Recent active shooter incident in AR has me reassessing my ccw choices


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R.W.Dale
September 14, 2011, 08:16 PM
As some of you may be aware Tuesday there was an active shooter incident here in Arkansas. This one struck a little close to home for me as my father works at the locale where this happened (he was out at the time)

As a recent chl licencee I really didn't place too much priority into the possibility of finding myself in a gunfight. Rather I viewed my chl as a freedom exercise and possibly a useful tool against a dog attack or some other situation that seemed more likely to me. In fact I wondered if I was even being unduley paranoid for even carrying. Then Tuesday happened!

Now I'm not so sure my short inaccurate seven shot pf9 I edc In a pocket is as useful as I thought it was. Now I feel compelled to carry a full sized handgun if at all possible. To carry those spare mags I used to scoff at you guys suggesting and to train for speed and accuracy at every oppurtunity.

Yesterday I learned it CAN happen to you or a loved one and you'd for damn sure be better off ready for it if it does

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Deaf Smith
September 14, 2011, 08:31 PM
Dale,

First off carry the most powerful gun you can shoot well and still conceal. Do that anyway regardless of any 'active shooter'.

And then make sure you have an excellent first aid kit and training to use it.

For you see, you are far more likely to see it happen at a distance and get there in time to help people than to actually be involved in the fight.

There are some companies that teach battlefield medic courses. I'd look into that to.

Deaf

Resist Evil
September 14, 2011, 08:41 PM
It seems good that the gravity of actually needing your self defense tool, and if it's good enough, has happened without the event actually happening to you.

There are likely many who will post that they have similar pistols to yours that they feel are perfectly adequate to the self defense task. Everyone has a different idea about this. I carry the largest pistol caliber in the best-sized package that I can carry and shoot well for about 98% of the time. The remaining time I use a .38spl revolver.

You'll figure it out. The bottom line is that it's better to have any gun than not when you need to use one.

wideym
September 14, 2011, 08:58 PM
Carrying a full sized pistol is great, as long as you carry something. It seems that active shooters seem to give up or shoot themselves when someone fires back at them.

MrM4
September 14, 2011, 08:59 PM
PF9 Might not be enough, extra round are always good to have but being good with what ever you have counts for more then all the ammo you can carry. I either carry a Glock or a 1911 with extra mags on my person, Shotgun or Carbine in the truck. Be prepared to use your CCW and hope you never have to.

Plan2Live
September 14, 2011, 09:23 PM
RWDale - I did a quick search and couldn't find any news articles relating to your post. Can you be more specific? What/where, etc?

BCRider
September 14, 2011, 09:31 PM
Plan2Live, just google for "arkansas shooting". It's all over the first page of responses.


I thought from my reading around here that the whole point of carrying is for self defense. Part of self defense is to use your gun as a tool to move away from the scene and not to promote the continuence of the conflict. If this means killing/wounding to stop the aggressor as you're moving away then so be it.

So I guess it becomes a question of being caught in such a situation. Proper tactics would suggest that if someone opened fire like this your job is to get you and your loved ones around a corner or other obstruction and away from the shooter. Once you do that you have some control over any engagement if he comes after you and yours by staying closer to the corner or feature where your gun is just as effective as his at the range you set up. It's about controlling the situation you're in so that you have an even if not upper hand. But mostly I suspect it's your job to just leave with you and yours as quickly as practical.

If you think of your role in this manner do you still need a big gun and spare mags?

But it's highly unlikely anymore since I'm sure courthouses all over the nation will bar guns from entering after this occurence.

R.W.Dale
September 14, 2011, 09:39 PM
Don't misunderstanding its not so much the exact cirstumstances of this shooting that have prompted me to look at this but rather that it happened at all.

This was a courthouse shooting. But it could have just as easily been a restaurant or workplace event.

Bobson
September 14, 2011, 09:45 PM
Now I feel compelled to carry a full sized handgun if at all possible. To carry those spare mags I used to scoff at you guys suggesting and to train for speed and accuracy at every opportunity.
This is the right attitude. If you're going to carry a concealed gun, you don't need to limit yourself to a gun the size of your fist. There are holster designs out there that will allow you to conceal a duty-sized weapon, and conceal it well. You'll probably need to adjust your wardrobe, but for those who are truly willing to be that sheepdog, a change of clothes is a small sacrifice.

I admire your willingness to consider new options, if nothing else.

GojuBrian
September 14, 2011, 09:46 PM
Guns aren't allowed in many places here in Arkansas including courthouses.
The shooter must not have been impressed with this law, but I'll bet there was someone there not carrying because of this idiotic law.

