hit.

c_yeager
September 14, 2005, 05:27 PM
Who has indicted the instructor?

I havent seen anyone do it yet, so here you go.

The ONLY way this could possibly have happened is if the instructor pointed a loaded weapon at the cadet, period. And I am giving the guy credit and not assuming that he actually pulled the trigger. Even if this was some kind of bizzare one-in-a-million case of a mechanical failure causing a weapon to discharge, the bullet still only goes in the direction that the weapon was pointed. How can the instructor possibly NOT be responsible if a person that he pointed a weapon at wound up getting shot with that weapon?

buzz_knox
September 14, 2005, 05:35 PM
Well, it's in the realm of possibility that the weapon was dropped and discharged (as in the case of the SWAT officer killed in LA when he dropped his 220).

However, unless live fire was going on in the basement classroom, it would be a struggle to come up with an explanation as to why a loaded weapon was out of a holster and thus able to shoot anyone.

Zrex
September 14, 2005, 05:55 PM
Well, it's in the realm of possibility that the weapon was dropped and discharged (as in the case of the SWAT officer killed in LA when he dropped his 220).


Maybe he was the only one in the room professional enough to handle that Glock 40......

jdkelly
September 14, 2005, 06:10 PM
The ONLY way this could possibly have happened is if the instructor pointed a loaded weapon at the cadet, period.

I don't know any facts about the shooting, and while I would guess that the gun was pointed at the trainee, it is possible it was a ricochet.


Respectfully,

jdkelly

Correia
September 14, 2005, 06:12 PM
All worthless conjecture at this point anyway. My first guess when I heard it was that a real gun got mixed into retention training. But still, all just conjecture.

Hawkmoon
September 14, 2005, 06:58 PM
All worthless conjecture at this point anyway. My first guess when I heard it was that a real gun got mixed into retention training. But still, all just conjecture.
I'll hope that we get more info ASAP. This suggestion is a possibility, but ... isn't that what blue guns are made for?

Weimadog
September 15, 2005, 12:31 AM
Optical Serenity: *snip* This particular instructor is a very capable SWAT instructor... Very high speed, and has probably put more rounds down range than 99% of those even on here. *snip*

Experience is no excuse. He should still follow The Four Rules.

kikilee
September 15, 2005, 01:40 AM
I would venture to say it will be a long time before the details are revealed.

c_yeager
September 15, 2005, 04:11 AM
All worthless conjecture at this point anyway.

This is of course correct

My first guess when I heard it was that a real gun got mixed into retention training. But still, all just conjecture.

And yet that correct statement is followed by another nugget of worthless conjecture.

Even if we assume that this is true, how does it absolve the instructor of responsibility?

zookrider
September 15, 2005, 04:36 AM
Even if we assume that this is true, how does it absolve the instructor of responsibility?

I have yet to see anybody here attempt to absolve the instructer of responsibilty, only a few attempts to guess at what might have actually occured. Furthemore, I think the last thing that is needed is a bunch of pontificating by self righteous individuals who weren't there and don't know what happened. While it is true that this is a horrible event never should have happened and the lion's share of my compassion rightfully goes out to the family of the deceased, I will save some for the man who will have to live with this burden for the rest of his life. The fact that he made a mistake, fatal or otherwise, should not earn him instant contempt from all who hear the tale. Was he in the wrong? Probably. Will he pay for this? Probably. As he should, personal responsibility and all that (though I doubt that any punishment metted out by others will be half as severe as the punishment he will heap upon himself.) Should he be treated as a pariah for the rest of his life, as the tone of some of you here on this forum would suggest? Not hardly. It is easy to kick a man who is down, it is harder indeed to lift him up.

SpookyPistolero said it best:

There but by the grace of God go I.........

[/soapbox]

Janitor
September 15, 2005, 08:12 AM
The fact that he made a mistake, fatal or otherwise, should not earn him instant contempt from all who hear the tale. Was he in the wrong? Probably. Will he pay for this? Probably.
Yup, and yup.

All that we know: A student was shot. An instructor was in the room. A news article says the instructor did the shooting.

That's it. That most scenarios one might come up with from that may involve gross negligence, they are still scenarios that one came up with. Not known facts.

G'head and say whatever you want about the guy though. That's what the 1st is all about. Compassion isn't a requirement of speaking your mind.

c_yeager
September 15, 2005, 08:56 AM
A little bit more information has been released, not much though.

http://www.ajc.com/news/content/metro/cobb/0905/14trainee.html

------

A trainee at a Cobb County police academy was killed Tuesday when the instructor's gun accidentally went off during the first day of firearms training, authorities said.

The woman, a new recruit with the Kennesaw police department, was identified today as Tara Drummond, 23. She was among 30 rookie officers in the seventh week of a 10-week program at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Austell.

The trainees were in a classroom in the basement of the academy, located in a converted textile mill, when the gun discharged about 4 p.m., said Carol Morgan, the academy director.

County Sheriff Neil Warren, whose office administers the program for Cobb, declined to discuss details of the shooting.

Drummond was taken to a local hospital where she died a short time later.

She was the first Kennesaw police officer killed in the line of duty, said department spokesman Scott Luther.

Kennesaw police Chief Tim Callahan called the death "a tragic accident," and added: "For the next few days, we want to honor the life of this young officer who would have been a great officer one day."

The class instructor is an "experienced veteran" of the county sheriff's office who has been teaching at the academy for 10 years, Sheriff Warren said.

Shaken up by the shooting, the instructor was also taken to a hospital but later released, Warren said.

The instructor, who was not named, has been placed on administrative leave until an internal investigation by the sheriff's office, the county police department and Austell police.

------

I saw everything i needed in the first sentance.

Really though, if you want to believe that a man is a victim because the gun in his hand killed a young woman all by itself, thats up to you.

Janitor
September 15, 2005, 09:45 AM
... because the gun in his hand killed a young woman ...
All the articles I've seen thus far said it was the instructors gun. Not that it was in his hand.

County Sheriff Neil Warren, whose office administers the program for Cobb, declined to discuss details of the shooting.
So we'll go ahead and make some of our own details up. :)

Reality is, that every shooter (who isn't a goblin, zombie, or scum bag) will end up being a victim of their actions at some level or another. We can choose to care, or not care about that. Doesn't change the facts though.

treeprof
September 15, 2005, 10:55 AM
More details. This was supposed to be a gun and live ammo-free building.

http://wsbradio.com/news/091505traineeshot3a.html
____________________________________________
AUSTELL, Ga. (AP) A firearms instructor who accidentally shot and killed a police trainee at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Cobb County violated safety rules by bringing a loaded gun, officials said.

Tara Drummond, 23, a recruit with the Kennesaw Police Department, died Tuesday shortly after being shot once in the chest, said Cobb County Sheriff Neil Warren, who is leading the investigation into the shooting.

Ammunition is banned from the building, said Warren, who declined to release the instructor's name or any initial findings as to why he had the pistol.

Also, state policy bans any working firearm loaded or not from academy classrooms, said Bob Sanderson, assistant director of the Georgia Public Safety Training Center in Forsyth. The state oversees the center in Austell and nine other regional police academies.

``In the classroom, they use what is called a red gun, models that are made of red, hard plastic that are replicas of actual handguns,'' Sanderson said.

Warren gave no details on how or why the gun fired.

The instructor will remain on paid leave until an investigation by the sheriff, county police and Austell police is finished, Warren said.

The trainees were in a classroom in the basement of the academy when the gun discharged around 4 p.m. Tuesday, said Carol Morgan, the academy director. Drummond was taken to a local hospital where she died a short time later.

