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“Police officers, who are highly trained, strike their targets only 20 percent of the time. So if you have civilians out there with guns that perhaps they’ve only fired once or maybe even never fired and they’re in a tumultuous situation with the adrenaline flowing, you want them out there shooting their guns? I think you have to think hard about that whole issue.” – Former NYPD Chief Ray Kelly in I don’t support more guns in America: Ex-NYPD chief [at]

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  1. The constitution doesn’t say that kelly’s opinion trumps my rights. Whether he has a valid comment or not we all have the right to attempt our on protection. Whether we succeed or not is not really the issue. After all, i’m promised the pursuit of happiness. Not the guarantee.

    • “So if you have [POLICE OFFICERS] out there with guns that perhaps they’ve only fired once or maybe even never fired and they’re in a tumultuous situation with the adrenaline flowing, you want them out there shooting their guns?”

      There. Fixed it for him. I know I shoot more rounds per single visit to the range than most officers do in an entire year. I try to go at least once a month.

      • Wasn’t there some article recently on an FBI test where untrained shooters were just as accurate as the average qualified officer or agent? Very few shot enough to maintain proficiency, and I doubt their cities want to spring for a bigger target practice budget.

        The big difference is that armed civilians, since they witness the crime, have a much easier time figuring out who the bad guy is, which explains why their collateral damage is so much lower.

      • Jim Jones, Exactly right. That whole story about police officers being highly trained is false. Police officers are poorly trained and it shows in the shootings they get into. Jeff Cooper was a sheriff and firearms instructor. He knew and made it common knowledge that most of the police needed far more training. Most metro police are only required to fire their guns once a year. Even the state police at best maybe once a month to go out on the range and fire a few dozen rounds, nowhere near adequate training for gunfights or the situations they may run across that require firearm use. I wish these people would tell the truth instead of having an agenda, and flat out lying like the rest of the media. It’s sickening.

      • So this guy is making a public statement that his police officers can only acquire their targets 20% of the time .
        WOW !!!!!
        That’s embarrassing .
        Could someone issue these officers 22s until this statistic changes .
        WTF ?

    • Agreed, furthermore is this dick taking into account that most “practice/train” almost excusively when they qualify? Is he accounting for the NYPD Glock trigger? Probably not

      • Yeah, a gritty stacking 12 lb. Trigger pull is great for accuracy! I’m positive my old lady shoots better than 99% of the NYC pigs.

    • The real hypocrisy is this:

      1. The USSC has ruled several times that police officers are not responsible to defend individual citizens so regardless of your local cops skills you is O fish O lee on your own (reference Castle Rock v. Gonzalez).
      2. The NYPD does not respond to individual citizens until the threat has passed (reference Lozito v. The City of New York) so unless you are rich, powerful and celebrated learn to run fast in the Big Apple, Chiraq and the left coast.

      I don’t understand the hubbub. If you can carry a gun do so because your life may depend on it. If it is illegal for you to carry a gun it is because your elected officials consider your life less valuable than their centrist control.

  2. LOL I’m pretty sure I shoot more on a tight budget than the average beat cop in NYC and I don’t have a lawyer setup for my trigger.

  3. Typical cop elitism. Here, let me translate his comment;

    “We’re just better than you Joe & Jane 6 pack…. we don’t hit our targets very often but we’re the cops… and we’ll make damn sure that even if we left the force after six months that we will always have the right to our guns even if you don’t…. guns for me and not for thee.”

    • You’re making a broad generalization about an entire career field. That’s the exact same thing anti gunners do to us. I am a Deputy with a fairly large SO in the East TN area, I encourage people to get their CCW, oppose ANY new gun laws, support the repeal of the NFA, and donate to pro gun organizations regularly. So do about 90% of my brothers in blue. On traffic stops I even advise people who have their CCW and happen to not be carrying that they should be.

      What you said is akin to assuming most black people are criminals or that most Hispanics are illegal.

      Just saying.

  4. Hey Ray, how about those of us who train more and shoot better than your cops? We couldn’t possibly be expected to defend ourselves or others without hitting innocent bystanders, right? Oh wait, that’s what your guys do ALL THE TIME.

  5. I love the whole special training canard. It’s the equivalent of you’ve never worked as X so you’ll never know Y. It’s a easy cop out (pun intended) to try to shut down a debate when you have nothing factual to prove your assertion. Here, he takes one unrelated fact, his officers’ poor marksmanship, and extrapolates to civilians based on nothing more than his personal feelings. The NYPD’s poor record is mutually exclusive from how an armed civilian would respond.

