“A SWAT team rifleman took out the gunman from more than 100 yards without a clear line of sight, [East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Sid] Dabadie told cnn.com. ‘That shot our SWAT team made was a helluva shot . . . We’ve been questioned for the last two weeks about our militarized tactics and our militarized law enforcement. This is why.” True?
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I think police need more training, not military grade gear. With regular range time and a hunting rifle you could take much longer shots than that. It’s just that what is required of police is extremely low.
I agree, but I do believe that local police need to be demilitarized. And by that I mean that they should not have a SWAT team or anything that resembles them. Local police are akin to a standing army and as such, tight controls should be placed on them. Not tight enough that they cannot do their jobs or protect themselves, mind you. But they should not have a need of any SWAT style team and military vehicles to perform their jobs. All SWAT style teams and military equipment should be formed up into an organized State Militia and act similar to our local fire departments. Where they train, train, train until there is an actual need and they respond. they would not be doing any normal policing. That keeps the local LEOs from having a military style appearance and yet still provide the capabilities of SWAT when it is actually needed. And I do believe that SWAT style teams are necessary.
Not much for commenting, but I like this idea. Fairly straightforward to implement, and in most communities I would guess overwhelming support. Perhaps much closer to our founding documents intent, self policed, self governed free and sovereign citizenry. Plenty of deterrent effect? It also forces communities to come together in common cause and removes centralized powers.
I like it, needs some fleshing out but this is good. Action steps?
Ohhhh I really like that idea let’s put regulated militia back up since we’re always hearing about it from the lefty stalinists
I don’t believe that the average suburban police dept needs MRAPS, however, the whole SWAT concept emerged from the LA shootout (which also served as the model for the movie HEAT). Regularly armed police officers were no match for the heavily armed, armored perps in the LA case, so special units were envisioned that could respond quickly with the proper equipment and training. I don’t believe this really constitutes a standing army, since SWAT accounts for a tiny percentage of the average police department.
The notion of dispersing SWAT like capabilities into the community is probably useless. The communities that really need those capabilities are going to be the big metro areas – if it’s even legal for a normal civilian to own the proper tools, do you really think they could respond in a timely manner? Even in a low-traffic rural area, the closest analogy to your idea – the volunteer fire department – can take a long time to mobilize, coordinate, and get to the business of fighting fires. Mobilizing a citizen militia to engage in an active shooter scenario would be a sight to behold.
“the whole SWAT concept emerged from the LA shootout”
It actually started in Philly in 1964 to combat bank robberies. LA then copied the concept a year or so later and added combating riots and barricaded armed criminals to the list of duties.
I think you misunderstood me. I said “organized State Militia.” These are not volunteers and I in no way meant to convey that they would be individual “private” militias performing this role. I am for removing all SWAT style teams from local PDs and placing them under the control of the state. Then, put into place certain restrictions on local PDs so that we get them “demilitarized.” This does not mean we remove their AR-15 rifles. But only the fact that some PDs allow their officers to dress up in fatigues and tactical gear. They also do not need MRAPs or other types armored vehicles. Nor do they need Humvees. Situations which would require SWAT and or armored vehicles, the State Militia would be called out to handle while the police are doing policing and not urban warfare.
So you are saying we should take the roles and responsibilities of SWAT teams and transfer them to the national guard? So the actual response would remain the same, but the responsible party would be the State, not a local PD or Sheriff’s office?
Actually, Heat came out before the North Hollywood Shootout, and that was the impetus for some police departments to start issuing “patrol rifles” instead of just pump shotguns in some of their cruisers. SWAT teams were started in Cali and NY and other big cities because of the actions of the Black Panthers (who didn’t really do anything “violent” besides show up and scare DiFi and her pasty statist pals), Weather Underground, and SLA.
Interesting idea. Had not thought of that possibility
They shouldn’t have anything we the people don’t (or anything that requires hurdles for us to get).
Vice versa: if they can have free access to it, then we should as well (without any hurdles).
Yep, no suppressors, no full-autos, no SBRs, no SBSes for departments without them jumping through the same hurdles as us “civilian” plebs. Police are civilians as well, unless they happen to be serving members of the military in addition to LEOs. I really hate it when politicians and cops refer to normies as “civilians,” and likewise when certain people (TTAG writers) refer to the “civilian-disarmament complex” they should really say the “plebeian-disarmament complex,” because police are and will be a privileged class of enforcers in the libbies’ “gun-free” utopia.