The instructor was treated briefly after the shooting for unspecified medical symptoms and continued to be under the care of a doctor Wednesday, Warren said. The 25-year Cobb County deputy sheriff has been assigned to the academy as an instructor for 10 years, Warren said.

Drummond, a rookie at the Kennesaw Police Department, was in her seventh week of the 10-week training course. She is the first Kennesaw officer to be killed on duty, spokesman Scott Luther said.

She began working for the 60-officer police department June 1 and started training Aug. 1. Drummond had hoped to become a detective someday, Luther said.

At Kennesaw police headquarters, flags were lowered to half-staff in Drummond's honor.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
______________________________________________________

pax
September 15, 2005, 11:01 AM
:( Bad juju, bringing a live gun into a role-play area.

On occasion, in classes with a FOF component, I've heard students grumble about being patted down to double and then triple-check that there are no live firearms present. Or complain that they won't go for the backup gun on their ankle, so why can't they leave it there?

Here's why.

pax

The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything. -- William Connor Magee

TheEgg
September 15, 2005, 11:04 AM
A firearms instructor who accidentally shot and killed a police trainee at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Cobb County violated safety rules by bringing a loaded gun, officials said.

:eek:

Does not look good for the instructor. Can't see how this can be anything but negligence (Negligent Homicide?, Manslaughter?), at least with the facts so far.

And yes, I understand that the situation can change with more information.

thatguy
September 15, 2005, 11:15 AM
People who work with dangerous objects can get careless after a while and forget how quickly mechanical things can turn on you. A good friend who works in construction told me over the phone the other night that he put his thumb into a power saw earlier this week. He's worked with such tools for decades... and forgot how unforgiving power tools are. The most risky time for a motorcyclist is 6 months after learning to ride. Over cautious at first, by 6 months they get cocky. With luck the mishap will be minor or a near miss and he or she will straighten up. If not...

Same with people who handle guns a lot. You have to work hard at remembering and practicing safe gun handling. But people, being human, are imperfect and errors occur. I think this 25 year veteran officer was so casual about being armed and handling guns after so many years that mistakes were made. Sometimes it doesn't take a big mistake to bring about tragic results. Sometimes a series of small mistakes can add up to serious trouble.

This is an awful situation for all involved. But it does appear that the training officer is at fault. He is ultimately responsible for whatever happens in the classroom and from the sketchy details it seems it was his gun, brought loaded into an area where firearms and ammo are prohibited, that was the problem. Whether it was dropped, mistaken for a training tool, or discharged during a demonstration, multiple violations of the rules of safe gun handling obviously occurred.

I suspect that at the very least the training officer will be dismissed and the city will be sued. At worst he may be charged with a criminal offense. No winners, here. A very sad thing for everyone.

Psssniper
September 15, 2005, 11:21 AM
Hey I have an idea ;)
lets just make stuff up and pontificate and see who can come up with the best sounding post, never mind the facts :D

"Facts are stubborn things."
~ Alain Rene Lesage (1668-1747)

"Where facts are few, experts are many."
~ Donald R. Gannon

"Never give up and never face the facts."
~ Ruth Gordon

"There are no facts, only interpretations."
~ Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)

"The truth is more important than the facts."
~ Frank Lloyd Wright (1868-1959)

"The fewer the facts, the stronger the opinion."
~ Arnold H. Glasow

"Practical politics consists of ignoring facts."
~ Henry Adams (1838-1918)

"An ounce of emotion is equal to a ton of facts."
~ John Junor

"I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance."
~ Socrates (469-399 BC)

"Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable."
~ Mark Twain (1835-1910)

"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts."
~ Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

"My mind's made up — don't confuse me with the facts."
~ unknown

"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored."
~ Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)

"By all means, let's not confuse ourselves with the facts!"

A black woman trainee at a Cobb County police academy was killed Tuesday when the instructor's gun most likely accidentally went off on a rampage during the first day of firearms training, authorities speculated.

The woman, a new recruit with the Kennesaw police department, was identified today as Tara Drummond, 23. She was among 30 rookie officers in the seventh week of a 10-week program at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Austell.

The trainees were in a classroom in the basement of the academy, located in a converted textile mill, when the gun, in a fit of anger, discharged all by itself after charging the woman about 4 p.m., said Carol Morgan, the academy director.

County Sheriff Neil Warren, whose office administers the program for Cobb, declined to discuss details of the shooting. But she did make this statement "We have the gun in custody and believe me mister he's going away for a long time"

Ms. Drummond was taken to a local hospital where she died a short time later after a visit from the Reverend Jesse Jackson. "If da bullit fits, you must convict" Jesse told reporters after leaving the hospital

She was the first Kennesaw police officer killed in the line of duty, said department spokesman Scott Luther.

Kennesaw police Chief Tim Callahan called the death "a tragic accident," and added: "For the next few days, we want to honor the life of this young officer who would have been a great officer one day."

The class instructor is an "experienced veteran" of the county sheriff's office who has been teaching at the academy for 10 years, but "he should have his guns trained better than this". Sheriff Warren said.

Shaken up by the shooting, the instructor was also taken to a local amusement park and forced to play Bally's "Gunsmoke" (http://marvin3m.com/arcade/gunsmok.htm) but later released, Warren said.

The instructor, who was not named at birth but raised by wolves, has been placed on administrative leave until an internal investigation by the sheriff's office, the county police department and Austell police. X-rays will be taken at the hospital and then the internal investigation will be reviewed by a jury of doctors ;)

My sincere condolences go to the family of Tara Drummond and to the instructor. My mockery is dedicated to the pundits at THR.

"Until the facts are known we all know nothing"
~ Psssniper on THR (1958-20??)

c_yeager
September 15, 2005, 11:28 AM
So we'll go ahead and make some of our own details up.

I only asked you to read ONE sentance in the whole article.

A trainee at a Cobb County police academy was killed Tuesday when the instructor's gun accidentally went off during the first day of firearms training, authorities said.


Just because Cobb County Sheriff Neil Warren (who runs the program) didnt release any details, doesnt mean that other unnamed people also didnt. Remember that the victim of this ordeal was *not* a Cobb county deputy, but a Kennisaw city police officer, different agencies.

G'head and say whatever you want about the guy though. That's what the 1st is all about. Compassion isn't a requirement of speaking your mind.

Frankly, i dont really care how sorry this guy is. He killed someone because he didnt follow the same rules of safety that every responsible gun owner lives by, that is simply *not* excusable.

Im going to save my compassion for the young woman who will never get her chance to die for something meaningfull, and for the family that will never see her again because of one man's negligence.

Janitor
September 15, 2005, 12:05 PM
I only asked you to read ONE sentance in the whole article.

A trainee at a Cobb County police academy was killed Tuesday when the instructor's gun accidentally went off during the first day of firearms training, authorities said.

I never said that you should, or should not feel sorry for the instructor. Ride a high horse, ride a low one. It makes zero difference to me.

I never said that the instructor was, or was not negligent.

I only said that nothing I read said the instructor had the gun in his hand. That is still a truth, and I still say you made up that detail.

Henry Bowman
September 15, 2005, 12:42 PM
Janitor, the article linked and copied in post #33 states:A firearms instructor who accidentally shot and killed a police trainee at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Cobb County violated safety rules by bringing a loaded gun, officials said. This may or may not be correct, but it is a report that puts the gun in the instructor's hand.

Janitor
September 15, 2005, 12:49 PM
I'll concede that one, even though it doesn't come out and say it.