    • On top of all that, James, New York City police have (by policy/mandate) 12 pound triggers on their handguns! A 12 pound trigger is a serious impediment to accuracy. Those of us who are smart carry self-defense (duty) handguns with triggers in the 6 pound range. That is enough resistance to reduce unintentional discharges … and yet light enough that we can still shoot accurately.

      But what do we know? We are not the “Only Ones”.

    • I call it the “Thirty years” card. It’s this pseudo trump card that jackwagons in business play whenever they’re wrong, you’re right, and they cannot marshal any argument more forceful or novel than that they have “been doing this for thirty years”, so they know what’s what and what’s best.

      In practice, thirty years experience more often means one year of experience, that’s merely been repeated for three decades with zero additional insight or expertise. It doesn’t matter if it’s some embittered front line grunt or some stuffed shirt c-level suit. Same card.

      Fortunately, in business, that attitude on their part generates numerous profitable opportunities on my part. Unfortunately, in politics, that attitude snatches my freedom and convinces other idiot voters to act in complicity with the self-styled experts.

      • “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience” – Mark Twain

        • Donald Rumsfeld ,
          Your performance depends on your people . Select the best , train them and back them . When errors occur , give sharper guidance . If errors persist or if it feels wrong , help them move on . The country ( NYPD ) can’t afford amateur hour in the White House ( NYPD ) .

  6. 20%? The Boston police shot 116 bullets into a boat, completely ignoring rule #3, and only hit Dzhokhar Tsarnaev once. From a distance of about 15 feet that’s a hit percentage of 0.86%. But this distinguished site has already hashed out the dismal LEO hit rates so we need not go there. Ray Kelly is simply repeating the standard liberal left gun hating mantra, we poor stupid folk are just too incompetent to do anything without our government.

    • Ray Kelly is simply repeating the standard liberal left gun hating mantra, we poor stupid folk are just too incompetent to do anything without our government.

      Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! We have a winner!

    • I thought 20% was double the NYPD average. I thought NYPD was 11% or so. I’ve been charged by hogs and still had a 50% hit rate during the adrenaline dump, so I’ll take my marksmanship over his any day of the week.

    • During the Hunt for Red Dorner, three LAPD, two armed with rifles, pumped over 100 rounds into a pickup truck, three houses and four parked cars, managing to strike one of the two occupants of the pickup in the neck just once. And they were not saddled with a NY trigger.

    • He’s explaining things to you, you see. You obviously need to be talked down to since he knows better and that’s how he shows it. He’s telling you what to do, what’s good for you, but makes it look like he cares. Typical gesture coming from an entitled know-it-all prick.

      As for training, I think on average most cops qualify about twice a year and that’s with about 100 rounds each time max. An average gun owner will shoot more than that in a single session. So to say that all street cops are highly trained and can be the only ones trusted with a gun is a bit of a stretch. And by that I mean Kelly is a stupid idiot. Stats don’t support his beliefs. So he’s either stupid or a liar.

    • Now wait just one darn minute. I’m a Whop and we flail our hands all the time when we jabber jaw. That doesn’t mean we are all lying…

    • I shoot about once every four months. The last time I practiced, I engaged multiple targets (8.5 x 11 inch papers) at 12 feet or so and my worst result was was 13 hits out of 15 shots. Oh, and I was moving while shooting and cranked off all 15 rounds within 7 or 8 seconds.

      And yet Ray Kelly and his ilk claim that I am not “good enough” to defend myself. Whatever.

  7. The average street cop in NYPD isn’t highly trained. I know people that are cops in NYPD, never shot growing up, and only qualify once a year. His statement is bullshit.

  8. He’s right, let’s establish free shooting ranges in all five boroughs of NYC, trainers on hand to teach shoot/don’t shoot scenarios, first 100 rounds free. If you take the course you get a coupon for 10% off your next gun purchase. Establishments to be paid for by seized property from drug/gangbang busts. If his concern is that some gun owners don’t get training give them training, instead of saying don’t give them guns. Let’s turn his point against him… Also… We offer sex Ed in school (shudder) lets offer firearm training along with it as well! There you go, mr kelly, solution found

    • Sex Ed should get around 5-10 hours a year (unless you wish to get into erotic techniques or demonstrations), essentially repeated every year for those who may have forgotten, like 6th graders, for example. 5-10 hours a year for firearms training, half of it hands on, would increase NYPD accuracy by 1000% 20 years from now, besides removing any requirement for training prior to issuance of universal RTC permits.

  9. Ok Chief,

    Based on your logic then, considering my background and special training then, a few examples of what I should be allowed to privately own and use include: powered aircraft carriers, high performance military aircraft, air launched anti-surface missiles and a variety of bomb types, a variety of crew served weapons, hand grenades, and fully automatic small arms… oh yeah and nuclear warheads. I think that beats the sh!t out of what your average NYPD officer has trained with.

