Was This As Dumb As It Appeared?


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Confederate
July 19, 2008, 01:20 AM
This is a reality check for me, so be honest.

Just minutes ago I was watching Court TV and the story of a police officer who was fired on by a car he was attempting to pull over. As he realized what was happening, this officer drew his service weapon, which appeared to be a Glock, and returned fire directly through his front windshield!

I would expect this would have a devastating impact on his hearing (likely resulting in permanent damage), but the windshield, I imagine, would destroy any accuracy and send bullets possibly into other peoples' homes. It also would, I think, be dangerous as hell.

Is this something that's taught to cops or was this just something this one officer thought he would do on his own. I mean, I can't imagine any range instructor in his right mind would allow someone to shoot into windshield glass at point blank range at his...well...range.

Please you LEOs, tell me it ain't so! Also, this guy later ascertained that the car's occupants were using a "high powered assault rifle." What would you do?

Thanks!

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The Lone Haranguer
July 19, 2008, 01:32 AM
I have to wonder about the accuracy of the story. Was this actual footage or a reenactment with superficially-look-alike actor(s)? :scrutiny:

... but the windshield, I imagine, would destroy any accuracy and send bullets possibly into other peoples' homes.
Yes on the first point, highly doubtful on the second. IMO the bullet will be pretty much spent after passing through the tough laminated safety glass in a windshield, which it also would have struck at a sharp angle. If fired through a side window (which is merely tempered glass) it could have done so. I would certainly agree that this would be an ineffective tactic. :confused:

-v-
July 19, 2008, 01:35 AM
From watching World's Wildest Police Chases, I remember one episode where a trooper, after being fired upon out of the back window of a fleeing car returned fire at the car through his windshield. The bullets punching holes in his windshield were well recorded by the dash-cam. FWIW.

strangelittleman
July 19, 2008, 01:58 AM
This is taught at some schools, but in the private sector on the LE / Military only courses and in some Military schools. I've done it in a training course back in the early 90's w/ an MP5 and M9 and yes it's accurate enough to hit IPSC tgts in the stationary vehicle in front or open standing tgts, both @ 15m. Yes, eye protection is a must when training in this because glass particles are floating around the interior like a snow globe! Ear protection is a must too and yes, the concussive blasts, from the weapon discharging, bounces around the interior and is readily felt on one's face and clothing.
Not pleasant, but effective enough to fight your way out of a kill zone or to initiate a kill on the oppo if called for.
I'd sure hate to try it w/ a 11.5" Colt 5.56 or a H&K 53. that kind of weapons's discharge would hurt even with hearing protection!

Coronach
July 19, 2008, 02:02 AM
We are trained to return fire through the windshield if that is the fastest way to address the threat. Depending on the positioning of the threat, it often is. It also has the added bonus of allowing you to keep a large chunk of your anatomy behind cover.

I have fired through a windshield while seated in a cruiser for training purposes. Even with hearing protection (doubled up), the concussion was ... impressive.

Mike

kingpin008
July 19, 2008, 02:21 AM
If the show was called "Crisis Point", that part was re-enacted, as are a few other parts of the show. every time they show the officers, the footage is all the same shade of sepia-tone, and the info in the corners of the screen is always in the same font.

They interlace actual surveillance or dash-cam footage with staged stuff. Also, the cop car appears to be the same one in each of those type of shots, regardless of who the officer is in the car. In at least two instances, the head-rests look eerily the same, and neither time was there any type of cage in the car, despite the officers working in an area that isn't way the heck out in the boonies (where one might not expect there to be a cage, for whatever reason)

redraidermgr
July 19, 2008, 03:20 AM
I talked to a Texas DPS friend of mine and he said that they do receive training on firing through windshields. He said a while back a DPS officer was killed because a suspect jumped out of the car and ran at the cruiser firing a semi-auto assault rifle through the windshield. It doesn't seem too strange to me, I would rather be a little deaf for a while then dead while stuck in a seat belt.

Sunray
July 19, 2008, 04:09 AM
"...fired on by a car..." How does one get fired upon by a car? The car's occupants,sure, but not the car.

moga
July 19, 2008, 04:28 AM
I saw the episode tonight at around 8 PM and it was Crisis Point. The suspects are in a blue Buick Roadmaster and return fire with a rifle, right? Are you sure its reenacted footage? It looked pretty spot on to me. I could see the shattered windshield glass flying around inside the compartment when the officer shot from his cruiser.

No sepia tones. All color footage, punctuated with cameo's of the officer calling the shots play by play.

The Lone Haranguer
July 19, 2008, 09:15 AM
We are trained to return fire through the windshield if that is the fastest way to address the threat. Depending on the positioning of the threat, it often is. It also has the added bonus of allowing you to keep a large chunk of your anatomy behind cover.

I had not thought of it that way. He would still need to be pretty close and almost directly in front of you ... but then he would also be in a position to be run over with the car.

