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Duty gun choice? everybody has to have the same gun or pick their own?

Discussion in 'Cop Talk' started by mixflip, Jan 2, 2010.

  1. mixflip

    mixflip

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    I was talking to an old retired LAPD cop and a younger former Nevada state trooper firearms instructor and heard some interesting issues on duty guns? We all work together at a small PD.

    The old retired LAPD cop said he advocated all his officers carry the same gun for multiple reasons. Commonality in ammo and fire controls in case of a need to back up other officers low on ammo or a need to pick up and use another officers gun for what ever reason or if a fellow officers gun is somehow handed to an officer whos gun is out of commission or what ever...you get the point hopefully? Plus cost and liability is lower if everybody has the same gun since training is more standardized?

    The younger state trooper firearms instructor said he advocated his guys have the option to pick and choose from a list of approved guns that best fits each officer ergonomically, and what caliber they are more accurate with? The dept does have to expand their instructor and armorers qualifications to all these guns which impacts the budget but they believe there is less liability if all the officers are custom fitted to a gun they can actually shoot better with. He also mentioned that swapping ammo is very rare. (how many officers deplete their loaded mag and the 2 spares?)

    What do you guys think of these 2 philosophies?
     
  2. JohnnyReb

    JohnnyReb Lifetime Member

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    There are merits to both arguments, and in my opinion neither one is wrong. My personal preference goes towards officers picking the weapon they are most comfortable with, and shoot the best with.
     

  3. G27Chief

    G27Chief Lifetime Member

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    What he said^, where I work and write policy, they choose from a approved list.
     
  4. msu_grad_121

    msu_grad_121 BOOSH

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  5. snair

    snair

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    our issue choices are m&p or sig 229, if you want to carry your own you can have glock, sig, xd, berreta, or smith and wesson 9 40 357 sig 45. i think there are benefits to both. one of the local agencies issues glock 17s for the standardized ammo/mag issue. i havent heard of any local shootings where the officer had to pickup others mags, not saying it couldnt happen i just havent heard about it. the issue with varied weapons, 15 years ago when i went through our auto transition course they did do a "battlefield pickup" where there were 6 different manufacture guns with varied malfunctions. you had to pick it up clear the malfunction and fire so that hopefully you at least had a basic understanding of the function or the different systems. our range personel do try very hard to give good training as opposed to just standing and killing the paper army.
     
  6. blueiron

    blueiron

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    Pick what you like works best.
     
  7. SPDSNYPR

    SPDSNYPR Zippy's Friend.

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    Dissenting voice.

    I find that multiple guns in multiple calibers just make everything a PITA. The guys who can and will learn to shoot well do so with anything you put in their hand. It's a motivation thing, not a mechanical thing. People who whine about the gun not fitting them right and have lots of different guns also happen to be the ones who sucked the most with our last pistols too.

    The firearm isn't just the firearms. It's the parts and associated gear. Parts, mags, springs, holsters, mag pouces - lots of things to buy. Then you have to get the firearms guys to armorers schools for all of them. And you have to buy ammo for several calibers (because if you let them have any pistol, who not whatever ammo they want too, right?). That's more expensive, because of less quantitiy discounts, and longer wait times for ammo (which nowadays is a really long time).

    You can't have stocks of spares of a lot of things it's good to have spares for. Because what's the next guy going to have, or who's going to change this month? And while swapping ammo and mags may not happen in gunfights very often, it happens all the damned time on the range. If a gun breaks, I can fix it right now. I don't have to order the part. If a mag's bad, I throw the guy a new one and he keeps going. Officer gets in a shooting, we give him another pistol and send his to the lab. Same with rifles and shotguns.

    If you get a a gun platform that works well, and ammo that meets your needs, there's nothing wrong with having your people learn to use it. We don't let them choose what car they want. They drive the CVPI. We don't let them choose their tires, radios, or lightbars. We teach them to use the one we provide. And oddly, they learn to use it.

    A firearm is a tool. And people can learn to use the tools they are given. Motivation is the only real factor in how well a person will learn to shoot provided they have decent instruction. The gun is about the least important part of the puzzle.

    It's the indian, not the bow and arrow.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  8. mixflip

    mixflip

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    Very good points on both. After reading that last post I tend to think that the "motivation" comment made alot of sense. We dont get to choose our vehicles, and vehicles accessories that could make us better drivers??? We dont get to choose which shotguns we prefer better, pistol grip? semi auto? mag extensions? A good shooter can shoot almost any gun decently.

    The sad reality is that it seems most cops that I know only go to the range when they are forced to and consequently are not very good shooters as a whole. (i.e. shoot move communicate, malfunction drills, tactics in general...)

    Another ironic thing is that even though we are all cops, I think I may be the only gun enthusiast in my little dept. Now, they do like guns but they dont go shooting for fun (or to ad to our budget reduced mediocre training imho), don't ever go to gun shows and haven't bought a gun in the last 5 years.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  9. mitchshrader

    mitchshrader Deceased

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  10. Cochese

    Cochese Most mackinest CLM

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    We manage an approved list just fine. All of the ammo is ordered from a list of three wholesalers. It is all SXT.

    My department is known for being stingy on everything, but we make it work with folks shooting what they want. We get outfitted initially with everything we need by way of duty gear, all off of a list and tailored to our duty gun that we buy on our own. Get hired on an choose a 1911? The department fixes you up with a holster for the 1911 and mag pouch. You want to change to a Glock in a year? Long as it is a 17/22, we have everything you need (used). You want to switch to an M&P? You buy a new holster and mag pouch and you are good to go.

