Pittsburgh Cops: .40 Caliber Ammo Doesn’t Have Enough Stopping Power

“Pittsburgh police are reviewing the ammunition used by the department because officers raised fears that the bullets do not have enough stopping power,” the Pittsburgh Tribune reports. “The officers say that twice in recent weeks it has taken several shots for an officer to disable a gunmen who was shooting at police.” Head shots? Mozambique? No? “Officers have worried about the ammo in recent months, said Officer Eric Engelhardt, chairman of the FOP Officer Safety Committee. ‘There’s not a lot of confidence in this ammo in our department.’” ‘Cause, you know, it didn’t work! To wit . . .

Officer Morgan Jenkins was shot and critically wounded and his partner injured in a scuffle and shootout early Thursday with James Robert Hill in Homewood. Officer Christopher Kertis was shot twice in the leg on March 17 in a shootout with Dante Bonner, 18, in East Liberty.

In both cases, officers said, the gunman continued to shoot at officers despite being wounded.

What’s that all about? I thought you shot someone and they fell down dead like they do in the movies.

C’mon. Seriously? Are we to believe that the Pittsburgh police don’t have access to YouTube? There’s about a bazillion videos on the subject available for immediate viewing, some of them by people who haven’t shot themselves during a negligent discharge.

Or . . .

Maybe there’s a cult of the .45 in the police ranks or, indeed, the po-po’s upper echelon.  Complaining about .40 is the key to forcing an “upgrade” and, eventually. indulging their JMB fanboyitis.

Alternative theory two: this kvetching is an excuse for some immediate ammo testing fun on the taxpayer’s dime.

Deputy Chief Paul Donaldson sent a memo to the police bureau saying the .40 caliber ammunition being used by officers was picked after a comparison study conducted by FBI experts.

Still, police plan to evaluate the stock, compare products and track shot placement in officer involved shootings.

So NOW the Pittsburgh Police want to track shot placement? And these are the guys that the disarmament industry doesn’t want to disarm. Go figure.

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

126 Responses to Pittsburgh Cops: .40 Caliber Ammo Doesn’t Have Enough Stopping Power

  1. avatarMark says:

    pssssssh, sounds like nonsense to me.
    Need to up their training, shooting people is like real estate.
    Location, Location, Location.

    • avatarAharon says:

      “Need to up their training, shooting people is like real estate.
      Location, Location, Location.”

      Now that is twisted modern-classic proverb. :)

  2. avatarmdc says:

    Because the .40 is a spawn of it’s real Daddy,the might 10mm.Now if the FBI stuck with the original,this would be a moot case.I don’t want to hear about over penetraton.A 170 grain bullet at 1300 fps or 180 at 1275 is sufficant with ample Ft lb’s of energy.JHP of course.Or go to the .45 double stack and be done with it.

    • avatarCJ says:

      ^ this

    • avatarLolinski says:

      Or you can use 7.62×25 Tokarev. Since it has good penetration.

    • avatarRaymond Gray says:

      Absolutely right! People who anticipate a gunfight will always grab a long weapon then say they worry about over penetration from a pistol. How did they pass the MMPI?

      • avatarcody says:

        I don’t think the .40 is over penetrating. The only thing I can come up with is shot placement, or the .40 is too fast and everyone knows that fast hollow points expand faster than larger slower ones. I never understood that when hollowpoints came out, they always make them lighter than the FMJ ammo normally used for practice. A lightweight, fast HP will expand violently but penetration will suffer due to the lighter weight. This is why I run ball in all my guns in .45 but my tokarev. And I never ever use safety slugs like Glaser or Magsafe because they make a nasty wound but almost 5-6″ of penetration? Garbage. Bullets also rarely over penetrate because of the tough skin on the back of a human. A woman committed suicide with 3 .38spl lead round nosed to the chest, the infamous ice pick load, and it never exited the body at point blank range.

  3. avatarJay says:

    So being fueled on perogies, kielbasa, and iron city beer make you resilient to bullets? God I love that city. Not even 40 can stop a steeler fan.

  4. avatarHal J. says:

    Do they really think that making a hole 1/20th of an inch wider when they shoot someone is going to be statistically significant? Newsflash: handguns don’t have great stopping power…period. If you want to consistently make a one shot stop, you have to use a shotgun or a rifle.