Okay, I actually would go along with that. A lot of work to do to determine quals and standards, but it’s entirely possible.
Agreed. A JCHiggins bolt gun from the 60s would do the thing. Cops need tactics training and marksmanship training.
The LA debacle was mainly due to the fact that most cops couldn’t make a precise shot with a handgun and they had no carbines. A 30-30 would have done the job pretty well.
I don’t like to see cops try to be military and I damned sure don’t want to see military personnel try to be cops.
Train to shoot well and have a rifle or carbine in the cruiser trunk. Good advice for everyone.
Article looking for story?
“Hella a shot”. ?!?! Ummmmmm. No.
If the “sniper” was shooting his service pistol at 100 yards and hit center mass, sure, it is hell-of-a-shot. If a scoped rifle, not so much. Heck, even if iron sites, not so much.
This sounds like quite the internet tough guy talk. “Oh that shot’s so easy, I could do it in my sleep.” But it was under stress, on the infamous two-way range, without a clear line of sight or a nice clean firing line.
I’m not saying anything about militarization or their tactics, but that was a good shot. Certainly nothing to be laughed off.
Really? Two way. The bad guy had a fix on his position and was shooting at him? The LEO had no clear line of fire, but took the shot anyway even though he couldn’t see the bad guy. He was just shooting blindly.
I dunno. If you take the bad guy out immediately on arrival, on the first shot, without a clear line of sight, I don’t call that shooting in the blind. Even though 100 yards is not a super hard shot, it is also not a fluke. Also, we weren’t there, we weren’t under that stress, we didn’t have fellow officers down and we weren’t facing a madman with a Tavor who knew what he was doing. I think a lot of the posts on this thread are the worst kind of “Monday Morning Quarterbacking.”
I’m glad that SWAT office was there and not some of the second-guessers on this thread who think they could have done better. He got it done. That’s what counts
I fail to see what’s “militarized” about a 100 yard hit on target.
Maybe cops see militarization as anything beyond annual quals? Wouldn’t surprise me.
Maybe they made the shot using a G43 using stock sights? If so, color me impressed.
If that were the case I agree. But the 100 yard shot came out of a scoped rifle so, not that challenging. I’m not saying a piece of cake, or a walk in the park but not that challenging for anyone with any training.
I don’t think it’s cops that see anything as militarization. I think the Sheriff is responding to how the media and even some here throw around the term ‘militarization.’ Putting a cop in slightly more bullet-resistant vest and arming him with a semi-auto AR is hardly militarization, but when the media takes a photo of him that’s how they paint it.
With recent events, the tanks and tactical costumes don’t seem as silly to me anymore. I still think that anything they can do in digi-cam they can do equally as well in navy blue, though.
My opinion…and there’s no way to verify…is the militarization exacerbated the situation last summer. It made no sense to wear jungle fatigues in an urban setting. The only message that sent was “we are an invading army”.
local law enforcement took on the role of enforcing laws from standing armies. The British Red Coats were used to enforce the laws during the colonial period. And as such, should be viewed as the same and they cannot be compared to militias as they are compromised of the people in the area. A lot of cops do not live or come from the area’s they “patrol”.
Other distinctions include paychecks and where their loyalties are.
I don’t mind cops having rifles and armor. Even a county bearcat I can understand. I do have a problem with them wearing multicam in a city. It’s beyond stupid. There are tons of brands that sell black blue or grey bdu style uniforms. Some 5.11 pants and shirts in urban grey for example. Someone with a bit more tinfoil in their hair might think someone was trying to send a message to the citizens by having cops do soldier cosplay in Iraqi hand me downs.
If the NAVY needs BLUE Camo PJ on an aircraft carrier of in a sub a the bottom of an ocean to feel macho.
The AirFarce/(we hit the ground most of the time) needs special AF camo down at the airport Hilton http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Air+Force+Digital+Camo&FORM=RESTAB
wacker on Rambo.
I’ll complain about militarization when they start regularly putting M2 Brownings on those bearcats
How do you “feel” about grenades and C4?
So a hundred yard supported shot with (probably) a 30 caliber rifle is supposed to be an achievement now? Please.
Police should not be allowed to have any gear nor readily available to other civilians in all jurisdictions.
This 100%. I cannot trust a government that doesn’t make me an equal partner in my safety or the safety of my family.
Indeed. Police are not exceptional. They are Civilians with certain additional powers.
I’m 100% for removing all police carveouts, aside from ones that are courtesy for their service.
