Does it matter what caliber you carry if...

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Thread: Does it matter what caliber you carry if...

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Dakotaranger's Avatar
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    Does it matter what caliber you carry if...

    Does it matter what caliber you carry if you end up using it and get an over zelous prosecutor? I just read an article in G&A Handguns that suggested carrying a 'Police Model' for the aspect if it's good enough for the PD to protect society,it's good enough for you. The point was with a jury if you have something else it could look like you are 'looking for trouble.' (Which is bizzare because everyone should look for trouble even if just to avoid it).

    The thing that really boggled my mind is that it has been real well documented how the .357 mag was developed, why the PD went to the 9 Luger, the FBI had the 10 MM developed but backed off when the .40 S&W was developed all because of various agents and police couldn't handle the recoil.

    So the question is knowing this and the stopping power of the .45 should a person make a decision based on what happens after a shooting if a prosecutor wants to make hay out of it? I know I would rather trust my life to my 1911, but I don't want some lawyer call me a vigilante because I don't fully trust the 9mm.
    "[T]he people are not to be disarmed of their weapons.
    They are left in full possession of them."

    Zacharia Johnson (speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convention,25 June 1778)"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed." ~Alexander Hamilton

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    VIP Member Array artz's Avatar
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    I heard about that. I don't believe it would bother me If I had to use a .22 or a .44, just as long as it was there and it saved my bacon.
    "Well...What caliber should I have used if it was prosecuter-approved ?" would be the question to ask him/her.
    Another one would be "Are there specific calibers to use on specific people depending on age, race, and size, sorta like hunting ?"
    Its totally crazy......

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    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    i'm going to stick with 45 ..

    i'm sure someone who is a overzealous prosecutor could even make a case that you used same caliber and gun cops did because you wanted to kill someone .. this kind of paranoia will never end

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    VIP Member Array ELCruisr's Avatar
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    I'm sticking with my .45 ACP. It's what I know, shoot and train with. Yeah, I've got a .38+P backup but I still prefer the ol' standby. Luckily with the new laws in FL, decisions on good/bad shooting should have nothing to do with caliber and everything to do with circumstances. One can hope this type of sanity will spread.
    If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

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    Member Array chiefs-special-guy's Avatar
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    It may not just be a caliber thing- I have seen where prosecutors focus on bullet type- i.e. JHP -and claim use of hollow point ammunition illustrates a wanton desire to do maximum damage, etc. of course, that is what leo's use here, so I suppose that is a defense.
    I do think you should use factory ammo in a conventional caliber in an unaltered weapon- no exotic handloads in some pistol whose safety you removed in your garage. You can't stop a zealous DA from harrassing you, but you can probably make it harder.
    God BLess
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dakotaranger View Post
    Does it matter what caliber you carry if you end up using it and get an over zelous prosecutor?
    An over-zealous prosecutor will try to hand you your noogies for dinner, but that's out of your control.

    Tips I try to follow: Do everything for a specific reason; have good rationale and be able to explain it simply; have documented proof of selection method; train, don't just practice; document that training and its specific purpose; have an exceptional attorney; don't screw up by becoming Mr. I. Wannabe and the image of the gun-toting spastic cesspool that anti's love to go after.

    Selection of rounds? So long as it's legal, effective, reliable. The thing is, handguns are deadly weapons that are designed to stop close-in threats. Beyond questions of penetration and ricochet, IMO it doesn't much matter which ammunition is used, when it comes down to it. A more-effective round will, on average, require fewer shots, put fewer bystanders at risk, etc. In the end, a zealot's job is to hang you. Your job is to have good rationale that's unassailable. That's about the most you can do.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
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    Ex Member Array Todd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefs-special-guy View Post
    It may not just be a caliber thing- I have seen where prosecutors focus on bullet type- i.e. JHP -and claim use of hollow point ammunition illustrates a wanton desire to do maximum damage, etc. of course, that is what leo's use here, so I suppose that is a defense.
    You could also turn it around and say that you use hollow points because you are concerned for the safety of innocent bystanders and didn't want the bullet go through the BG and hit someone else too.

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    VIP Member Array MNBurl's Avatar
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    I don't worry about that problem. I carry what works for me!
    MNBurl

    "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.