R.W.Dale
September 14, 2011, 09:49 PM
Guns aren't allowed in many places here in Arkansas including courthouses.
The shooter must not have been impressed with this law, but I'll bet there was someone there not carrying because of this idiotic law.
My father would be one such case

Plan2Live
September 14, 2011, 10:10 PM
This is one of those topics like "which caliber is better" that can only be answered by the individual. I personally lean toward the theory of carrying the biggest gun with the largest capacity that you can use well and conceal well. But others will choose to go light and easy. If you go your entire life and never pull your weapon then light and easy would have been the best choice. On the other hand, if you are involved in an event and you need a bigger caliber or more rounds and you don't have them, well we can only theorize how that one would come out.

MedWheeler
September 14, 2011, 10:11 PM
The shooter must not have been impressed with this law, but I'll bet there was someone there not carrying because of this idiotic law.

Just ask Suzanna Hupp about that feeling.. (1991, Luby's Cafeteria in Kileen, Texas.)

MICHAEL T
September 15, 2011, 12:38 AM
I'm not so sure my short inaccurate seven shot pf9 7 rounds mine holds 8 when full loaded You do carry loaded right. Inaccurate I was doing head shots at 12 to 13 yds on a normal police B-27? target by 2nd mag. Their far from inaccurate I used the finger rest on mag(doesn't effect concealment ). With out my groups open some But still good enough for SD . carry a 2nd mag if worried about ammo. .

Bobson
September 15, 2011, 12:42 AM
Just ask Suzanna Hupp about that feeling.. (1991, Luby's Cafeteria in Kileen, Texas.)
Wasn't Ms. Hupp the sheepdog who stopped that shooter?

JohnKSa
September 15, 2011, 01:45 AM
She managed to escape the restaurant but both of her parents died. Although she had a gun (it was outside in her car) she wasn't carrying because, at the time, there was essentially no legal way to carry in TX. She became a TX legislator and was instrumental in bringing concealed carry to TX.

Bobson
September 15, 2011, 02:17 AM
Gotcha, thanks.

chris in va
September 15, 2011, 03:33 AM
I recently realized that I can't shoot my G21SF nearly as well as my CZ 75BD, so despite the weight and caliber disadvantage, I will be carrying the CZ from now on when possible.

kayak-man
September 15, 2011, 04:52 AM
Originally posted by DeafSmith
And then make sure you have an excellent first aid kit and training to use it.

I agree 100%

There are some good Tactical First Aid classes out there, but I haven't had a chance to take one yet (I want to, Oh, I really want to). If you have a hard time finding one nearby, I'd suggest looking into the NOLS Wilderness First Responder course. It may be more indepth than what most people are looking for, and it does cover more than just trauma, but when you're done, you know that you can handle almost anything that gets thrown at you.

Chris "the Kayak-Man" Johnson

1858
September 15, 2011, 04:57 AM
Yesterday I learned it CAN happen to you or a loved one and you'd for damn sure be better off ready for it if it does

This story caught my attention since I was in Little Rock last week. If I move there I'll be applying for a CC permit once the 90-day residency requirement has been fulfilled. As for what I'd carry, either a P220 Carry, P239 or 1911 Commander with at least two spare magazines. If I had a CC permit, I'd carry a firearm every day, no doubt about it.

1858
September 15, 2011, 05:17 AM
By the way, even if you have a CC permit and carry a handgun religiously, if you were in that courthouse at the time of the shooting, you wouldn't have a firearm with you if you were complying with the law in AR.

R.W.Dale
September 15, 2011, 05:39 AM
By the way, even if you have a CC permit and carry a handgun religiously, if you were in that courthouse at the time of the shooting, you wouldn't have a firearm with you if you were complying with the law in AR.
True

But as I said earlier its not so much the particulars of this incident which BTW had a miraculous outcome . But again that it happened at all. It was a courthouse this time, whose to say next time it wont be a disgruntled wall mart employee or that a little too quiet coworker you always wondered about. I'm talking about this not to convince others to change anything, I'm merely writing about this to show how its changed MY views.

1858
September 15, 2011, 05:55 AM
I agree 100% with everything you've said and can understand how this situation has make you reevaluate your "system" for protecting yourself and/or others. I would add that situational awareness is critical too. That might mean choosing a specific table at a restaurant, parking in an inconvenient spot, crossing the street to put distance between you and a group of strangers, knowing where the exits are etc.

I have recurring nightmares in which my life is in danger from some form of threat. I have a firearm with me in the dream but no ammunition. :eek: Being in that courthouse as a CC holder but having my pistol in the car would be similar.