Let’s see how enthusiastic California police are about taking away standard capacity magazines and bullet buttons when they’re under the same restrictions.
unfortunately, they (not all of them) see themselves as our superiors. I as out to eat with my family at a hamburger joint this past weekend. 3 local cops sat next us. One stated that if someone tried to run on them, they would “tase’em.” Fortunately, another cop at the table told him that he cannot just do that. The dumbass cop, said “sure I can, if it is a legal stop!” then they realized I was staring right at them and they changed the subject.
Give them cattle prods and it should be no surprise that they treat us like cattle.
You can go online and buy all that armor and an AR to match. It’ll be expensive AF, but you can do it…
(note: obviously you can’t buy the AR online, but you get the idea)
No, but let’s say it does before the anti’s realize that hunters with hunting rifles do this every day.
A 100 meter shot with an AR is not militarization.
MRAPs on the other hand are a different story.
Agreed! A police sharpshooter is fine. That isn’t the same as heavy military equipment, dressing in the latest camouflage BDU, and aggressive tactics that include aiming a machine gun from an MRAP at citizens in their houses (as as was done in Boston).
Sure, if that’s all SWAT teams did (responding to shooters). In reality, about 80% of what SWAT teams do is serving drug warrents. They actually typically wait to enter mass shooting events until it’s far too late to do much. Look up how long they waited during Columbine, Sandy Hook, and Orlando. This is the exception that proves the rule: it’s pretty unusual that police would need any of the military grade stuff.
The only reason this exception exists is because this murderer was targeting cops. If he started shooting up a store with “just civilians” it’d probably be another 1+ hour wait.
Would love to see breakdown on response times cop shhotings vs others.
I’m still in the ‘3 hrs was a might too long’ camp.
Mite have been. 🙂
Militarized? No-just competent… how is a hundred yard shot a big deal? “Make America safe again!” 🙂
The only problem I have with “police militarization” is the lack of citizen militarization.
Not impressed. At that distance, a bench rest shooter would ask, “Right eye, left eye or half way in between?”
To be far, though br boys are not typically shooting at moving targets that are themselves shooting back.
I think a far closer model is big game hunters.
Or even, “favor left edge of right pupil, send it.”
Shooting at a moving target who is shooting back and has already killed three people that you probably knew is a bit different than shooting from a bench rest. You’ve obviously never had to shoot while under true stress if you so flippantly dismiss it.
When I read this article, I was reminded of the Austin PD Sgt. who landed a center-mass shot, offhand, on an active shooter with an AK at over 300ft, while holding the reins of two horses. THAT was impressive.
My wife who shoots about 20% of what I do could have made that shot easy. I guess she’s qualified for her “sniper” badge now. Must have had a good spotter to pull off such a extreme shot. Is there a cool patch for the 100 yard club or do they just cut the extra 0 off?
My wife had never fired a gun when we met. Now, 10 years later, she is shooting 10 out of 10 on 4 inch steel plates at 300 yards with her Ruger precision rifle in .308. So does this make her police chief or a 4 star general?
I think that makes her a SEAL. When they make a movie about her exploits try to get a real baby.
In most circumstances, no. Police and sheriffs have NO military role. Having said that, there are going to be emerging situations that will need that technology and “military” engagement tactics. Local and state LEO’s will be the ones tasked with resolving the situation. They expect and deserve the appropriate tool for the job at hand, but where do we draw the line???
The line should be directly parallel and equal length to the line that’s drawn on citizen ownership of such tools.
One people, one body, one goal, one set of rules to govern ALL.
Only living individuals possess rights whereas governments can only have privileges. An agent of government can be equipped with less (but never more than individuals) as they are operating under privilege. When they are not acting as agents of government, they are operating under rights. They accept the paycheck so they agree to operate under privilege while acting as agents of government.
(The site wouldn’t let me edit the above reply.)
The only perk of being an agent of government ought to be the paycheck. Anything else tends to invite corruption and tyranny.
Rob, I like the way you think.
Average people make 100 or even 200 yard rifle shots every weekend at their local gun club’s range. And what’s this about no clear line of sight? Unless it was a magic bullet he must have had a clear line to the target.
Or the bullet penetrated concealment, but I’m going to lean on the side of the news having no idea what they’re talking about.
Well, the sheriff said that, so…
Yeah. I wondered about that too.
With no clear line of sight, how did he see the threat?
And was it then an unsafe shot?
Maybe there were people milling around in behind the target – meaning he had to make the shot, or endanger someone beyond.
