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pistol defense ammo question

Discussion in 'GATE Self-Defense Forum' started by Benello, Feb 27, 2011.

  1. Benello


    May 14, 2008

    First and foremost, thanks for being a member here. I truly appreciate and respect what you do. I have many of your books and writings and enjoy your advice on the personal defense tv show.

    That aside, I was wondering in your professional opinion, as a civilian does it really matter what self defense ammo I carry in the eyes of the courts? Meaning, are they more inclined to be more leanient if one was to use say Hornady Critical Defense ammo because it is marketed as "defense only" and for civilians versus say Ranger +p+, which is clearly geared towards LEO. I am under the impression that the latter would have better terminal balistic results and surely more street credit, but I am not LEO. Should non-LEO's refrain from carrying what the LEO's carry?

    Am I overthinking it? If the shooting was justifiable would it even matter?

  2. Mas Ayoob

    Mas Ayoob KoolAidAntidote Moderator

    Nov 6, 2005
    The ammo comes up often in court, actually more so than for cops, whose ammo is generally issued by a governmental authority. The most common attack is to allege that hollow points are flesh-ripping Dum-Dum bullets of doom that indicate malice and intent to kill, blah-blah. Do a Google search for the work of Attorney Lisa Steele, an appellate lawyer who has documented many of these cases.

    Doesn't mean you shouldn't carry JHP...just means you need to be able to articulate that you carry it for the same reasons as cops. Safer for bystanders (less likelihood of over-penetration or ricochet), safer for you and others (violent perp stopped quicker), possibly even safer for guy you shoot because you'll generally have to inflict fewer gunshot wounds to stop him.

    I'd stay away from the old Black Talons because of the documented controversy, and because you don't want to carry ammo that old anyway, especially since Winchester and other makers produce better SD/HD ammo than Black Talon today. If someone asked me or my civilian girlfriend why we carry police ammo, the answer would be "If the police thought it was the best to use to protect us, we thought it was probably the best for us to use to protect ourselves." I haven't yet seen "OMG, he used police ammo to shoot a felon in self-defense" come up in court, though of course that doesn't mean it couldn't happen.


  3. Benello


    May 14, 2008
    Thanks for the prompt reply Mas.