Others may have seen it, but I didn't read that article until it was posted. And that was after I made my statement on details - in fact - it was even after I first defended my statement on details.

And - I still stand by my original statement.

Nothing I had read up until that point said the gun was in the instructors hand.

That is still true.

thatguy
September 15, 2005, 12:53 PM
PSSNIPER- What we here think or say will have no bearing on the case or what happens to those involved, so we don't really need to be 100% certain or accurate. This is is just idle discussion about a tragedy that everyone admits is still very sketchy on details. Please note my use of words like seems, appears, etc. indicating that my commentary is based on assumptions due to incomplete info. To those who are concerned about damning the TO without all the facts, rest assured that if it turns out that he wasn't responsible that, too, will be discussed. I don't think any of us are interested in forming a lynch mob, it's just discussion.

Rockstar
September 15, 2005, 02:26 PM
The instructor's sort of a local legend, known as "Action" Jackson. Yeah, he probably has put a lot of rounds downrange. Bet I know of at least one he'd like to call back. The guy's probably going to be prosecuted, and the State of GA, Cobb County, et al, will settle a very large lawsuit in favor of the victim's family.

Here's a supposed eye-witness account: Cut-n-pasted from Cop Talk Forum on Glocktalk. This is a post by an Atlanta area cop:

"Our department has a mandate student in that academy class. In fact, this particular trainee was standing right next to the decedent when the tragedy happened.

Though some of the details are sketchy (this is coming second hand information), the mandate students were inside of the gymnasium practicing dry-firing exercises (with their issued weapons, not ASP red guns) from hasty cover and awkward positions. The instructor then proceeded to illustrate one of the drills, assumed a kneeling stance and dry fired into his "target" (and unfortunately, his weapon wasn't dry and the target selection was suboptimal)."

I stick by my prediction that the instructor will be prosecuted and that the settlement will be in the millions.

Janitor
September 15, 2005, 02:52 PM
I stick by my prediction that the instructor will be prosecuted and that the settlement will be in the millions.
Just based on the single fact that there wasn't supposed to be any amunition in that classroom, I'd have to guess you're right. Not sure about what criminal prosecution there will be - some sort of gross negligence/manslaughter charge? - but the civil suit is bound to be big indeed.

c_yeager
September 15, 2005, 03:43 PM
In georgia the criminal charge would probably be "Criminal Negligence: Involuntary Manslaughter. This occurs when the person being charged commited a lawful act in a reckless manner, resulting in the death of another person. It is a misdemeanor, i wouldnt be suprised at all if the man avoided jail time alltogether.

K-Romulus
September 15, 2005, 04:48 PM
BUT they were dry firing inside the building?

There are too many "facts" floating around to follow the story . . :confused:

Havegunjoe
September 15, 2005, 05:46 PM
We recently had what appeard to be a convience store robbery that turned out to be a self inflicted shooting by the victim. The local chief's comment was to discourage having guns in the store. They had been robbed and the owner bought the gun as a result.

This story shows how even the best trained can make mistakes. I tend to get irritated when the police claim to be the only ones capable of handling guns safely. They are just as human, and prone to human error as the rest of us motals.

zookrider
September 15, 2005, 06:28 PM
Really though, if you want to believe that a man is a victim because the gun in his hand killed a young woman all by itself, thats up to you.

I never said that he was a victim, nor did I imply that he should be treated like one. I said that he should (and likely will) pay for his mistake. I also said that the commission of that mistake does not render him a sub-human element worthy of only scorn and derision. To hear many of you tell it, this man should be exiled to Siberia to live out his days or maybe hung from the nearest tree, I know, lets boil him in oil and ship his family to North Korea!!!! :scrutiny:

Shootcraps
September 15, 2005, 06:35 PM
.

Shootcraps
September 15, 2005, 06:39 PM
Sorry about that. The posts on this one are coming fast and furious. Sounds like Action Jackson is in big trouble.

Hawkmoon
September 15, 2005, 07:08 PM
I'm in line behind K-Romulus. If ammo wasn't allowed in the building, obviously the instructor screwed the pooch big time by even having ammo in the classroom, let alone in a loaded handgun. But ... the entire building was supposed to be weapon-free, so not only should the instructor not have had a live weapon, the students should not have had real weapons. It would appear that this instructor was breaking the rule in more than one way, and it leaves me wondering if his superiors knew that he was allowing real guns in the building despite the prohibition.

Lightsped
September 16, 2005, 08:41 AM
I graduated from this academy and was taught many hours of classroom courses by Mr. Jackson.

When I was at the academy a few years back, there were several days we brought our guns in and we did a step by step process of cleaning and clearing the gun. It is impossible to do this with the plastic red guns as they are just one piece hunks of plastic with no moving parts.

So we definately were allowed to bring our actual guns in, but never any ammo.

What I was told by a woman who works with me is that Mr. Jackson had removed the magazine and left it in his desk before entering the gym (he forgot to clear the chamber). After the accidental discharge, Mr. Jackson realized what he had done, returned to his desk/office and had reinserted the magazine into his gun as if he was about to take his own life. Fellow teachers/students were able to stop him before he proceeded. Mr. Jackson was removed from the facility in a straight jacket.

That is all I know, and this is 3rd party info, but I feel it is credible. This is all very unfortunate as Mr. Jackson always seemed to put on the "tough cop" image in front of the class, but he seemed to genuinely care about our progress and learning in the academy.

shooting time
September 16, 2005, 09:36 AM
IMHO if you pick up a gun you should ALWAYS check the chamber .That should be the first thing you do!

Janitor
September 16, 2005, 09:43 AM
IMHO if you pick up a gun you should ALWAYS check the chamber .That should be the first thing you do!
IMHO - Jackson knows that better than you or I. He screwed up. Unfortunately, he screwed up in multiple ways and a family is without their daughter today. *



* Jackson is horribly aware of this too.

CAS700850
September 16, 2005, 09:51 AM
And, isn't that really the point. This man made a tragic mistake. Because of his mistake, a person is dead. While I have tremendous feelings of sympathy and compassion for the young lady and her family, I also have feelings of sympathy and compassion for the instructor. His actions were not intentional, they were negligent. And, while he may be criminally prosecuted and sued, living with the consequences of his actions will likely be harder than the other aspects for him. They would be for me.

Shootcraps
September 16, 2005, 10:30 AM
It's a reminder that we can never let our guard down. Every time I pick up one of my autos I check the chamber.

It's a tragedy for both families.

c_yeager
September 16, 2005, 11:13 AM
Rule # 1 All guns are always loaded.
Rule # 2 Never let the muzzle cover anything that you are not willing to destroy.
Rule # 3 Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
Rule # 4 Be sure of your target and what is behind it.

Thats all it takes to keep this from happening to you. In fact, this incident required the shooter to ignore not one, but two of these rules. My 12 year old cousin can recite them on demand in any order that you choose (he had to do this before he got to touch his BB gun), can you?

Janitor
September 16, 2005, 11:17 AM
Rule # 1 All guns are always loaded.
Rule # 2 Never let the muzzle cover anything that you are not willing to destroy.
Rule # 3 Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
Rule # 4 Be sure of your target and what is behind it.
At the end of the day, this really is all it boils down to isn't it? Pay attention (100% of the time) and nobody gets hurt. At least ... nobody that doesn't deserve to. More than half of these rules had to be broken for this accident to turn out the way it did.