Again, making a shot at a FREAKING GUN CLUB is not the same as shooting at a living person who has already killed three people. It’s not even in the same stratosphere. While I agree a 100 yard shot is not the same as an 800 yard sniper kill, don’t flippantly dismiss it because you and your buddies can hit a target at 100 yards on a relaxing Saturday afternoon.
Shooting someone at 100 yards is really nothing special if that is what you do for a job. I fought in Iraq and in the Philippines. Iraq was often times sittuations that occured in populated areas filled with non combatants. While rules of engagement were different the potential for collateral damage was not when taking a shot. Engaging someone at 100 yards that does not have eyes on you would be a cake walk. In fact I would have felt blessed if that was my dilemma. The worst thing anybody can face beyond multiple combatants is having to clear a building or snatch someone from a building. That is far more stress and requires much more training than reaching out 100 yards to one jackass with a rifle who is not hunting you.
But I am safely ensconced behind my keyboard where of course I am ten foot tall and bullet proof. I also have the luxury of 20/20 hindsight. And further more just last week I made all types of loud mouth comments about BLM being terrorists and the police are you and me. But now I will shit talk the cops because of my bullet proof keyboard and an over abundance of hypocrisy. I must now go and wash the cheeto stains off my dick.
A 100 yard shot can be performed with any good rifle.
I’m an amateur and I can make 100 yard shots with an AR, M1 Garand, or a Ruger 10/22.
I don’t think that being a good rifleman is militarization, it is just American tradition.
Civilian police should not be legally allowed to have or use any device that a non police civilian can own and operate. Anything that police have or use that citizens cannot is over militarization. The police are or are close to becoming a standing army on US soil.
Yup. And they will be the enforcement tool of tyrants to come.
Clear line of sight. Hasn’t been addressed yet.
Is there something special about “the shot” that means only a trained SWAT marksman could have made it?
To the MSM, sure.
Reminds me of the reporter’s comments in the FIRST BLOOD mivie….’ only their training in police survival techniques saved their lives.”
Repeat that narrative.
I think the word we need to use is “context”. As other commenters has written, SWAT and armored vehicles coming down on a 23 year old pot dealer with no history of violence is excessive. Shooting an unarmed man 135 feet away is excessive. Shooting an armed individual, who has shot people without provocation and is an active threat, from any distance is NOT excessive.
From my understanding, the purpose of police was protect people accused of crimes from mobs so the accused could have their day in court. The investigations conducted by police were once done by private individuals paid by those who had a vested interest in the case. The revenue generation conducted by police was not needed in the past because people felt that if you didn’t work, you shouldn’t eat, but helped through charity those that were too young, old, or weak to take care of themselves, and the state stayed out of it.
I’m tired as hell of this militarized police crap. Give the police whatever they need to do their job safely, effectively, and efficiently. Especially military grade equipment and training. If people just look around them and think for a minute lots of items we use everyday were created for or by the military. Swiss army knives, toughbook laptops, most ruggedized watches, military grade cellphone cases, aviator sun glasses, pistols and rifles that we want or already have, emergency medical service, the internet (which was developed to protect government information in the event of a nuclear attack and was not intended at the time for civilian use), and so on……
The police are also part of the front line of defense outside of civilians when a terrorist attack is actively being exicuted. The recent shootings in Dallas and Baton Rouge prove the need for military grade equipment be ready and available for police use. The departments should not have to entertain anymore criticism about their equipment and tactics to a-holes that are too cowardly to walk in their duty boots (also designed for military field use).
You know full well those examples are not being debated here. Our problem is them running around in MRAP’s like the bearcat, and they’re sheer exuberance to play dress up as a solider and go rushing in on a drug dealer like soldiers kicking in doors in Iraq. This is exacerbated by rubber stamp judges who’ll sign off on no-knock raids without any thought as to the nature of the subject or regard for the bystanders or innocents who may be inside.
Think there can’t be an innocent living with a drug dealer/criminal? Just remember that baby sent to the hospital after a police flash bang went off in its crib after they busted down the door and threw it in without regard to who was inside.
They’re cops. Not soldiers. They need to f**king act like.
Dam straight Nick
“Does 100-Yard SWAT Shot on Baton Rouge Killer Justify Police Militarization?”
No, unless the SWAT dude made the shot from inside his MRAP.
This shouldn’t have taken a SWAT-team sniper. It was a patrol-rifle job that could, and should, have been done by a cruiser-cop. If they think otherwise, they need to spend more time reevaluating their mission rather than just scrambling to justify their existence.
