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Leo's , active ,retired

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Usmc-1, Jun 2, 2011.


Do cops shoot at the range :

Poll closed Jul 2, 2011.
  1. 1 time a week

    8 vote(s)
  2. 1 time a month

    15 vote(s)
  3. Quarterly

    43 vote(s)
  4. never

    4 vote(s)
  1. Usmc-1

    Usmc-1 Member.

    Apr 17, 2011
    Free Oklahoma Territory
    This also applies to anyone else military ,security etc who routinely have weapons as part of there trade !

    I was wondering through experience (I worked 20 years in Law Enforcement in 2 different agencies ,was on special ops for years as well).

    Im curious , in your departmart small or large how many officers actually fire there service weapon more than once a week , that weekly averages would be around 1-4% of the force who shoot more than once a week , unfortunately , the percentage doesnt really go up for weeks 2-3 , now once a month ,I think it might go up to around 15% , obviously , quarterly (on ave quarterly quals) is where many of the force get there shooting requirements done and again , unfortunately , its more of a "hit the target " to qualify , which I suppose is good enough (for policy / not nearly good enough for what the public perceives of our Officers!)

    I would say smaller departments have the advantage , less court time ,less overtime , lives are just busier in the big cities , Im not even putting special ops into the equation ,(which is another situation by itself / anyone whos been there knows if the brass doesnt see swat as being useful you wont get much in the way of resources and that means no ammo,among other things) !

    What Im getting at is this with all the crap a cop has to deal with , they arent getting there proper range time , the average goofball gets to the range more often than the patrol officer , I dont believe things have changed ,I wont go into where I worked or managements lack of knowledge or concern , because it should be mandatory to hit the range once a week , "Practice makes perfect" and when S_ _t hits the fan you will know what to do because you practice that!
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  2. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Mentor

    Jan 8, 2011
    I don't know a single LEO that routinely shoots his duty weapon weekly...I doubt if we will ever see it as a mandatory training excercise. Ammo simply costs too much for most departments to be able to afford it.
  3. VA27

    VA27 Participating Member

    Jun 5, 2006
    Slovenly Manor, Dungheap-Upon-The-Hill
    Yup. Years ago, the dept used to issue 50 rounds of wadcutter (reloads) a month as long as you turned in 50 rounds of brass. I could always count on getting extra ammo because not everyone took advantage of that. That program pretty much went by the wayside a few years before the switch to semis. And since the sharp increase in the cost of ammo, I don't expect it to ever come back.

    Folks who like to shoot, will. Those who don't, won't. Simple as that.
  4. Harley Quinn

    Harley Quinn Senior Member

    Aug 8, 2006
    No. CA.
    Very few departments shoot once a month... As mentioned cost!!!
    Special teams shoot more...Once a week, was at one time in my life, done...

  5. lawson4

    lawson4 Member

    Jun 26, 2003
    I have firearms training, as well as defensive tactics, once a month and the ammo is free. It's voluntary, but you'd be surprised how many officers won't show up.

  6. Steve in PA

    Steve in PA Senior Member

    Dec 29, 2002
    NE PA
    Your opion on smaller departments is wrong. Smaller departments translates to less people available to work, court time, overtime, lack of ranges, no money, etc. Most departments barely have enough money to allow their officers to qualify, let alone go to the range once a week, month, etc.
  7. USAF_Vet

    USAF_Vet Mentor

    Jan 6, 2011
    Hastings, Michigan
    for most USAF enlisted personnel, they are required to qualify once a year. Security Forces/ Law enforcement personnel (and this may vary from unit to unit) shot monthly at a minimum. Being an SF augmetee, we had to qual quarterly, but often were pushed back to semi-annually.

    That was qualifying on M-16 and M-9. Typical enlisted only qual on M-16
  8. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Senior Member

    Jun 14, 2008
    SouthEastern FL
    Where I worked, we were issued fifty rounds of commercially-sourced reloaded practice ammo up to once a month if we asked for it. We were not required to return brass or in any other way prove we used it. The ammo was .38 Special, 148-grain LSWC (this was in the late eighties.)
    However, that was for use as we wanted. Department-mandated range time consisted of the annual re-qualification. In addition to that, perhaps one-to-three of our monthly in-service training sessions involved range activity each year.
    Incidentally, I still have a box or two of that ammo I never used. I think I was acquiring it faster than I'd burn it off, especially since every range session I initiated myself involved several guns, and not just my service weapon (and caliber.)
  9. Apocalypse-Now

    Apocalypse-Now Participating Member

    May 11, 2011
    deluxe apartment in the sky
    cops practice at the range? :eek:
  10. Rock185

    Rock185 Member

    Jul 8, 2005
    High Desert
    I have been in LE for most of my adult life since 1973. I worked for a larger dept., about 3000 officers for 2/3 of my career and a much smaller one, about 30 officers for the other 1/3 of the time. I retired last July, but have remained a reserve officer.

    I believe there was actually more interest in firearms and firearms training in the big city with the large dept. We could actually get practice ammo and go to the main range and shoot on certain days. Each precinct also had an indoor mini-range for practice and qualification.