    You don't have any $$$ for your own gun purchase? We will issue a G22 and everything you need to run it.

    Most carry Glocks, since they are not gun folks. A few 1911, XD, M&P, USP, Ruger P89 and Sig 220/226 mixed in to make it interesting.
     
  11. pgg00

    pgg00

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    We have a set of guns that are available for issue. Officers are also allowed to choose from a list of weapons at their own expense, calibers are 9mm, .40, and .45. Armorers don't matter cause we don't have any anyways and everything is sent out and there aren't very many of us. My problem with the CVPI analogy is that they can still adjust the seat, mirrors, temp, etc to their liking. If you wanted it to be the same you would set the seat for a 5'2" female and then tell everyone else to live with it.
     
  12. AngryBassets

    AngryBassets Jagenden Übel

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    I see the benefits to both theories. In my area (southern NJ), it's almost exculsively "whatever gun you want to carry, as long as it's this one!"

    My department issues Glock 23's, and that's what you will carry. I'm pushing for some Glock 22's to be slowly phased in, with an opt-out (meaning, eventually, you will have the choice between a 22 or 23).

    If the money was there for armorers, etc, I could see personally owned weapons being allowed from an approved list; our rangemaster/training guy is a HUGE gun guy. Our chief turned in his 23; he carries his personally-owned Kimber 1911. He *is* the chief, though...
     
  13. CAcop

    CAcop

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    In the end we allow a lot of different guns and it is just not that hard if you are willing to be open minded.
     
  14. AngryBassets

    AngryBassets Jagenden Übel

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    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA I work in NJ
     
  15. Hack

    Hack Crazy CO Gold Member

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    FBOP is, you get what you have given to you, and that is all you get.
     
  16. MeefZah

    MeefZah Cover is Code 3

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    It seems most large departments use one gun, because it makes sense from a logistical standpoint.

    Most smaller ones allow the use of whatever gun the officer wants (within reason) and I presume that has to do with officers providing their own guns upon being hired.

    Personally, I want to carry my gun, not a department issued gun. Even if we issued the exact gun I wanted to carry, I would still want to own my own duty gun. I can't explain why, exactly, I just do.

    I did recently buy a second Glock 19 which serves as a spare, should my primary duty gun go down, get stolen, etc. I also have a spare belt ready to go in the event that certain components get broken so I can still go on shift without any delays. I think if you are an officer who carries your own gun, you should have a plan in place in case of a non-emergency failure of your primary gun or equipment. At least a second gun you are qualified with, and a backup duty holster and mag pouch. You can often find good used leather gear at gun shows or on here for a very reasonable price.
     
  17. OLY-M4gery

    OLY-M4gery

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    From a money point of view, one gun, one caliber, makes the most sense.

    Glock is a little different, because so many of the parts they use aren't even model or caliber specific.

    But, it's not just the gun. Then there are magazines, holsters, mag pouches, amorer training. etc.

    OTOH, I have seen what happens when recruit change guns, and go from a gun that is physically too big, to one that is properly sized. They are able to qualify........................

    Double stack Sig-Sauer, to a single stack Sig-Sauer, that was pretty similar, resulted in a vast difference in a person's ability to use a handgun.

    -------------------------------------------------

    Our newby's get to pick any duty handgun they want, as long as it is a G17 or G19. Once they are off probation the can switch to a G21.

    Off duty weapons can be any Glock 9mm. Until they are off probation, then it can be any Glock 9mm or Glock .45 ACP.

    We used to have a much more wide open weapons policy. But, the issue became training armorers.

    Of course, our officers have to buy their own guns...........
     
  18. CW Mock

    CW Mock

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    I am a fan of choosing one's own gun. An issue gun for those who don't have the money, desire, or may just want the issue model. We issue M&Ps which are as close I think as we will ever get to a user selected weapon - they allow us to select what grip backstrap we want. I think that everyone should be able to choose a gun that fits them, they have confidence in, and want and like to carry.

    My old man worked at an agency that let you choose what you wanted from a list. Lot of different guns, but all of them had to be carried in a certain type of holster and finish. Amazingly, their uniforms still looked uniform! There were a lot of cops there that could shoot too, and carried some nice weapons.

    There is something to be said for parts commonality from a logistical standpoint. Having a gun go down and a replacement in supply, etc. Magazine sharing though ... however unlikely, is not something I feel comfortable doing for a lot of reasons.
     
  19. razdog76

    razdog76 Heavy Mettle

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    I feel the same way because in a profession where so many aspects are controlled by others, I control this one.
     
  20. Dragoon44

    Dragoon44 Unfair Facist Lifetime Member

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    I fall on the side of the officer being able to carry the one they choose, that feels right to them, with the end result being they will have greater confidence in. Which will likely result in better performance.

    I don't buy into the sharing ammo theory, if no no other reason than just plain common sense. If we are in a shootout and you have used up all your ammo we still got a problem, I am going to throw you my ammo to waste? Don't think so.

    Allowing officers to use their own gun can also save the dept. money. My own agency practiced this, by allowing officers to either use the dept. issued gun or purchase one of their own from the approved list. Officers were required to maintain their own personally purchased weapon. So the dept. dd not have to stock parts for various weapons.

    ANd let me add, in my own experience the only officers that were willing to shell out for their own preferred firearm and holster were the most motivated officers. the ones into guns and shooting. And were the top shooters in the dept. I never saw a single one who purchased thier own weapon have problems qualifying.

    The guys that had problems qualifying are the ones that carried the dept issue weapon and when we had revolvers wouldn't even bother to buy a decent set of grips or speed loaders.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010