Seriously, when seconds count, the SWAT-team is just minutes away. This is exactly what a patrol-rifle is for, and I don’t consider a cruiser equipped with one to be militarization – a SWAT team with an armored truck and automatic-weapons on the other hand, is.
As an officer, I’ve always felt that if you gave beat units regular semi auto AR-15s with a decent red dot and a level 3 or 4 vest to throw on when the s is htf, and decent and frequent training, that’s enough to defeat 99.9 percent of threats to the public or us we would encounter
Street cops have an understandable need for patrol rifles. Officer Lenda at the Oak Creek Temple incident had to take down the bad guy at roughly similar distance with the rifle in his trunk, and he did so. He didn’t take time to don full SWAT team battle armor (personal or vehicular), he engaged quickly and did his job admirably. You don’t always have to have an MRAP and full blown SWAT team to get the job done, considering the cost in civilian lives (Orlando anyone?) for those commanders that decide to wait for them before taking out the bad guy.
Yes, because this shot clearly justifies using flashbangs to roast sleeping toddlers, or using no-knock warrants as often as possible because the size of federal grants depend on the number of “risky warrants” served per year.
I can’t get anything regarding number of shots/qualification standards for the Seattle PD but their online manual (actually a bit of an interesting read) notes only an annual qualification for pistol, patrol rifle, patrol shotgun. Bad enough that they only have an annual qual for pistol – worries me even more that they are allowed an AR with just a once-a-year qual.
No info regarding department-mandated range days beyond the annual qualification day. .
If they’re anything like other departments, the number of required days outside qualification is zero.
I qualified expert with an M-16 the first day I ever held one. If you don’t enjoy shooting a course of fire, it is a waste of time and money. Develop a fun training day and see how many show up.
The premise here is faulty, one (militarization of police forces) doesn’t really have much to do with the other (the cop taking out the racist coward who thought he was much smarter than he was). Police don’t “need” all this military gear any more than I “need” an AR with a 30-round mag. I don’t have a problem with them having this stuff, on the surface it seems a good use of existing resources. But, like my ARs, it all depends on how it’s used.
As for all you guys making light of the 100 yard shot, context is again appropriate. Bottom line, the SWAT guy took out the scumbag under immense pressure, and most likely saved lives in the process. He got it done, as he should have. Diminishing that accomplishment is silly, what should he have done, moved out to 500 yards? Would you be impressed then? Probably not.
The BR shooter attacked armed men with the ability to fight back, that is not cowardly. A 4 AM no knock raid is cowardly.
Yeah, I saw his Youtube nonsense, he was not only a coward but also a dumbass. Now he’s “extincted.”
I assume you’re armed Chris. A man shoots you in the back of the head from concealment. Was he a coward or since you were armed and could fight back it was a good shoot, right?
I have no problem with police wearing body armor, kevlar helmets, or 100 yard sniper shot shots to get the bad guy.
That is not the militarization of the police.
Since when do the police have an obligation to take a bullet for you????
I understand some police officers will take a bullet for an innocent civilian.
But not all of them will take a bullet for an innocent person.
The case Warren vs the District of Columbia 1981, you have no right to police protection.
When the police are using M60 or M1 tanks then you can say the police have been militarized.
Having an armored car or truck for protection is not militarization either.
“Since when do the police have an obligation to take a bullet for you????”
When they started cashing their paychecks. That is why we hire them, to take a bullet for us. If they don’t want to do that job, fine let them find honest work.
+1. They get shot so I don’t have to. Every soldier I have spoken at length with, combat arms or REMF, understands this as part of their job. If they didn’t, none of them would have volunteered in the first place. The fact that so few cops today do astounds me.
There is also a glaring difference between police and military. When you enlist or get a commission in the military you are signing a contract for a specific length of service. During that time, Uncle Sam owns your butt.
Conversely, if cops feel the job is too dangerous they can just quit. People in the military don’t have that option.
+2. Well stated.
No, actually. The police are hired to investigate and apprehend criminals. Sometimes this may require risking their lives, but if a policeman takes a bullet and in the process allows the criminal to get away, he has technically failed at his job (even if he doubtless succeeded at being a selfless human being).
If police don’t have a duty to protect me and my family, then I reserve the right to protect them myself by whatever means I deem necessary. If certain police or politicians don’t like that, then they better man up and take full responsibility for our safety. I’ll take a bullet for my kids any day of the year, will you take a bullet to protect my kids? If not, then you don’t need no stinkin’ MRAPs.
