Weekend Digest: Barely Human Edition

Thompson SMG, c Nick LeghornMore than 80 years ago, John Dillinger’s gang stole a Thompson submachine gun from a police station in Auburn, Indiana. Thursday, after spending all but three months of that time in the custody of law enforcement, the gun was returned to the Auburn Police Department, where plans are in the works to preserve and display the historic gun “for all to enjoy when visiting Auburn and sharing in its diverse, small-town history,” according to Police Chief Martin D. McCoy. The gun was stolen on October 14, 1933 . . .

along with bulletproof vests, ammunition, and several other firearms. It was recovered in Tuscon, AZ in January, 1934, following a shootout with the Dillinger gang. Tuscon PD held onto it until 1966, when it was transferred to the FBI’s custody, and it remained there on public display for most of the remaining years from then until the present day.

Your Lockdown of the Day™ for today comes from Tehachapi, California. Friday afternoon two students at Tompkins Elementary School reported that a man with a weapon fired it towards the school. Tompkins School went into lockdown as did nearby Jacobsen Middle School and Tehachapi High School. An hour later all schools had been declared “clear” and students were released. The two students’ stories were conflicting as to the location of the man, but both agreed it was an adult male wearing black. Later a third student came forward to tell police that he was “pretty positive” that it was an airsoft gun and that the man was firing orange pellets toward the school. Sgt. Keven Empey of the Tehachapi PD said in a press release later Friday afternoon that “The report at this point is unsubstantiated and is under further investigation.”

This isn’t exactly guns, but Facebook’s been in the headlines here lately, and cops often are, and those things intersect in this story so… Facebook is going to pay for a beat cop in Menlo Park, California. The Menlo Park City Council unanimously approved an officer to be hired by the police department but paid for with funds provided by Facebook, to the tune of some $200,000 per year the officer’s salary and benefits. The officer will patrol the Belle Haven area, a poorer community that’s very near Facebook’s headquarters. Menlo Park Mayor Ray Mueller said there’s no cause for concern about a conflict of interest, because the officer will still be full under the command and control of the Menlo Park Police, just like any other officer. Facebook is also providing an additional $215,000 for rent and improvements to a new substation in the area.

Another home was defended in Detroit on Thursday when a resident fatally shot a 17-year-old intruder attempting to break into his home. According to police, two people attempted entry through a back window at about 12:30 p.m. The resident heard a noise, got his handgun and fired a single shot. The 17-year-old was struck and died at the scene, while his accomplice ran off and escaped. What are the chances he won’t be trying that again anytime soon?

Guns.com has a brief piece on the Great Red Ammo Scare (aka Obama’s going to ban the import of Russian ammo). The upshot: It’s not happening. Several vendors, including Wolf, have said the rumors are unsubstantiated. Furthermore, even if Obama did ban Russian ammo through executive action, both Red Army Standard and Hot Shot have factories in Romania, not just in the Ukraine. So buy it up if you feel you must, but don’t go all Chicken Little on us.

Good news out of Virginia that the House rejected Governor McAuliffe’s amendment to HB 962, which would have completely reversed the language of the bill and likely rendered many residents of the Old Dominion State inadvertent criminals. [That “inadvertent criminal” thing seems to be a pattern lately.] HB 962 was designed simply to clarify the language of the existing statute, which says that it is legal to transport firearms in vehicles in closed containers such as glove boxes or consoles. McAuliffe’s amendment would have changed the language such that the containers had to be locked, which is not even possible with many glove boxes and consoles. The amendment was defeated by a 30 to 70 vote, and the unmolested HB 962 now goes back to the Governor’s desk to be signed as-is, not signed (in which case it becomes law), or vetoed. If vetoed, it will come up in April at a veto override session, and if the 30/70 ratio is the same then, that will be enough to override.

Yet another SHOT Show video from Richard Ryan’s new Guns YouTube channel. This one is the Barrett MRAD Barrel Conversion model. Two screws and about two minutes, and you can go from .308 (in various barrel lengths) to .300 WinMag or .338 Lapua Magnum. This is one of those things that I wish I had a reason to need.

Jerry Miculek dual-wields a pair of KRISS Vectors, dropping 40 rounds on target in 3.5 seconds. Of course there’s high speed video. Conspicuous consumption at its finest.

The other day I showed you a video of Jerry Miculek dropping a round on an 18×24 inch steel plate at about 325 yards using his S&W M&P 9 mm with reflex sights (not that the sights matter much at that distance). How about this… 22plinkster, a 1962 Colt Woodsman Target Model, iron sights, with 36 grain Federal Champion .22LR ammunition, an 18×24 inch steel plate, and 500 yards. Now granted, Jerry pulled it off on his first shot, but he’s hardly human at this point. 22plinkster said it took him six shots, but the ballistic calculator on my phone says the holdover at that distance is around 35 feet.

Bang! … … … … … … Clang!


  1. avatar Craig says:

    Guys, why no news on the bills in RI yet? 26 pro and anti gun bills are kind of hard to miss…

    1. avatar mirgc says:

      And in Oregon, pro-2A advocated got a couple of pro-gun bills thru, as well as defeat the latest attempt here to expand background checks to include private transfers and loans. Champagne corks are going off in celebration!


  2. avatar mountocean says:

    Crazy how much the suppressor affects the cyclic rate.

    1. avatar Paladin says:

      That’s not a suppressor. The Vector CRB has a barrel shroud to cover it’s 16″ barrel. My guess is that the difference in split times is due to the difference in trigger fingers.