Lawdawg45
September 15, 2011, 07:51 AM
R.W.Dale,

You've posted what many of us are struggling with that CC in society. For me, the debate was between my Ruger LCP and my J-Frame for everyday carry, but the argument was settled at the range. Even with the J-Frame having 2 less rounds, the presence of real sights gave me the ability to place kill shots at 25 yards with no problem. The LCP just wasn't accurate enough and the lower powered round combined with the jam factor moved it to the bottom of my carry list. In LE and self defense classes we used to teach about a "threat level assessment" and how to dress/arm yourself, but many of the places formerly low on the list (grocery store, church, gas station, fast food) have become prime choices for shooters. Again, carry what you're consistently deadly with and a minimum of 2 reloads.;)

LD45

HexHead
September 15, 2011, 08:20 AM
R.W.Dale,

You've posted what many of us are struggling with that CC in society. For me, the debate was between my Ruger LCP and my J-Frame for everyday carry, but the argument was settled at the range. Even with the J-Frame having 2 less rounds, the presence of real sights gave me the ability to place kill shots at 25 yards with no problem. The LCP just wasn't accurate enough and the lower powered round combined with the jam factor moved it to the bottom of my carry list. In LE and self defense classes we used to teach about a "threat level assessment" and how to dress/arm yourself, but many of the places formerly low on the list (grocery store, church, gas station, fast food) have become prime choices for shooters. Again, carry what you're consistently deadly with and a minimum of 2 reloads.;)

LD45
You might want to swap that LCP for a S&W Bodyguard .380. It has real sights.

Lawdawg45
September 15, 2011, 09:58 AM
"You might want to swap that LCP for a S&W Bodyguard .380. It has real sights."

I did at one point, but I found the laser activation and mag release to be very awkward, and I prefer the non jamming more powerful .38 +P JHP, but that's just me!;)

LD

wgp
September 15, 2011, 03:14 PM
My usual test is "What do I want in my hand if I have to use it?" and while it has to be concealable that question makes choosing a larger pistol and extra ammo easier. I have a couple of pocket pistols but rarely carry them. With a good holster and belt it's not as hard as you might think to carry a Commander or similar. There are some very good compact 9s coming out too -- the Springfield EMP has become one of my favorite carry guns due to its good capacity and good sights but still light weight.

EmGeeGeorge
September 15, 2011, 03:24 PM
deleted...

Sulaco
September 16, 2011, 10:22 AM
In my hometown, the courthouse has metal detectors and sheriff's deputies manning each entrance. We get wanded, too if they feel like it. Security is very tight and as far as I know, we've not had any incident to cause it, other than wanting to be safe. It's a shame things like this have to happen as a result of some moron doing this. I don't know if everybody being armed would make much difference though. The problem is, if they let the wrong person in, there's a good chance he will harm someone before someone like me takes his will to fight away. At least with the metal detectors and tight security, there's no way he's getting in to begin with. I can't believe I said that, but it's true.

FMF Doc
September 16, 2011, 05:41 PM
I was just discussing the idea of "Gun Free" (for law abiding citizens) areas with a contractor I work with. He has been teaching SWAT and Couterterrorism tactics all over the world for almost 35 years. He mentioned that you didn't have the shooting in schools, courthouses and in perticular to our discussion, airplane hijackings when almost anyone could carry a pistol. This is long ago and even before many of our times but nevertheless, armed citizens with (back then) revolvers did more to keep the police in many ways than over 1 million LEO/Security people and the amost $2trillion spent on the very same goal in this country today. Want to balance the budget...get rid of the ATF, DEA, and scale dawn the overzelous office weenies with guns called the FBI and let people protect them selves. I'm not a LEO hater, work with them everyday, and have the utmost respect (for the good ones) but my safety is my responsibilty, not theirs. Let me take care of it!

USAF_Vet
September 16, 2011, 05:51 PM
As one who will be joining the ranks of CCW holders this year, I've given a lot of thought to what my CC gun will be, and have given thought to what a BUG will be, if I decide it to be neccessary (rather than just a fun extra range toy).

After hunting and searching and researching and shooting and renting and so on, I came across a great deal on a 2nd gen S&W auto at my LGS that was priced well.

I bought my S&W 469 for $250, I've practice with it (not as extensively as I will when it's an EDC) I'm accurate with it, I like the feel of it (although will probably swap the factory grips for something a bit more comfortable) and it's size/weight/round capacity are exactly what I was looking for in a CC gun.

Having been under fire, albeit in a completely different situation than the OP has described, I know that I'd never want the feeling of not having "enough gun." Which is the main reason I won't carry anything less than a 9mm as a primary CCW.