Edit: What I’m trying to say is that those officers that are willing to lay down their life for my kids (or anyone elses) have a reason to be armed to the teeth. If you’re just collecting a paycheck and a pension, then you have no reason to have toys. I personally know cops in both camps.
Tyranny is rising. Government has to beef up what amounts to its fists in the civillian world. Whether current officers like to realize it or not, that is a standing army in blue which will be used to enforce the will of tyrants. If officers in the ranks don’t want to follow along, they will fire them and fill the ranks with new, indoctrinated officers.
The author thinks Barney needs too get the bullet out of his pocket …………
Get over it
I thought about Barney, too.
I remember that Mayberry’s Sheriff Taylor had a gun rack full of rifles in his office, and I think Barney could have hit a man at 100 yards.
When I think of the term “militarization,” I think about tools unavailable to the citizenry, such as full-auto rifles. And I’m still not convinced any civilian law enforcement agency needs a full-auto anything.
Personally, I think they don’t need guns at all. Citizens should be armed, not government employees.
Government employees are citizens too. Well, at least some of them are.
While acting as agents of government, they operate under privilege. They voluntarily submit themselves to this situation in return for compensation.
If the cops have no responsibility to save the lives of other citizens, then they don’t need military equipment. Anything an average citizen can purchase without permission from Big Brother, police can have. Anything else is militarization. And wearing camo in urban settings just make you look ignorant.
And 100 yards on a moving target that isn’t completely visible is about what deer hunters do millions of times every year.
The Baton Rouge PD found one nail and is therefore trying to justify their whole bag of hammers.
Not to mention the Baton Rouge PD used a framing hammer for a finishing nail.
I see a place for armored vehicles in police use. North hollywood is a classic example. Semi auto rifles also have a place as does body armor.
Some of the problem is public perception. Weak minded folk see a cop in cammie fatiques and they start freaking about militarized cops. Easy cure for that is blue cop style uniforms instead of cammies.
Cops do not need tracked vehicles(outside of bomb robots) or artillery or full auto weapons. Stay away from those and the PD is good.
Now, we voters and our pols need to seriously end this useless and destructive war on drugs. Most of our friction between cops and citizens would likely abate if this happens.
I don’t mind the cops having AR-15s like I have. I do mind the cops wearing fatigues (even blue ones should be out of the question). I also mind the cops taking part in urban warfare training. The only reason for cops to be doing that is if they plan to subdue the citizenry. SWAT and other similar “tactical” type law enforcement teams need to be removed from local police departments and those departments need to get back to the business of policing.
Ferguson. Rodney king riots. BLM instigating civil unrest. There may be a valid reason for that urban training. I’d like to think the local cops could hold the line until help shows.
My main issue is the full armored MRAP’s with belt fed machine guns atop them. I can’t see an issue ever of a local police force needing anything that heavy. If something like that is indeed needed, some plans should be in place for the National Guard to intervene.
So I was thinking about this while making a sandwich (see my previous comment for where this train of thought started).
It strikes me that “the shot” and “the gear” are completely separate issues.
Look this is why SWAT exists (it was started after Charles Whitman climbed the Texas A&M clocktower). I have no problem with cops having everything they need for going after active shooters, terrorists, heavily armed gangs, hostage takers etc., no problem at all.
The issue here is that “militarization” of police tends to mean use of tactical gear like bullet proof vests, select fire weapons, NVGs, flashbangs, explosives, military EOD robots, armored vehicles etc. Now that shit is expensive to get a hold of and maintain as is the training required to use all of it properly and that is the root of the problem.
The real issue is the overuse of this gear and a corresponding lack of “old school” police work. This has two causes. First, as we all know; when you get a new toy you tend to play with it. Bought a new gun? RANGE TIME! This is no different. The departments that have all this gear want to use it. But there’s a second problem and that is justification. When a city or town gets some brand new swag on the taxpayer’s dime they need to show that they’re using it to justify having it. An MRAP costs about $30K/year in maintenance and that cost has to be justified to John Q. Taxpayer who says “Just WTAF am I paying for here?”. That thing sitting in the garage waiting for a major event is very difficult to justify. However, if it’s being used on “high risk” warrants even a few times a year it’s easier to justify.