    • Pf-f-f-ft. Everybody knows that when you leave the service, that service retains that training/experience to give to your replacement.

  10. He might be right in a small percentage of cases, but, then, it is unlikely those people would be carrying in public unless illegally. CCW permits require training and demonstration of marksmanship. How many gang-bangers and criminals practice regularly? Probably, not many, yet they sure seem to hit those little kids from moving cars in Chicago regularly.
    Overall, his premise is bogus and his remark makes him look foolish.

  11. I have seen this neanderthal mentality over and over again from cops and I have worked with quite a few while serving in the Army. It is the old Cops vs. Civilians mindset when they don’t consider themselves Civilians. Also in the mindset is that “you are a perp until proven otherwise”. And, the final capstone belief that “if you aint a cop, you aint s**t”. Granted, there are many fine officers out there, however, I think the profession now attracts the wrong kind of personality and the good ones are in the minority.

      • Big city police chiefs do not want and do not trust “civilians” to have guns, and are vocally against CCW laws. Faced with rampant crime, each and every one is completely convinced that more guns means more gun crime–despite being unable to cite any evidence supporting their position. Maybe it is because big cities are almost all run by Democrats, and the democrats hire chiefs who follow their anti-gun creed.

  12. Most civilians I’ve encountered who take up arms for self-defense also take on the responsibility of training themselves to a much higher level than the minimal training standards of most police agencies.

    I shot a few IDPA competitions in college, sometimes with local police officers also participating. I usually finished toward the middle or middle-back of the pack, but I was never out shot by a police officer.

    Our police officers need a lot better training before this guy’s argument even starts holding water.

    • You should shoot against the cop we have at our IDPA. We don’t call him Robocop for nothing. I remember when his light failed at a lights off shoot (indoor range) and he just used the flash of the gun to ID the targets. There are a few guy who can out shoot him, but they are running “race” guns and he is shooting his service Glock. Yes In know IDPA doesn’t have “race” guns, but SP-01 Shadows with a 3ib trigger pull comes really close.

  13. When his says police officers “,who are highly trained,”, and “civilians out there with guns that perhaps they’ve only fired once or maybe even never fired” maybe he is specifying subsets. In which case he is only misleading rather than out right lying. Yeah, I doubt he is that smart too.

  14. I’m very pro-cop but let’s be real here… Even the departments here in CT that are heavily tax funded and have higher emphasis on training only shoot a couple times a year, forget about the less well off PD’s that have a lackluster re-qual every year… I don’t shoot nearly enough and I still get to the range 1-2 times a month minimum where I don’t just stand in a stall and shoot 100 rounds at a silhouette target for an hour at varying distances. I would say most all of us on this site have more extensive range time and training than the average police officer with the exception of the shooting enthusiast sheepdog and those in special ops such as SWAT. So yeah in case you were wondering I think the Chief’s opinion is shit…. And feel like most cops I know would agree.

  15. If he’s talking about NYC cops it’s no wonder. They have those 10lb triggers to deal with. Hell they can’t give those guns away when they are done with them. Civilians don’t buy guns with triggers like that. Funny though, these police departments that are against civilians having guns trade them or sell them to private companies when they want to upgrade. Where do they think those guns will end up?

  16. So, I shoot IDPA once a month, about 100 rounds per match. Over the last 11 months, I’ve hit no shoots 4 times & missed targets maybe 5. That gives me a hit percentage of 81 & last time I classified 2 years ago was Novice.

  17. Well, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I am grateful that an opponent of our civil rights is able to present an argument that is both clearly philosophically, as well as factually, mistaken.
    It’s rare that someone can get is so wrong, and still put it on paper. Good job.

    As an aside, I took a family from NYC (7 of them) to a private range recently. One of them was a NYC police officer who was visiting his family. They were all nice, polite, eager to learn people. None of them could shoot worth a damn, including the officer. He thought hitting a silhouette at 25 yards with a G19 in slow fire was actually good shooting. They all took pictures of each other holding the guns and shooting, including the officer. They all commented, including the officer, that they never got to do anything like this at home.

    • One of the bullseye matches I attend uses the Police L target at 25 yards. It is a generous target but considerable smaller than a B29 silhouette. I wonder how many departments still use this target and how many actually hit the black. It is challenging with a service pistol and open sights but it can be done.

      • Unless the 11 concussions I’ve had are finally catching up with me, I remember the L target’s 9 ring is an 8″ circle. That is what I would consider as the beginning of accurate shooting using a service pistol standing at 25 yards in slow fire. In fast fire, that’s good shooting.
        The black is probably a 4″ circle, and yes, that is challenging, and accurate shooting, even in slow fire. Very few of the cops I shoot with, and I shoot with a bunch of them, are getting there.

