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  1. #1
    Garda's Avatar
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    Leo use of shotguns

    Ok boys and girls. I have posted this in a general area cause I figure some non-Leo people may have an opinion on the subject.

    I have never understood why US officers carry shotguns in their cars. I get the sidearm which is mostly Glock, right? But US LEO's use shotguns.

    Now shotguns fire pellets that scatter and have sweet FA accuracy over any decent distance so doesnt that make it a bad choice of weapon?

    Our armed units along with the UK's ARV's all carry H&K MP5 carbines. accurate, reliable and a dozen shots before reloading. Of course they also have an option on other weapons but these are 'standard'.

    Various other forces use M16 as their carbine so Im left wondering, why? When it comes to shotguns?
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  2. #2
    Ken K is offline Banned
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    I'll take a shotgun for close in combat, especially with multiple subjects. Stopping power. Psychological effect too.

    The shot requires less than accurate aim, which is the whole idea. Someone correct me here, it's been awhile, but doesn't 00 basically send 9 shots, each comparable to .32, down range?

    There is also the slug, which is something I would not want to be hit with, and increases effective range.

    We all train to know the limitations on the range of each type of shot. I also would rather "spray" a few pellets around the place rather than automatic or high power ammunition, depending on the area.

    Besides, I have actually had 4 guys trying to get out of a car all stop and put their hands up when they heard that 12 gauage jack.

    Just another weapon option.

  3. #3
    Iron Man's Avatar
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    There is no better of a manstopper then a shotgun blast at close range. Most shootings take place within short range so the spread is not a major issue in most cases.

    A 12 guage shotgun using 00 buck has 9 pellets each 33cal (I believe if it is wrong I am close) They all hit at the same time causing major damage.
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  4. #4
    Ken K is offline Banned
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    Table 2. Lead Buckshot

    Shot
    Number Pellet Diameter
    (Inches) Average Pellet
    Weight (Grains)
    4 .24 20.6
    3 .25 23.4
    2 .27 29.4
    1 .30 40.0
    0 .32 48.3
    00 .33 53.8
    000 .36 68.0

    Glock, you are correct.

  5. #5
    Iron Man's Avatar
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    Cool. I was pretty sure it was either 32 or 33.

    Either way, it will mess you up badly
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  6. #6
    FishTail Guest
    A lot of forces here don't use the MP5 any more and are going over to the H&K G36C...full-up 5.56mm baby!

    Last time I looked we only used shotguns to fire Hatton (breaching) rounds, CS rounds and less-lethal rounds. Versatile weapon.

  7. #7
    Garda's Avatar
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    Thats what I thought

    Quote Originally Posted by LongTail
    A lot of forces here don't use the MP5 any more and are going over to the H&K G36C...full-up 5.56mm baby!

    Last time I looked we only used shotguns to fire Hatton (breaching) rounds, CS rounds and less-lethal rounds. Versatile weapon.
    hmmm, I didnt know the MP5 was being phased out. Maybe our guys are as well, spot the gun novice

    Thats pretty much what I was thinking, for breaching etc yeah great but for taking a bad guy down I figured the 'extreme' result of a short range shot and the possibility of a long range shot hitting other people would have departments and forces changing over in this PC and accountable age we live in.
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  8. #8
    FishTail Guest
    Well, I guess when shotguns were introduced it was them or a bolt-action hunting rifle...and given the choice I'd choose a shotgun for most situations. A sidearm is really only there if you're surprised. If you expect to encounter a gun, take a bigger gun

  9. #9
    Ken K is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by LongTail
    Well, If you expect to encounter a gun, take a bigger gun
    That says it pretty well.

    A lot of people here hunt with shotguns, and our VP aside, respect what they can do!

    Side note, the last officer killed in the town I live now was killed after he shot the bad guy with a 12 gauge. But, officers had been using the gun for clay target practice that day and had birdshot in it. He didn't check his weapon at shift start.

    He pops the guy with birdshot and he runs around a corner. The officer followed and was ambushed, hit between the side panels of his vest.

    When the guy was caught he had numerous small wounds from the shot. Most likely wouldn't have happened with 00.

  10. #10
    Curt581 is offline Whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garda30055A
    I have never understood why US officers carry shotguns in their cars.
    Pretty simple, actually.... Because we can.

    Now shotguns fire pellets that scatter and have sweet FA accuracy over any decent distance so doesnt that make it a bad choice of weapon?

    Our armed units along with the UK's ARV's all carry H&K MP5 carbines. accurate, reliable and a dozen shots before reloading. Of course they also have an option on other weapons but these are 'standard'.

    Various other forces use M16 as their carbine so Im left wondering, why? When it comes to shotguns?
    The 12 ga. shotgun has a long list of advantages over other weapons. It's wide range of specialty ammo makes it an extremely versatile weapon. Keep in mind that a shotgun's primary mission is close range.