    As to the advantage to small depts. less busy, less court time/overtime,etc. Not so with the small dept. I worked. Just as much court as the big city and more overtime due to shortage of manpower due to budget and recruiting difficulties. Also, we had many more resources on the larger dept., back ups, detectives,street crime units, night detectives, motors, air support, evidence technicians,etc,etc. Unlikely as it might seem, the smaller dept was more stressful and labor intensive for me. As to how often officers shoot. I think not often outside of dept. training and qualification. As you undoubtedly have seen during your own career, most officers are not interested in guns/shooting beyond what the dept. requires...
  11. Usmc-1

    Usmc-1 Member.

    Apr 17, 2011
    Free Oklahoma Territory
    Exactly , I feel this is a sad state of affairs in Law Enforcement , one of which led me out the door after my 20 , most departments have become so political its almost unbearable , when officers are straddled by such nonsense , when we heard "10-19 EOS" most of us were a block away anyway , in and out the door , sure the training officers wanted us to train , but with all the bs and constraints of the job (now adays) , its just that a "job" , it wasnt like that when I started or maybe it was and I just didnt see that way , I dont know!

    I know this much , most civilians spend at least 3 hours more a week than officers do with there weapons , shooting , cleaning , maintaining!

    I doubt too many officers even sit in front of a mirror dry firing , telling themselves "no matter what, I live today and come home to my family" I did every day ,like brushing my teeth , it may sound corny , but its like hitting the firing line 2-3 times a week you practice real life situations and when they come its second nature, no guessing "what do I do now", and yes my department didnt offer rounds either , but I paid for that myself , some things are worth the added expense , the "presentation hat" wasnt high my list of items needed to survive a firefight!
  12. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Active Member

    Mar 19, 2005
    When I was an officer at a mid sized department (400-450) I could always count on two guys being at the range, and they met everyday for practice with PPC revolvers. When I left training though, there was little time for practice with my carry weapon (which I despised!) and so I would practice with my backup and favored, off duty primary, the 1911.

    I think if departments issued better, more accurate weapons, people might be inclined to practice more. As it was, I really hated, and continue to hate, DA autos with super heavy triggers. On top of that, when I got a day off, I wanted the day off. We were short about 50 officers so someone has to make up for that, generally the new guys.
  13. westy39

    westy39 New Member

    May 30, 2011
    I recently retired from the BPD here in Montana. We usually had 2 or more mandatory shoots per year as well as 3 or 4 practice shoots a year. The shoots were not all that well attended. I am sure the cost of ammo (Glock 22, very sweet) was always a consideration. The department wasn't that big about 112 officers so they did a pretty good job. I always left with a smile and a dirty gun. Westy39
  14. DesertVet

    DesertVet New Member

    Mar 28, 2011
    Agency requires quarterly qualification shoots with issue Glock Model 22 pistols and Squad rifles. I have to qualify on SMG also. Twice yearly we must qualify with any / all off-duty firearms.
    I normally shoot on my own bi-weekly give or take.
    There were times in my Military career and in my civilian law enforcement career that I was putting 1000 rounds of pistol ammunition down range a MONTH!! These days I shoot a box of pistol ammo about every two weeks or so.
  15. franconialocal

    franconialocal Active Member

    Oct 21, 2008
    New Hampshire
    Only once per year qualification due to the budget......as usual. LOTS of shooting on my own, however.
  16. ball3006

    ball3006 Senior Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    When I was Chief of a small dept many years ago, I had my guys shoot once a month, 50 rounds. It did not help. They all were lousy shots......chris3
  17. catnphx

    catnphx New Member

    Feb 3, 2011
    Phoenix, AZ
    First, thank you all for your service in protecting the good citizens of America. My daughter would like to be a homicide detective someday ... she has a long way to go but she has my support every step of the way.

    Second ... reading this thread is very scary. :eek:
  18. gunnutery

    gunnutery Participating Member

    Jul 30, 2009
    I said quarterly, but I'm the only one on the department that does that. Everyone else only shoots their sidearm on qualification day (unless they go to a school that requires shooting). But I could definately say that I'm the only one on the dept. that spends his own money on ammo for the sidearm.

    My first department, I could usually get a box of ammo from the boss about quarterly or every six months (if I asked for it).
  19. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

    Feb 18, 2007
    NE Ohio
    Having had a combined military police, security, and public law enforcement carrer of 24 years, it still bothers me that few police officers take weapons practice seriously. Most consider it a chore, and few are truly interested in doing anything beyond what is required, as few are into firearms as a hobby or diversion. In comparison, a tradesman like a carpenter has to know how to use many tools, and use them well, or he doesn't make a living. A cop has to learn to use a handgun, shotgun, maybe a rifle, and possibly a speed detection instrument. Not a lot of manually related tools, in my opinion. You'd think a police officer could get as good with his handgun as a carpenter gets with a hammer, right? If the skill level with a handgun required of cop was equivalent to the responsibility placed on him to protect his own or another's life, and if his continued employment depended on it (say, if you don't shoot 90% qualification scores, you get suspended, remedial training, and fired if you continue to shoot poorly), well, things would get serious very quickly. It is a shame that the law enforcment community treats firearms competency so poorly, yet is swift to hang an officer out to dry if the shooting goes bad. Any conscientious cop should be out there practicing on his own time and dime if his dpeartment doesn't provide enough, IF he takes his job seriously.
  20. danprkr

    danprkr Participating Member

    Apr 26, 2009
    Judging by the cops I know I'm surprised at the quarterly being the most common. But then again maybe it's your sample audience. Most of the cops I know practice either once a year just before qualifying or not at all. Which has caused me to always wonder just how lax are those qualification standards if you don't have to shoot at least some to keep a passing score?

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