Rmart30
July 19, 2008, 09:21 AM
They mix a lot of the actual footage with re enacted....
Pretty easy to spot some of it if ya pay attention. It the camera is panning around, or you have 2 or 3 different camera angles showing footage its staged.
Still better than watching old sitcom reruns :D

Disaster
July 19, 2008, 09:42 AM
I talked to a Texas DPS friend of mine and he said that they do receive training on firing through windshields. He said a while back a DPS officer was killed because a suspect jumped out of the car and ran at the cruiser firing a semi-auto assault rifle through the windshield. It doesn't seem too strange to me, I would rather be a little deaf for a while then dead while stuck in a seat belt.

Unfortunately, those are pretty different situations. A rifle bullet is moving way faster and being right behind the windshield increases your chance of getting hit....less distance for the deflection to take effect. The pistol bullet, on the other hand, will be even more enemic after hitting the glass (vs. rifle) and will deflect much further from it's path because the deflection will start at his windshield and travel a long way to the BG. You'd probably stand a better chance ducking down and possibly trying to exit vehicle. Sitting there and engaging a pistol against a rifle is surely going to get the officer killed.

I can understand the reason for telling officers that they "can" shoot through a windshield. But they need to understand there is very limited applications for doing so. Kind of reminds me of when my brother missed a deer on his first hunting trip. The deer was walking along about 30 yards from him and my father was trying to figure out why he missed. My brother said, "Dad, I did everything you told me. I even lead him."

Confederate
July 19, 2008, 01:01 PM
"...fired on by a car..." How does one get fired upon by a car? The car's occupants,sure, but not the car.
The same way the White House issues statements and the Pentagon announces changes in policy....

Yes, the show was a reenactment, but the voiceover of the officer is explaining how he shot directly through his front windshield at the time it shows the actor.

When someone like that is outgunned and is being fired on, is it worth it to take such measures? He didn't hit the bad guys once, and though he had glasses on, he unlikely had hearing protection.

It's too bad they can't develop a gun they could put in the front of the police vehicle that was powerful enough to stop a car that was directly in front of the car. With three-shot bursts, it would be a lot better than shooting a pistol while trying to drive.

Again, shooting a Glock inside a car could cause substantial ear damage, could it not?

maconcop
July 19, 2008, 02:18 PM
As my screen name implies I'm a cop. We are not trained to shoot through windshields. We are trained and instructed to always do ABSOLUTELY WHATEVER it takes to survive the shift. To accent that point in the city police academy we are required to shoot on our backs, on our sides, laying down over our heads weak-handed, you get the point. We are taught to never stop fighting until (A) the fight is over (B) we are safely away from the situation. Apparently (to me) he decided that engaging fire before exiting the vehicle was his best means to survive. I'm sure that his ears did not appreciate the abuse.

I imagine that his intent was (as I believe mine would be) to fire from inside the vehicle as a means to buy him time to get from the driver seat to the rear to the vehicle in order to put the entire vehicle between him and the rifle. (Plus I have a 12-ga in my trunk).

MedWheeler
July 19, 2008, 02:50 PM
MaconCop covered most of it. Truth is, no matter what your training, when TSHTF, you do what comes instinctively. Blasting through the windshield may have been just that. Being left-handed, it probably wouldn't have occurred to me, though, as I would more likely thrust my arm outside the driver's window (I rarely patrolled with that window up). Yeah, there would be no sight alignment, but the instinctive hope would be to make my assailant flinch enough to throw off his aim while I throw the car in reverse and try to get some more air between us. Hitting him, if it happened, would be a bonus.

Chipperman
July 19, 2008, 03:37 PM
....would destroy any accuracy and send bullets possibly into other peoples' homes.

Since when are the Police responsible for errant bullets?

Frog48
July 19, 2008, 06:08 PM
Accuracy would be seriously degraded. Also, you'd think that punching through glass would rob the bullet of alot of energy, requiring numerous shots to take down a suspect.

rcmodel
July 19, 2008, 06:12 PM
All I know is, if some dirtbag was firing an AK-47 through the back window of the car in front of me, & I was seatbelted in place, it would damn sure be worth a try!

Even if he only "thought" it was working!

rcmodel

Frog48
July 19, 2008, 06:15 PM
All I know is, if some dirtbag was firing an AK-47 through the back window of the car in front of me, & I was seatbelted in place, it would damn sure be worth a try!

For sure! In a life and death situation, its worth a shot, so to speak.

MMCSRET
July 19, 2008, 09:27 PM
If you saw the entire chase scene, his windshield had taken several hits from the bad guy and was coming apart.

bodyarmorguy
July 21, 2008, 05:55 PM
Quote:
....would destroy any accuracy and send bullets possibly into other peoples' homes.

Since when are the Police responsible for errant bullets?

Since always........
Police are responsible and held accountable for each round fired. Point of law however.....For example, an Officer interrupts a robbery in progress at the local convenience store and a gun battle ensues between the Officer and the bad guy. During said exchange, the clerk is struck and killed by a round from the Officers gun. Criminally, the Officer would not be charged (toss all civil litigation from the equasion for the moment please). The bad guy however may be charged with homicide or as a principal to homicide as someone died during the commission of the other crime.