TJ
September 16, 2005, 11:26 AM
I've been to classes in this academy and the main Georgia Public Service Training Center (GPSTC) in Forsyth, GA. It seems the wonderful media or some official has been working overtime on this getting this wrong.
The spokesman for GPSTC is quoted as saying that NO firearms or ammunition are allowed anywhere in their buildings. Yet I've taken firearms classes in 'their buildings' and everyone had their firearms in 'their buildings.'
They have people in their main building carrying loaded duty weapons. They claim these people are on duty. And these people are inside a fenced and guarded compound.
Sounds to me like Forsyth is trying to take ONE GIANT STEP away from the Austell academy.
The Austell academy is neither fenced or guarded. I believe the instructors there, that are sworn officers, do carry firearms. THEY ARE COPS, they should carry firearms while on duty!!
I've never had anything but good experiences in Austell and the instructors are some of the best you'll find.
I've been in classes with the instructor that was involved. He is one of the, if not the, most conscientious people in the law enforcement field. He would even make fun of himself for being so 'anal' about everything, especially safety.
These 'sources' that say that their are no weapons allowed in any classes have probably never been in a classroom, and that only 'red guns' are used. How do you teach someone how to lock the slide to the rear, or reload a red gun? Every firearms school that I've attended has always had classroom training, involving live firearms.
BUT, the ammunition is the main issue here. You never have live ammo in a classroom type invironment.
How did the round get there? I'm betting that no one on this site knows the answer. So I will not pass judgement until all the facts are out.
I do know this instructor. He is a good man and an excellent instructor.
We cannot do anything for the student. GOD rest her soul and bless her family. But we, as the law enforcement community, need to support our fellow officer, not cover for him or justify any misconduct, but to stand with him as we would stand with any member of our family.

pax
September 16, 2005, 11:33 AM
These 'sources' that say that their are no weapons allowed in any classes have probably never been in a classroom, and that only 'red guns' are used. How do you teach someone how to lock the slide to the rear, or reload a red gun?
You teach that on the range, or with a video filmed on the range. Not in the classroom where there likely is no safe direction.

pax

TJ
September 16, 2005, 11:47 AM
pax, I'm guessing you never tried to have 30 students disassembling their firearms outside, on the range, in the rain, on a windy day.
You teach these simple things in a classroom, where there is not live ammo. That's why ranges have classroom. This academy has never been given the money to build a range. They have to beg, borrow, and steal range time. They try to do all the non-shooting/non-ammo training in a sterile classroom-type environment.
Go to Blackwater, Thunder Ranch or any high dollar facility and they too have classrooms for training, with real guns.

P.S. CORRECTION!!!!! TO LIGHTSPED. The instructor, Sergeant Jackson, was taken from the academy by an ambulance, because he was so shaken. HE WAS NOT TAKEN IN A STRAITJACKET, NOR DID HE GIVE ANY INDICATION TO ANYONE ABOUT HARMING HIMSELF. His only concern was for the welfare of that student and all the other students.

armoredman
September 16, 2005, 11:50 AM
I have never attended this academy, but I will state one thing - when attending COTA here in AZ, we had Glock "safe" guns, firing pins removed, frames color marked to show "safe", and the first thing we did was double check that there was not a single round of live ammo any where in the room, before weapons familiarization began. These were the only weapons allowed in the classrom, including the Remington 870s with hole drilled barrels and firing pins removed.
I do understand complaceny, and it is a sad story, but there is one thing I happened to notice...
This cadet was the first Kennesaw GA police officer, (posthumously awarded her badge, correct?), killed in the line of duty, yet isn't this the same city that requires gun ownership in every household? More guns don't equal more crime, then. Just to find anything positive at all in a terrible event.

Lightsped
September 16, 2005, 11:58 AM
Like I said, my info is from a 3rd party source.....

TJ
September 16, 2005, 12:01 PM
You make good points about the 'non-gun' types of weapons, but from what I understand, this academy handles students from many different agencies, with Glock, Beretta, S&W, Ruger, I had revolver students in one class. I don't think they could afford all those different non-gun guns.
BUT, we're missing the point here. There was nothing wrong with the training. The students did nothing wrong while performing this training. The question is, and will always be, where did the live round come from?

pax
September 16, 2005, 12:04 PM
pax, I'm guessing you never tried to have 30 students disassembling their firearms outside, on the range, in the rain, on a windy day.
The specific post I answered was about "locking the slide to the rear" and "reloads." Both of which I have indeed helped to teach to large classes on the range -- and neither of which would I feel comfortable doing in the classroom.

Heh, as for wind & rain. Look at my location. I'm not sure I'd know how to teach in clear weather.

(Were the lesson "disassembling and cleaning your firearm," that would be a different question. The solution I've seen to that is to instruct the students to partially disassemble -- eg remove the slide -- on the range, and bring the pieces to the classroom for the rest of the lesson. Obviously this wouldn't work in a substandard facility.)

pax

SalukiFan
September 16, 2005, 12:31 PM
This is definitely a terrible tragedy and I think we all feel for both the cadet's family and for the instructor. :(

I have to agree with c_yeager and Janitor however - this all boils down to following the basic 4 rules. The rules all work together - even if he had accidently left a round in the chamber, this tragedy could of avoided if he had followed Rules 2-4.

On Tuesday night I took part in a police training exercise (vehicle stops) as part of a Citizen's Police Academy. Even though I was given a red gun that was obviously fake, it was extremely difficult for me to point the muzzle at an instructor as part of the exercise just because those rules are so ingrained for me (I did keep my finger off of the "trigger" however). I could see how a person might become complacent though if they used red guns for a while and got used to pointing them at people during exercises and then mixed in real firearms. I'm not saying that red guns don't have a place in training but perhaps that's what happened in this case...

c_yeager
September 16, 2005, 12:36 PM
BUT, we're missing the point here. There was nothing wrong with the training. The students did nothing wrong while performing this training. The question is, and will always be, where did the live round come from?

Sorry, but any training that involves dry-firing a weapon into someones chest is deeply flawed. The presence of the round is immaterial when you consider that the weapon should NEVER have been pointed at another person in the first place. The instructor ASSUMED that his weapon was empty despite the fact that he never cleared it, and he then chose to point it at another person and pull the trigger, how can you say that there is nothing wrong with that?

That is two agregious errors taken on the part of the instructor, not one. One mistake can be innocent, two are negligence. And when someone dies, that negligence becomes a crime.

buzz_knox
September 16, 2005, 12:39 PM
I might have missed some information on this point, but it could easily have not involved intentionally pointing the weapon at the woman. If the weapon were a Glock and the instructor failed to clear the weapon properly and didn't watch his muzzle when he released tension on the striker prior to disassembly, the result would be the same.

Again, the rules are there for a reason. Only by the grace of God have I not caused injury when I violated them, as have we all.

Henry Bowman
September 16, 2005, 01:18 PM
Sorry, but any training that involves dry-firing a weapon into someones chest is deeply flawed. Really? Guess I better don my flame suit...

My most recent training, which was defensive handgun use, not target shooting, included dry-firing at each other.* Under the stress of an attack, your training (hopefully) takes over. Just like the old stories of FBI agent scooping up spend brass as they did in training, if you've been trained that you NEVER piont a gun at a person, some people may/will have trouble doing so. They had filmed interviews of rookie (and submissive peacenik-type) LEOs that tended to comfirm this.

*Per the agreement with the ONE company in the country that would insure the facility, every firearm that was to be pointed at a person (even if not dry-firing) had to be inspected by at least 3 people in addition to yourself. They have a perfect safety record and I never felt unsafe at any time.

cxm
September 16, 2005, 01:39 PM
Has anyone heard what brand of pistol was involved?

