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Carrying Reloads In Self-Defense Pistol: Any Documented Cases Where It Mattered?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by Mr. Whimsy, Feb 10, 2010.

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  1. Mr. Whimsy

    Mr. Whimsy member

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    I was just thinking about how many "dud" factory rounds I've experienced lately and it occurred to me that my reloads seem more reliable. Now of course we are scorned for carrying our reloaded ammo by almost everyone... but on the other hand, there are also people who don't leave the house without strapping on a Batman-belt full of survival gear.

    Do any of you acknowledge this advice as "well-intentioned" but carry your reloads anyway? Or are there well-documented court cases you can cite that dissuade you?
     
  2. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    NOPE! But we wont let that get in the way of an argument around here!
     
  3. Stophel

    Stophel Member

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    If a lawyer wants to, he will demonize you for WHATEVER you do or don't do. If you use factory hollow points, he could paint you as a vicious madman, bent on killing, using the most deadly ammunition you could find.

    NOT anything I would worry about. If I had my own load that I liked, I'd sure use it without reservation.
     
  4. TeamPrecisionIT

    TeamPrecisionIT Member

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    A justifiable homicide is just that, justifiable. Whether you use an axe, baseball bat, M2 .50 cal or an F16 is really not the issue. You better be damn sure it would be viewed as a JUSTIFIABLE action by a REASONABLE person. Everything else is hogwash. Any good lawyer will be able to discount or object to any other 'things' that do not show prudence in the course of action taken. If you feel your reloads work more reliably in your gun than you should be 100% fine.

    Damian
     
  5. Mr. Whimsy

    Mr. Whimsy member

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    Well, that's how I was kind of leaning. Yes you could be made to look bad, but it's the lawyer's job to make you look bad and if it isn't reloads, it could be your gun collection. Or your online habits. Or the fact that you hunt. Pretty much anything you enjoy doing is open to being mischaracterized as a dangerous character flaw that leaves you a maniac in need of state supervision.

    I just can't imagine living a life constantly in fear of "what the prosecutor might think". But maybe I'm wrong, and am willing to study any cases that are presented here.
     
  6. jon_in_wv

    jon_in_wv Member

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    Personally I think it will only matter in certain cases. I carry factory loads in my carry guns but I do have a few boxes of rounds loaded up for defensive purposes. I loaded 115gr XTPs at a moderate velocity. The choice of bullet is one that is common in law enforcement and they aren't loaded to max velocity so they can't imply I was trying to make the rounds faster, or more powerful or deadly. If you go out trying to reinvent the wheel by using something exotic or getting crazy with mercury in the HP I think the prosecutor or civil attorney will make a strong argument that you were reckless and tried to make a more "deadly" bullet and should be held accountable for it. I don't agree with the argument but I don't have to, only the jury does.
     
  7. James T Thomas

    James T Thomas Member

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    out of ammo matters

    I misread this post!
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2010
  8. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    James, I think you have confused carrying spare ammo with the OP that is talking about handloaded ammo.
     
  9. SNoB

    SNoB Member

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    I havent heard of any cases, but by doing it, you could become that case that everyone talks about.
     
  10. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I think OP means handloads. Do a search on that issue. There are some enormous threads going over the matter in fine detail.

    If the OP means extra clips or cartridges, that's a more interesting topic. LEO's and soldiers have certainly run out before, but for a self defense situation? I suspect an extra clip might be a good idea. Beyond that, it's probably never going to be necessary.

    Still I like keeping some spare speed loaders in the man purse.
     
  11. Mr. Whimsy

    Mr. Whimsy member

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    I meant handloads. Sorry, my fault guys... did you ever blank out on a word that you meant to say? Apparently I said reloaded when I meant handloaded.

    To be honest it is a little difficult to find quality self-defense ammo here, which is another reason I am contemplating just using reloads. When I do find ammo it's at extortionist prices, making it difficult to do much practice with good factory ammo. I end up using reloads for practice.
     
  12. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    Where is here? Can you not receive shipments from places such as Natchez, Ammoman, etc?
     
  13. Mr. Whimsy

    Mr. Whimsy member

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    Cosmoline, the only thing I'll be doing a search on is why anyone would carry a "man purse". Maybe your part of the country is more cosmopolitan and sophisticated, but here it screams "shoplifter" or "Nancy boy". At best it would be conspicuous and divisive.

    I salute you for pulling that off, as I've long thought it would be the most convenient form of carry and would allow a full-sized gun.
     
  14. mgmorden

    mgmorden Member

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    As TeamPrecision says - you're either justified in the shooting or not. After the fact makes no difference. The prosecution hell-bent on a conviction is something I don't get either. 99% of self defense cases don't even make it to trial around here - the few that do when the person is in the right is usually a mere formality. The prosecution isn't working for the perp's family - s/he works for the government.
     
