Bad news for COM target SD advocates


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Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 12:42 PM
I've had a "running battle" (figuratively speaking) with advocates and experts about the best BG target should you end up having to shoot in an SD situation. They say COM. I say head.

In San Antonio, Texas, on January 2nd, 1 unarmed felon took away the guns of two LEOs and ended up shooting 4 LEOs before one of them finally killed him after hitting him 6 times with a Glock 22 (.40 S&W) from point blank range. Meanwhile, that heroic officer was himself shot 4 times by the felon using a Glock 22 he'd taken from one of the SAPD officers.

Today I found this at http://news.mysanantonio.com/story.cfm?xla=saen&xlb=180&xlc=912899&xld=180 :Jamie Lichtenwalter, the man who police say ambushed the officers, lay dead from gunshot wounds to the head and neck. The bad news for the shoot COM advocates is that it ended up taking head shots to stop the felon.

"But head shots are too difficult" is the wail and whine. Okay, so practice until they're EASY. Then guess what? COM and cookie shots become REALLY easy. If you want to learn how to do something hard, practice something similar that's harder yet.

An additional benefit of being able to make head shots is that it doesn't really matter what caliber of carry cannon you have. A .22 or .32 in the nose has pretty much the same effect as a .45 in the same position. It's just not as messy.

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Oleg Volk
January 6, 2003, 12:58 PM
Kill zone on a human head is about the size of a squirrel and moves fast in any real life situation. Counting on hitting despite return fire that is optimistic.

cheygriz
January 6, 2003, 12:58 PM
Blackhawk,

Sounds good in theory.

Now would you like to hear the REALLY hard part?

The average officer knows, that statistically, in a 20 year carer, there is only about 1 chance in 1,000 that he will ever need to fire his gun at another human being, so you can't get him/her to practice enough to attain a high level of proficiency.

( And BTW, as a 15 year police firearms instructor, I can honestly say that it's easier to get the female officers to practice than most of the men.)

Then there is the even harder part. If you think going through Navy Seal training is tough, try going to your city council or county commissioners and getting them to appropriate enough money to buy that much ammunition.

Head shots are great in theory, but the devil is in the details.

Double Naught Spy
January 6, 2003, 01:02 PM
It isn't that head shots are difficult. If you can properly place a COM shot, then you can properly place a head shot. Actually, head shots are a stupid concept. It needs to be a brain, brainstem, or upper spinal cord shot. Shooting somebody in the face is a head shot, but unless it hits the brain, brainstem, or upper spinal cord, then it is just an ugly but not necessarily incapacitating injury.

The purpose of COM shots is not that they are easier. The purpose of COM shots is that they give the most room for error while still permitting a hit on the target, whether the error be due to the shooter moving or the shootee moving.

There is a lot less liability in COM shots since people DO miss the exact intended point much of the time in unplanned shootouts. You then end up with projectiles down range that go to unintended places, sometimes occupied by people.

Interestingly, there are TWO types of COM shots. There are the 'COM' shots where people are taught to shoot center of chest or 'COC' in order to hit the heart and lungs (critical organs) and there is actual COM where the aimpoint for actual center of mass is much lower- at the very bottom of the rib cage or slightly lower. This ends up as a liver or upper stomach sort of shot. True COM shots have the greatest chance for a hit, but very easily may end up hitting short term inconsequential areas of the body such as the gut. Yes, they hurt, but don't incapacitate quickly and may not incapacitate for days if untreated.

As for shooting somebody in the nose. Maybe it will work and maybe not. If you fire at the nose with the gun at the same elevation as the nose or lower, then you stand a good chance of the bullet traveling to the brain. If the gun is higher than the nose, then you stand a good chance of the bullet completely passing under the cranium, missing the brain and maybe hitting the brainstem or spinal cord and maybe not. A .22 into the nose if fired from above may simply result in a messed up nose and palatte, denture work, but otherwise the guy isn't going to be too bad off.

Oleg Volk
January 6, 2003, 01:05 PM
The other reason for COM shots is that subsequent rounds can be fired with the gun aimed higher than for the first shot and still hit something.