        • You’re right on the ring sizes. 8″ for the 9 ring and the 10 ring is a 4″ black center. We shoot both rimfire and centerfire matches at this target. Not that hard with a .22lr using a reddot scope. For centerfire, a lot of the shooters are using target pistols with optics and hand loads but some still turn in great scores with open sights.

  18. What we have here in the Chief’s comments is a couple of big ole myths.

    Myth 1. Cops are well trained. A small percentage of cops are well trained, and only a small fraction more even enjoy qualification days. Many don’t care about guns or shooting and they simply aren’t very good.

    Myth 2. Errant shots are a significant problem. I’ll concede that even one innocent bystander hit by a missed shot or by over-penetration is a tragedy, but if we’re talking about statistical bogeymen, this one is barely in existence.

    • 500 -600 deaths a year for ALL accidental shootings. This is pretty small considering other factors.

      I think kelly is falling into a silly trap of comparing armed police encounters with armed civilian encounters.
      Civilian defensive shootings usually take place at distances of 3-6 feet.

      Civilians aren’t trying to cuff and stuff anybody. We just want our selves and our family to get to safety. If a bad guy has to keep moving to keep us from shooting him, he’s not likely to shoot us.

      If we pull out gun and a guy runs away, that’s a win for us. The cop has to chase him down or it’s a loss.

      Most criminals are not motivated to face armed resistance and continue. They close a victim they think will offer the most reward for the least risk. This is why elderly women are so often targets. They are unlikely to resist, less capable of physical violence, less likely to be armed and in many cases less able to identify the criminal later due to diminished capacity of vision , hearing and metal faculties.
      Almost all criminals shot at by police are motivated to continue in the face of armed resistance, otherwise they would have surrendered before the cop broke leather. Think about how few arrests require the cop to shoot somebody. Many officers go 25 years without firing their weapon in the line of duty. Some don’t ever have to draw it.

  19. Hard to believe that he can say this with a straight face. NY Cops are the worse shots in the world, indiscriminately spraying bullets around the city, repeatedly gunning down innocent bystanders. The Empire State Building shootout this year, those bozos shot NINE innocent bystanders. NINE, to shoot two perps!

    Typical Statist tyrant windbag, so full of shite, spouting blatant lies to protect his cushy gig. Makes me sick. I’ll give him that the typical CCW carrier may not have as much “training” but it is a blatant lie that NYPDs finest can do much more than shoot innocent civilians, the record bears this out. Why else does the NY cop Glock trigger even exist?

  20. Why are we even having this conversation? NYC residents aren’t allowed to exercise their Constitutionally protected right to self defense. And apparently they don’t want to since they continue to vote for these folks.

  21. One Name: Amadou Diallo. 41 shots at a guy standing in doorway. Half missed. AND he was the wrong guy.

    High trained my ass.

  22. We know there are a lot of new gun owners out there that have purchased guns in response to recent events and Obama shooting his mouth off. The statistics prove it. And yes, sad to say, a lot of these folks probably won’t shoot very often. But even if they do go to the trouble of getting a permit, these are not the people that plan on carrying. Kelly is grazing over the fact that carrying a concealed weapon is a commitment to being prepared to use your weapon, and I believe most civilians that actually carry practice at least as often as the police.

  23. How many home invasions are foiled because a homeowner simply displays the weapon to the intruder, or shoots, misses, and the intruder runs for their life?

    Sorry Mr. Kelly, your just another elite who does not want to extend the right you have to carry a firearm to the rest of us, as your life and the rights of your elite friends who can afford to live in gated communities or have armed security are more important than the rest of us common folk.

  24. Feelings….whoa..whoa…whoa whoa …feelings.
    Why do people like this ignore the facts of dgu everyday?
    I’m just preaching to the choir.

    • NEVER HAPPENS. Guns are NEVER used by ANYONE to stop crime. Get serious. Guns are evil talismans of death, nothing more. Nobody should ever have guns.
      Except cops
      Except retired cops
      Except my security guards
      Except elite politicians and business persons

      But definitely not you or me.

  25. Another idiot big city political police chief jerk who is always going to spew the PC line his mayor boss expects. The attitude is always going to be along to line of “don’t bother me with the facts.” A coward like this is always going to avoid saying this sort of thing in a place where his BS is going to be effectively challenged, just like the rest of his leftist buddies.

  26. I can never tell if perpetuation of the “highly trained officer” myth is meant to be dishonest or simply rooted in denial. Without fail at every class or match I’ve attended there’s always at least one cop who gets sent home for flagrant safety violations. The ones that stay never shoot very well at all.