    • avatarJesus says:

      S&W .500 Magnum would like a word with you about stopping power.

      • avatarPyrotek85 says:

        Yeah, except that has the power of a rifle round, so you’re basically proving his point.

      • avatarHal J. says:

        Heh. I should have qualified it that no service handgun shoots a cartridge that’s a reliable stopper. Heck, there are handguns chambered for 7.62×51, after all…

        • avatarPyrotek85 says:

          Exactly. I don’t really consider things like 500SW or 50AE in this kind of comparison, it’s basically an outlier. There’s a reason almost no one carries these for self defense, aside from hiking in bear country that is.

    • avatarJAS says:

      It’s not the diameter that matters. It’s the circumference. And hence, the frontal area. From that standpoint the .45 ACP is ~21% larger than the .40 S&W and ~39% larger than a 9mm. Those are substantial differences.

      Our local PD switched from Glock 22s to Glock 21s in .45 ACP last year and never looked back.

      • avatarrip_vw32 says:

        Your math is just a little off, I think..

        3.14*(.450/2)^2= .1589625 = .16

        3.14*(.400/2)^2 = .1256 = .13, .13/.16 = 19% larger than a .40

        3.14*(.355/2)^2= .098929625 = .10 = .10/.16 = .38% larger than a 9mm

        • avatartfunk says:

          Using your numbers, you should actually use the difference between the area (.3 for 40 and .6 for 9mm) divided by the area of the smaller round to find the percentage increase for a .45.

          So, from .40 to .45 would be .03/.13= .23, or 23% larger

          From 9mm to .45 would be .06/.10= .6, or 60% larger.

          This is only for frontal area, though, and doesn’t take into account expansion, velocity, bullet type, etc.

        • avatarJAS says:

          “Your math is just a little off, I think.. ”

          Thanks! I did my math on the fly, half in my head so that’s why I used the “~” in front of the numbers. The point is that it’s not just a 1/20 inch difference.

      • avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

        There’s more to it than just the frontal area of the bullet BERORE expansion. By that logic a .380acp would be more deadly than a 30-06.

        The 9mm has a higher velocity and it’s velocity that forces expansion. For instance, according to Speer the Gold Dot +P 124gr 9mm launches from a Glock 17 @ 1235fps for 420ft/lbs of energy and the 230gr out of a S&W 4506 @ 851fps for 370ft/lbs of energy. The 9mm expands to .720″ and penetrates 11.78″ in bare gelatin while the 45 expands to .711″ and penetrates 13″. Heavier bullets tend to penetrate deeper while faster bullets dump a larger portion of their energy outward, which accounts for most of the deeper penetration of the 45 despite the higher energy of the 9mm +P.

        If you want to shoot the hottest +P ammo you can find the strongest 45 rounds are a bit stronger than the strongest 9mm rounds, but the rounds overlap 90% of the time. In fact the original loading for the army’s 1911s was a 230gr. @ 850fps from a 5″ barrel while the German army’s original 9mm load was a 124gr. @ 1150fps from a 4 inch barrel. With the extra 20% in barrel length the 45 had a whole 4ft/lbs edge.

        • avatarfrankgon4 says:

          I think you are saying 357SIG

        • avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

          Glock 17s don’t shoot 357Sig. The 125gr. Gold Dot 357Sig from a Sig P226 exits @ 1379fps (528ft/lbs), expands to .617″ and penetrates to 14.34″. The expansion is probably lower because with the higher velocity the bullet petals out and folds back over. They can only measure the final diameter not the maximum. The same thing happens to .357 mag.

      • avatarWLCE says:

        “It’s not the diameter that matters. It’s the circumference”

        So my 9mm is deadlier than my 5.56???

        you want killing power, grab a long gun.

        • avatarJAS says:

          Wont get an argument from me on that one. I’m in the velocity camp myself. My favorite pistol round is the .357 Sig.

          I was just commenting on the 1/20th inch difference.

      • avatarPat says:

        It is many things. But the arguement is probably about type of round in each caliber that is used. They must be using a pretty crappy one because you can get close to 357 performance out of some 40 rounds with the larger diameter or bullet weight to boot.

