“Johnson City Officer David Smith had just arrived at Southern Tier Imaging when MRI technician James Clark, 43, wildly ran up to him before punching him several times as he was trying to exit his vehicle,” nydailynews.com reports. “During the attack witnesses said Clark managed to somehow grab Smith’s weapon and repeatedly open fire until the 40-caliber duty’s magazine was spent. Once Officer Smith was down, then the suspect shot him two more times . . . Clark was consequently killed by a responding officer with a single gunshot wound. He died a couple of hours later in surgery.” Officer Smith died on the scene. Let’s talk about onions. . .
Onions have layers. Ogres have layers. Self-defense strategies have layers. Or at least they should. In the tragic incident above, Officer Smith is getting out of his cruiser. Clark catches him off-guard and launches a physical attack. Clark gets ahold of Officer Smith’s weapon and shoots him. To do so, Clark penetrated three layers of defense.
First, Smith didn’t see him coming. I don’t know how someone “wildly” runs up to a vehicle but I assume it involves a large measure of speed and surprise. I suspect Officer Smith didn’t do what everyone should do before they exit a vehicle: stop. Look around. Assess your environment.
Again, transitions are always the most dangerous part of any journey. The transition from your house (or police station) to your vehicle. The transition from the gym to your car. The transition from your office to a bar and vice versa. If someone’s going to attack you, they’re most likely to strike when you’re between “safe” places.
Your car is a relatively safe place (aside from car crashes). If you see something wrong you can drive away. If that wrong thing attacks you while you’re in your car you have safety glass and some metal protecting your from, say, punches. Your vehicle creates a layer of security. Leave and you have one less.
Second, you have your situational awareness, which should increase in both intensity and scope when you leave your car. In other words, it’s a good idea to look around and see where danger could be lurking, both near and far. Are there a pair of stationary feet under a nearby car? Someone hanging out across the street? Anything untoward?
It’s not paranoia; it’s a personal safety habit that quickly become subconscious. After you’ve scanned your environs for possible threats you’re free to take your situational awareness down a notch or two. But once you lose your ability to return to your car, you’ve lost another layer of security.
Third, you have your ability to run from or attack an attacker – remembering that it might be impossible to draw your gun. If your assailant uses speed, surprise and violence of action, your physical prowess in a fight could be your next line of defense; the next layer of that allows you to get to your final layer of defense: your gun.
Or not. The physical attack may be so brutal, your ability to sustain injuries or launch a counter-attack so limited, that you lose. All you can do is hope that you survive your injuries. In that case, it’s a very good thing if your firearm is concealed. Because you don’t want your enemy or enemies to get it – given that they’ve shown no compunction about using life-threatening violence against you.
Which brings us to open carry . . .
Cops, like the unfortunate officer described above, open carry. They usually do so with retention holsters; holsters specifically designed to frustrate a gun grab. If you open carry you should use a retention holster too – depending on a number of factors. But first . . .
Retention holsters come in three levels: 1, 2 and 3. Each level indicates the number of motions needed to extract a firearm. A Level 1 holster holds the firearm with friction alone. You pull the gun out. One motion. A gun owner using a Level 2 must perform a second, separate motion to extract the gun: push a lever, press a button, twist the gun, etc. A Level 3 firearm requires a third motion; usually pushing a guard or “hood” away from the top of the holster.
Retention holsters are a double-edged sword (so to speak). The more motions you have to perform to extract your firearm the less likely it is that someone will be able to remove it and use it against you. That someone could be a bad guy. But it could be you, too. Unless you practice using a Level 2 or 3 retention holster – a lot and properly – you could find yourself unable to draw your weapon safely, quickly and efficiently. In certain situations that would really suck.