    With a standard 00 buck round, I can train an average officer to put 9 .32 pellets in a close range man-size target with excellent consistency. You can't do that with an MP5. The HK requires extensive training and a dedicated shooter to come close. Use full auto or burst fire, and the odds of all rounds hitting the target drop dramatically, even with the best trained people.

    Do the math... 5 standard buckshot rounds X 9 pellets = 45 projectiles. Add an extended magazine to 8 rounds = 72.

    MP5 = single mag, 32 rounds at best?

    The MP5's 9mm FMJ bullet is much more penetrative at close range than soft lead buckshot, increasing the risk of punching through people, walls, vehicles, etc and striking an unintended target.

    Switch to a slug round, and a shotgun's accurate range can be extended much farther than an MP5. An average officer can be easily trained to hit a man-sized sillouette at 50M consistently. Hit a man with almost an OUNCE of lead, even at 100M, and he'll go down and stay down. Add a rifled barrel with .50 saboted rounds, and you can extend that effective range even further in the right hands.

    Shotguns can be used to fire sintered slugs as breaching rounds to take out door hinges or locks during a dynamic entry. Tear-gas, bean-bag, and baton rounds are readily available for crowd control.

    Try doing all that with an MP5.

    All of those things can be done with a single weapon, eliminating the necessity of training line officers on multiple weapon systems and simplifying what an average non-SWAT officer needs to remember in a rapidly evolving, high-stress combat situation.

  11. #11
    FishTail Guest
    Excellent answer.

  12. #12
    chris2001's Avatar
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    As Curt pointed out the shotgun is so versatile that it would not be a good idea to take it out of the cars. We can do so much with them that its just an awesome tool to keep in the cars.

    In my car I actually carry Bean Bag rounds, Slugs and 00buck. Let me tell you get out of a car with a shotgun and the psychological effect it has on suspects is amazing.
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  13. #13
    Garda's Avatar
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    Well thanks for the answers.

    Curt,
    I hope you realise that I wasnt asking as in why you are allowed but merely why it is the prefered weapon.

    Im still surprised that you are allowed carry them considering most forces are trying to scale down on lethal force and as you say. A shotgun has a lot of stopping power.
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  14. #14
    Iron Man's Avatar
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    If I need to shoot someone I want it to do as much damage as possible. If in the process the person dies, well then they brought that on themselves.

    The more damage the weapon does the more likely it will stop the suspect.

    Also for less lethal you can use beanbag and CS rounds from a shotgun.
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  15. #15
    Curt581 is offline Whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garda30055A
    Im still surprised that you are allowed carry them considering most forces are trying to scale down on lethal force and as you say. A shotgun has a lot of stopping power.
    That's why we carry them. What's the point of using a gun that has low stopping power?

    Which is more likely to shock the public...

    Firing at someone ONCE and successfully stopping the threat

    -or-

    Firing multiple times with a low to average probability of stopping him?

    I'll answer for you... The perception will be that shooting someone once is necessary, while shooting someone 20 times will be viewed as excessive... no matter what the circumstances.

  16. #16
    Garda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curt581
    I'll answer for you... The perception will be that shooting someone once is necessary, while shooting someone 20 times will be viewed as excessive... no matter what the circumstances.
    Yes but you know as well as I do that the questions following that shoot will be:

    A, Couldnt they have used less lethal force and maimed him? or
    B, Couldnt they just have shot him in the arm/leg/etc.

    Reality doesnt play a part when its the cops people are talking about, remember?
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  17. #17
    Iron Man's Avatar
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    They can ask whatever they want. So as long as my department clears me fuck'em.

    A person can still shoot you if you hit a leg or arm. It does not stop the threat. Also it is a small target area.
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  18. #18
    Curt581 is offline Whatever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garda30055A
    Yes but you know as well as I do that the questions following that shoot will be:

    A, Couldnt they have used less lethal force and maimed him? or
    B, Couldnt they just have shot him in the arm/leg/etc.

    Reality doesnt play a part when its the cops people are talking about, remember?
    I'd argue that, as well.

    If you're saying the media will twist things to fit their agenda, you're right they will. I'm way beyond the point where I'm concerned what the media has to say. They pull things out of their collective asses on a daily basis, and the general public knows it. The media doesn't have the ability to sentence me to prison time, nor can it impose things like civil liability.

    Reality DOES play a major part in the arenas that matter... the subsequent review of possible criminal charges or the civil trial. It's far easier for an expert witness to convince a jury that you used the minimum amount of force necessary if you only shot the armed suspect once, instead of 20 times. It can be done, but which would you rather testify to?

  19. #19
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    First thing I grabbed when I came across a woman one day with a rifle was my shotgun. Since this is in the public area I don't want to go into it. Bad day for me though.
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  20. #20
    Darin's Avatar
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    I echo what everyone else said about the shotgun. It's the most versatile weapon we have and can be the most devastating.

    You can also skip the pellets off the ground to nail a bad guys legs if they are exposed...such as behind a car.

 

 
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