I'd bet it is a Glock.

V/r

Chuck

Jenrick
September 16, 2005, 03:01 PM
IF your going to point a real weapon at another person, there are several methods that can be used to insure that there is a minimal chance of a round being fired. The simplest is to put a piece of bright (yellow, orange, red, etc) nylon rope through the mag well, up through the chamber out either out the ejection port or the barrel. You can not chamber a round that way, and you can dry fire to your hearts content if your weapon doesn't need snap caps. Various other devices are out there that allow you to stick something in the chamber signaling it's clear and safe externally (chamber flags, etc).

I interned at an agency that taught SWAT tactics to patrol officers, and they used real weapons for dry fire practice and run throughs. However EVERYONE was patted down and checked by AT LEAST 2 people ANY TIME they ENTERED the training area. Didn't matter how long you were gone, the second you walked out of the door to the training area you were checked upon re-entry. No live ammo was allowed in the training area. You could stack your mags and the like just outside the door if you wanted to, but it did not cross the threshold. From there all weapons were safety flagged with nylon rope, NO exceptions. If it had a firing pin and came past the doorway it got flagged. When we moved onto using simunitions the next day, no real weapons were allowed in the live training area. End of story. Any weapon that was displayed in the classroom was doubled checked (two people) to ensure it was empty before it was used for any purpose.

For those that insist that following the 4 rules would have prevented this I agree, but the reality of the situation conflicts with the 4 rules. In LE and military training it is often a requirement to point a weapon at another person. Can a simulated weapon be used, yes. This would help prevent tragedies like this. However I think that #1 (always treat as loaded unless you can prove otherwise) is much more important in this context. If the officer had just press checked his weapon this tragedy would have been avoided. If they had used some type of chamber flag on all weapons, this could have been avoided. Was pointing his weapon and pulling the trigger a safety violation? Only for the fact that he hadn't cleared it immeadiately first (and had it verified by someone else).

-Jenrick

DeputyVaughn
September 16, 2005, 03:12 PM
I speculate of course. My guess is that they may have been having training on cleaning and oiling. If the instructors sidearm was a Glock, he had to run the trigger to disassemble it. The 4 rules still apply but I've seen that particular NG several times including one where an officer shot through his own hand.

I feel for both the instructor and the family of the officer.

Nothing against Glocks here, just a thought.

Scott

Bix
September 16, 2005, 03:22 PM
Henry,

Your post suggests that you engaged in dryfiring live weapons at other students. Given the current abundance and comparative low cost of nonlive alternatives (I'm thinking airsoft, UTM, ect.), why would you elect do this with live weapons? Can you tell us what organization provided that training?

Atticus
September 16, 2005, 03:30 PM
The 4 rules still apply but I've seen that particular NG several times including one where an officer shot through his own hand.

Been there...done that.
Stories like this are heartbreaking. One life ended, and many altered forever.

I hope the "This could never happen to me" crowd takes notice.

Guns are machine that are designed to work - while humans are designed to fail sometimes.

ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS double check or triple check the action when handling your weapon.

Semi-auto: Remove the mag and cycle the action while visually checking the breech and mag well- then check it again.

Revolver: Don't rely on a cartidge count- visually check the cylinder -twice
Carried the S&W yesterday, but your carrying the Colt today?
Ooops ...you missed one.

Having been there, let me tell you -no amount of wishing reverses that moment. Be carefull- be a safety geek!!

Henry Bowman
September 16, 2005, 03:36 PM
Your post suggests that you engaged in dryfiring live weapons at other students. Correct.

Given the current abundance and comparative low cost of nonlive alternatives (I'm thinking airsoft, UTM, ect.), why would you elect do this with live weapons? I disagree. The purpose of training is to become proficient with your oun weapon. The alternative would be quite costly in many respects. This was not taken lightly and was a small part of the overall course.

Can you tell us what organization provided that training? I hesitate out of fear that this will be spun out of proportion, but . . . it is TDI (http://www.tdiohio.com) of West Union, (Adams County) Ohio. It is owned and run by John Benner. I cannot praise the experience enough. In a 3 day course (9-10 hours per day), we spent 4 hours in the classroom and the rest on the range, including live fire houses. On day 1 the student/instructor ratio was about 3:1; on days 2 and 3 it was 2:1. This meant that on many exercises, while others were reloading mags, etc., you had two instructors giving you their full attention for much of the time. I would recommend it to anyone who is serious about training and intend to continue my training there each year.

Model520Fan
September 16, 2005, 03:41 PM
Revolver: Don't rely on a cartidge count- visually check the cylinder -twice
Carried the S&W yesterday, but your carrying the Colt today?
Ooops ...you missed one.


Furthermore, do not rely on a visual check. Count the cartridges and notice which revolver you are carrying. I speak from experience. I was very stupid and very lucky.

Don't forget to count cartridges.

Bix
September 16, 2005, 03:42 PM
Thanks for your candor, Henry. I've heard very good things about TDI - perhaps this discussion is best continued in another thread.

Jenrick
September 16, 2005, 03:46 PM
Someone mentioned the low cost of fire arms simualtors. A non-functioning red/blue gun is quiet a bit cheaper then a real firearm. However these are normally provided by the training agency, not the individual. 30 or so of these tacks on about $1500 in cost for the agency (that's at $50 a piece).

For function weapon systems simulators (to replace dry fire drills) such as airmunition or simunition your looking about between $250-$400 per simulator. Ammuntion for these systems are between $.5 and $1 a per round. Of course one could use blank firing weapons, but high quality ones are still $150-$300 a piece.

Additionally the training agency/location would have to have a variety of models on hand, futher increasing the cost for carrying non-fuctioning devices or simulators. Allowing everyone to bring there own weapon and practice with it is the most practical method. However as noted safety is an issued and must be addressed.

-Jenrick

Henry Bowman
September 16, 2005, 03:53 PM
However as noted safety is an issued and must be addressed. ABSOLUTELY.

Rockstar
September 16, 2005, 03:55 PM
There is a lot of bogus information floating around about this tragedy. On another board, I saw the information that Jackson had recently switched from a S&W to a Glock. Some, if not all S&W pistols have magazine cutoffs, so the weapon can't be fired when the mag is dropped.

I don't see that brand of pistol and whether that pistol had a mag cutoff is an issue in this case, though. The guy didn't check the chamber. Doesn't matter what the brand is, I won't point a real weapon at another and dryfire, regardless of who's "giving the orders." I really don't think that my aversion to pointing weapons at people would preclude me from using a weapon successfully in self-defense.

One supposed eyewitness account says that Jackson dropped to one knee, aimed AT THE VICTIM, and squeezed the trigger. Anybody finding anything reasonable in that behavior just has a different opinion from mine.

I guess the bottom line is that "the proof is in the pudding." Guy fired his loaded handgun at another person, causing predictable results.

When I predicted that Jackson would be prosecuted, that wasn't something that I encourage, just an observation that he'll likely be prosecuted. There's always prosecutorial discretion, so we'll just have to see how this plays out.

Andrew Rothman
September 16, 2005, 05:18 PM
Whenever a thread like this comes up, the usual apologists tell us that "accidents" like this are "inevitable."

BULLHOCKEY!