Blueduck
January 6, 2003, 01:15 PM
Head shots look easy when standing on the ten yard lane on nice calm day shooting at a still target..

When your moving, the targets moving, and explosions from the other guys gun are going off in your face I'm betting a whole different ball game.

bogie
January 6, 2003, 02:12 PM
Meowzambique 'em.

ahenry
January 6, 2003, 02:33 PM
The psychological impact from being shot in the face will probably be far greater than a shot to the chest. Not a bad idea to stack the deck in your favor. If you can consider yourself accurate enough to make a head shot then you’re probably better off with it. The corollary being you ought to stick with COM unless and until you are good enough to make your head shot (on a bobbing head) each and every time.

Frohickey
January 6, 2003, 02:45 PM
Shouldn't you just do both?

Go for COM first, place a doubletap there, and naturally follow it up with a CNS shot? If the BG is going down, then your front sight will have nothing to shoot at, and you don't shoot the CNS shot. If the BG is still up, then your front sight would be inline with the BG's head.

COM is best because its a higher percentage shot than CNS. CNS shot is what you need because your COM shots are not working. It could be a BG with kevlar, on drugs, etc.

El Tejon
January 6, 2003, 03:30 PM
Blueduck, you forgot "in the dark.";)

As the wise man in Tejas saith, shoot what is available until something else is available.

Shawn Dodson
January 6, 2003, 03:40 PM
Try a few realistic force-on-force drills with Simunitions or AirSoft. Hitting the target is a challenge, much less hitting COM or head.

You're moving, your bad guy adversary is moving, you're trying to hit him, he's trying just as hard to hit you, you have to be concerned about hazards downrange, your adversary doesn't care about hazards downrange, at what point do(es) your hit(s) stop the bad guy?, etc.

General hits to the head and neck don't guarantee a stop. Your slugs still have to damage something vital.

Nero Steptoe
January 6, 2003, 03:51 PM
How many U.S. Presidents who were shot in the head lived to tell about it?? I'm sure there must be some. (I'd shoot for whatever I could hit, I suspect.)

Redlg155
January 6, 2003, 04:11 PM
I am an advocate of center mass for the first two shot and then a head shot if at all possible.

I pretty much equate a head shot to such....

Shooting the moving pendulum of a clock while the clock itself is in motion.

I can't make that shot reliably 100 percent. I know I have a greater chance of success under pressure if I shoot COM.

Granted, each situation is different, so it is beneficial to practice headshots in case the perfect opportunity of a stable target presents itself. In a hostage situation or small window of opportunity shots you will need all the accuracy and confidence you can muster to make the shot.

Good Shooting
RED

kidcoltoutlaw
January 6, 2003, 05:07 PM
hip shot puts him on the ground so the head is easier to hit.

Dave Markowitz
January 6, 2003, 05:15 PM
Meowzambique 'em.

Is that where you throw a cat at the BG after shooting him COM?

:neener:

Don Gwinn
January 6, 2003, 05:23 PM
The "Meowzambique" was perfected by Vermont State Troopers.

ACP
January 6, 2003, 05:31 PM
Good post. If shooting point blank, I imagine one could walk the shots up to the head/neck region. If a couple body shots put them in a defensive/protective position, it might not be TOO diffiult to unload the rest into the cranium -- esp. if they are within arms reach and already wounded.

BTW, I can't believe you have more than 600 posts in less than 10 days. What was your TFL total??

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 05:34 PM
DNS, there are only about two ways to shoot a BG in the nose with the gun above him: (1) He's a 4' tall midget, or (2) he's already down. Otherwise, a nose shot is way more likely to be from below his snout because you're in a crouched firing position. As he charges, his head is liable to be bobbing up and down instead of back and forth, which means your perfectly aimed nose shot is going to impact from neck center to forehead, and any hits in that line are very likely stoppers.

Otherwise, the best argument for COM shots is to use the BG as a bullet catcher so your non-stopper hits don't fly off into somebody else.

However, hitting any vital organ except the brain isn't an instant stopper. If your hit is online with the spinal column, that will be an instant stopper, provided your bullet penetrates far enough, and most of us use HPs to avoid "over penetration."