    • avatarGutseo says:

      Better yet just fire a double barreled shotgun in the air… That will stop them dead in their tracks -_-

    • avatarPhil Hallmark says:

      My .44mag says it has stopping power, but it still remains like Tex said, placement. Big target-small aim. I shoot snakes between the eyes, dedicated aim and kill because I don’t want rattlers to bite my loved ones. The furthest shot with a .22 pistol was 75 yds, between the eyes, witnessed. That is dedicated aim small and kill intention. Remember, aim small, and choose the point of impact. Okay, 75 yds below the ear on a white tail and only half the head was left= that’s a .44 mag hit. Truth only.

    • avatarPhil Hallmark says:

      My .44mag says it has stopping power, but it still remains like Tex said, placement. Big target-small aim. I shoot snakes between the eyes, dedicated aim and kill because I don’t want rattlers to bite my loved ones. The furthest shot with a .22 pistol was 75 yds, between the eyes, witnessed. That is dedicated aim small and kill intention. Remember, aim small, and choose the point of impact. Okay, 75 yds below the ear on a white tail and only half the head was left= that’s a .44 mag hit. Truth only.

  5. avatardwb says:

    Pittsburgh police are asshats. i grew up there. I would not even know where to begin.

  6. avatarAharon says:

    If anyone shoots me with a 22cal I’m running for the nearest hospital emergency room.

  7. avatarKris says:

    Buddy killed a charging 1,000 lb bull moose with his G35. There is nothing wrong with a 40. Hornady 165 gr critical defense. 5 shots to the chest and shoulders inside of 10 yds. It didn’t drop at his feet, veared off course and fell over about 30 yds away.

  8. avatarmdc says:

    Looking at mug shots,i see 2 things that stand out.Youth and size.Throw in drugs of all sorts,you get problems.

  9. avatarSertorius says:

    Strange that the article does not identify the load they carry currently.

  10. avatarMr. Obvious says:

    This isn’t news – substantially all handgun cartridges, aside from the “botique” / quasi-novelty stuff like 50 AE / S&W 500 Mag., are underpowered. They’re designed to be compromise cartridges – they’re as much power as you can get without overwhelming the shooter or the gun.

    The notion that .40 S&W with JHP rounds is unduly “underpowered” is simply stupid. Based on recent police shootings (e.g. LAPD’s attempted assassination of unarmed citizens in two different events) where police fire 40+ rounds and hit nothing, my suspicion is that the problem actually lies with training, not the gun.

    • avatarMax says:

      Well, I would still put rounds like .44 mag and 10mm inside the range of pistol calibers that have been proven quite powerful but are still fairly manageable to shoot. But, like the above poster said, shot placement is critical and any gun will do if you will do.

      • avatarPat says:

        You would have to use a reduced load 44 to even hope to not grossly overpenetrate. The 10mm is a far better choice, as is the 40, 45, 357sig, even 9mm.

  11. avatarDaveL says:

    The officers say that twice in recent weeks it has taken several shots for an officer to disable a gunmen who was shooting at police.

    Would someone please tell the Pittsburgh PD that that’s normal?

  12. avatarMikeinid says:

    Do you suppose they actually hit the target, or are bad guys supposed to just fall over when the gun goes off?

  13. avatarDerek says:

    So they shot a guy (who was probably in an altered state of mind) with a handgun and he didn’t immediately fall down and die. That’s the problem here?

    I know this is a stupid question but I’m going to ask it anyway; Do they get all of their firearm information from cop dramas?

    On the other hand, I wouldn’t mind seeing 10mm prices fall a little if they switch to that and others follow suit.

    • avataroopsdidisaythatoutloud says:

      Hey now 10mm is still in stock don’t mess it up. :)

    • avatarmdc says:

      Derek,plenty of REAL 10mm suppliers out there.Underwood Ammo,PBR Ammo.Underwood east of Mississippi,PBR west.See what happens when change occurs from Gods plan.The .40 is a spawn of it’s original intent,the 10mm.Problem will be that recruits,vetrean officers will complain,it’s to big,it’s got recoil.Id say tough,find another profession.

  14. avatarmacgearailt says:

    I think ol’ Tex pretty much covered it. Heart /bridge of the nose, got it.
    Robert, this is the type of unvarnished clarity you can expect when you move to Texas.