  3. avatar Accur81 says:

    The Barrett MRAD looks awesome. Top it with a NightForce, Swarovski, Bushnell ERS, US Optic, etc. 3-18ish scope and call it good. I wish it wasn’t 6 grand. For the price I could get a Savage 110 BA, Rem 700 LTR (or a good .308 since Freedom group buggered), and a decent 300 Mag. Take the aforementioned scope options and mount a LaRue QD base. Done.

    Then again, a single caliber Gunwerks scope / rifle combo could run a fellow 6 grand as well. Ah, well. Many a Mosin has killed deer and pigs, and some of those are cheaper than dinner and drinks and a movie with the Mrs.

    1. avatar benny says:

      The MRAD also has about 2 more zeroes on the end of its price tag. It looks awesome, and probably is awesome, but it’s not enough awesome to justify that price.

    2. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      Every Mosin also has stories to tell to those with the sense and patience to listen.

  4. avatar JeffR says:

    I was at my favorite range/LGS today. They had a sign up: “Russia has banned the export of all sporting rounds.” I almost tore a retina rolling my eyes.

    1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      I saw the stupidity coming so I ordered a good quantity of 7.62×39. It should last me way beyond any idiocy that arises from the Russia excuse.

      1. avatar Jacob W says:

        You ought to sell it, and benefit from the idiocy. If you have to suffer through it, might as well make a little scratch during.

  5. avatar 5Spot says:

    The coolest thing about that mrad is the T handle torque wrench that comes with it.

  6. avatar William Burke says:

    John Dillinger, it is claimed (possibly apocryphally), carried two 45s with him. One was his Thompson, stolen from the police station… and the other was an attached part of his manly anatomy. 😀

    1. avatar benny says:

      We may never know.
      You know what they say about kissing and telling.

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        The Smithsonian, it seems, has both denied and refused to deny the story.

  7. avatar benny says:

    I didn’t think they would ban the imports from Russia. What would that even accomplish?

    Kudos to Facebook for putting a cop in a poor neighborhood AND donating to said neighborhood. I can’t say I disagree.

    Is there anything Miculek CANT do?!

    1. avatar William Burke says:

      “I didn’t think they would ban the imports from Russia. What would that even accomplish? ”

      You’re joking. It keeps any more 7.62 X 39 ammo out of the hands of American citizens, doesn’t it?

      1. avatar benny says:

        Yes, that’s true but the ammo is also made locally and in other countries.

        1. avatar William Burke says:

          But the intention is there.

        2. avatar benny says:

          That’s too true.
          This wouldn’t be the time though. Sad part is, I only got my gut as a reason why lol.

          Not enough reason in most scholarly debates…

      2. avatar Karina says:

        No it doesn’t. Wolf is an American company, and the majority of x39 (and other soviet calibers) is of Romanian origin.

    2. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      “Is there anything Miculek CANT do?!”

      Yes: miss.

      I’m thinking that .22 Plinkster is the heir apparent.

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        .22 Plinkster! Now THAT was a damned fine shot.

        1. avatar Mark N. says:

          And here I thought I was bad assed dropping rounds on a plate that size at 250 yards with a .22 rifle! This demonstrate how important it is to have a back stop, or at least have a pretty solid idea where your rounds are going to end up.

        2. avatar benny says:

          I could only dream of such feats of accuracy…

        3. avatar lolinski says:

          Not really, you just need to shoot much. Ed McGivern said he spent 30 000 shells to learn one trick and that anybody can do it.

        4. avatar William Burke says:

          Okay! Lousy shot, then. 😛

        5. avatar Larry says:

          “Anybody can do it”? Where you think you’re gonna find 30,000 rounds of .22?

  8. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    “More than 80 years ago, John Dillinger’s gang stole a Thompson submachine gun from a police station in Auburn, Indiana. Thursday, after spending all but three months of that time in FBI custody, the gun was returned to the Auburn Police Department…”

    Except that from ’34 ’til some time in ’66 it was a guest of the Tucson PD.

    And I thought the antis were bad at math…

    1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      It wasn’t even a word problem.

    2. avatar Matt in FL says:

      That was meant to say “police” custody, or “in the custody of law enforcement,” but my fingers got away. I’ll fix the text when I get to a real computer. Editing on a phone is a nonstarter.

      1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        One smart ass, reporting for duty.

    3. avatar Dave Lewis says:

      And just for the record, my bet is that the Thompson was an early version with the forward grip and drum magazine. The WW2 version shown in the picture didn’t come along until WW2!

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        Hence the term, “World War II version”.

  9. avatar Stinkeye says:

    Glad to see 22Plinkster getting some more love in the digests. He might not be in the same league as the Miculek Systems Model 101, but he’s got some serious skills. One thing I like about his videos is that most of the time, he’s not shooting super-fancy guns or exploding targets and crap. Just a dude messing around with a .22, doing some very impressive shooting. It’s mostly stuff you can try yourself, and really appreciate how good the guy is.

  10. avatar lolinski says:

    Miculek shoots full auto to conserve ammo.

  11. avatar tdiinva says:

    For those of you who feared Virginia gun rights were in danger you have your answer — 70 pro-Second Amendment votes in the House of Delegates. McAuliffe might as well just go on vacation for the next four years because none his agenda is going anywhere.

    1. avatar William Burke says:

      Maybe. If there is not a Virginia school shoot-up in the queue.

  12. avatar neiowa says:

    Associate by caliber only. Today I find that GSAxcess.gov has 2x Reisling Model 50 listed as surplus at LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL SECURITY Los Alamos, NM. There is some history. Should go in a museum.

    and 7x M14

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