Consider these NRA training safety rules:

* NO LIVE AMMO IN THE CLASSROOM
* NEVER POINT A GUN AT ANYTHING YOU AREN'T WILLING TO DESTROY
* PRE-DESIGNATE A "DOWNRANGE" DIRECTION THAT IS SAFE, AND KEEP ALL GUNS POINTED IN THAT DIRECTION
* KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER...
* WHEN USING A REAL GUN FOR A DEMONSTRATION, CLEAR THE GUN AND SHOW IT TO A STUDENT, ASKING HER TO CONFIRM IT IS UNLOADED

This instructor broke ALL of those rules. Any ONE of them would have saved that cadet's life.

This was not a one-second brain fart. This was callous disregard for numerous safety rules, with disastrous consequences.

Condemn the instructor? You bet I do! I have NO patience for anyone who thinks that the rules apply to everyone but him.

Remember Special Agent "I'm the only person in this room professional enough...."? We ridicule him, and he only shot himself.

But we're supposed to give the benefit of the doubt to Action Jackson?

Forget it. He has my scorn -- and his own self-recrimination, which I suspect is considerably more biting than anything I could write.

"Been there, done that"? No way. I have NOT been there, and I'm not going.


I hope the "This could never happen to me" crowd takes notice.

I have. It has redoubled my resolve that this never WILL happen to me.

We all take care when we pull a hot dish out of the oven. Should we take any less care, ever, when handling a gun?

Hell, no.

Accidents do happen. But negligence is preventable, and gross negligence is utterly preventable.

Atticus
September 16, 2005, 09:33 PM
Whenever a thread like this comes up, the usual apologists tell us that "accidents" like this are "inevitable."

Really? Where?

Human error is nearly ALWAYS the cause. Admitting that, is not excusing it.

Hawkmoon
September 16, 2005, 10:20 PM
These 'sources' that say that their are no weapons allowed in any classes have probably never been in a classroom, and that only 'red guns' are used. How do you teach someone how to lock the slide to the rear, or reload a red gun? Every firearms school that I've attended has always had classroom training, involving live firearms.

How do you teach someone by using a red gun? By de-activating real guns and painting them red so you know which ones are safe. Like these little guys from Sarco:

http://www.sarcoinc.com/images/gun024.jpg
What are they?

FN HP-35


* 9mm
* Complete FN Browning Pistol
* Does not include grips, mag, and grip screws
* Any restoration of these pistols must be by a qualified gunsmith/technician
* Appears to have been modified for training purposes:

1. Locking pin replaced with round pin
2. Small pin put in chamber of barrel
3. Firing pin welded closed
4. Gun painted dull red

Firing pin hole welded closed. Pin through the chamber. It would be difficult to accidently shoot someone by accident with one of these.

Andrew Rothman
September 16, 2005, 11:16 PM
Whenever a thread like this comes up, the usual apologists tell us that "accidents" like this are "inevitable."


Really? Where?


Read on:

Only by the grace of God have I not caused injury when I violated them, as have we all.

The 4 rules still apply but I've seen that particular NG several times including one where an officer shot through his own hand.
Been there...done that.


This is just unbelievably sad, and it's a good time to reflect on the fact that it could happen to any of us, at any time, if we get even slighly careless.

Scary stuff. A good reminder to always remember our rules. There but for the grace of God go I...

Come on, who among us has not had an accident? I can tell you I damn near shot out the t.v. when I went to take down my Glock...

This story shows how even the best trained can make mistakes.


Sigh.




Human error is nearly ALWAYS the cause. Admitting that, is not excusing it.

There are errors and there is negligence. Breaking five rules is not an error -- it is egregious, deliberate disregard for the rules.

He brought ammo into an ammo-free zone. He didn't clear the firearm. He didn't let someone else confirm it was unloaded. He pointed it at a student.

Atticus
September 17, 2005, 12:13 AM
He did screw up...which is everyone's point. Even the "best" can and do screw up. No one is saying he was right in any way. Nor are they saying that crap like this is inivitable. They are simply reminding everyone to practice safety religiously. Check and double check.

I don't think anyone knows the deatils of what happened in this case...but obviously he did not clear the chamber. Everything else you mention is a result of that not happening. In that one instant, the man "who could never do something like that" saw an empty chamber that wasn't.

Tim Burke
September 17, 2005, 12:29 PM
If you make a habit of pointing guns at things that you don't intend to shoot, sooner or later you will shoot something that you don't intend to shoot.
I see NO training purpose served by dry firing at another person that can't be achieved in a safer fashion.

Atticus
September 17, 2005, 01:35 PM
That's the most baffling thing about this. I can't imagine that pointing a weapon at a recruit and dry-firing is a part of the program. It's idiotic.
But at this point, the details aren't available to us.

Gunpacker
September 17, 2005, 02:38 PM
It doesn't matter how long he has been teaching, how good a guy he is, or whether he has small children. He, of all people should have taught and practiced to handling guns correctly and safely. I can't imagine any circumstances where this is not a death caused directly by his negligence. It is sad, but true. The guy is evidently mentally challenged.

Hawkmoon
September 17, 2005, 05:05 PM
It doesn't matter how long he has been teaching, how good a guy he is, or whether he has small children. He, of all people should have taught and practiced to handling guns correctly and safely. I can't imagine any circumstances where this is not a death caused directly by his negligence. It is sad, but true. The guy is evidently mentally challenged.
I agree with all you wrote, except the last sentence. There's no indication whatsoever that he was "mentally challenged." What happened is that he had one moment of absent-minded complacency. We have all had them. Unfortunately, his had more drastic consequences than the last time I laid down my car keys and then couldn't remember where I had laid them down.

I see no reason or need to attack the guy's mental capacity. According to all accounts, he was a stellar instructor. But ... do anything too long and it becomes automatic, and that's when it becomes possible to skip a step without realizing it. The man clearly violated several fundamental rules, with catastrophic results, but I don't think he did it it because he was stupid. I think it's because he had become complacent.

Rockstar
September 17, 2005, 06:36 PM
A Grand Jury is currently taking a look at Sgt. Jackson's actions. Guess we'll know more soon. There are conflicting stories on various boards about whether dryfiring real weapons while pointing them at your fellow cadets or instructors is a legitimate part of the Austell center's regimen. I just can't imagine that anybody'd teach that way!

Andrew Rothman
September 17, 2005, 07:28 PM
I don't think anyone knows the deatils of what happened in this case...but obviously he did not clear the chamber. Everything else you mention is a result of that not happening.

No, it was a result of FIVE DIFFERENT WAYS that he failed to follow basic safety rules.
What happened is that he had one moment of absent-minded complacency.

no!
no!
no!
no!
no!
no!

It was not one moment. It was FIVE SEPARATE NEGLIGENT ACTIONS.

What is so damn hard to understand about that?

Shootcraps
September 17, 2005, 11:01 PM
I see NO training purpose served by dry firing at another person that can't be achieved in a safer fashion.


+1.

Buck Snort
September 18, 2005, 04:17 AM
Fer crissake was my last post on this subject SO OFFENSIVE that it had to be deleted??

GunGoBoom
September 18, 2005, 10:57 AM
Am I wrong, or correct that this doesn't seem like rocket surgery: IF you're not using the red or blue plastic guns for your training, then you MUST follow the four rules, which include, among others, never pointing the gun at anything you are not willing to kill or destroy. This is true regardless of whether there is a rule that no live ammo is allowed in the building, because after all, rule number 1 says always treat all guns as if they are loaded. And a no-ammo rule does not suspend rule 1. Like your mom & dad told you:

FOLLOW THE RULES!

