Real Firearm Tactics OR Hollywood Hype


July 13, 2004, 02:46 AM
I was watching a 1968 police movie about the NYPD titled "MADIGAN" starring Henry Fonda and Richard Whitmark.

Near the end of the movie, the NYPD detectives made entry into an apartment to handle an "armed barricaded subject with hostage" situation (these where the days before SWAT Teams).

As the two NYPD dectectives where about to enter this apartment, they both pulled out two (2) .38 snubs each -- one in the left hand and one in the right hand.

:what: :eek: :what:

Was using two guns at the same time ever a REAL police tactic, or just Hollywood hype?

:confused: :scrutiny: :confused:

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July 13, 2004, 03:34 AM
Before Hollywood I'll say no... However it used to be commen in the wild west for people to carry two handguns, The SA and "ball and cap" revolvers at the time were rather slow to reload.


July 13, 2004, 05:33 AM
I don't know how accurate the movie was about that particular set of circumstances but there is at least one retired NYPDer on this forum who could say for sure. In any event I think that that scene would be the embodiment of what was once called the "New York reload".

July 13, 2004, 05:44 AM
I've seen a double holster shoulder rig called a "New York Reload." It was designed to carry two revolvers, one on the left and one on the right. Maybe that's what a New York Reload is, two wheel guns? Interesting question.

July 13, 2004, 06:01 AM
The idea behind the "new york reload" is to discard your empty gun and replace it with a new loaded gun. Im not sure why this is called a "new york reload" though.

I'm sure that some cop at some time in someplace entered a hostile situation with one j-frame in each hand. I doubt that this was a department sanctioned or trained proceedure though.

July 13, 2004, 07:28 AM
Just my 2 cents. I'm mil and not a LEO, but two guns has never been a military entry technique. If you have two guns out that means you aren't really aiming either one. Add a hostage and 4 guns slinging lead in a close space has the distinct chance of inviting murphy for a visit. Dead BGs is OK dead hostages = a lot of questions. I think it was probably just hollywood embellishing. What would you expect from a bunch of people that try to act like shooters but protest gun ownership...

July 13, 2004, 07:49 AM
Remember that Madigan was a 60's era movie. Also note that it was- relatively speaking- realistic. This was way before sophisticated tactics were part of the tool box.
Note that in that scene an ESU Sgt was present with a long barreled shotgun.
ESU was dual hatted, but primarily a rescue unit. Their initial training was received from FDNY, and the logo remains a fire type truck. The motto in the day was "SWAT we're not".
It was also loosley based on fact.
Carrying two revolvers was authorized by NYPD and recommended by the Firearms and Tactics Section.
I carried two revolvers; 1 Glock/ 1 revolver; 1 13.5" Ithaca/ 1 revolver etc for my entire 20 years in NYPD.
The purpose of carrying two guns was to ditch the empty six shooter and immediately transition to the second. Revolvers were slow to reload and the dump pouches of the day were not conducive to speed. The purpose was not to shoot both at the same time. Carrying one in each hand was meant to save time- which there is never enough of- when transitioning. The training of the day was also poor, being primarily PPC type rather than what was needed.

I know of two incidents in that time frame when Detectives carried a revolver in each hand. One was an older incident in the 60pct confines, and the second a celebrated case where a whako with a gun shot several people in Central Park, and fled to the roof of a park building.
A Detective climbed a ladder to the roof and, with a revolver in each hand, engaged the perp in a close range fight.
Carrying a primary and secondary weapon is common for all- mil and police- involved in Direct Action.

1968 was a long time ago, and can be considered the dark ages when it came to policing- shooting- telecommunications etc.
We know a lot more now, but that is only with the benefit of hindsight.

Sitting at a keyboard with a cup of coffee in your hand and your dog at your feet is comfortable, but you need to take things in the context of the time.

July 13, 2004, 08:22 AM
Thanks Pat.

- Gabe

Wayne D
July 13, 2004, 08:43 AM
As Pat says, there was little or no training in 1968. I believe the FBI was still teaching one handed point shooting from the hip. So, if you're not going to use your off hand for support, why not have your extra gun in it? Given this style of training and type of equipment (revolvers and dump pouches), I would probably do the same thing.

July 13, 2004, 09:08 AM
Your welcome!

Also please be aware that there was no formal hostage negotiation (as we know it now) priot to the John and Al's Sporting Goods Siege in 73 in the 90 Pct.
Several Black muslims took over the store in an attempt to get weaponry and were interupted by the cops. One cop was killed by a 30-06 to the head.
The muslims vowed that they would die, but when the hostages rescued themselves by punching through a false wall and up a rooftop staicase, the perps decided not to meet any virgins and gave up like little girls.

I was a Hostage negotiator and a Hostage supervisor, and have a fairly clear understanding of the dynamics of IHR.
I am also aware that none of that existed in 68.

July 13, 2004, 12:15 PM
Thanks, Pat, for your comments in reference to my posting.

It is great to hear from someone who has "been there, done that."

:D :) :D

July 13, 2004, 12:55 PM
Pat has BTDT in so many ways, at so many times and had/has his finger in so many pies, I'm starting to think there are actually several people all posing as this one 'Pat Rogers' person...maybe a gagle of identical siblings or something...

No one person could possibly have the skinny low-down on so many topics.

- Gabe ;)

July 13, 2004, 04:12 PM
I wish that i could be cloned- i'd certainly be making more money right now.

Every morning when i wake up i remind myself how lucky i have been.
I have been in the right places at the right time.
Been present when doors of opportunity opened.
Been mentored by some of the very best people in the world.
Worked for and with the absolute best in the world.

Along the way i've developed a fair amount of experience (that being what you get when you don't get what you want...) and having the ability to assimilate that information.

My life has not been what one would consider normal- but it has been a good ride.

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