  15. avatarDavid says:

    The shot placement “myth” is the brother of the one-shot-drop myth. This guy is right about alot but expecting average people, even average soldiers and cops (w/ “average” training), to instantly and consitantly stop an attacker w/ one shot (even from a long gun) is bull feces. Under duress most people cannot, even w/ training, consitantly hit a moving target the size of an apple at 10 meters – let alone 25. Guns, even long guns, are not magic wands and there is a very good chance that a BD will battle on after being hit. If spec ops guys have this problem you can bet the average joe will.

  16. avatarDJStuCrew says:

    I’ve gotta agree with Mr. Obvious; unless they’re using ball ammo, a modern JHP self-defense round should stop just about any wired-up crackhead they encounter. There is simply so much energy transferred to the poor sack of Jello that they can’t possibly fight on… unless the shot placement is truly horrible or they’ve got a vest. Even then, the standard “two to the chest, assess, one to the head” is a proven man-stopper. Train, train, train… and then get more training!

    • avatarDJ says:

      That sack of jello is not moving laterally and erratically at 1o to 15 mph. Your headshot is. If “he’s coming right at you” he’s an idiot. It’s not like at the range – they move outside the lines on the ground.

      There are a lot of “expert marksmen” that can’t hit a tactical target center mass – to say nothing of getting fancy and going for the head.

      • avatarDJStuCrew says:

        Hey, I didn’t just fall off the turnip truck, LOL! But the BG can’t run faster than 1400 feet-per-second. I ain’t no Bob Munden, but I can track a moving target traveling under 35 mph pretty dang good. Ever bust any clays? I’d think a trained cop could do the double-tap drill on demand, even under stress. But if they’re having problems with, say, Speer Gold Dots in .40 S&W, I’m far more apt to look at the shooter than the caliber or round. Any good modern SD round, such as Federal Hydra-Shoks, Horady Critical Duty or the good ol Ranger XT will take the fight out of anyone if placed properly. (And “properly” should be just about any torso/head shot.)

  17. avatarSCS says:

    At least they HIT the perp. He would still be running loose if the PD from Bloombergistan would have shot AT him.

    • avatarSCS says:

      with a couple of bystanders critically wounded.

    • avatarDaveL says:

      Have you noticed the NYPD firearm discharge reports stopped keeping track of hit percentages after 2006? Instead they use something they call “Objective Completion Rate”, which they define as at least one officer hitting at least one suspect at least once during an encounter.

      For 2011, it was 78%.

      • avatarLolinski says:

        So if 10 officers shoot 15 rounds each at a suspect and one bullet hits the suspect, its mission complete? Completely ignoring the fact that the 149 bullets can and will hit bystanders.

      • avatarSCS says:

        Wow, that is the definition of “fixing the numbers”.

  18. avatar.9mm says:

    Note to Pittsburgh PD, aim down your sights. Focus on your front sight and you’ll find the .40 is plenty adequate.

  19. avatarCurtis says:

    Look up the ballistics tests the FBI uses to assess penetrations of the different rounds. They want at least 12 inches of penetration, 18 being the maximum. All the hand gun ammo preforms basically the same. So as stated before, these maybe a bunch of people who watched to many tv shows and movies…can’t really say they played too many video games though cause you have to shoot someone a dozen times to get them down.

  20. avatarTommy Knocker says:

    Another possibility could be the Pitts police are rallying for full auto. Around the world cops regularly carry buzz guns. Here it is the special units. It goes to the whole “we can’t let the cops be OUTGUNNED” argument the police make. Wouldn’t be surprised to see them make the request.

  21. avatartdiinva says:

    Into the caliber wars I go.

    Lethality, which the military defines as the probably that a casualty with an untreated wound in location x will die in time t, is directly related to the mass of the projectile. Lethality is not synonymous with stopping power which is not a measurable quality. More mass equals higher lethality everything else remaining the same. Back in the days before JHP 45 was the undisputed champion of lethality for military pistols. It high mass transferred energy more efficiently than 9mm and cause more extensive damage.

    When JHP came around rounds like the 115g Hornady critical defense round were able to more or less match the lethality of 45 ball. However, the proper comparison is with a 45 JHP like a 23og Remington Golden Saber JHP with its improved energy transfer and expansion. More mass yields more energy transferred with a bigger hole and higher lethality. You can’t beat physics. The question is not whether a 45 round of any given type is more lethal but are all modern JHP rounds so far up the lethality curve that returns to bullet mass are low.