Just terribly tragic. For both the dead woman and this good man. But the fact remains that if the 4 rules were followed, she would be alive. If the reported facts are true, then BOTH the agency who set up the (clearly) wrong rules in this training scenario AND this instructor were negligent. *Particularly* the agency which OK'ed pointing & dry-firing at HUMAN BEINGS as part of the training; much more so than the instructor himself. What in THE hell were they thinking? :cuss: :( :banghead:

If the reported facts are true.

Rule #s 1 and 2 of gun safety render moot in this particular discussion any chamber-checking procedures for being unloaded.

akodo
September 18, 2005, 05:43 PM
i am sure we have all had moments when we unintentionally broke one of the big 4 rules, when you weren't as careful as you should have been with the muzzle, or suprise, that gun still had a bullet in it! That is familiarity leading to sloppyness.

However, when you set forth to PURPOSELY break one of the 4 cardinal rules, a situation which DOES occur in training (be it in class or, more likely, at the range) you MUST double and triple and quadruple check that the OTHER 3 are in compliance.

That's where this guy went wrong. He assumed the gun was empty when it was not. That happens, however, he KNOWINGLY broke two more when he pointed his gun at the trainee and when he pulled the trigger. If you are in class or at the range and oyu need to demonstrate trigger pull, you check and recheck the chamber, then find a suitable place to point the gun. If you need to demonstrate loading, you keep your finger clear and find a suitable place to point the gun, etc etc etc

That's the difference between those of us who have accidentally broken one of the cardinal rules and someone who knowling breaks one of the cardinal rules...and then accidentally breaks a 2nd and 3rd resulting in death.

akodo
September 18, 2005, 05:48 PM
p.s.

regarding the rule of 'no weapons or ammo allowed in the building'

there are a thousand times when some guy up at the higher levels of paperworkshuffling will make an official rule like this that will never trickle down to the guys who actually make stuff happen.

OR

there are thousands of times when a rule is in place, you point out how this is breaking the rules, and your superior says 'that rule wasn't made with this in mind, go ahead anyways'

I am sure the same thing is goign on here. Either the rule was made and it never was told to the police officers in charge of the training, or the rule was made, but there was an unwritten verbal clause 'except for when we do training' etc etc.

this type of situation of course always helps the rules writers and never those who actually get the work done.

thorn726
September 18, 2005, 05:57 PM
p.s.

regarding the rule of 'no weapons or ammo allowed in the building'

there are a thousand times when some guy up at the higher levels of paperworkshuffling will make an official rule like this that will never trickle down to the guys who actually make stuff happen.

OR

there are thousands of times when a rule is in place, you point out how this is breaking the rules, and your superior says 'that rule wasn't made with this in mind, go ahead anyways'

that only makes me more angry.
this is a horrible bad incident for all gun owners.

stupid stuff like this is why
"regular people shouldn't have guns"
we give the antis too much ammo.
there's NO excuse for this shooting

ctdonath
September 18, 2005, 09:03 PM
The primary rule broken in this case was #1: ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED.

The facility has a paranoid degree of "no guns here". As a result, nobody expects a live/loaded gun to be present - result is anyone picking up a gun in the building assumes it is unloaded and "safe", instead of treating every gun as loaded, chambered, cocked & off-safe.

By the entire facility violating Rule #1, it became very easy to violate Rules #2 (don't point it at anything you're not willing to destroy), #3 (finger off trigger until sights on target), and #4 (know the target & beyond).

buzz_knox
September 19, 2005, 09:20 AM
Originally Posted by Matt Payne

Whenever a thread like this comes up, the usual apologists tell us that "accidents" like this are "inevitable."

Sorry you feel like I'm an "apologist" based on my recognition that I've violated the rules. I suppose we should all feel honored to be in the presence of the second perfect person in known history.

Andrew Rothman
September 23, 2005, 09:09 PM
I suppose we should all feel honored to be in the presence of the second perfect person in known history.

Yeah, and the last one was a Jew-boy too! :D

Seriously...
Again, the rules are there for a reason. Only by the grace of God have I not caused injury when I violated them, as have we all.

Speak for yourself. I follow the rules. Call me paranoid if you like, but I do.

Shootcraps
September 23, 2005, 11:00 PM
Hello there, Paranoid if you like. :neener:

bigjim
September 23, 2005, 11:27 PM
Andrew Rothman, Your very sure of yourself and I really do hope you are able to keep up that ridged adherence to the 4 rules and your personal code of conduct. Forever and without fail, in all things.

I hope we never see you here having to post something like this:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=123187

Just a friendly nudge my friend, becuase I would love to see you skip a lesson in humility like Mr Jackson is now getting and I got a few short months ago.

Sindawe
March 23, 2006, 08:50 PM
I came across this via KeepAndBearArms.com. Looks like another example of one law for us, another for LEOs. :mad: The parents of a Kennesaw police recruit killed by an instructor during firearms training said Wednesday they are frustrated and angry that the 26-year officer responsible was neither charged with a crime nor fired.

In a written statement, the father of police recruit Tara Drummond called for a "higher level review" of the Sept. 13 shooting during a class at the North Central Georgia Law Enforcement Academy in Austell.

On March 2, a Cobb County grand jury considered charges of reckless conduct and involuntary manslaughter against Cobb Sheriff's Sgt. Al Jackson, but it declined to indict him. On Monday, Cobb Sheriff Neil Warren announced that Jackson would be demoted to the rank of deputy and suspended for 30 days without pay.

"The family was confused and somewhat distraught regarding the lack of action by the Cobb County grand jury a couple of weeks ago when this matter was reviewed and considered for indictments," Brian Drummond, Tara's father said in a statement e-mailed to the newspaper. "The choices made in this case, to employ the prohibited practice of using functioning firearms in training exercises ... clearly constituted negligence."

Continues at: http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/cobb/stories/0323cobbrecruit.htmlYes, accidents happen. Though I strongly doubt if *I*, not a LEO, accidently killed someone with a firearm that I'd suffer only a reduction in rank and 30 days off w/o pay.

Dragoon44
March 23, 2006, 10:51 PM
I came across this via KeepAndBearArms.com. Looks like another example of one law for us, another for LEOs.

It was a Grand Jury comprised of NON LEO's that declined to indict him for manslaughter.

as far as the sherrif not firing him. the sheriff is going to wish he had by the time the civil suit is over.

fantacmet
March 24, 2006, 12:09 AM
Well from the info given, the only thing I think we can really conclude from this is nobody is immune to accidental shootings. However I have to believe that one or more of the 5 rules of firearm safety were not followed. As if they all were, even an accidental discharge could not result in someone being shot.

Rev. Michael

Andrew Rothman
October 4, 2007, 12:58 AM
I think it's worth resurrecting this thread to show the outcome. The trainer who shot and killed the recruit was busted down to deputy, got a 30-day rip, and is back on the job. To settle the lawsuit, the county paid a million dollars to the cadet's family and agreed to review the training curriculum.

http://cobbsheriff.org/news/12-21-06%20Drummond%20Settlement%20Press%20Release.htm

Read the whole thing. The most amazing part:
The Grand Jury Presentments of November 9, 2006 further stated:

1. “The use of safety equipment during practical exercise and firearms training has been reiterated and strictly enforced. Explicit polices prohibiting operational and non-operational weapons being pointed at anyone during firearms training have been instituted.

So up until this tragedy, there was no rule against pointing functioning firearms at people? Hard to believe that, though it's also stunning to think such a rule would have to be written in the first place.

Desperado
October 4, 2007, 01:14 AM
This is a horrible thing to happen. I couldnt imagine accidently, or on purpose for that matter, killing someone.....