    • I usually assume it’s either one of two things: stupid or liar. Either he’s too stupid to realize that what he’s saying isn’t true, that what he feels or believes is true regardless of evidence to the contrary (of which he may be ignorant). Or, another possibility is that he is lying, knows it, but he’s just holding party line on gun control.

      Just like Nick Leghorn believes that our 2A rights end at 30,000 feet on a crowded 747 since people can’t be trusted with guns, Kelly believes the same thing, but as it pertains to a densely populated city. Same Fuddy nonsense. (Oh noes, I criticized a TTAG writer! Quick, delete this comment!)

      • 2a rights end when you get on an airplane that belongs to somebody else. It should be up to the owner of the aircraft.

        • I agree. The government should have no say in this matter at all, and airlines should be allowed to write their own policy. If this was the case, I’m positive at least one major airline would be fine with CCW holders bringing their own guns on board.

          The issue here is that Chief Kelly’s position quoted above is intended to be mocked and condemned by gun owners. Yet Nick Leghorn’s position isn’t much different. One talks about a crowded city (or a crowded location within one), the other is talking about a crowded airplane. Fudds all around.

    • It’s a combination of two things – police who want to feel “special” and insist that because they’re a cop they’re “highly trained” (even if they just finished the two week academy) and the fact that TV and movies always depict police / soldiers as having superhuman weapons / combat abilities. Since most people get their “facts” from TV / movies, they actually believe this BS and think that the average cop can quick draw without aiming and hit a bullseye at 100 yards one-handed. It’s the same with the myth that police have the most dangerous job, because shows like The Shield and The Wire depict them as always being in shootouts and in danger, so the incompetent members of the real life police forces think that they’re always in danger of being killed despite them having one of the lowest death rates by industry in the country (and most of their deaths are from traffic accidents).

  27. Ray Kelly needs to understand that we who are firearms owners, we that exercise our rights, we that train, we that work, we that vote – we are NOT civilians, we are CITIZENS.

    The “civilians” that you speak of Mr. Kelly are the ones that the government controls with food stamps and welfare. The people you keep in government housing. The “civilians” that you speak of Mr. Kelly are the cannon fodder you will use to justify taking our rights by force.

    We who are citizens, will NOT be cannon fodder. We are the Three Percent.

  28. I probably shoot more in a month than an NYPD officer does in a year on the job based on my understanding which would be lucky to have 4 standard capacity mags a year worth of practice. I don’t even shoot all that much compared to some people I know. I’d put my $$ on the average CCW holder who carries over the average NYPD shooter the vast, vast majority of days. Precedence speaks a lot better of the CCW shooter, not to mention the liability of a CCW holder is a lot higher than an officer.

    Then again, lets see who’s been making the news lately for sketchy shoots; I’ll give a hint it’s not the civilians.

  29. Maybe its just me but I don’t think you can call people “highly trained” who miss their target 80% of the time. Like many others here I practice at least once a week and compete in IDPA and USPSA matches as well. If I had a hit ratio of 20% I’d sell all my guns and take up golf.

    • Are you shooting at moving targets? also lolice take a lot of crappy shots. This seams triple true in NYC. They take shots that they have a very low probability of actually making.

  30. Well I don’t know about you guys, but I’m not listening to anything Merle from “The Walking Dead” has to say.

  31. Sorry Ray, in NYC it’s 17%. I’ll match my ability against the NYPD any day. I bet I shoot more rounds in one session than your cops fire in a year. My average session is 500 rounds, what’s yours Ray?

  32. I shoot IDPA type matches approx. twice a month and a few police shoot with us. Only a few ever do well. I do have to say out of 40 to 50 players, usually maybe 2 are law enforcement. So police marksmanship and speed does not impress me. I feel better prepared taking care of myself if evil ever shows up at my door. Plus I have vested interest.

  33. NYPD officers, who Mr Kelly was personally responsible for, have a hit ratio much less than the national 20% average. It seems like they’re expected to score one hit on a bystander per 17 round magazine and one hit on the intended target per two magazines.

    I think it’s Ray that can’t handle the truth.

  34. Once again, I think the politician is right. Sort of.

    I’m not comfortably with folks who have only fired their gun once or never carrying and shooting. It does take training to get to know your gun – I try to take my Glock to the range on a regular basis, and I’ve seen my accuracy improve as I try different grips and stances.

    I know that if I shoot two handed, I’m pretty accurate. Strong hand is a little right, but still accurate if I set up the shot. Off hand is always low – I work on it, but could compensate in a pinch.

    What could, and would, make a difference to his remarks is if it were possible to get more training. However, it seems to me that NY, especially NYC, places so many restrictions, that practice is discouraged. And thus you have people who don’t practice carrying. In other words, he only has himself to blame.

