johnny blaze
October 10, 2006, 11:25 PM
I caught part of, I believe that it was Dateline. It really doesn't matter what show it was.
The news story was about a guy that had killed someone and was found guilty of murder.
The guy was walking along when two Rottweilers ran towards him.
The guy fired a warning shot to scare off the dogs.
The dogs owner, according to the shooter, came running towards him yelling that he was going to kill him. Only the shooter and the dead guy knows what really happened.
I guess that the attacker had a lenghty record which the jury was not told about.
The one thing that I found interesting, the jury was really upset about the fact that the shooter used HP ammunition. They were really upset about the testimony of a ballistics expert as to what a HP can do to a person.
I believe that the HP's were part of what convicted him.
I have been considering using standard ball ammo instead of HP's for self defense.
Any thoughts?

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October 10, 2006, 11:27 PM
JHP is fine for me.

As the saying goes, better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6.

October 10, 2006, 11:33 PM
It's in this thread

October 10, 2006, 11:36 PM
that makes no sense, that type of projectile is made for that exact purpose. And is mean for personal defense

October 10, 2006, 11:37 PM
Why the hell would you convict someone if there was two rotwilers running toward him and also a guy running toward him yelling "Im gonna kill you!!" with a criminal record. Thats pretty stupid.

October 10, 2006, 11:41 PM
I don't think this one conviction should be enough to convince you to give up JHP ammo. Instead, consider using the same type as your local police, state police, or one that is billed as personal protection or self defense ammunition.

Why the defense attorney could not shoot down (no pun intended) this spurious argument is a mystery to me.

October 10, 2006, 11:45 PM
My personal carry ammuntion says "The choice for law enforcement" right on the box!

If it's ever used I'm going to be enforcing the laws against killing/maiming/assaulting me. Sounds fair enough.

Handgun Midas
October 10, 2006, 11:47 PM
In any event, the guy's lawyer should have countered and nullified the JHP arguement simply by asserting that they are talking about a gun, and deadly force is the only kind that one should ever expect from it.

Don't some cops carry JHP? If so, that sure as hell should have been brought up.

Another facet that the defendent's lawyer could bring up is that JHP is less likely to over-penetrate and harm bystanders. So his client made a responsible choice of ammo.

Maybe his lawyer tried but it didn't take. Some heads are thick.

October 10, 2006, 11:54 PM
I saw a bit of that show, it looked like federal hydra shoks that he had (saw the little post). They did not name them. I think they made a big deal about the little post in the hydrashok, kind of like they did with the Black Talon's back in the early 90's. Seriously though, this is a retarded argument. You go into any gun shop/wal mart or whatever and any type of ammo labeled "personal protection" is a JHP. Anything that is not JHP is labeled "target/range" or "hunting".

Green Lantern
October 10, 2006, 11:56 PM
I *think* Mas Ayoob talks about ball vs. HP in his book, The Truth About Self Protection.

I love his take on it - the JHP is actually MORE humane in that it takes fewer shots, with higher damage, to take the bad guy out of the fight. Where if you use ball, he says, you must put so many holes in so many vital organs to actually STOP the guy that there is little chance of him surviving!

Even before I thought of it that way, I always figured I would reply with the truth, that ball ammo has more risk of over-penetration and I didn't want to hurt an innocent bystander!

"Buy *insert favorite bad-a JHP load here* - FOR THE CHILDREN!!!" :evil:

October 11, 2006, 12:05 AM
Historically, ammo has often caused a defender grief in court if the prosecutor (or plaintiff's lawyer if it's a civil suit) makes a big deal about it and the defense counsel doesn't effectively respond. A lot of juries are comprised of ignorant people, and are voir d'ired (SP?) off a jury if they belong to the "wrong" organization or have opinions contrary to what lawyers want.
One thing problematic has always been handloaded ammo. The opposing lawyer will make it seem you buiuld up super nasty rounds if he can. So I don't think it's good to use handloads in a self-defense purpose.
Hollowpoints should be OK. But if you need a lawyer, MAKE SURE he can and will deal with the hollowpoint issue effectively.