In this case, an overly muscled, pumped felon was charging and shooting. The only reasonable way to stop him was with a head shot, as the hero figured out -- probably after he'd already taken hits from the felon's recently acquired SAPD issued Glock 22.

Practice head shots. Then if this felon's counterpart comes after you in a parking lot at dark-30, you'll be challenged in line with your training. If your attacker is slower and softer looking, you shouldn't have any trouble making a GOOD COM shot.

Overtrained or undertrained, your choice.... :what:

JohnK
January 6, 2003, 05:41 PM
Isn't the hit rate for police officers still around 25%, as in they miss 75% of the time? If the average officer can't hit COM more than 1:4 I can't see them hitting the head at all.

Training to a level where you can make head shots is a good thing, obviously the better you can shoot the more likely it is you're going to survive in that situation. I won't argue that a hit to the head is most likely better than a hit to the COM, or even better mid/upper chest, but it still seems to me that a hit in the COM is better than a miss to the head.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 05:52 PM
I think it's about 20%, but police do a lot of "long" range pistol shooting. Loaded with adrenaline and 20 yards away from a hoppin' and jumpin' target, I'm not sure I could do better than 1 of 5 hits.

However, this shooting was VERY close range. The perp landed on top of the hero LEO. IOW, it was a SD range shooting, 7 yards or less. A head at 10 feet is a decent sized target compared to a torso at 30 or more feet.

If a BG is 60 feet away, I don't have any business taking a shot unless he's shooting at me or about to. Then it's a COM shot.

There IS no "this is the shot to take" SD situation. They're all going to be different.

Just bear in mind that a GG could end up emptying a .45 COM into a charging BG and still lose.... I'm just of the strong opinion that our GG should be able to make a 10 foot head shot and trained to take it if needed.

bogie
January 6, 2003, 06:14 PM
Remember that the object isn't necessarily to kill the bad guy. The objective is meow STOP the bad guy. _Most of the time_ a center-mass shot results in a stop, and center-mass is significantly easier to hit, especially in a situation where someone is shooting at you, moving, or otherwise making your concentration skills redline.

A 25% hit rate is pretty darn good in those circumstances.

Teufelhunden
January 6, 2003, 06:32 PM
I don't know the formal name for it, but I've heard discussion of raising your definition of COM into a triangle drawn from nipple to nipple to nose. This would triangulate the heart, upper lungs, and CNS systems such as the spinal cord and brain stem.

It seems like a better area to aim for since more stuff in that triangle is quickly fatal than a potentially low traditional-COM shot (gutshot)--but then again, a crummy shot to the gut still beats a miss over the shoulder...

-Teuf

Edit: Added an image here (http://www.geocities.com/twjackson255/targetz12.jpg) for reference.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 06:37 PM
cheygriz, you're absolutely right. If you don't practice a shot, that's not one you should suddenly decide to rely on in a pinch.

Like LEOs, I'm sure SD shooters with CCWs fall into the "never practice" to the "obsessive about practice" ranges too.

If you do practice, IMO, you should practice to achieve something useful, and any SD situation where you must shoot is almost surely going to be at close range. What does "must shoot" mean? Simple. You don't stop the attacker RIGHT NOW, you die.

On TFL, there was a thread that had a post about a BG who was shot multiple times (6-8) by a guy in a bar. The BG beat the shooter to death, then walked a few blocks to an emergency room. The personnel finally noticed that a guy in the waiting room was bleeding. Then he got treatment. Point is that point blank COM shots cannot be relied on to stop an attacker. So practice a shot that will....

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 06:41 PM
a crummy shot to the gut still beats a miss over the shoulder... That's debatable.... :D

Getting shot turns the adrenaline spigot on full flow, and a gut shot takes a LONG time to slow somebody down much less stop them. "LONG time" in such situations is much longer than you've got.

bogie
January 6, 2003, 06:59 PM
Okay - stand up and dodge around a little.