And so you get an overuse of SWAT teams on “high risk” no-knock raids for TWOD. If they shoot an innocent person when they get the wrong house, hey man, what part of “high risk” didn’t you understand? Of course they could have watched the house, waited for the suspect to exit (or realized he/she wasn’t there) and then grabbed the guy by surprise. But that doesn’t justify 15 guys rocking $5000 NVGs each, so there’s an incentive to get an address and “go kinetic” on a much more regular basis than is actually necessary as part of justifying the fact that each SWAT member is kitted out with $50K worth of gear and riding in a $100K+ armored vehicle with exorbitant maintenance costs.
Generally speaking we’re stupid about this. We don’t like to pay for things that are used infrequently. You can see this in the military. When we’re not at war we spend less, train less and let our gear and tactics become stagnant. Then when we do have a war we spend a fuckton of cash and lose people “getting up to speed”. This is exactly why Carl von Clausewitz noted in “On War” that a military not actively fighting a war or not recently done with a war should hire advisers from a country that currently is at war or just got done with one. It keeps the military sharp and appraised of new developments in warfighting during times of peace.
simple solution. remove SWAT and SWAT style teams from local law enforcement. I do not have an issue with SWAT in general, as I do see a need for such teams. But as you said, local PDs over use them to justify the cost of having them. If we place SWAT under a different authority, in some sort of readiness/fast reaction teams (ready in a moments notice like the fire departments are). Then they wouldn’t be used for busting a kid selling pot. But would still be available when there is an active shooter/hostage/bank robbery gone bad/ some other extreme event that would really require SWAT.
Unless the guy was on the move, it’s not that impressive. I can hit a torso sized target at 100 yards repeated and I don’t consider myself sniper material. The only justification for the MRAP’s is the Army accountant’s don’t have to leave it in Afghanistan and mark it down as a total waste.
That is one opportunistic SOB. Watch out for him. The guy’s using his fallen comrades as political cover for police militarization. How despicable. They make it difficult to be on their side.
By the way, nobody’s out there arguing against better police marksmanship or even against the need for police sharpshooters. He’s cynically equating that with militarization.
The average SWAT sniper shot is from about 50 yards out. Most use a Remington 700 in .308. Slightly modified, but basically off the shelf. The challenges facing SWAT snipers are largely training-related, not equipment, unless you want to dial back that168 Match King round they use, which over penetrates in 90% of snipers’ experience.
For example, snipers need to be familiar with low light shooting, as 95% of their encounters take place in such. While the average SWAT sniper shot is 51 yards and the longest documented shot taken was 187 yards, many closer encounters are common, including point-blank. Snipers need to train for these conditions.
They also need to train for moving targets and firing while moving (think helicopter). At least one sniper had to use his buddy as a standing support. What training covers that?
No, they don’t need fleets of armored vehicles and robo-bombs in every podunk town, bored and looking for something to do. Let them improve their training and they can collaborate on joint SWAT teams covering a reasonable overlap of jurisdictions. Those (actual) weapons of war have no place on every other town’s streets.
A sharp shooter is one thing and a SWAT Team is entirely something else. An officer in regular uniform with a scoped bolt gun should be able to make a shot like that any day of the week and twice on Sunday!
So to answer the question, no it doesn’t justify having a bunch of SWAT officers.
As clearly portrayed in McClane v. Gruber in ’88, this is not a new issue. All the military hardware in the world won’t completely protect you against the unexpected and well-executed actions of sociopaths and evil humans. At the same time, they need the right tool for the job. My opinion: I draw the line at full auto, 50BMG, robots, and MRAPs.
You would dedecrying if SWAT showed up with Remington 870s and S&W revolvers and arrived in used Brinks truck. The Police are justing using the same upgrades that everyone else wants to use. If the AR-15 represents police militarization than you are lying if you say it isn’t a weapon of war.
When you say “militarized” you mean that they have more armor and defensive military gear in general. You know why that is? Because they’re not allowed to be overly aggressive like they used to. Up until the late ’60s, early 70s they could keep most thugs in line with billy clubs, a revolver, and some German Shepherds. They could shoot fleeing felons in the back and get confessions out of people using some extraordinary methods. That’s all changed.
Police militarization is the result of liberal police reform in a multicultural society. Look at what’s going on in Western Europe. Same thing because they let in millions of Muslims. This is what happens.
“Police militarization is the result of liberal police reform in a multicultural society.”
Demonstrably untrue. Police reform has not occurred in the last four decades. Even today, the nascent movement of judicial/sentencing reform ignores police criminality because of the political clout of police unions.