  15. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Member

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  16. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    Sigh --

    [1] This has been discussed extensively. See these threads:

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=503695

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=434947

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=396040

    [2] In any case, after over 30 years practicing law, I have some understanding of how the legal system works. I won't use handloads for self defense.

    But also remember that you don't have the final say on whether it's a valid self defense shoot.

    We really have to get over this "a good shoot is a good shoot" business. If you are on trial after a self defense shooting, someone doesn't think it was a "good shoot." Either the DA decided that he had something to prosecute or the grand jury concluded that there was probable cause to believe that a crime had been committed and that you did it. There is a dispute about whether the shooting was justified, and determining whether it was a "good shoot" is now going to be up to the judge and/or jury.

    Everyone who has ever been on trial after a self defense shooting thought as he pulled the trigger that he was right -- that he had no choice. But the fact that he wound up on trial shows that in the aftermath the prosecutor found good reason to challenge the claim of justification and to believe that he could get a jury to agree.

    Sometimes, probably often, the evidence may be substantial that your use of lethal force was justified self defense; and if that's the case, things like handloads pretty much won't matter.

    But there's no guarantee that if a "bad day" happens to you, when the dust settles everyone will be agreed that it was a "good shoot."

    And there are studies that indicate that things like the weapon you used will affect the way the jury responds to you, thus possibly affecting your outcome:

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=4840558&postcount=27

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=5167902&postcount=69

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=5649380&postcount=30
     
  17. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    Darn, I almost forgot to put the popcorn on! :p
    OK, carry on, I have the popcorn...
     
  18. gunnie

    gunnie Member

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    i wonder how many crime scene investigators would know a "handload" from a commercial round to begin with. the outward appearance of one can often be identical to NIB factory ammo.

    i know of one case personally that resulted in an empty revolver, there was no mention of non-commercial origin in the LEO report. any of the recovered bullets would likely have shown same clearly. they were scored down through the jacketing of the bullet base with a triangular file in an "X" shape, and loaded backwards.

    the perp had an extensive history of arrests and convictions, many of violent nature ranging about ten years period. the shooter had traffic tickets before. the closely located non-involved witnesses confirmed the shooter's story. the perp had physical superiority. the perp initiated the physical assault, and charged after being told to disengage at gunpoint. at the cost of everything.

    LEO's generally refer to encounters like that as "good riddance shootings". likely at volumes that only their co-workers will hear. i can't say with any degree of authority as to whether the homegrown ammo was ignored or missed. none of the heavy 265 grain slugs stayed in target.

    in a shooting of questionable provocation, it could be a problem the prosecutor will use to raise doubts about whether the shooter was secretly "wanting" or "planning" to get into a situation with a similar result.

    the point being made above about the evidence of what actually caused the shooting outweighing the bullet construction is generally, and at very least, ideally true.

    i don't have reliability issues with factory ammo. i also think any load a sane person can make at home will be available as an equal on store shelf. maybe in a specialty format, maybe shipped from great distance, maybe at a cost premium, but obtainable.

    why add to your liabilities if you are forced into a shooting? this is the conclusion of most police department lawyers.

    gunnie
     
  19. w_houle

    w_houle Member

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  20. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    This is basically what a local D.A. told me the other night when I asked. Ran into him at a High School hockey game right after the last time this argument came up. Said the only time handloads could be an issue would be if the shoot was deemed unjustified and the use of extremely hot loads or altered bullets could show a malicious intent....but the use of your own reloaded ammo in itself, would not make a good shoot bad.

    This too is what the D.A. said. But....he said that unless the type of bullet you are using is not legal(exploding, etc) or you were using a illegal firearm, you have not committed any crime just by shooting your own reloads. He said where people get into trouble is when there are other options to shooting the BG that they ignore or disregard, either intentionally or not. He said the most common is in protection of property.

    He then added that this was his interpretation of the laws within his jurisdiction, that laws vary from state to state and how other D.A.s interpreted the law in their jurisdiction may be completely different. He also said that altho a shooting is deemed a justified homicide, that one can be convicted of another crime if they committed one.......i.e. carrying concealed without a valid permit. But this too, in itself, would not make a good shoot bad.
     
  21. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Suppose the only gun you own is a Model 12 Trap gun your grandpa willed to you.
    And the only shells you have for it are Grandpas reloaded trap-loads.
    And a home invader busts down your front door and comes at you with a knife.
    And you shoot him with the only gun and shells you own.

    Do you see any legal problem with that?

    I thought not!

    If it's a justified shooting, it's a justified shooting, regardless of what ammo you have on hand to do it with.

    rc
     
  22. Oro

    Oro Member

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    I think one result of this thread is no one can provide a citation, which is an interesting fact.
     
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