    • “I’m not comfortably with folks who have only fired their gun once or never carrying and shooting. ”

      Katy, my bride carries a S&W Airweight .38. Borrow yourself one and some +P ammo, and carry along a big strong man to go shooting sometime. I loaded 5, fired 2, and sat down rubbing my hands while my 41-year-old son relieved me, which lasted one shot. Then my 35-year-old son took his turn, which lasted one shot. So I had to force myself to fire the last shot, as well, and ached for the rest of the day. It HURTS! My wife fired 2 shots before we bought it and said “never again”, but she wanted it, because she intended to carry it forever, hoped to never need to shoot it again. She’s been carrying for 50 years now without incident, she gets to make up her own mind. Before you decide everyone should shoot their EDC regularly, run 5 rounds through one of these, and think again.

      • So she’s carrying a gun that she has no interest in firing and would anticipate the recoil when trying to use it? I’m just curious to know how accurate those two recoiled shots were – if she can get off two rounds on target before calling it quits, more power to her. I’d guess the adrenaline could carry her through the the remaining three.

        Still, if she hasn’t fired it since, how can she get better at it?

  35. There are a surprising number of “Armed Citizen” stories in which the defender basically bought a gun, and afterward all but forgot it was there – until the decisive moment when it was needed and brought to bear. And they won.

  36. If I perfomed my job at the percentage hit rate of “trained cops” with weapons .
    I’d be fired.
    Plain and simple.
    Why do people tolerate the lack of leadership. I would think as an executive officer he would demand better from the ranks.
    Let me see….hit rate is excruciatingly poor….lets fix it with an amazing superior training for our officers.
    Enough said.
    Even thugs have a better hit

  37. Cops only hit targets 20% of the time, AND ARE “AT THE SCENE” 0% OF THE TIME.



  38. Some civilians can shoot better than police! And civilians are not handcuffed by Political Correctness!

    I rather have 20% chances of hitting the criminal who is raping my family than 0% chances due to Political Correctness!

  39. By his definition of “highly trained”, I’m an ER doctor. After all, I have to patch my kids up all the time from various cuts and scrapes they collect…and if a couple of hours on a static range once a year to requalify makes the average police officer a “highly trained” expert, then by that logic I have all the medical training I need.

    • I saw an AMA post with a former NYPD officer on reddit a few years back. He said that their qualification was to shoot one box (50 rounds) of ammo every six months and that they only had to have something like 3/4 ON PAPER at 10 yards. They’re not even expected to actually come close to the bullseye, just be able to knick the edge of the paper.

      • Dear God if this is true then I stack up way better than the NYPD and I am an amateur. I went to the range today with my TCP 738 and SR9C. I use the 5 oval targets, 5″ x 7″, sized to approximate a heart or head. At 7 yards I get all the bullets into the targets, even with the TCP. I got 8 of 10 within a 2″ x 3″ oval with the TCP in my best run (two mags, for those who will say it only holds 6). OK, it opens up at 10 yards and farther. And I need to get better with the SR9C because after about 12 yards it opens up, too, and I know it and I can do better with more practice. But I am no cop. I am just a guy and almost 63 years old, for Heaven’s sake, even if I try not to act like it! Many of you are younger, have guns with longer barrels, go to ranges where you can practice on the move, and can do far better. Could I go up face to face with a mouse gun against Abdul and his AK at 50 yards in a concert hall? Of course not. But if I was within 10 yards, like in a restaurant or grocery store? That little TCP in the back pocket will be more likely to save me and maybe others than the police SWAT team many minutes away. And if Abdul should come inquiring at home, my own AK has his name on it, and I can shoot it a lot better than minute of terrorist at 100 yards.

  40. So if a woman has a gun, but no formal training, she should allow herself to get raped and murdered? This guy is just so stupid.

  41. Bloomberg/Kelly was likely responsible to the crappy hit rate of NYPD by substantially cutting the firearms training budget. Continued under DeBozo.
    NYPD also hold the title for most bystanders shot by police because they are such bad shots.

  42. This guy has a fundamental misunderstanding of both police shootings and private citizen defensive gun uses. He ignores the 3-3-3 rule that most DGU shootings involve three shots, fired within three yards, and last less than three seconds.

    Police shootings are more likely to take place at a greater distance than a DGU, and sometimes even at or from moving vehicles. Of course more of those shots will miss.

    Moreover, police shootings are likely to involve more shots fired, too, thanks to officer immunity. If you’re not as legally responsible for each round fired, as a private citizen would be, then of course you’ll fire more shots and miss more.