October 11, 2006, 12:14 AM
I watched some of this also and since it was apparent that the use of hollow points did in fact play a roll in the jury's minds, it is something to take note of.

Apparently the prosecution was much better at demonizing the shooter because of the use of a hollow point ,than the defense was at countering. What was said and done during the trial I don't know, but my advise is to make sure your attorney is smart enough to defend against that type of crap . Or maybe just another OJ type jury who have there heads up their rears ?

October 11, 2006, 01:02 AM
I guess that the attacker had a lenghty record which the jury was not told about.

That right there should show you the credibility of this "example".

I call BS on the whole thing. If this guy was convicted of murder, there's a whole lot more to the case that your highlights.

Previous records of all shapes and sizes come up on both sides in any trial. Credibility is the only real currency in todays judicial system, and people dig up dirt on the other guy to destroy it. Does't matter whether he robbed a bank or pissed on the neighbors rose bush, a good attorney will bring it up in court to establish that he is of low moral character.

Steve in PA
October 11, 2006, 01:28 AM
"Why the hell would you convict someone if there was two rotwilers running toward him and also a guy running toward him yelling "Im gonna kill you!!" with a criminal record. Thats pretty stupid."

The guy shot a warning shot because the dogs were running towards him. No mention of them being aggressive.

Their owner was upset and yelling, as anyone would be in this situation.

Just how was the shooter supposed to know what type or record, if any the guy had, and what difference does that make?

The shooter over reacted and was found guilty. His story, much like his name stunk.

October 11, 2006, 01:38 AM
A slick lawyer will be able to demonize any sort of ammo you might use.

Hollowpoints are extra-deadly expanding rounds, specifically designed to maximize injuries.

Ball rounds are extra-deadly military ammunition, designed to penetrate deeply and shatter bones.

Frangibles are extra-deadly rounds designed to shatter/explode, causing grievous injury.

Wadcutters are extra-deadly rounds designed to poke non-closing holes in people, greatly increasing the probability of bleeding out.

JSPs are extra-deadly rounds designed for hunting large, dangerous game, and are wholly inapproiate within the realm of lawful self defense.

You get the idea. Just so long as your lawyer expects this kind of tripe and knows how to deal with it, you should be fine.

October 11, 2006, 01:50 AM
That's an old news story. It was covered here back when it took place. My sense is there were a lot of question marks. The business regarding HP's, assuming it actually came into court, should not have. But the fact is the man claimed to be defending against dogs that never bit him and against an unarmed man who never touched him. No witnesses. Lots of question marks there. Without a trial transcript, I'm not inclined to believe ANYTHING regarding what ballistics were discussed at trial, coming from some Dateline reporter. Those clowns are completely unreliable.

This business of "warning shots" has always seemed troublesome. You don't cap off rounds towards a man or his dogs unless they really pose an imminent deadly threat, and if they do you should simply shoot them. The whole episode seemed strange.

October 11, 2006, 02:58 AM
"Steve in PA "Why the hell would you convict someone if there was two rotwilers running toward him and also a guy running toward him yelling "Im gonna kill you!!" with a criminal record. Thats pretty stupid."

The guy shot a warning shot because the dogs were running towards him. No mention of them being aggressive.

Their owner was upset and yelling, as anyone would be in this situation.

Just how was the shooter supposed to know what type or record, if any the guy had, and what difference does that make?

The shooter over reacted and was found guilty. His story, much like his name stunk. "

Hal, "the guy" shat a warning shot because "...when I look up, here come these dogs running very quickly, fangs showing, barking, running right at me."

That sounds like dogs being aggresive to me.

The guy that was shot was not the owner, he lied to the humane society about where he lived and checked the two dogs out to take them on a walk.

Have you ever seen someone get upset and "loose it?" I have. My nephew gets a crazy look in his eyes and goes berzerk. When you come up against someone like that you don't really care about their record, all you care about is your safety.