Level 2 and 3 retention holsters are bulky and awkward; they stick out from your side like a motorcycle sidecar. Sitting in a tight chair is an issue – which makes drawing your gun while sitting in a chair problematic. Retention Level 2 and 3 holsters also aren’t the most beautiful holsters in the world, either. And if you’re going into a victim-rich (i.e. gun free) zone, you can’t ditch your gat and pull your shirt out to cover your empty holster for a stealthy entrance (as you can with most non-retention outside-the-waistband holsters).
Even so . . .
If you’re open carrying I highly recommend carrying in a Level 2 retention holster – at least. If you don’t, kick your situational awareness up a notch or three. Keep an eye on anyone getting close to your gun, especially in stores and other public places. If you have the slightest suspicion a gun grab is in the offing (I’ve seen people do it “just for fun”) turn your body so that your gun is harder to reach.
And yes, carrying a gun with a manual safety adds an additional layer of security – and an extra step for you to screw-up. But hey, no one said this open carry thing was going to be easy or as safe as carrying concealed. As always when it comes to guns, there are ways you can minimize the risk. Were he alive today, I’m sure Officer Smith would recommend risk reduction via a retention holster for anyone open carrying a firearm. You have been warned.
Damn, hands sure are deadly. We need to ban hands ASAP. For the children.
Don’t forget running wildly! Think of the children!
Come on man, where are your tactics? We can’t have people running away. The only safe play is to cower in place.
If you open carry, heighten situational awareness is a must. If you have a kydex holster, adjust the friction so it requires a good tug on the firearm to remove from the holster. Get it to the point where the belt almost moves upward when withdrawing the firearm.
If you open carry, think about carrying a backup gun. You never want someone to steal your open carry firearm, but you don’t want to be defenseless if someone does.
“If you open carry, heighten situational awareness is a must.”
You must not get it at all…REGARDLESS of whether you open carry, conceal carry or don’t carry at all, “situational awareness” is a “must” ALL the time…
Very, very true. If a person is carrying concealed but is caught off-guard because of a lack of paying attention, they’re going to be in deep trouble.
Being aware of one’s surroundings should be standard practice for everyone.
Serpa Blackwahwk level 2 holster. Enough said.
The Serpa holster has been banned at many training sites along with organizations including IDPA matches. The risk of the trigger finger being on the trigger before the sites are on the target has been found to be too great.
I really don’t want to get into the “Serpa is evil” debate (really, I don’t) but are there any real, documented cases of the holster causing an ND? I haven’t done any exhaustive searching but most everything I’ve stumbled on is of the “I heard it from a guy who heard it from a guy” variety.
Google “I just shot myself” and you’ll find the Tex Grebner video.
He explains what happened, which can best be described as muscle confusion (rather than muscle memory) caused by switching both weapons and holsters. He comes out and says he doesn’t blame the holster or the gun.
Regardless how you feel about the Serpa, I think it stands to reason that it’ll be safer for you if it’s your only holster and you practice drawing from it a lot.
Its only been banned at one place, I use a serpa holster in IDPA matches on both my competition guns. The guy who shot himself was a professional shooter not familiar with the holster (his bladetech broke before the match I think), was using a single action pistol, and flipped the safety off before even drawing it. The serpa holster is not any more dangerous than any other holster when you totally disregard basic range safety rules.
I guess I’ve been out of the loop. First I’ve heard about the Black Hawk Serpa as having this so called problem. Because that is what I use when I OC. I carry a 1911 when I OC because it also has the external safety for another layer of protection.
The idea that I would continue to put my finger on the trigger once I disengage the holster lock and squeeze off a round as I draw the weapon is rather strange; I would say is more a lack of training than an inherent flaw with the design.
Even if that was the case, I only disengage the external safety on the gun as I’m starting to point the gun at the target and then when I’m ready to fire do I place my finger on the trigger.
Each person has to make their own decision; for me, I like my Serpa.
Horseshit. Anything that could “go wrong” while drawing from a serpa holster could go equally wrong using ANY other holster. It’s a training issue 100%. People cause NDs, not gear.