    Police shootings are also more likely to involve multiple officers firing than a private citizen’s defensive gun use would involve additional defenders shooting. Why? Police tend to respon iin numbers. Criminals tend to attack lone victims.

    Whereas one dog barks at something and the other dogs bark at the barking, one officer shoots at a suspect and the other officers shoot because the first one fired. Having more officers on scene means more guns to fire. Those other officers aren’t exactly guaranteed to have proper stance, grip and sight picture at that precise moment as the first officer fires, are they? Of course, not. Hence, more missed shots.

    Denigrating private citizen marksmanship in DGUs is bad enough. Using the completely incomparable standard of police hit ratios as the basis for that undue criticism is a mix a intellectual laziness and elitist lying.

  43. Most NYPD officers are woefully undertrained and do little to maintain their proficiency. IN attempt to prevent these officers from shooting themselves, the Department insists that Glock install special 12 lb triggers in their issue weapons. They are known as NY-2 triggers. At a recent Glock Armorers’ School, we installed them in the firearms and experienced the ridiculously hard trigger pull. This trigger pull contributes to inaccuratecy. Rather than invest in adequate training (Keep your finger off the trigger) the NYPD has chosen to use a poor hardware remedy to the problem of negligent discharge. The stories of the poor hit rate among NYPD cops are legion. The safest place to be in a shootout is in front of the perpetrator. The most dangerous is to be an innocent bystander.

  44. ““Police officers, who are highly trained, strike their targets only 20 percent of the time.”

    That was a typo, what he actually said was “Police officers, who are barely trained, strike their targets only 20 percent of the time”. I’ve gone shooting with cops and it’s appalling how incompetent they are with guns. My first time shooting one handed with my left hand (I’m very much right handed) I had smaller groups than they did and I had my target another 3-5 yards down range.

  45. False correlation. Civilians, many of whom shoot more than 50 rounds a year in practice, unlike many police, are on record with a much higher hit rate than 20% in defensive shootings.

  46. Most defensive gun used by common folk are within 10 yards and only several shots are fired. Peace officers often shoot at fleeing suspects and individuals much farther than 10 yards away. Comparing the two doesn’t equate because very few of us chase down a fleeing armed robber and then dump 30rds of 5.56 in his direction at 20-50 yards.

    • Well if it’s 556 then nine of us are gonna miss cuz we are using our rifle. Hell at 30 yards? Guy would be as dead as yesterday’s fried chicken. But 30 with a handgun on a moving target. That’s different.

  47. Sounds like he just made the case for “high capacity” magazines. Let’s do the math – the evil home invasion specialists around here usually come in groups of 3 – the FBI says it normally takes 3 hits to stop an evildoer – the standard as stated in the article is only 1 in 5 rounds hits the target – 3 times 3 times 5 equals 45 rounds necessary for self defense. — I need to go shopping – need more magazines or a bigger gun.

  48. This is claptrap! There was a report that was issued to the JCOS that stated during pitched battles in Afghanistan and Iraq our troops only hit 20% of their targets but has the battles lasted their a curwcy increased to 40%. What is the point to all of this? People need to stop beleiving the shit out of hollywood! The only dead eye shots out their are guys like Jerry Mucilek.

  49. Seeing as how I’ve yet to meet a single cop who knows as much about guns as I do, I’m unimpressed with his argument.

  50. His whole statement is predicated on the police being highly trained. Anyone in the know is well aware of how lax LEO qualification standards are. Good LEOs train more on their own time and dime.

    I know for a fact (friends in LE) that my personal regimen far exceeds what jurisdictions around me require for police qual.

  51. Perhaps a random selection of police qualification targets ought to be made public, along with a random selection of CHL qualification targets. Let the people decide who is to be better trusted with guns at a crime scene in progress.

  52. If I remember correctly, part of the reason NYPD is so lousy at hitting their intended targets is due to the heavy trigger pull, a requirement for NYPD……I believe it was7-7.5lbs of pressure to fire the first shot… most accounts, that is a lot of force…

  53. The 20% figure he cites includes all police shooting scenarios. There’s a marked difference in hit rates depending upon whether the suspect is returning fire, you know.

    Factor out the police shootings of unarmed black teenagers, and the average hit rate drops even further.

  54. As usual closed-minded people are just that because there could’t possibly be armed citizens who train regularly and responsibly for an active shooter situation. Just look at the schedules for firearms training schools (Sage, Tactical Response,etc.) and they’re sold out… a lot! Personally I go through 1,000 rounds a month simply to prepare for an improbable event (okay for fun as well) because I want to be prepared in that very scenario. There are an abundance of officers that don’t shoot every week, but what it really boils down to is control. Chief Kelly has “you need me” complex in an environment where response time is five minutes at best. He seems to forget that CHL holders are some of the most responsible citizens this nation has and frankly we need more good people with weapons than the well armed criminals.