As for his name, he didn't choose it, his father did. He is named after his grandfather. Insulting him because of his name only makes you look like an idiot.

October 11, 2006, 04:09 AM
I think people need to remember that the main point of this thread is about the potential risks, in a courtroom environment, of having JHPs in your carry gun, not the merits of the Fish vs. Kuenzli incident.

As to the main point, I carry JHPs and I'm not going to stop. Whatever risks there are in terms of how a jury would view JHPs is more than balanced by their likely efficacy if I have to shoot somebody or something.

Standing Wolf
October 11, 2006, 04:52 AM
A slick lawyer will be able to demonize any sort of ammo you might use.

Bingo! We have a winner, ladies and gentlemen!

The sad, sorry, simple truth of the matter is that no matter how we law-abiding American citizens defend our lives from the predators, there's an abundance of parasitic lawyers who are all too glad to prey upon us all over again.

What's needed is "make my day" laws in all states to prevent criminals and/or their survivors from attacking us after we defend ourselves. The lawyers, of course, would have hissing fits over the very idea.

October 11, 2006, 07:34 AM
If you can, use what your local or state PD uses. I use the Federal .38Special "FBI" load in all of my revolvers.

Let plaintiff's attorney argue that the cops are all murderers...

highlander 5
October 11, 2006, 07:55 AM
That "slick lawyer" happened to be the prosecuter and Mr Fish's lawyer should have pressed the issue BUT some of the jurors had a pre concieved oppinion of hp ammo. Civilians will believe the prosecuter because he represents the state and he wouldn't make a big deal out of this fact if it weren't "relivent".
Most people don't know that all LEO's use HP ammo.
Some think it's ILLEGAL for anyone to use hp because of Geneva Convention tho it is illegal in some states for civilllan use

October 11, 2006, 08:43 AM
I'd worry more about having the funds to hire defense attorney who is well versed in this type of lawsuit than picking and choosing your carry loads.

Even if you move past the ammunition they'll go after the type of weapon, your need to carry it, your desire to install a laser/flashlight/tritium sights, your training & ability, your choice to join the NRA, etc., etc.

Double Naught Spy
October 11, 2006, 09:44 AM
Hollowpoints only played a role because the jury felt the guy shot the bad guy AFTER he stopped being a threat. The supposition was bolstered by his inconsistent accounting os the events, discrepancies with other data (other campers heard shots considerably prior to when claimed, hence a delay of a long period before he reported the event), and his bizarre behavior (he put his pack under the guy's had as a pillow, but didn't provide first aid even though he was trained in first aid as a scout master).

So, hollowpoint ammo was NOT the reason for conviction. Conviction was because he was believed to have fired after the guy stopped being a threat.

October 11, 2006, 09:59 AM
With a HP you have less chance of overpenetration, which reduces the risk to "civilians" in the area. Because they have the potential to stop a fight quicker (all else being equal), less shots may need to be fired, also reduceing the risk of colateral damage. Keep in mind that you are responsible for every round that leaves your barrel. Even if you are justified in shooting, if you miss, or a round goes through your intended target, you can still expect a long civil suit.

October 11, 2006, 10:53 AM
Yes, the prosecutor sang and danced about the HydraShok HP ammo. If the guy had used FMJ and would have had to shoot the attacker 6 times instead of 3, the prosecutor would have sang and danced about that, too. Either way, a jury of sheeple would buy into it - and they did. He also tried to make an issue out of the shooter's caliber choice (10mm) "Much more powerful than the guns police use," he said.

The one thing that ocurred to me was if the convicted would have been carrying pepper spray and used it before "going to guns," he would most likely never been put on trial in the first place. If the pepper spray would have stopped the dogs and the attacker, fine. If not, he tried to use a non lethal method of defense and was left with no choice but to shoot. The grand jury would have most likely no-billed him.