    And as far as long guns go, anybody who has been hunting with modern bonded round knows one shot in the human chest with a round as small as 243 is light out.

    • avatarGyufygy says:

      When did JHPs actually start showing up? I’m guessing by your comment they’re relatively new.

      • avatarjwm says:

        I started seeing hollow point rounds for handguns in the mid 70′s. Super Vel 110 grain .38 special. Since then it’s been a constant developemant looking for the magic 1 shot stop each and every time. I’m hoping the Phaser will end the argument.

        • avatarST says:

          August 2057- FBI loses two agents in laser fight, calls 40 megawatt too weak for duty use.

        • avatarHal J. says:

          It’s hard to beat a phaser for stopping power when it’s set to “dematerialize”…

        • avatarAnon in CT says:

          If we criminalize terawatt lasers, then only criminals will have terawatt lasers.

  22. avatarAM says:

    If I were them I would move DOWN in caliber to 9mm.

    With modern JHP’s it has similar “stoppin’ powah” to .45 and is easier to shoot accurately than .40 (it’s a lower pressure cartridge), which is what hey really need.

    • avatarcsmallo says:

      Six shot .38s if they are armed at all. Disarming cops is the best thing we can do for a safer America. Citizens should be armed, not government employees.

      • avatarPyrotek85 says:

        +1

        The founders feared a standing army, and the militarized police and swat teams would fit the bill better than our actual military.

      • avatarjwm says:

        Aren’t government employees citizens also? I think the standard should be any weapon the cops can have, all can have.

    • avatarPat says:

      AM, 9mm aint similar to .45…..though its a good round. .45 is similar to .40, however. You said you would move down…..which is less power.

  23. avatarSkyMan77 says:

    “A bad carpenter blames his tools… “

  24. avatarJason says:

    The only round shown (in flawed tests admittedly) to have any more stopping power than the 40 is the 357 mag, and with the skill of modern cops, I doubt they’ll be going back to revolvers any time soon. The 45 acp, despite the mythos surrounding it, doesn’t really perform that much better (if at all) than the 40. In fact, with JHP bullets, the difference between all cartridges is lessened.

    Of course, the fact that the 40 is deemed “underpowered” shows a fundamental misunderstanding about the uses, power and tactics of a handgun, from the police no less!

    • avatarRuss Bixby says:

      Late edit: I don’t know what the police are carrying, but suspect it to be some sort of ball. Can’t have ‘em actually KILLING bad (e.g. misunderstood) guys.

      They’re blaming the diameter, which is – I suspect – misplaced, but the actual ammo may need to be changed.

  25. avatarRuss Bixby says:

    Depends on cover, lighting, range, distractions, what and how the bad guy is shooting, any “physiological enhancements” – crack, PCP et cetera – and likely other things – little stressors such as victims lying (or thrashing) about screaming, f’rinstance.

    Maybe we shouldn’t always just GOTO BASH$LEOS.

    Just my two cents’ – see Ammendment 1.

  26. avatarDon says:

    As a die hard .45 acp fan, the numbers don’t lie. 40 has more KE than 45acp, they are close in weight and diameter. I switched to .40 because I wanted more “stopping power”. If the BG has some amount of KE coming at you based on his mass and velocity, what you need to do to stop him is throw as much KE against his toward you. These cops don’t know what they are talking about.

    If they want more KE then they need to look at the .357 mag, or less disputedly the .41 mag. But then they will have to be able to hit.

    • avatarPat says:

      There are some very hot loads of 45 out there that can equal or even exceed some 40, but the guns are generally larger with less rounds on tap.

    • avatarmdc says:

      The real 10mm fits right between the .357 and ,41.FBI,nuff said.

  27. avatarST says:

    Sorry officers, blaming the ammo wont wash with me.

    In one of the late Jim Cirllios books regarding his time in the NYPD stakeout squad, he details incidents where a 12 gauge shotgun at close range didnt put down a bad guy.

    Shot placement is the only criterion that matters.Observe AF SP Andy Brown taking down an AK wielding bad guy at 71 yards-verified by the military-with a worn GI spec Beretta 9mm loaded with the legendary manstopper that is military issue 9mm FMJ NATO.

  28. avatarGeorge says:

    If you need to stop someone, the best round is the second round.

