A veteran uniformed police officer stopped by his bank and walked in on an armed robbery in progress. Both the cop and the robber had six-shot revolvers. More than two dozen shots were fired at a distance of less than 20 feet and neither was hit. Fortunately no one else was injured but the bank’s lobby was a mess. The robber gave up after he ran out of ammo, while the office still had bullets. The robber reloaded once and the officer twice during the incident.
An off-duty officer stopped by his favorite bar on his way home after work. Just after he sat down, two men came out of the men’s room and one of them had what appeared to be revolver in his hand. The officer drew his auto-loader and fired 14 rounds at a distance of less than 15 feet. Neither of the men was hit, and they surrendered. The weapon turned out to be a pellet pistol designed to look like a Smith&Wesson large frame revolver. The officer was a member of his department’s pistol team and a range instructor.
These were trained police officers that I personally have seen group their shots on a timed course at 75 feet. When confronted with a shoot situation, their accuracy disappeared. You have to be a stone-cold killer not to experience an adrenalin surge and a blood pressure spike in a life or death situation. You experience hearing loss and tunnel vision as your brain stem prepares the body to fight or run by diverting blood from ‘unnecessary’ systems. Training reduces the problems, but they can’t be eliminated.
Given these realities, what are the realistic chances of someone with less training and seasoning than an NYPD SWAT officer being able to make the head shot required to take out a shooter wearing soft body armor and firing an AR-15 at you? An armed guard at that school would have been the first person to die, and wouldn’t have prevented anything. The shooter knew what was going to happen, and that is a huge advantage.
(Balloon Juice) All I can think right now is how many moms have Christmas present hidden all over their house and were told this morning that their child is dead. How many of them will now look at a Christmas tree, knowing their child will not be there on Christmas morning to open the presents lovingly purchased and wrapped and hidden? How many of these parents struggled for years to get pregnant, and now their kid, because of some lunatic with an easily accessible gun, is dead? How many grandparents who waited for 30 years to have a grandchild, have plane tickets booked for the Holidays, and now need to change those plans and come up earlier to bury their grandchild.
How the hell John can write a thoughtful, eloquent post like that at a time like this is beyond me. I am unable to get past being mad as hell right now. My only saving grace is the grief I have because of my own past experiences at loss.
I just returned from doing laundry and shopping. Between the time I left the house until I returned, the wind has picked up (out of the north!), the snow – which had been slowing down – has increased, and the temperature feels to have dropped. I have yet to check weather.com. Not that they would have any report on the amount of snow that has fallen so far, but at least I can get the temperature and wind.