Pay attention to meow you're moving. Ignore the snickers from the folks around you. Mutter about the :cuss: fire ant infestation or aliens in your underwear or something.

Now, you'll notice that your head moves around. A lot. So do your arms and your legs. In fact, your shoulders and chest can do a fair boogaloo...

What doesn't move much is the area centered (roughly bowling ball-sized - seriously...) in the vicinity of your belt buckle.

Learned this playing football - much easier to tackle a belt buckle than to tackle a leg, arm, or head. Legs, arms and heads can feint in a particular direction. Belts can't.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 07:05 PM
ACP,Good post. If shooting point blank, I imagine one could walk the shots up to the head/neck region. If a couple body shots put them in a defensive/protective position, it might not be TOO diffiult to unload the rest into the cranium -- esp. if they are within arms reach and already wounded.

BTW, I can't believe you have more than 600 posts in less than 10 days. What was your TFL total?? But consider this:

How sure am I that my CCW (semi auto) is going to fire when I pull the trigger? Almost 100%, because I carry it with one in the pipe.

How sure am I that it will fire a second time? Not so sure because jams happen, and according to Mr. Murphy, the first jam from my CCW is liable to happen when I can least afford it.

So my mentality is that I've got ONE shot to solve my "problem."

Secondly, my best time between accurate shots is 0.3" with my DAO CCW. That's 3 seconds for 10 shots, and a charging BG can cover more than 20 feet in 2 seconds. I DON'T have time to walk shots if he's close enough to be considered "arm's length" away.

(BTW, I had a bit over 5,000 posts on TFL.)

Teufelhunden
January 6, 2003, 07:18 PM
That's debatable....

Being that since we're talking CCW situation, this theoretical shooting will not take place in a vacuum. Considering where a miss could travel, and who else it could hit, I would rather have a shot pull low and score a hit than miss anyday--that's why I've got 19 more rounds anyway.

Yes, his adrenaline might go sky high with a gutshot and he'll take a slowly debilitating wound, but a miss isn't going to do ANY damage, and presents the opportunity for catastrophic consequences.

-Teuf

Greybeard
January 6, 2003, 07:37 PM
Blackhawk -

I understand where you are coming from on the recent San Antonio "clusterperf" (' hoping that one will be most descriptive and still get by by the software).

Since it appears that no one has mentioned the following yet, I'll chime in. As explained to us at DPS CHL instructor school, taking the first shot at the head is not only increasing the odds for a miss, but can imply "malice". A potentially subsequently perceived "intent to kill", rather than simply desire to "stop or neutralize". Or so the lawyers may claim ... Yea, I know ... Better judged by 12 or carried by 6?

On the other hand, we have been encouraged to train with and teach two quick shots to the chest (then, if needed) one to the head. It is a drill I sometimes set up for some (more advanced) students with a special "Chargin Marvin" target. Unfortunately, I've seen it practiced and perfected far more frequently by serious CHL people than typical LEOs ...

I'm still hurting for the SAPD LEOs and their families.:(

G-Raptor
January 6, 2003, 07:40 PM
IMO, shoot what you can see until you get a better target.

I practice shooting at small targets because I want to have confidence in my shot placement. As one saying puts it, "don't shoot 'em in the chest - shoot the button on his chest". But when (if) the SHTF everything will be much more dynamic. I may not be able to see the hot spot (particularly in low light). If all you can immediately see is an arm, ear, or shoulder, shoot that.

Headshots are good, if you can get 'em. Even if it's a bit off and doesn't put him down, it will still ring his bell real loud and seriously screw up his OODA loop.

However, the most likely situation would call for several body shots first.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 07:49 PM
Teufelhunden, that's why it's debatable! :D

IMO, you shouldn't ever take a shot when you can't afford to miss. If the backdrop consists of soft targets, I'd much rather have the BG catch the bullets than risk a miss.

But that presumes I'm able to consider the backdrop. That means I've got time to work out the old brain a little before shooting, which means the BG isn't inside of 10 yards going full tilt with murder in his eyes. Believe me, in the latter case, all I'm going to see is his head on top of a mad Incredible Hulk.