Get ready for the pain that your comment will bring. Serpa haters abound and are vocal.
Isn’t that the Tex Grebner special? I honestly don’t know.
I like em just fine, depending on the gun. Something like a 1911, it’s easy to keep your finger outside the trigger guard until you’ve come up and out. I can’t say from experience, but looking at where it holds on a Glock, I can see the possibility for trouble, but I can’t imagine it being something that practice wouldn’t cure…
Just to put my two cents in I have both the Level 2 and Level 3 Serpas for a glock 17. The Level 3 is for when I’m on duty and the level 2 is for when I want to OC off duty. My finger is no where near the trigger when I pull it from the Holster. I have to take my gun in and out of my level 3 multiple times a day actually due to the small county jail I work in. My finger is almost on the slide when I draw and that’s from leaving my finger where it is after having to push the lever button to release the gun.
I have a SERPA for now, but my plan (when I have some more cash) is to get a Safariland level 2 or 3. The SERPA is better than nothing, but I’m not convinced it’s the best option (one cop told me he’s had issues with one when it got into some dirt). As for the “finger slipping inside the trigger guard” issue, I think it unlikely to be a serious issue IF one practices drawing enough.
When i OC I use a retention holster, it’s a must and should be paired with good situational awareness, something that luckily comes naturally to me.
Not to be rude, but the statement, “something that luckily comes naturally to me”, is the first flaw in your situational awareness. Be careful with that assumption.
Operators gotta Operate dawg.
I’m not LE, so understand the following is just personal determination.
Were I to carry openly , I’d use a pistol equipped with an external safety and a mag disconnect. Why? Because the nature of LE requires talking to people. And at two feet distance , the bad guy can get your pistol quicker then you can even realize he’s making a move. It’s not about training, it’s about physics.
The alternative would be forcing people to stand thirty feet away , which is hardly workable.
If we are really worried about guns being used against us, the fool-proof way (hah) would be to use a gun no one knows how to operate. Something freaking weird, with like a spring loaded thumb safety that you have to push down with 6 lbs of force.
H&K P7. Many anecdotes of the squeeze cocker mechanism saving LEOs and others from being shot with their own gun. Although I feel like in the height of a struggle to the death anybody who grabbed the pistol would squeeze it hard enough to cock it, apparently this wasn’t the case in a handful of events where the BG got a hold of a P7 and couldn’t fire it.
Speed, surprise, and violence of action also works if you are a criminal.
Which is why, for most of us regular folks, open carry creates a tactical disadvantage.
“tactical disadvantage”, who do you think you are, a one man swat team…???
It is encouraged to use defensive driving “tactics”, does that mean we are wannabe APC drivers? No. Tactics are are you act in a given situation. Something “tactical” is something that is related to tactics. Open carry places the disadvantages outlined above upon the carrier, in a self defense situation. They are disadvantages in regard to your tactics, thus a tactical disadvantage.
And I suppose rhythm gymnastics is a sport too,,,
If you are alone I think it is more important to use best tactics. You don’t have that SWAT team to get your back if you fail. Tactical is not a bad word. If you think it is then give us a better word to use to describe everything you do to survive an attack and or stop the threat.
Besides “operator” and “tactical” the one word that I am tired of hearing is “running”. “What optics are you running on your 3Gun rifle?” “I am running this M&P 15 22 suppressed.” “When I am running to WalMart to buy some running shoes I like to pick up my three box limit of 5.56 that I am running in my AR 15 Recon and soon I will be running night vision.”
I’m not running any tactical operations or operating on any tactical runs or operating runs tactically or running operations tactically.
What a tragedy
Good thoughts on retention holsters.
Serpas suck and it is way too easy to have a ND with one.
I prefer Safariland retention technology
Deepest condolences to the officers family, and if there were anything positive to come from it, it would be lessons-learned, so it doesnt happen to a brother-officer, or an armed or unarmed citizen in the same sudden life-or-death situation.