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    pax
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccw9mm
    Tips I try to follow: Do everything for a specific reason; have good rationale and be able to explain it simply; have documented proof of selection method; train, don't just practice; document that training and its specific purpose; have an exceptional attorney; don't screw up by becoming Mr. I. Wannabe and the image of the gun-toting spastic cesspool that anti's love to go after.
    Excellent tips, and worth repeating.

    pax
    Kathy Jackson
    My website: Cornered Cat

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    Senior Member Array jofrdo's Avatar
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    It's not just caliber and bullet type that overzealous prosecuters will focus on. Having a laser on your gun, when police don't, can be presented as your having been looking for a gunfight; same with have a single-action trigger, when police are using double-action guns, "his gun had a hair trigger. He was just looking for a chance to throw up a wall of lead." All the more reason to thoroughly know and understand the gun laws in your state and city so that any use of your gun is unquestionably legal.

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    Member Array DaveT's Avatar
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    From personal experience, I can tell you that there is no 'outguessing' what can happen in the legal system. All you can do is train and be prepared.

    After my shooting in police work, the case was referred to a Grand Jury. That is standard procedure here in Texas, had to go through that even though the Texas Ranger and FBI investigations concluded that it was a 'justified' shooting.

    Once inside the Grand Jury room, I was asked to explain what happened, was also able to use a marker board to diagram the situation. During my explanation, I explained that I fired two times in rapid succession at the BG. The foreman of the Grand Jury immediately begin this line of questioning:

    Him: Since you fired twice, that means you really wanted to kill him.

    Me: No sir, we are trained to fire in 2 to 3 round shot groups (this was back in 1981), that is called combat shooting.

    Him: You are a liar, 'combat shooting' is where you fire all your rounds and empty your gun.

    Me: No sir. The only time we fire all our rounds is on the training range, and that is only when we are practicing speed reloading.

    Him: That's a lie, you really must have wanted to kill him.

    Me: Sir, It was a cold blooded, planned ambush. He had already shot at me and the bullet missed my head by about an inch. He was turning his gun on my partner when I fired. I fired two rounds. One round missed him, the other hit him right in the heart. I would like to think my first shot hit him and the second missed because he was dropping after being struck from the first round, but we'll never know that for sure. If I had only fired once and that was the round that missed, my partner or myself might be dead right now.

    Then the DA stepped in to diffuse the rather heated conversation. Guess he could tell I was trying real hard to be polite...... Right after I left the room, the Texas Ranger who investigated the shooting was called in to testify. I met him in the hallway and explained the line of questioning. He had a certain look in his eyes when he said "don't worry about it, I'll take care of him". He did, I was no-billed right after he finished his testimony.

    Found out later the Grand Jury Foreman who tried to roast me was the owner of a gun shop, and he did not like police officers.

    In answer to the question that first started this thread: I was using a .357 4 inch S&W revolver. The type of weapon, or the caliber of ammo never entered the conversation.

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array Old Chief's Avatar
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    I have always believed that any one choosing to carry a personal protection piece should opt for the one that best fits their hand and they are most comfortable and accurate with. Everything else is just somebodys opinion and in most cases, unsolicited advice.
    One should never confuse good fortune with good training.
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    In God we trust.

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    Member Array LTPhoon's Avatar
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    It was conventional wisdom long ago that you carried what the local agencies did because if a responding officer saw you pointing an ivory-handled nickle-plated Auto-KaBling .600 at somebody, they might get the wrong idea pretty quick; that you used the same ammo that the locals used becaused that afforded some legitimacy vis-a-vis the system as well; and that you let a zealous lawyer do the 'splainin' from the git go. This is why I carry a Sig P229 in .40 with the Nitron finish and will carry a P239 DAK in .40 Nitron as soon as I sort the holster thing out...

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    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    In order for civil and criminal liability to even be an issue, I have to survive a deadly force encounter. If I don't survive, it really doesn't matter what I'm carrying, so I'm going to choose the weapon that makes my survival as likely as possible. As far as what happens afterwards, I'll cross that bridge if I ever come to it.

  16. #15
    Member Array gotammo's Avatar
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    Almost nothing the prosecuter can say that a good defense laywer can't undo or minimize. Remember most LEOs are given their gun and have option but to carry it due to policy. Carry what you have and its always better to be judged by 12 then carried by 6.

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