SD shootings are extremely unlikely in the first place. For a citizen to be charged by one like the one in San Antonio is another order of magnitude unlikely, IMO. The most likely SD situation we're likely to get in is a mugging, and not by a crazed killer.

But in the event that my brain in hyperdrive says "head shot needed," I want my body to say "okay, been there, done that, so tell me when."

The BIG point is, again, that there is NO preplanned SD shooting scenario that will fit all SD situations, so you should train and be prepared to use WHATEVER is appropriate.

My original point is that the perp in this tragedy needed a head shot right from the git-go. He didn't get it until the hero LEO figured that out after shooting him 4 times. My mind would have been shouting "GO DOWN, GO DOWN..." as though telekinesis would have worked instead of a head shot....

gryphon
January 6, 2003, 07:55 PM
This might be a little OT, but doesn't it bother most of you that an officer, who uses as one of his main tools a firearm, only has a hit rate of 25%?!

That's like a carpenter only hitting the nail once out of every 4 swings. Who'd want to hire him?!

I think that there should be stricter training by PD. I also think that no police officers should be out on patrol by themselves. They should always have a partner.

More on topic, I think that you just need to hedge the bets and aim COM, if that doesn't stop the BG, then head shot if possible.

Blackhawk
January 6, 2003, 08:08 PM
This might be a little OT, but doesn't it bother most of you that an officer, who uses as one of his main tools a firearm, only has a hit rate of 25%?! Doesn't bother me a bit.

What that statistic disregards are the "impossible" shots LEOs have to take. Their targets aren't paper ones immovably fixed to a target board, nor are they at known distances, nor are the LEOs themselves able to mentally rehearse the shot. They're more likely to be shooting at targets that are shooting back, running, jinking around, and making their best efforts to do them or somebody else mortal harm. And let's not forget dark, obstinate weather, and a pucker factor 2-3 stories high.

I'd be VERY surprised if many or any of us could do as well or better under the SAME conditions. We do our SD or target drills at closer ranges and orderly conditions.

I WANT LEOs to take the hard shots to keep themselves safe, even if they only amount to suppressive fire. At the same time, I insist that they be VERY aware of what else is in their line of fire.

A hit rate of 15-20% would be just lovely as long as no LEOs are getting shot and no innocent members of the public are getting shot either. Even better if the intended targets do get shot. Ammo is much cheaper than LEO funerals and all that goes with them....

Pendragon
January 6, 2003, 09:20 PM
seriously screw up his OODA loop.

Oh!

Another student of Col. Boyd!

I am in good company.

Admiral Thrawn
January 6, 2003, 11:39 PM
Yes, I was hearing about how the "Cranial Occular Cavity" is the place to go for in the head.... basically between the eyes or a big lower.

Hardtarget
January 7, 2003, 12:04 AM
A friend of mine practices a strange system(no idea where he got it). He calls it the three Hs. Thats hip...heart...head. To him the hip is the transmission, the heart is the engine, the head is the computer. He feels like the BG is going down...even though he has never had to prove the theory. Personally, I do the best I can with the COM practice.
Mark.

Redlg155
January 7, 2003, 12:11 AM
Yikes.

I hope he never has to use that!

I can see it now. He hits the BG in the hip. BG decides that that really hurt and surrenders. Next BG gets really good lawyer and sues good guy for intentionally crippling him for life. BG wins because good guy did indeed shoot him there on purpose.

COM or Head usually= No Lawsuit.

or to make Blackhawk Happy..

Headshot= NO Law Suit. :D

Good SHooting
RED

Blackhawk
January 7, 2003, 12:26 AM
:neener:

triggertime
January 7, 2003, 12:54 AM
Training to shoot to the textbook 'center of mass' is a bad habit to get into because alot of the time people fail to realize that in reality the target area isn't always stationary. Your attacker(s) will be crouching and moving laterally once the balloon goes up and the guns start going off.

So if you train to aquire a sight picture at center of mass and your assailant suddenly ducks, then you've instantly lost your sight picture. This 'momentary lapse of orientation' in your OODA loop will prevent you from tracking your target and could result in you yourself getting shot.