Outstanding article Robert. Really appreciate these and other practical training reports- learn something new every time.
Paul – I switched from the Serpa to Safariland, per advice of long-time LEO trainer, and founder of first IPDA chapter in So Cal at Ironsights, Bill Heyder.
Much easier and more natural draw, as effortless now as non-retention holster and as I have kids and am constantly dropping things like my cell phone, flashlight, out of pockets getting in and out of car, I want something to prevent same, if I ever had to carry, assuming I could get CCW in San Diego…so I train now, as you never know when things MIGHT change.
I use the Serpa on a drop down for hunting, as its much better retention scrambing in the dirt and brush, per the USMC reports.
WI Patriot- “tactical advantage” language doesnt mean you are MIL or LEO, of course, its a succinct descriptor of how training for certain sets of actions will give you more capability- the gun is only one part of a much bigger continuum of training for self-defense. If you arent thinking that way, you might as well not have the gun, as might be inferred from the officers disarmament by the crazy guy. I’m not ashamed to consider a longer term approach to a series of alternative tactics, applied to certain conditions, as a “strategy”. Its just a word.
Many books and articles on the awareness-to-action part of this subject- and various terms for us noobs to learn from the LEOs and MIL who have a lot to offer: 3s’s, Coopers color states, OODA loop, etc etc.
Navy uses a thumb break holster but it didn’t stop that guy from stealing the POOW’s pistol with at least 2 other people there. Kind of surprises me, they tend to be a pain to flip open the bail.
Good analysis, thanks for some things to think about.
One other issue of note to think about when you are carrying open or concealed.
We should realize that carrying a gun is like having a child with you. You have to protect both yourself and the child/gun.
The big difference is that your gun, as in this instance, can be used against you.
There was an incident in Madison Wi, where I work, where the police arrived on a scene where a drunk became aggressive and attack the officer.
The officer broke away and pulled his gun. The man charged again but now the officer had to also protect himself from being disarmed, i.e. protect the gun.
The officer probably could have physically defeated the drunk, but with a fire arm out and vulnerable, the officer was forced to fire for the immediate protection of the gun.
Thus, for us citizen carriers, say in a robbery, once a gun is displayed, your wallet is no longer the priority and the gun becomes the focus of the opposing parties to protect or acquire. The asset can become liability.
If you don’t use a retention holster, keep a potential adversary at a distance because you may have to draw earlier to protect your gun and your life, in that order.
Good analogy- hadn’t thought of it that way, but “protecting the gun” like your child, could be a state of mind, that *might* cause you to fail to use less lethal weapons, or tactics, in various situations.
The drunk stumbling toward you could just be “verbal judo’d” or distracted,
or pepper sprayed,
or simply side-stepped and tripped.
Or you could just out-run him.
Hell, you could just strip the mag and let him have it, after the first shot, for example. I know that sounds crazy but can you imagine the look on his face as you step back from that “boooom” – ” ok, here- you take it if you want it so bad!”
While you step back and catch your breath.
Jackie Chan silly but hey whatever works, and my limited experience with drunks is you can avoid a lot of fights by joking around, or placating, than bulling up…while you wiggle a $20 behind your back at the bartender, and wait for the bouncers to show up… ok, well I made that last part up.
Sometimes I think training on just one tool leads to a tendency to go to that tool, when others might work better. Like the homeless guy camper in AZ…
Blackhawk serpa cqc for me. I suspect most people that talk shit about them have never used them. There’s no way I could release the gun and have my finger on the trigger. The only place my finger can be is the frame above the trigger.
It may be a combination of my particular carry gun and the fact that I have exceptionally large paws, but it would be a neat anatomical trick to pull the trigger drawing out of the Serpa.
Really don’t know how you can draw from a Serpa and wind up with your finger on the trigger unless you are just plain incomptent. If you put your finger on the trigger with a Serpa, then you do it with whatever else you use.