At least with the metal detectors and tight security, there's no way he's getting in to begin with. I can't believe I said that, but it's true.

But what stops the BG from pulling a gun and firing BEFORE he gets to the metal detectors and security guards with the wands? Considering some of the courthouse security I've encountered, they aren't the most on top of things.

G29
September 16, 2011, 05:55 PM
Do some research on the 10mm... glock G29 is subcompact and rides nicely inside the belt. The 10mm is veristale.. you can buy loads from 450ftlbs to well over 700ftlbs depending on your preference and application. If you are a outdoorsman,,,,, well its can be used for hunting back up or hiking.... Ive owned over 1O guns and the G29 is by far my fav

good luck

Rexster
September 17, 2011, 05:56 PM
Except for very rare, specialized circumstances, I carry at least one handgun that fills my hand, so I can handle it quickly and fire accurately in a hurry, that fires a duty/service-level cartridge. This is not difficult; a Ruger SP101 can fulfill these requirements, and are so pack-able that I usually carry two. An S&W K-frame or SIG P229 are almost as easy to pack.

Now that I think about it, I have not carried either of my J-frame snubbies in at least two or three years, as the weapons mentioned in the above paragraph are so easy to have with me.

As for pocketable autos, I have carried my Seecamp LWS-32 as a "primary" handgun less than half a dozen times, total, and only when I really, really needed to appear unarmed, in special circumstances. The Seecamp is the only pocket auto I have ever really liked to carry. I briefly owned a Walther PPK, and never learned to like it well enough to bother buying a holster for it. I tried Colt Mustangs for a while, too, but never warmed up to the idea of using them as carry guns.

My wife bought a Kel-tec .32, and I fired most of the break-in rounds for her. I
could not imagine pulling such a horrid little weapon in a gunfight, no matter
how reliable. It has been a paper-weight for years; even my wife does not like
carrying something so small.

It is not so much the cartridge power issue that keeps me from small handguns, as the desire to have a weapon that handles well under dynamic circumstances, and can place shots at widely varying distances.

Rexster
September 17, 2011, 06:38 PM
FWIW, my carry practices will always be influenced by the fact that I defended myself and others from an "active cutter" in a post office parking lot, in a very "nice" part of town. Suicide by cop, of course, but the setting was a very "nice" area: three long blocks from the neighborhood where the old-money folks live, next door to the ballet office and training building, across the street from a trendy shopping center...

(I don't want to go off-topic, into carrying at a post office; just sayin' where my incident occurred.)

By the grace of God, nobody was injured in this incident, except for the bad guy. Once we locked eyes, it was a two-man incident from that point.

To this day, I want a weapon in my hands that I can shoot well, without thinking. Not a weapon that I must delicately hold just so, and must place my trigger finger just so.... Unconscious competence is the goal.

To this day, I want a weapon that points for me, as if God is guiding my hands. God gave me hands shaped as He intended, and blessed me with folks who designed certain grips that fit me. (I am very thankful for the efforts and skill of the man who designed the original factory grips for the GP100.) I do believe in using the sights, but if the weapon points well for me, already, I am ahead of the game. I looked over the top of my GP100 at the decisive moment...

While I am quite comfortable with other cartridges for defensive use, to this day, I have a deep and abiding affection for the .357 Magnum.

I am no hero; this story is for teaching/learning purposes. What one good man can do, another good man can do.

Vern Humphrey
September 17, 2011, 06:47 PM
The M1911 -- hundreds of thousands of Mexicans, Germans, Russians, Italians, Japanese, Viet Namese, and arabs can't be wrong.;)

medic-rod
September 17, 2011, 07:09 PM
If you use a 380 go kel-tec,LCP and body guard say not to use +P kel=tec says it;s ok just not all the time. I have a 9 round mag on mine with bufalo bore +P my wife has the same but the B.B. ammo kicks a bit so she has hydra shok with 10 rounds good ammo it is fine. I do like my P-90 .45 ACP but it's hard to hide. as far as "inaccurate" we both can at 30 feet cover 10 rounds with 1 hand. and we had a Cougar (4leg type) on our dog2 rounds 1 dead pound dead cat 1 saved dog. is a 380 enough? was that day and at for a gun that small a long range. shot a coyote at about the same range. so I feel good with them. bigger is better but you need to be able to hide and trust also. just my opnion.

R.W.Dale
September 17, 2011, 07:09 PM
To me a 7 shot 1911 brings nothing to the table over my pf9 other than accuracy.