It would be more advisable to train to shoot into the abdomen at the belly button level and then walk your rounds upward into the thoracic triangle to maximize the chance of disrupting the central nervous system sufficiently enough to stop the threat.

Head shots should always be the last resort, not top priority. The target area is small and it moves erratically. Not only that, but bullets have the tendency to glance off the skull rather than penetrate depending on the angle from which the shots were originally fired.

Blackhawk
January 7, 2003, 12:57 AM
Not only that, but bullets have the tendency to glance off the skull rather than penetrate depending on the angle from which the shots were originally fired. That can be good.

"I was just trying to knock him out." :rolleyes:

HS/LD
January 7, 2003, 02:51 AM
Didn't we just all read the story of the young Marine (God Bless 'em All). Who stood his ground and took a shot to the face.

He chewed on the bullet for awhile then spat it out, and continued to munch his hamburger. Then asked the perp if he wanted another shot before he retaliated.

Then, after being shot in the 'head', he rumaged through is vehicle, produced a (say it ain't so) honest to God 1911. Took careful aim... and shoot the dirty little carjacker in the CHEST.

When the cops show up the carjacker is already room temp and the Marine (God Bless 'em All) decided to get some push ups in while he was waiting.

So where should you shoot head or chest?

I don't know.
Just make sure you aint shooting a Marine (God Bless 'em All)

:D


Regards,
HS/LD
BTW you all know New Zealand Army lads make US Marines look like nancies right?? :neener:







:)
Sheeez just kidding Gunny,
Semper Fi :D

MLH
January 7, 2003, 12:32 PM
(This might be a little OT, but doesn't it bother most of you that an officer, who uses as one of his main tools a firearm, only has a hit rate of 25%?! )

This is the problem. This is NOT their main tool. Many officers never draw their gun in their entire career. Some only a few times.
Their brains are their main tools and sad to say some never use them very often either. Such is life. That is why they miss. they just don't get enough practice because they don't use them very often or the dept. won't fund enough money to buy the bullets. A shame but a fact of life (and sometimes death.)
:what:

El Rojo
January 7, 2003, 02:24 PM
Blackhawk never gives up. I will do what I have to in a firefight to make sure the BG stops. If the body shots don't stop him, then I guess I will keep shooting COM or if I have the ability and opportunity, I will take a head shot. I will just be shooting at the biggest target available and not stopping until they stop. If they take a gut shot, fall over, and the person is still moving, I will shoot them some more. I can also take cover and watch them squirm from cover. If they are still a threat and don't comply with me telling them to hold still, I might just have to shoot them again. Every situation is different. For me, I am going to shoot COM because that is where I have the greatest chance of making a rushed shot a hit instead of a miss. Every hit is better than a miss. Of course between the eyes shots are the best, but look at reality, are you going to shoot 10 shots and get all of them perfectly in that little 3" circle? Yeah? Maybe you should try doing it timed then. Next maybe try putting a friend 50 yards to the side and while you draw and shoot your target, have them shoot at you with a paint ball gun. Try to hit that target while ducking for cover. I chose to be lazy and practice for COM while being timed.

Blackhawk
January 7, 2003, 02:33 PM
Blackhawk never gives up. What does "give up" mean, anyway?If they take a gut shot, fall over, and the person is still moving, I will shoot them some more. I can also take cover and watch them squirm from cover. If they are still a threat and don't comply with me telling them to hold still, I might just have to shoot them again. Shooting them again is not a good idea, Red. Maybe if they're moving in an agressive manner, such as trying to get a bead on you with their gun, it could pass a murder inquiry, but most likely if you shoot them and they go down, your SD shooting justification is gone. You HAVE stopped the attack, and that's your only legitimate purpose for shooting.

bogie
January 7, 2003, 03:25 PM
Getting back to meow original premise - The officers failed to maintain sufficient situational awareness and weapon retention. They were NOT ambushed, as the article claims. The guy disarmed one of 'em, shot the place up, then disarmed another one.

Possibly the officers in question had been training to disarm suspects, etc., and not to shoot 'em, and closed and tried to wrassle the SOB. Real life follows training, folks.