Yeah, not to go fanboy or too OT on this, but
having watched that youtube a couple times, I recall that Tex Grebner explained that he got the gun stuck, rushing to pull it out, by not depressing the retention release properly, and when he pushed down then back up on the gun, his finger slipped into the trigger well as it came out of the holster far enough.
I can see how that would happen, as the trigger finger motion is a little more convoluted, and involves pushing down the tip on the release, then flattening to ride the frame, until ready to shoot.
But again, thats a failure to drill on the draw enough, and as a tip to other noobs- I see how its easy to rush this part of the five part draw, if I am trying to get the shot out in the 1.5 sec Tueller drill scenario, for example. I had one instructor point out a technique- to envision and practice – a slightly different pace- slow (getting clear of holster and garment), then faster, then slow again as you focus on sight, pull trigger, etc. YMMV.
I heard about this about 4 years ago- and apparently enough rangemasters running IPDAs across the country had seen something scary, ie before and not just the Grebner ND, that the word spread, and it was banned not long after that.
Other readers? I’d be interested to hear how many NDs the USMC have suffered using these- maybe someone with current experience can tell anecdotes.
Not really. The demonstrations I’ve seen involve the release button being right in line with the trigger, instead of higher on the frame of the gun. Maybe Serpa (Blackhawk?) has changed the design slightly, or maybe it’s only holsters made for cetain models of guns.
A failure to disengage the lock on the first attempt causes the finger to curl to exert more force, yadda yadda yadda…
I still think, however, that one could train themselves to react to a failed unlock by pushing the pistol back down, pointing the finger to full extension, pressing on the lock again with the pad of the finger or the underside of the knuckle, and redrawing.
So it’s feasible, at least on the specific gun holster combo I’ve seen demonstrated.
Excellent article. Thank you.
This is why we keep blades with us.
Asses Situation – 21 foot rule – unable to draw from retention holster – engage spring assisted blade – defend.
Just a personal opinion, what do you guys think?
You really think that you can draw a blade faster than somebody can pull from holster, orient the muzzle horizontal, and fire two from the hip? That 21 foot rule is pure fucking garbage if you got a holster. I have spent enough time doing hood drills and being the redman to know that I don’t have a chance to close the distance on somebody from 21 ft.
I prefer an Emerson Wave featured knife, but good call otherwise. Just don’t let the tool become a substitute for the awareness.
I’m not that big on assisted opening blades, I’ve typically found they have a secondary safety which can complicate the draw. I don’t have an emerson, to rich for my blood, but I have a Cold Steel Rajah III which has a thumb plate which basically does the same thing. And of course, depending on the knife laws in your area, a small fixed blade like a ka bar tdi can work even better
Also I’m aware that a knife can be turned against you just as readily if you are unprepared. I do believe that it is significantly more difficult disarm a knife than it is a firearm.
I’m no martial arts expert, but I’d rather have a gun than a knife, first. The knife is the backup, so if I were wrestling over the gun, I could reach back for another tool…
but that gets pretty complicated, and implies you have practiced and are strong enough to wrestle, especially one handed with someone crazy enough to be grabbing your gun. In the crazy guy grabbing gun scenario in the article, its not clear when the guy got it- out of holster or out of hand of the cop? If the first, then having stronger retention, and a tactic to place weak hand on the wrist pulling gun, to keep locked in holster, spinning away, etc, while reaching back for knife could be one idea. But I’d defer to the many more well trained and knowledgeable here or elsewhere with current experience on what works.
Too many variables for a one-size fits all, but interesting discussion.
Better would be like Robert says- make space first by awareness, and second if you lose your gun, make space by GTFO, until you can get to your backup, or out of range, if you lose it.
No way in hell I can deploy my Kershaw Leek faster than I can deploy my 1911. And the Kershaw is a lot less effective as a self defense tool anyway.