I read a column where the author - Masaad Ayoob, I believe - said if you carry a gun, you must absolutely carry pepper spray and use it before drawing your gun and shooting. Of course, some situations will demand passing up the pepper spray and going directly to the gun, such as a crazed assailant running at you with a hatchet, ready to split your skull down the middle.

IANAL, but IMHO the shooter messed up big time when he decided to "cooperate" with police and let them question him for hours on end with no legal counsel present. THE POLICE ARE NOT YOUR FRIENDS in a situation like this!!! As they say, "Anything you say will be used against you," so SAY NOTHING other than "My attorney will answer all your questions after I have consulted with him/her. I will remain silent until then."

My take on the situation?

1: Always carry and use pepper spray first.

2: Always load with FACTORY hollow point ammo, not handloads or FMJ.

3: If you have to shoot after using pepper spray, LAWYER UP.

4: Get some professional training in the use of deadly force - Lethal Force Institute, Thunder Ranch or Gunsite. Yes, it is expensive, but not nearly as expensive as the $150,000 to $300,000 to hire a COMPETENT legal team to defend you in a murder trial. Don't even think about using a public defender - as in everything else, you get what you pay for, one way or another.

Kelly J
October 11, 2006, 11:10 AM
I got to tell you up front, that there must be more to this story than was posted, in the first place there seems to be a major lack of information about the dogs in relation to an attacker, and the following shooting.

As to the use of hollow point ammo most law enforcement people us HP ammo for two major reasons one it stops the bad Guy and two it reduces collateral damage in the case of a shot trough, or a miss.

I know that here in this part of Missouri the local police and the Sheriff’s department as well as the Highway Patrol all use HP ammo.

If the fact that this guy was convicted solely because he used HP ammo he needs to appeal the case with an Attorney of some worth, not a divorce lawyer.

October 11, 2006, 11:49 AM
At one point in time, there was the supposition that a DA or the plaintiffs layer in a civil case would use you choice of ammo to help defeat you in court.

Some of us have talked about it in the past and were severly beat down by the other camp saying things like NO WAY THEY WOULD USE THAT AGAINST YOU IN COURT."

Since it happened yet, we could not defend our position in the debate.

Well, IT has happened. :banghead:

I suspect your ammo choice will be on every opposing lawyer's check list from this point forward.

Rev. DeadCorpse
October 11, 2006, 12:10 PM
Two mags. 1 with 135gr Hornady XTP and 7.2gr of W231 (1720 fps on the chrono). 1 with 180gr Hornady XTP pushed by 5.8gr of W231 (1000 fps). 13 rounds each in a Witness 10mm. My daily carry loadout.

I don't believe in "warning shots". Clearing leather to begin with should be warning enough. Hollow points in general are designed to dump as much of their energy into a target via controlled expansion. There is also the permanent wound cavity and hydrostatic shock effects that come into play. FMJ can over penetrate, which is something you want to avoid in an emergency situation as you don't want to hit any bystanders.

I'd rather face a jury than end up in an ER or on a slab.

October 13, 2006, 02:33 PM
Kelly J said: If the fact that this guy was convicted solely because he used HP ammo he needs to appeal the case with an Attorney of some worth, not a divorce lawyer.

I'm not at all convinced that's what happened. And, I'm not persuaded his attorney was incompetent. Although I'd want someone who made more of a name for himself in criminal law defending me in a murder trial, Judge his credibility for yourself:

Jones, Skelton & Hochuli, P.L.C.
A. Melvin McDonald
TEL: 602-263-1747
FAX: 602-263-1784

Mr. McDonald joined the firm as a partner in 1985. He received both his undergraduate and law degree from the University of Utah. Mr. McDonald practices in the areas of criminal defense, governmental liability, products liability, employment law and personal injury. He has taught Criminal Justice at Arizona State University and is a former Superior Court Judge for Maricopa County, and a former United States Attorney for the District of Arizona. Mr. McDonald is admitted to practice in Arizona state and federal courts.