    Or in words of the Mozambique drill: It is all about location, location, and then… location.

  29. avatarG23 to 9 says:

    To all who are wondering, PPD carries G22, G23, G27 and some G17s and they use Federal HST as duty rounds……you know a well known under-performer #sarc

  30. avatarcynical bastard says:

    OK, so they SHOT the suspect several times. How many times did they actually HIT?

  31. avatarmike says:

    Shot placement wins out over anything else. A 22LR to the head/heart wins out over any larger caliber shot anywhere else to the body. If your shot placement is still perfect with larger calibers, then even better… the debate is moot then.

    But for the typical average shooter, stick with 9mm and quality ammo (T-series, HST). It’s the best realistic compromise between size, power, and shot placement accuracy. When the military switched from 1911 to Beretta, shot accuracy went way up.

    • avatartdiinva says:

      Yes it did but not only because the M-9 is 9mm. The military 1911s were older than dirt. The Army had not procured new pistols since the Korean War. Any thirty year old gun that has been abused by the military will be a piece of crap.

  32. avatarRalph says:

    I suggest that the Pittsburgh PD begin to carry tactical nuclear weapons. Their one-shot stop ratios will improve dramatically. Sure, there will be some collateral damage, but what the hell. It’s for the children.

  33. avatarCameron says:

    Wall of comments, but isn’t that the fella who shot himself in a drawing from retention video? very clever.

  34. avatarNick R says:

    Im a Pittsburgh man myself, and I just had this conversation with my a township officer last month, he said that their township (in Allegheny county, but outside city lines- and its a massively wealthy township too) allows their officers to choose between the issued Glocks in 9mm, OR supply their own Kimbers, Sigs, or S&W M&P’s in their choice of calibers. My friend officer Z carrys a nice Kimber custom 2.

  35. avatarRandy Drescher says:

    Ayoob shot a cow at a slaughterhouse with the flying ashtray(45 200gr CCI). 1 shot to the head & it partly blew the head up. 1 shot….dead. Whats good enough for Massod Ayoob is plenty good enough for me with the exception of 230 grain, Randy

  36. avatarMy Name Is Bob says:

    “Begun, the caliber wars have.”

  37. avatarLance says:

    back to .357 Mag and .45 Auto???? Make the Cops use revolvers again too that’s fair.

  38. avatarAccur81 says:

    Sometimes I look at combat calibers this way: would I rather my opponent have 15-17 rounds of 9mm, 11-15 rounds of .40, or 8-13 rounds of .45? It’s pretty much a wash. I would be most concerned by an opponent who is an accurate shooter.

    Regardless, I would use my handgun(s) to fight to a shotgun or rifle whether at work or at home. I would not expect my AR .223 to stop with a single shot, and am even ready to fire an additional shot(s) with a 00 buck tactical load.

    Perhaps I’m cynical, but I’m tired of police agencies switching guns and ammo at taxpayer expense. The 9mm, .357, .357 Sig, .40, and .45 have already been extensively studied.

    • avatarArdent says:

      Indeed! I’d personally not feel poorly armed with a GP100, a .357 SIG, any of the common police variant .40′s, or any of the commonly available police suitable .45s. If your arm is a problem YOU are the problem. Multiple center of mass hits from a .22 will eventually stop the fight. If you can’t do it with accepted calibers, it’s you skill level that is at fault, not the gun. Just as goes with claiming an out of the box quality pistol shoots ‘off’. The error is 99% likely the shooter, not the gun.

  39. avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

    You can shoot a deer in the heart with a 30-06 and it can still run 50′ before it drops. I know there’s an ammo shortage and all, but if someone is trying to kill you, you might want to bite the bullet (so to speak) and pull the trigger a couple more times.

    If you want a more powerful gun you’ll have to deal with more recoil, which is why the 40S&W was invented in the first place – the FBI agents couldn’t master the 10mm.

    • avatarfrankgon4 says:

      Sometimes it happens even with a kill shot. Many a hunter can tell the story of blowing the heart or lungs out of a 150 pound deer and it still ran 30 yards or more. Sometimes you just don’t know your dead.

    • avatarArdent says:

      Deer don’t shoot back. It’s a damnable (and likely damned) fool who takes a poke at an armed human and waits to see the result. What does good training teach: keep shooting until your target is down. I just don’t know what they teach cops these days.