  55. Wellllllll…the Chicago cop who shot a young black perp managed 16 rounds on target. Of course he was lying on his back for most of them. But I digress-breaking news-Chicago chief ‘o po-leece Garry streetlight McCarthy FIRED…More inept than him appointed interim doofus. And another perp shot in the BACK by cop scandal uncovered. I guarantee I am better than my local constables…AKA The Keystone Cops.

  56. Who are these armed civilians who would have a gun by choice, but also choose not to practice with it?

    And how do these armed by their own choice civilians compare to cops who have to get and carry arms as requirements of their jobs? In terms of practice with and interest in these tools?

    It seems to me people who *choose* to be involved with guns might be a bit more – er – involved with guns than people required to carry one for their job. Just because he has cops who spray and pray, does not mean that other people, differently selected, will.

    Given the levels of skill and restraint shown by NYC cops in adenaline-causing circumstances, one might speculate that chief-guy in the end *doesn’t want people – anybody – getting too skilled with guns.*

  57. I can’t comment about New York cops, but here in Illinois we’ve got cops that can hit a target 16 times out of 16 shots fired, and yet they’re so humble about it that they don’t even release the video for over a year (after the Mayor’s reelection).

    And the politicians are worried about US having guns?

  58. This is the same guy who remains firmly attached to the public teat, with his 10 officer, $2 million a year security detail. Where have I seen this before? Oh right every other petty tyrant who wishes the proles to be disarmed.

  59. I only read as far as the chief’s well trained comment. I call BS. I’m willing to bet that most serious gun owners get much more range time than overworked cops, just the way it is.

  60. Total BS. This person doesn’t speak for me in any way. Who doesn’t understand practice makes perfect? How can the argument be made there have been no successful self-defense uses of firearms? Often a show of force or a challenge is enough to turn the tide or change an outcome. Direct hits to a target don’t necessarily denote the victor. Bottom line, this guy is full of crap.

  61. 1993 University of Chicago study found 700,000 cops killed 330 innocent individuals vs 250 million gun owners killing 30 innocent people.

    So, who are the highly trained? Certainly not cops, in terms of shooting the wrong people.

  62. Only Democrats would see that their officers only have hits 20% of the time and immediately think we should ban guns for civilians and not we should increase training for police.

  63. I don’t exactly care what Ray thinks. He doesn’t out rank me, and he doesn’t sign my paycheck. So he can just take his opinion, fold it until it’s all corners, and stick it where the sun don’t shine.

  64. More petty credentialism from progressive trash. If “training” was the issue, name an annual required round count, or better a score on a given drill, and hold both officers and civilians to it. Still wouldn’t be in any way, shape nor form constitutional, but at least those advocating it wouldn’t sound substantially less intelligent than the vast majority of Chinese made doormats.

  65. It has already been shown that civilians that carry train more and are more accurate then police officers. You’d think these gun-control nuts would just give up their rhetoric of misleading comments.

  66. The real issue here is not about relative marksmanship skills, but about how a person operates under life threatening stress. I’m sure cops are on amber alert for most of their tour, but maintaining high vigilance for extended periods is stessful and tiring. It overloads the adrenal pathways and creates poor health. So cops may be among the worst for stress performance, especially at the end of a long duty spell. This may be reflected by their poor firearms hit rate. That and the rotten equipment and lousy training.

    If you have had experience of a real emergency you will know how you react. Does time slow, does your vision sharpen? If so you may shoot better than at a range trip. On the other hand, if your heart races, your vision blurs with sweat, and your hands shake, you may do much worse. And that is not a reflection of your personal valor, it is just the way your nervous system is wired. And the same applies to the armed professionals. All the training in the world will not produce a hero. And a hero may be the last person you want for everyday police work.

    So not every civilian is going to be John Wayne, and not every cop is going to be Barney Fife. But this ex PC is talking down to everybody and treating us like mugs. His security blanket should be pulled.

  67. I spent a career in law enforcement. Law Enforcement Officers are no different that any of us. Some (low percentage) are very good with weapons and tactics and practice/study their craft. The rest will practice/qualify when they have to. Decision making skills under stress are generally better than the general public because that type of atmosphere and decision making is what they do. Bottom line, as one of your readers has mentioned; the police do not owe an individual obligation to protect a citizen. Our personal safety is each individual’s responsibility. There are obviously legal guidelines and restraints on how you accomplish this. Therefore, practice, train, maintain awareness, develop the proper attitude, and protect yourself, your family and others in the face of people who want to taqke what you have including your life. Former chief Kelly’s opinion is just that – an opinion.


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