General Civil Litigation
White Collar Crimes and Special Matters

University of Utah College of Law, Salt Lake City, UT, 1968
J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence
Honors: Chief Justice, Moot Court Society, 1967-1968

University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1966
B.S., Bachelor of Science, Major: History

National College of the State Judiciary (General Trial)
National College of the State Judiciary (Search and Seizure)

Utah, 1968
Arizona, 1969
U.S. Federal Court, 1969

United States Attorney for Arizona
September 1981 to January 1985
Maricopa County Superior Court Judge
1974 to 1981
Shultz & Worischek Law Firm
1974, Associate
Deputy County Attorney, Maricopa County
1970 to 1974
Evans, Kitchel & Jenckes Law Firm
1969 to 1970, Associate
Law Clerk to Justice Jack D. H. Hayes
Arizona Supreme Court, 1969
Law Clerk to Charles C. Bernstein
Arizona Supreme Court, 1968 to 1969
Law Clerk to F. Henri Henroid
Utah Supreme Court, 1967 to 1968

For those who wants to know first hand reports rather than banter about the case, his attorney has some layed out in his appeal:

Appeal (

I'm not sure exactly what happened that day. But, its clear that the prosecutor decided, for whatever reasons, to push forward to put this in front of a jury to decide. Even if he was found not guilty, it underscores that the fight doesn't end after we solve problem #1.

October 13, 2006, 02:51 PM
It appears he had another on his team:

Griffen (
Mr. Griffen is a third-generation native Arizonan. He is a member of all state and federal courts in the State of Arizona, as well as the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Griffen limits his practice to criminal defense. He is a founding and former board member of Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice and a member of National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys. Mr. Griffen has previously served on the Criminal Rules Committee of the Arizona State Bar. He has lectured throughout the state on numerous criminal defense topics.

Education: Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University, B.S. 1974; Arizona State University and Pepperdine University, J.D. 1978. Bar Admissions: Arizona 1978. Court Admissions: Arizona Supreme Court 1978; U.S. District Court (Arizona) 1980; U.S. Court of Appeals (Ninth Circuit) 1980; U.S. Supreme Court 1983. Member: Coconino County Bar Association (President, 1987); State Bar of Arizona; National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice.
Areas of practice include: Criminal Defense, DUI Defense and Traffic Violations.

October 13, 2006, 03:02 PM
Well, IT has happened

Has it? Where's the proof? All I've seen is a third hand report from a notoriously biased and unreliable news source. The first hand accounts, such as this comment from one of his attorneys, say nothing about a conviction based on HP ammo:

The travesty of this case came as result of shocking rulings from the court. We were not allowed to tell the jury about prior dog attacks. We were not allowed to provide specific information about prior deadly attacks by the decedent. We were not allowed to talk about the psychiatric condiction of the decedent, who had several suicide attempts, and who had been hospitalized for his psychiatric conditions. The decedent, a homeless man, lived in the woods. He suffered from PTSD, Agrophoebia, and a number of severe debilitating problems. Judges, retired police officers, lawyers and other citizens were denied any ability to discuss terrifying events that they had encountered with decedent Kuenzli. One was choked and thought he would die.

You're coming to your conclusion based on something someone heard someone say on Dateline.

October 13, 2006, 03:17 PM
gg Hornady TAP FPD's

October 14, 2006, 06:44 PM
By convicting him they should put every police officer in america on trial cause everyone in l.e. carries hp in there issued weapon's. This is bull:cuss: . I know if you watched on that the guy was said to have a bad temper and alway's approached people in a threatening manner. I heard on there that they were saying it was also because the gun he shot him with was a .45 and that is tooo big of a round for defence. Who are they to say what we can defend ourselves with. Is it not our right to bear arm's. What does it matter what caliber he was shot him with. You should not approach some one in a threatening way especially if the guy is trying to defend himself against your dog's.

October 14, 2006, 06:48 PM
Simple enough to point out that nearly all police officers carry JHP ammo. Specifically NYPD. I don't think they have much of a case against JHP bullets if cops use them too.

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