  40. avatarSCS says:

    Everyone forgets to mention the 40 “long”……………the 10 mm.

  41. avatarWilliam Burke says:

    “Man is the weakest of animals.”

    I dunno. I think he forgot about pandas. This guy spends over five minutes saying what can be clearly said in twenty seconds. He’s in love with the sound of his own voice.

  42. avatarLeo338 says:

    Maybe they are advocating for getting those exploding bullets all the idiots in MSM keep talking about.

  43. avatarMark N. says:

    There’s that fascinating vid that’s been posted here a couple of times of an anesthesiologist lecturing to med students about gun shot wounds. First, he notes that only one in seven persons shot dies from a gunshot wound. Second, the leading cause of death is blood loss. Absent a disabling CNS wound, i.e. severed spine or damaged brain, the ability of an attacker to continue the attack is a function of the rate of blood loss (and resultant blood pressure). The faster you bleed, the faster you go down, and vice versa. Even a heart shot will not stop an attacker until there is sufficient blood loss to the brain to cause unconsciousness. So we are talking maybe ten seconds or more, even with a perfectly placed shot to the chest. And without blood loss, no matter how many times a person is shot, “stopping” will not occur.

    • avatarArdent says:

      There is a caveat to this (and I read the research involved). Multiple hits to required systems results in faster incapacitation.
      The first is obvious; more holes means faster bleed out regardless of underlying structures hit.
      The second is less obvious; multiple systems effected equals more rapid incapacitation.
      The example here is a penetrating wound to the heart which disrupts but does not preclude maintenance of blood pressure. For so long as blood pressure to the brain is maintained consciousness and thus ability for hostile action exists.
      However if one figures in a penetrating wound to the lung we’re usually seeing pneumothorax and consequently immediate lung collapse and restricted oxygenation of the blood.
      Additionally there is enhanced blood loss with any penetrating injury to the torso, adding on to loss of blood pressure.
      These injuries are synergistic, with decreased oxygenation (often when needed most IE in fighting) in addition to actual blood loss plus loss of blood pressure. )
      There is also an infinitive, known as shock.
      Shock increases as more bodily systems are involved in a traumatic event.
      It also increases as decreased ability to oxygenate and or maintain blood pressure or volume increase.
      Involving ancillary organ systems such as the spleen induce additional bleeding which leads to shock and general CNS shutdown in addition to contributing to the shock effect over all. While the mechanism is poorly understood, the effect seems to be that the CNS becomes overwhelmed by multiple organ damage and initiates a shutdown of the CNS, including consciousness.
      This is a powerful argument for more bullets on target.
      While it might be that more bullets is just a common sense device, it turns out that multiple, normally non-incapacitating injuries can result in incapacitation. Furthermore, a single penetrating trauma to the heart isn’t as effective at incapacitation as causing multiple organ failures.
      Embrace the idea that lots of hits that don’t strike anything vital are more effective than a single strike destroying the heart if instantaneous incapacitation is required.

      The sole exception is a vital CNS hit:
      A suitable amount of damage to the CNS, such as most common handguns rounds can cause will result in instantaneous incapacitation. These targets include the spine and brain. Any direct hit from any common military caliber weapon to the spinal cord above the areas of intended disruption, or to the central brain structures will generally result in instant incapacitation, and generally in rapid death barring major medical intervention.

  44. avatarBub says:

    tex sounds about right to me.

    as for the police. more training and if they are serious maybe some extra training on their own time and dime, just like the rest of us.

  45. avatarJeh says:

    Total bull. Hell the my local PD is actually shifting to the .40 because their .45 is being considered “too powerful”.

    But im guessing this Pittsburgh complaint is more an issue of bad aim then actual ineffectiveness.

  46. avatarWPZ says:

    A crusty, if not downright unpleasant, old geezer I have professional acquaintance with spent 32 years riding around in Chicago Police Department cars. He was in a fair number of gunfights and responded to many more.
    He loves handguns and has perhaps thousands, but will say, if asked: “The only gun I’ve ever seen work every time was a 12 gauge with buck.”
    That said, for handguns, once placement is right, the bullet design seems to have emerged as the second-most important factor the defender might have some control over. Two other friends with three decades of copper experience apiece and have been to plenty of gunfights, live and aftermath. Both absolutely insist on Gold Dots and prefer .45s when possible.
    That’s all the information available to me with which I have any faith.