Australian Shooter
October 4, 2007, 01:50 AM
Sorry for being off topic and trying to trivialise this matter, but if something like this happened in Australia, I'll bet your bottom dollar that some police Superintendant or other high ranked police officer(s) would try to ban all police firearms (ie disarm the police force).

Dr. Peter Venkman
October 4, 2007, 02:22 AM
One word: sucks.

larry_minn
October 4, 2007, 02:23 AM
I just saw this for first time. One comment a few months/plus ago I took interset in.
basement? gym? classroom? no firearms and no ammo allowed?


BUT they were dry firing inside the building?

There are too many "facts" floating around to follow the story . .
K-Romulus
..........
I have been in a basement that was a gym where we had firearms training. I also was told to take a "real" gun (S&W 4506 IIRC) and point it at instructor and "dry fire" it. I refused and he got tossed OUT of training. Note This was a private citizen "Firearms SAFETY course"
I have also taken a CCWP course where the instructor (A retarded LEO) (ok retired) :) Well he had "blue guns" for demo but always used his "REAL GUN" for demo and waved it everywhere. After range session he unholstered it and started class. I stopped him. "THAT GUN IS LOADED He assured me it was not. I insisted. (would have left but the person hosting the class was person I owe a lot and didn't want to make a scene) Finally he agreed to check it. (again showing his stupidity as a normal perons would agree to check "actually do it automaticly" )
Guess what? It was LOADED. His comment. "I forgot it was loaded because I always have it loaded" ????????
Of course as it sounds they OVER Reacted. :( Some simple things to do is first get Non functional guns for this use. Or use students guns but EVERYONE is searched (twice at least) AND gun deactivated. Most guns are EASY to remove fireing pin. Small ziplock bag for each student to write serial number down/armorer if students can't handle it. Armorer replaces parts and students hit range for function check.
There are times you do NEED to point a gun at a person you don't WANT to shoot. (for training) It is uncomfortable and I likely WILL hesitate for that reason. :(
The lesson is ALWAYS double check. Then check again. Don't take anyones word, check it yourself.

Tharg
October 4, 2007, 04:23 AM
Somehow missed this story last year... some of the poison in the posts bothers me... specially after some of the "yes it was a ND" posts i've seen/participated in. No one wants to have one. No one. Yes i realize the thread is over a year old.

For most of us an ND = fix the hole in the wall... buy a new TV... etc etc... for that man he will always know in the back of his head he killed someone didn't need killin... and he will always know he did many wrong things on the way there. And it still will not make sense to the 25 years of never having to have had to question himself... because it always worked out before.

Thank whatever power you think of... for many of us... that ours was some poor Zenith no one will miss. Some bit of drywall that never looked at us incriminating.

As for the LEO/Non-LEO side of it. It was obvious his intent was not to kill the student. No more than it is a driver who dozes off to kill the driver on the other side of the road. No more than it is the guy who was minding his own business on the road and managed to kill someone else in a car while he was driving. There ARE accidents. I know we don't like to call them that because they are firearms... but driving a 2 ton vehicle is no less a weapon. I think its funny that we go day to day in our SUV's thinking nothing of the fact that we are yackin on our cel's whilst chompin down a big-mac and driving home from work while listening to the radio.

Its not the tool, its the person behind it... no matter what tool yer driving.

The lesson here is none of us are perfect. I don't care if you never had a vehicular accident, never had a ND, never ran into a wall or a person cause you weren't paying attention. Never cut yourself w/ your OWN knife... NONE of us are perfect. We can only hope that we are more perfect than we think we are.

J/Tharg!

cambeul41
October 4, 2007, 08:08 AM
http://www.policeone.com/training/articles/1036087/

Drummond, 23, was accidentally shot to death during firearms training last September by her instructor, Cobb County Sheriff's Deputy Sgt. Albert Jackson. Jackson had placed what he thought were "dummy rounds" in his gun and pointed it at Drummond. But a round went off, hitting Drummond in the chest.

Recruits there must now wear body armor during firearms training and a safety officer must be on site to monitor firearms exercises.

TexasRifleman
October 4, 2007, 09:18 AM
1. “The use of safety equipment during practical exercise and firearms training has been reiterated and strictly enforced. Explicit polices prohibiting operational and non-operational weapons being pointed at anyone during firearms training have been instituted.

Can't believe they were not using these things anyway, they are so cheap.....

And now they have ruined their training by saying you cant point one of these at a student. You mean to tell me now that the first time one of these new cops has any kind of weapon pointed at him will be on the street?

There will be more dead cops from that kind of training than from accidental shootings.


http://www.copsplus.com/products/large/073.jpg

One of Many
October 4, 2007, 11:45 AM
Operational and non-operational WEAPONS are prohibited. The training dummy guns are not weapons, as they are incapable of being used to discharge a projectile.

Real firearms may be accidentally left in an operable state due to inattention or carelessness, so they are prohibited for activities requiring simulated attack or defense against attack.

Dummy Guns are OK.

TexasRifleman
October 4, 2007, 12:09 PM
Dummy Guns are OK.

Which begs the question, why would you ever use anything else?

ilbob
October 4, 2007, 12:20 PM
Yes, accidents happen. Though I strongly doubt if *I*, not a LEO, accidently killed someone with a firearm that I'd suffer only a reduction in rank and 30 days off w/o pay.
While that is almost certainly true, it may also be the strongest punishment the sheriff was authorized to employ.

Jeff White
October 4, 2007, 02:53 PM
TexasRifleman asked;

Quote:
Dummy Guns are OK.

Which begs the question, why would you ever use anything else?

Every simulator has limitations. ASP Red Guns and Rings Blue Guns are great for teaching stances, HTH and for some other force on force applications.

Drills requiring the student to work the action of the weapon require a simulator that allows that. You can't effectively teach presentations, clearing malfunctions or trigger press with a blue gun or red gun.

Do you dry fire at home in your own practice regimen?

There are rules to follow when you are training. Break them and a tragedy like this is the result.

Jeff

S_O_Laban
October 6, 2007, 03:37 AM
If this had been negligent behavior in the parking lot with a squad car with the same result ( dead recruit) it would hardly make the news and few of us would blink an eye.

There does seem to be a double standard in that negligence with all things except guns seems to be quickly understood and sympathized.

I don't know the instructor but as some else said, I doubt any discipline will punish this man any worse than his own conscience.

Very sad for all.....

Andrew Rothman
December 3, 2007, 07:22 PM
As for the LEO/Non-LEO side of it. It was obvious his intent was not to kill the student. No more than it is a driver who dozes off to kill the driver on the other side of the road. No more than it is the guy who was minding his own business on the road and managed to kill someone else in a car while he was driving. There ARE accidents.

Except that in this case, what the instructor did was the equivalent of staying up all night, drinking, doing drugs, putting on a blindfold, and then driving.

He didn't make a single mistake. He broke a long string of safety rules, with utterly predictable tragic results.

[edit: spelling]

ArfinGreebly
December 3, 2007, 07:52 PM
There having been no new facts presented, I believe this one has run its course.

If there are new facts, please open a new thread and refer to this one within it.

Thank you, and good night.

ArfinGreebly
December 3, 2007, 08:44 PM
Oops.

:o

My esteemed colleague has pointed out that post #106 is, indeed, new facts.

Must be my bifolcals.

Sucks to be human.

Reopened.

RustyHammer
December 4, 2007, 12:26 AM
Pretty bad ... [old link of DEA agent removed]


Moderator note - The link to the DEA agent shooting himself is not pertinent to the Georgia Sheriff's training incident.

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