Since posting this I've been carrying a glock 34 with 17rds on tap and another 17 in a reload. I'm very accurate with it its fast on followup and it conceales surprisingly well

Ducman69
September 17, 2011, 07:22 PM
Chiming in a bit late, but while obviously very subjective, risk assessment still involves statistical probability versus inconvenience and effectiveness of countermeasures to minimize that risk to an acceptable level.

Take riding my motorcycle as an analogy, I could be very safe simply choosing not to ride a motorcycle just as one can be quite safe just avoiding going out past dark or bad neighborhoods and the like. I enjoy the freedom and experience of riding though, but to minimize the risk I took the basic and advanced MSF courses and got protective gear... but its just a mid-tier helmet with a comfortable mesh jacket and gloves and boots which is a compromise. IMO, that is a reasonable compromise, just as my choice to go out nights with less concern of the neighborhood but carry a small meager capacity 9mm like my Kahr PM9 simply because its more convenient just like the mesh over full on one-piece racing leathers.

A single event near home doesn't change the real statistics (of which from my reading most encounters are not only rare but involve few shots and at very close range), so personally I'd just step back and evaluate if the extra effectiveness of a fullsize is truly worth the extra bulk... for my own life circumstances, a light mesh jacket and little 9mm are best especially since the inconvenience of carrying more protection might lure me into occasionally going out with nothing. :)

Shoot66
September 18, 2011, 02:19 AM
R.W. Dale,
I started carring with the same approach as you did. After a year I moved to a full size HG. Some might find it troublesome. I do not. I carry every day. I do not feel I need to look back.

bestseller92
September 18, 2011, 03:05 AM
"Active shooter" scenarios are one reason I carry a gun, and the possibility of encountering one, however slight, leads me to carry an accurate, powerful gun that I can hit with out to 25 yards or more. My most common carry gun is a Glock 26 9mm loaded with Federal 115 grain +P+ JHP. This is a very accurate little pistol and I shoot it well. When I can, I carry a Glock 22 .40. I'm considering adding a Glock 23 .40 to my carry remuda in the near future, as a good compromise between the full size G22 and the baby G26.

wlewisiii
September 18, 2011, 03:31 AM
If I'm worried about an "active shooter" or "fascist shooter" situation, I'll want at least my Winchester 94 along. That cowboy's AK can do more to equal things than any handgun. A good bolt with scope and 300 meter's of stand off is even better, but in the real world we don't get to choose our scenarios, now do we?

That said, 99% of the situations will be fine with my 642 - five rounds of .38 special 158 gr. LSWCHP +P will solve the problem.

Averageman
September 18, 2011, 03:01 PM
I buy my pants 2 inches bigger in the waist and carry a fullsized handgun and at least one extra magazine whenever possible, usually an 1911A1 or the slightly smaller HK USPC in.45.
When you debate caliber and concealability, I think you have to ask,
"How low in caliber and how small a weapon am I really willing to go and still defend myself?"
"At what point is a smaller, lighter more easily concealed gun so small and light that it wont get the job done?"
As long as you are within the law, should you even consider "printing" as an issue?
And in the end "Why are you carrying concealed anyway?"

Psa1m144
September 18, 2011, 03:07 PM
I bought my first handgun right after the VA Tech shooting and I lived in Roanoke, VA which is only 1hr away. I bought a Glock 22 and I have been carrying it ever since. Shootings don't happen often but I know that I will be prepared for it if it ever happens around me, my wife or 2 daughters. Definitely don't slack on your carry weapon or your ammo, always keep an extra mag with you.

Vern Humphrey
September 18, 2011, 03:29 PM
When you debate caliber and concealability, I think you have to ask,
"How low in caliber and how small a weapon am I really willing to go and still defend myself?"
"At what point is a smaller, lighter more easily concealed gun so small and light that it wont get the job done?"
As long as you are within the law, should you even consider "printing" as an issue?
And in the end "Why are you carrying concealed anyway?"
A long time ago, I was at a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (SERE) symposium at Fort Bragg. An expert there was extolling the condom -- you can carry on in your wallet. You can keep your socks in it so they stay dry. You can use it for a canteen.

Some wisea$$ asked, "If you were setting out to walk the lenght of Death Valley, would you carry your water in a condom?"

And the expert said, "In a survival situation, you take what you have."

And the wisea$$ replied, "We're not in a survival situation. We're in an air-conditioned room debating what some other poor slob will have when he's in a survival situation."

The outcome of that was the Watersack (a polyethelene bag inside a slightly smaller nylon bag) -- a great way to carry a lot of water safely.

The second outcome was a principle -- when considering what you will choose in a life-or-death situation, pretend you're actually going into that situation and decide what you really want when the chips are down.

Like you, I want the M1911.

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