  47. avatarWLCE says:

    I actually agree with Tex (and I never do)

    If your 40 “doesnt have enough stopping power”, then you need to reach for your shotgun or your patrol rifle. Simple.

    If 40 doesnt cut it, 10mm, 45, 357 sig or any other wunder caliber out there sure as hell wont.

    • avatarPat says:

      These people must be using some crappy ammo. Each caliber has a spectrum of power from weaker to stronger. These dudes must have been on crack and using FMJ instead of hollowpoints.

  48. avatarArdent says:

    On paper and empirical performance of the .40 S&W strongly suggest a considerable gain over the 9mm with which so many police departments and others are enamored. Recalling that the 9mm was largely a replacement for the .38 spcl which lacks anything like their ballistics, but which seemed to serve well despite ‘bad guys’ often armed with .45, .38 super and even .357 handguns one is forced to wonder wherein lies the problem. Arguably a hit from any of the above to a vital target will have lethal result and rapid target incapacitation; I fail to see how something ‘more powerful’ than the .40 will help. In the end, you actually have to hit something without which the target cannot continue.
    I personally carry a .45 (full scale 1911). It is difficult to conceal in many ways and requires a commitment. If I wore an open duty holster I might actually shrink my gun though. If I anticipated a full on firefight I’d certainly carry a rifle at all times. If and when that isn’t possible I’d tend to choose a high capacity .40cal. I’ve owned CZ 75(b)s, Glock 23s and HK USP 40s. I much value their increased capacity over the 1911 and respect their power without question. I choose a 1911 as a civilian for it’s one shot stopping power, and do not feel restricted by the increased recoil and decreased capacity in a weapon that is purely defensive.
    That said; if you cannot achieve incapacitating shots on an unarmored human with a .40cal you have failed as a marksman and as a gunner. Anyone who returned to me from the field and indicated that their .40 cal premium hollow points failed to achieve incapacitation of a human target would be sent back to the range with a supply of target loads until even after a mile run and under screamning and yelling they could make torso shots at reasonable (25yds) ranges. Anyone incapable would be dismissed. Is it too much to ask that with a free gun, and free ammo a uniformed police officer practice enough to be competent with his weapon? It ought to be a basic job requirement. Missing you target or achieving peripheral hits will not incapacitate with a .500 magnum in a determined subject. If you want to live, learn to hit.

  49. avatarKevin says:

    Recently in the city I live, a homeowner stopped an intruder with a single round to the chest from a .22LR rifle. Dead as a doornail, on the living room floor.

    .40 S&W is just fine for a service pistol.

  50. avatarPhil Hallmark says:

    My .44mag says it has stopping power, but it still remains like Tex said, placement. Big target-small aim. I shoot snakes between the eyes, dedicated aim and kill because I don’t want rattlers to bite my loved ones. The furthest shot with a .22 pistol was 75 yds, between the eyes, witnessed. That is dedicated aim small and kill intention. Remember, aim small, and choose the point of impact. Okay, 75 yds below the ear on a white tail and only half the head was left= that’s a .44 mag hit. Truth only.

  51. avatarPat says:

    The fault would lie in the cartridges, not the caliber. If you wish, you can load damn near 357 power in a 40 (with a bigger bullet).

  52. avatarcody p. says:

    http://www.lawofficer.com/article/training/officer-down-peter-soulis-inci

    Here’s a good story about the .40S&W. The officer shot the suspect 22 TIMES! 17 COM. The perp had very little alcohol in his system, and that’s about it. I believe the problem is high velocity light-weight hollowpoints that expand nice and purty, but do not penetrate as they should. I feel that if the officer had an spare mag of FMJ(like i carry on a daily basis) that he would’ve stopped the man ASAP. I understand that handguns are only used to fight your way to a rifle ;) and are poor stoppers…but I do carry .45ACP FMJ for this exact reason. While obviously the ball round won’t expand, it’ll definitely reach all the vitals if needed. And in the .40S&W’s case, FMJ tends to be flat-nosed…which means it’ll glance off bone less than traditional round nose and just hammer on through any bone. And for those velocity guys out there, I carry on occasion a Romanian Tokarev in 7.62×25 with 100grn JHP’s @ 1600fps. OUCH.

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