Lessons learned: Use enough gun, keep 'hold of your gun, don't get close enough to the bad guy for him to coldcock you.

Blackhawk
January 7, 2003, 03:31 PM
don't get close enough to the bad guy for him to coldcock you.IMO, that's the PRIMARY failure of the first two LEOs in this incident. When you're behind somebody, you can't see what they're about to do in time to react. I give the untrusted more wake space than in front or the side.

However, the original premise is that depending on ANY handgun to stop an attacker with COM shots isn't a good plan....

bogie
January 7, 2003, 04:29 PM
Thompson-Center Contender in .45-70.

If it takes meow than one shot to center mass, I'm gonna throw it at him and run...

Blackhawk
January 7, 2003, 04:38 PM
:D

Agreed! If there was anything left to throw it at.... :D

bogie
January 7, 2003, 05:10 PM
Wait a second.... This is The High Road.

Practice cranial shots.

We all know that that is the _only_ way to stop an undead walking zombie.

Meow.

El Rojo
January 8, 2003, 03:43 AM
Maybe if they're moving in an agressive manner, such as trying to get a bead on you with their gun, it could pass a murder inquiry, but most likely if you shoot them and they go down, your SD shooting justification is gone.You misunderstood me to some extent. What I meant is if they go down, that doesn't necessarily mean they stopped. I shoot someone in the gut, I would think they would most likely fall down for a brief period of time. That doesn't mean they have stopped their threatening actions. So if I do shoot someone, and they don't stop their actions, I am going to shoot them some more. That is what I meant. Hence the point that I could take cover as an alternative to running up to see how they are doing. Just because they are squirming around because they are shot doesn't mean they are done. And that is why you are such a big fan of head shots. You want to stop them immediately and for good right? That way there is no squirming, just calm.

However, the original premise is that depending on ANY handgun to stop an attacker with COM shots isn't a good plan....Do you have statistics to support this arguement? What are the rates of COM hits taking a subject down immediately? What are the rates of head shots taking down subject immediately? Then we would have to take into consideration the number of hits to COM when the shooter meant to shoot for COM vs. the number of hits to the head when the shooter meant to shoot for the head. Otherwise your entire argument is based upon circumstance and occassional situations that support your argument vs. occasional situations that are opposite of your thesis.

I think COM shots are a good idea because hits count, misses don't. COM is larger than the head. If you COM shots fail, then target the head or just keep shooting COM. Whatever is easier and more feasible in your situation. Which Blackhawk agreed with, every situation is different. Do what you think you can do in the situation is really the point here. If you train enough to take head shots, great. If you don't, do what you can to make hits and not throw rounds into dangerous areas behind the target.

Blackhawk
January 8, 2003, 12:52 PM
Red, the first sentence of what you quoted shows that we agree about the "after" shots. I put that part in because your post was not clear in explaining those caveats, and I don't want you or anybody else on record in a public forum as advocating whacking the wounded, nor do I want anybody reading your post and getting the idea that such is in any way condoned by you or anybody else on THR.

The original premise was my opinion. I don't need statistics to back up my opinion, and I doubt that M&S or any of the other data collecting wonks are much interested in studying head shots because they're rare. Many people get shot in the face messing up their jaws, teeth, etc., but surviving. Those are head shots because that's where the face is. Likewise many people survive COM shots.

Statistics aren't necessary to support my premise. Physiology unarguably supports the premise that an anterior centerline bullet to the neck up to and including the nose will be a stopper. Likewise through an eye socket. Between the eyes has an extremely high probability of being a stopper as does in the forehead or temple. Additionally, many areas suffering impacts to the bones of the head will render most people unconscious, and that's as good of a stopper as a fatal wound.

The anterior head has a relatively larger concentration of "stopper spots" than COM, and most of them will end an attack. On the contrary, there are far fewer COM hits that will instantly drop an attacker stoked with adrenaline.

Don't take a shot you can't make, and finally as somebody's tag line says "my opinion is just as irrelevant as yours," so do what you want and practice what you want.

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