The multiple facts of police militarization (military equipment, lethal tactics, contempt of de-escalation, sacrifice of Constitutional rights on the altar of “law and order”) can be directly traced to the drug war, originally a cynical attempt by the Nixon administration to attract white voters by murdering hippies and minorities, but has since morphed into a bipartisan lovefest between police and politicians.
100 yards????? Holey fucking dog shit!!! Any silly boot that went Unk first time around at Edson Range would make that shot hitting a running target in the dark when it was raining, as his PMI and Senior Drill Instructor took turns kicking him in the face. Or maybe shit has change in the 45 years since I was a Jarhead, and Rifle Marksmanship is no longer part of your cutting score. The Corps did not let me finger fuck their M16 (no suffix) let alone shoot at people until I could prove to them I was worthy
For the most part the Cops I have come in to contact with in the past were all great human beings doing a some times dangerous, sometimes thankless job they wanted to do. But very few of them train enough to have any firearms.
The badge does not endow instant proficiency in anything.
First things first. Arming cops with rifles is not militarization. It’s a useful tool, that is not per se any more or less dangerous than their sidearm. If anything, I’d replace handguns as sidearms with some kind of stocked pistol (one of those folding stock models that can still be holstered) – it would still allow for rapid draw, but in cases where they have time to prep, having a shoulderable weapon means more accurate fire means fewer stray bullets… so why not?
As for actual militarization (.50 cal rifles, MRAPs etc), it’s still a problem. Actually, the problem isn’t even that SWAT has these things. The problem is that every small town has SWAT these days, and it’s usually crewed by the same cops that walk the beat. These should be strictly separated – you can only be in SWAT, or you can do other things, but not both. And SWAT shouldn’t be used for serving drug warrants and the kinds – it should be reserved for hostage situations, active shooters, terrorists, armed bank robberies – that kind of stuff.
Yes, this does mean that SWAT would be paid to basically do nothing other than train most of the time, since such events are rare in practice. That’s fine by me.
Having swat in a fire station type of set up where they just train and wait til a real oh shit moment is actually a fairly tolerable way to waste tax dollars. As compared to a lot of boondoggles the .gov funds.
I claim no expertise on shoulder stocked handguns other than to have used a couple. My experience is they aren’t much more accurate than a standard type of pistol. Training and range time probably would solve most hand gun related problems in the cop shop.
The cop was using a Carcano M91/38 .. . . . . . . . 🙂
Far out James69. Carcano That’s an, “I” talyen gun from “IT”lee ain’t it? That makes it sound like he was, he was shooting from that book suppository building. This is no shit man, for real, Rose Hill is only a 5 minute drive from my house!!! another 2 or 3 minutes up Lancaster and you can stop in to feed your head with a cold beer at the Ozzie Rabbit, a dive of a bar with a big picture of Lee wearing rabbit ears painted on the outside. Just another case of Truth being way cooler than fiction. Keep on trucking.
I try to Never ever take myself too seriously, I might miss having fun if I did.
Why all the hate for MRAPs? First, Bearcats are not MRAPs. MRAP = Mine resistant Ambush Protection. You see smaller or cheaper departments utilizing these as opposed to Bearcats because the MRAPs are free from the military, Bearcats are sold by their manufacturer Lenco. Also the primary purpose of both of these armored vehicles in civilian policing, SWAT is for extraction of officers under fire. The reason they are brought out on SWAT deployments is not because the SWAT team wants to show them off, it’s because of some CYA commander who says what if you need it and don’t have it deployed. Most SWAT team members detest them because they are a pain to drive in any urban environment, again think liability. Also for all,of those arguing that the police shouldn’t have anything the citizenry can’t get, Bearcats are available for purchase from Lenco.
They’re not free. They were just paid for out of a different bucket.
Yeah go ahead if the budget allows. It’s the man, not the gun.
HOWEVER, stop the liberal use of SWAT teams, begin proficient deescalation training, and STOP COVERING HARMLESS PEOPLE WITH THE GODDAMN MUZZLE!
That’s one way around posse comitatus. BTW, the police have been in the process if militarization for years with even the smallest towns having SWAT teams, armored vehicles, ect.
Police are being targeted by black and Islamic terrorists who use high grade weapons and body armor and potentially explosives. Why shouldn’t we allow them to be equipped to fight this scum. Would you rather the military be activated to patrol the streets under marshal Law? I wouldn’t. If you’re worried about a police state, consider this. Most of us have high grade weapons, NVGs, body armor and probably more range time than the average LEO, so why worry about the police overstepping their authority?