I don’t see how it is a problem having an external safety (except that author just hates them period) when using a holster that needs extra practice with in the first place. If you have a gun with an external safety working it should be part of your draw motion already. It’s automatic.
Also consider this… if the officers gun DID have an external safety might that have slowed down the bad guy enough to change the outcome??
Ogres have lairs. Batman has a lair. My house needs a new layer of paint.
However, I guess it is fair to state that “ogres” have layers too depending on individual mythical anatomy.
So…Batman is an ogre?
I bought a retention holster (Safariland ALS) in case I am in a situation where I need or want to Open Carry. I use it as a range holster and once I got used to it, getting a smooth draw isn’t a big deal.
I don’t like, nor do I own or use any holster with any kind of retention system, having said that, I do own, wear and use good leather holsters, from which can only be drawn from the correct angle, I would defy anyone to run up and try to draw my EDC, a 1911, from my NON retention leather holster from any angle, the pistol simply won’t draw except from at the angle it’s supposed to, and that angle is the angle from which I draw from…if a retention holster can prevent other from drawing your weapon, it can also prevent you from drawing as well…
Hey you ever actually had somebody try and rip it off your body? And by try I mean violently try to rip it off. I have worked at lot of cqd drills and seen guys get their holster ripped when having their pistol taken from them. To suggest somebody who is throwing their full weight into you while gripping you pistol can’t get your pistol from you is a little bold.
Would you like to come try it…???
I see ZERO reason to open carry. None. I carry appendix in a sticky holster concealed. There is virtually no printing of the weapon and I can draw and fire damn fast. With the right position, I can carry all day long.
The biggest reason to I choose to carry concealed, I don’t WANT people to know I’m carrying! I see no reason to advertise that fact. Doing so draws unwanted eyes and attention, including cops or some idiot who is afraid of flavor crystals and calls the cops because someone has a gun. I want to be invisible. I want to blend in like a taxi on a NY city street, not like a cop on a horse in NY that EVERYONE notices. When a person open carries, they lose a huge degree of (element of surprise) In a tactical situation, element of surprise can mean the difference between surviving or not. Every tactical edge one can employ increases chances of success.
Should we have the right to open carry? You bet, but I see virtually no reason for the average citizen to open carry.
Agree 100%. You may be more at risk by carrying an exposed firearm, especially in a neighbored known for criminal activity. Bad guys are always looking for a way to get a gun.
What are you going to do when a few raunchy looking individuals happened to be walking down your sidewalk approaching? You can’t draw your weapon if there is no provocation. If there is provocation, you probably wont have time.
Carrying an open weapon only advertises to the criminal element that you have something they want!
I see no reason to open speak…..
Same. I saw a youtube a couple three years ago when first considering holsters, how easy it was to rip a gun or even the whole holster (paddle style) out from behind, with a twist… I can imagine this is one of the things cons talk about and practice with nothing else to do in prison…
So, I’d prefer IWB, and if OWB, with a garment, in order to be as concealed as possible. I am willing to give up some speed for camoflage.
Use the 3S’s and the 4 states, to reduce risk of having the problem, and the space to deal with it, first, like Robert addresses.
PS: open carry can create more problems than its worth in some environments- google the Costco episode in AZ a few years back. I live in an area where I’d be more at risk from a prog-tard PTA mommy freaking out, and getting shot by a rookie cop, than a bad guy…
I have to OC because my state (and like every other state) wont issue a CHP to anyone under 21.
Pistols just for shooting your way to your rifle.
A similar incident just happened in my town. The trooper should have just likely shot the guy instead of wrestling him. He could have gotten himself or others killed as a result of his weapon being out and engaged in a fight.
So let me get this straight… He is out of bullets but was killed by another cop? Aren’t they supposed to make an arrest? I mean if I just shot a guy “after the fact” I would go to prison.