Gord
July 21, 2008, 07:08 PM
Any firearm fired in any type of enclosed space without (and often with, I imagine) hearing protection will damage your hearing in short order, yes. Then again, I'd rather be deaf than dead...

As far as windshields go, yes, deflection and energy loss will probably be present - downward if firing from the outside in, upward if firing from the inside out. You can try to compensate (i.e., aim lower than desired POI if firing from the inside) or, more simply (and much more likely as a reflexive action) fire multiple times in quick succession. The first round will, hopefully, punch a hole through the windshield, and subsequent rounds will not be deflected, at least not to the same degree.

JDoe
July 21, 2008, 07:10 PM
These guys have the windows rolled down...

Vehicle Counterambush Drill - Windshield Shooting (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWUGBne0B70)

HB
July 21, 2008, 07:30 PM
A rifle bullet is moving way faster and being right behind the windshield increases your chance of getting hit....less distance for the deflection to take effect

Now how does that work?

Chipperman
July 21, 2008, 08:49 PM
...the clerk is struck and killed by a round from the Officers gun. Criminally, the Officer would not be charged....

My point exactly.

Confederate
July 22, 2008, 01:12 AM
The way I saw it, and I may be wrong, is that the officer had the chance to scoot or shoot, and he chose the latter. One of the car's occupants had a high powered rifle and was thus at an advantage. Once the shots began, he could have fled the scene; however, he chose to give chase, all the while hearing thumps of bullets hitting the car. In my opinion, he recklessly endangered his life and the lives of the people living in houses both behind him and in front of the bad guys.

So, with the help of backups, he nabbed the two evildoers and no one was hit...well, except two dogs, a cow and a cat sleeping on an old woman's porch. The cop himself never said anything about hearing loss and I'm wondering if he suffered any. You'd think.

Still, I heard of a guy who shot a bear six times with a .44 mag in self defense. He had no hearing protection and managed to kill the attacking bear, but he told his hunting partner, a friend of mine, that he didn't have ringing in his ears or anything afterwords except the shakes. He said he didn't even recall pulling the trigger, and that he suffered no apparent hearing loss.

It was an amazing story, but perhaps when your body gets pumped, maybe some defense mechanism kicks in.

Confederate
July 23, 2008, 07:15 PM
The way I saw it, and I may be wrong, is that the officer had the chance to scoot or shoot, and he chose the latter. One of the car's occupants had a high powered rifle and was thus at an advantage. Once the shots began, he could have fled the scene; however, he chose to give chase, all the while hearing thumps of bullets hitting the car. In my opinion, he recklessly endangered his life and the lives of the people living in houses both behind him and in front of the bad guys.

Even if the window was open when the officer fired, he probably would have sustained some damage to his hearing.



So, with the help of backups, he nabbed the two evildoers and no one was hit...well, except two dogs, a cow and a cat sleeping on an old woman's porch. The cop himself never said anything about hearing loss and I'm wondering if he suffered any. You'd think.

Still, I heard of a guy who shot a bear six times with a .44 mag in self defense. He had no hearing protection and managed to kill the attacking bear, but he told his hunting partner, a friend of mine, that he didn't have ringing in his ears or anything afterwords except the shakes. He said he didn't even recall pulling the trigger, and that he suffered no apparent hearing loss.

It was an amazing story, but perhaps when your body gets pumped, maybe some defense mechanism kicks in.

TNT.45
July 24, 2008, 02:06 AM
I saw the same video it was real. I am sure his ears were ringing but better than being dead.

Looked to me like his Glock jammed up if you watch the video closely. Looked like a FTF due to the slide being back after only firing four or five shots through his windshield.

hemiram
July 29, 2008, 02:31 AM
I shot my S&W 28 with pretty hot factory loads out the driver's window of my truck once, and even with both windows rolled down, it was pretty rough. Kind of felt like I got slapped in the face. I need to look at those videos..

Powderman
July 29, 2008, 02:54 AM
I was talking to my son about firing in enclosed spaces. I mentioned that firing an AR or M16 in a room would blow your eardrums out.

He looked at me and said, "No, it won't. You don't hear anything from it but a pop."

He was talking about an incident where he and another Marine walked into a medium sized room in Fallujah. They were armed with M16A2's. Two combatants were inside the room with AK's.

He--and his fellow Marine--walked out of that room.

The insurgents did not.

doc2rn
July 29, 2008, 08:25 AM
I also believe that is part of the allure of the fo~tay cal bullet. It helps penetrate the windshield of cars without vearing off course, IIRC.

That was one of the reasons why TPD went to .40s. Then ammo went up and they switched back to 9mms, funny how life changes.

Powderman, thank your' boy for his service and adrenaline has alot to do with what he is keying on in a gunfight. The ringing in the ear doesn't start till your scene is secured.

Coronach
July 29, 2008, 12:32 PM
I had not thought of it that way. He would still need to be pretty close and almost directly in front of you ... but then he would also be in a position to be run over with the car.This assumes that the car is still functional and in a position to ram the suspect (no intervening barriers, like the suspect's car). In general, though, I agree. If I can shoot him, I can run over him. :)

Mike

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