Also… WTF is this:
A warrant to search his home and computer? The suspect is dead – The victim is dead. Who authorized this warrant and on the basis of what??? In NY it seems they’ll issue a warrant for anything.
Lots of good information in the article but too much second guessing Smith’s actions. His SA could have been just fine; or not. When in a situation many variables impact your SA even at its highest level affecting your focus and decisions/ actions. None of us were there wearing his shoes so anything said critiquing Smith’s actions and movements is all irrelevant Monday morning quarterbacking.
Re: Retention holsters.
I used one when in uniform in the mid 70’s – a level 2 according to the descriptions above. I think it was a relatively new concept product at the time. It was leather, designed with the usual snap retention to be worn high and tight on the Sam Brown same as any closely worn duty holster. The difference was that to remove the sidearm one had to move it quickly forward through an opening down the front of the holster securely held closed by a long heavy metal spring that was open at the top of the holster. The gun was absolutely secure from anyone else wresting it from the holster, and most of the time there was no trouble clearing leather when drawing was necessary. But without adequate quick forward momentum, or being in a position that impeded a quick forward draw, the muzzle end of the weapon invariably got hung up at the bottom of the holster at the closed end of the retention spring and one had to struggle to get it out. After less than a year I went back to my straight draw thumb strap retention duty holster. No question of reliably drawing every time.
I’m confident that retention holsters are more dynamic and reliable now as every LEO I see has one, so I can’t speak to the present. Personally I don’t favor any holster that impedes my draw in any way. To this day, I favor closely worn medium deep but open top holsters without a strap or anything to impede draw. CC only of course, so no exposure to open carry grabs.
New ones are pretty good; I carried a revolver with a level 3 leather holster and it worked great every time. As long as the shooter practices.
I too use an open face holster most of the time, but that’s because I don’t open carry when I’m wearing regular clothes in an urban environment… because why on earth would I!
My mom called to tell me about this. I just moved out of that area last month.
The guy that did the shooting was my MRI technician twice. Nice guy, everyone liked him. So weird to read about him flipping out and killing someone.
Also, we really need to put some effort into training LEOs better. I’ve done retention training at a couple of the classes I have taken, and LEOs should be better trained than me if they expect to prevent this type of thing.
IF you have the need to open carry, you have the need for a retention holster. If it’s too complicated for you, or not pretty enough, carry concealed. It’s really not that hard to get good with a level 2 or even 3 holster, it just requires practice (so does shooting!).
That gun they take and use against you can be used against someone else next. Don’t let it happen.
I use a Bianchi 1,2,3 holster on duty. Off duty i use a concealed Kydex retention holster. I have a different holster for class B ( khakis and polo shirt).
I never carry open unless I am in some kind of uniform.
Retention holsters require tons of practice. About 500 draws will train your brain and hand to release the firearm.
When i first bought my Bianchi I didn’t have much practice time before I had to use it. I was third in on a search warrant and when I went to draw my firearm i used the wrong process. I recovered quickly but it could have been tragic. Practice is the key to any holster, but more so with a retention holster.
Great post. Thanks for the info and the Paul Gomez video link. R.I.P. Mr. Gomez, would have loved to train in person.
I think Moms Demand Action is exploiting the general public’s lack of knowledge about retention holsters to fear-monger and make open carrying out to be a more dangerous activity than it is.
Does anyone have the links to some really good videos explaining the basics of how retention holsters work?
When OC’ing, one makes a subconscious decision to have the BG focus on them rather than anyone else. I would rather have the BG target me than some defenseless person or persons. Live by the sword die by the sword kind of thing. I am not LEO but work in armed security and am former military. Retention is an absolute must but like so many before me have pointed out, situational awareness is paramount to any form of defense or offense bar none. I’m not bagging on the cop, but it sounds as if his personal assumption cost him his edge. Being comfortable in a routine often leads to waste of many forms and is a professional hazard. Assume nothing and your chances of a foul up are minimized