Orange Sheriff's Office buys 14 elephant guns

This is a discussion on Orange Sheriff's Office buys 14 elephant guns within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; uhhhhhhhh.... Kenneth Lewis of the Orange County Sheriff's Office displays a .499-caliber Alexander Arms Beowulf rifle Thursday. The Sheriff's Office is buying 14 elephant guns. ...

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Thread: Orange Sheriff's Office buys 14 elephant guns

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
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    Orange Sheriff's Office buys 14 elephant guns

    uhhhhhhhh....



    Kenneth Lewis of the Orange County Sheriff's Office displays a .499-caliber Alexander Arms Beowulf rifle Thursday. The Sheriff's Office is buying 14 elephant guns. (JACOB LANGSTON, ORLANDO SENTINEL / September 28, 2007)

    Henry Pierson Curtis | Sentinel Staff Writer
    September 28, 2007

    Orlando is safe from rampaging pachyderms now that the Orange County Sheriff's Office has bought 14 elephant guns.

    The largest weapon in Sheriff Kevin Beary's armory fires a half-inch-diameter bullet with sharpshooter accuracy.

    "The sole purpose for this weapon is large or exotic animals," sheriff's spokesman Jim Solomons said Thursday.

    Each .499-caliber Alexander Arms Beowulf rifle has a laser sight to let shooters hit where they aim out to 300 yards -- a perfect tool to help the agriculture and marine unit deal with cattle that wander onto the BeachLine Expressway and Florida's Turnpike.

    But the Sheriff's Office also is thinking bigger.

    Orlando's theme parks are home to elephants, polar bears, lions, giraffes and hippos. Should any of them get loose, deputies need the right weapon to stop them if public safety is threatened, Solomons said.

    If the worst happens, the Beowulf can stop it.

    Essentially an assault rifle on steroids, the $800 weapon has "the power to kill anything that walks, swims or crawls!" according to a 2003 product review by gunblast.com. "Everyone who shot the gun was grinning like an idiot, and muttering phrases like, 'I gotta get me one of these.'"

    When considering whether to buy the rifles, the Sheriff's Office remembered that an elephant ran amok and killed its trainer in Honolulu in 1994.

    "They had to go through a whole lot of bullets, and all they did was aggravate the animal and put it through needless suffering before they were able to bring it down," Solomons said.

    In the 1960s, an elephant escaped from a circus in Winter Park. It rampaged along Cady Way into Winter Park Pines, leaving large mementos of its presence along the street, until it was subdued and recaptured.

    Orange County's toughest neighborhoods may not have elephants, but the deputies who work there are getting a shipment of 25-shot machine pistols.

    "Matching firepower," said sheriff's spokesman Capt. Mark Strobridge, when asked why.

    "Our tactical squads that are getting the weapons are dealing with the worst of the worst and those types of neighborhoods," Strobridge said of the new semiautomatic, .45-caliber Heckler & Koch machine pistols. "They're more accurate than their [regular] pistols, and they can stand back further from the bad guys."

    The agency intends to buy 49 of the weapons at $1,660 each.The arms race in law enforcement dates back to the 1980s, when cops across America complained they were outgunned by criminals. So they traded in their old six-shooters for 16-shot, 9 mm pistols.

    A couple of years back, Beary replaced those with more than 1,000 more-powerful .45-caliber pistols for his deputies. AR-15 assault rifles joined the 12-gauge shotguns in many patrol cars.

    And then killers behind the county's skyrocketing murder rate over the past two years increasingly armed themselves with AK-47s and other high-powered, high-capacity weapons.

    "When I started out, there was only a small SWAT team that had these nontraditional weapons," said Strobridge, a 26-year veteran. "Unfortunately, the criminals have evolved and the types of weapons they carry. And we should not be behind. We should be ahead."

    Henry Pierson Curtis can be reached at hcurtis@orlandosentinel.com or 407-420-5257.

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  3. #2
    Member Array Gunner69's Avatar
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    Where do you even start with the inaccuracies in that story??

    How about that at 300 yards the best you can hope for is 39" of drop and the little holo sight is going to be pointed at the sky so much for precision accuracy. Other than that the whole story puts the LEO's in question into a horrible light.
    The 6 P's
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    Wow. Just....wow. I don't know what is worse, the reporting, or that someone actually called the Beowulf a "300 yard elephant gun." Sheriff's spokesperson Solomons was either wildly misquoted, or is a complete idiot. Someone in OCSO should have come on here for 10 minutes - they could have found out what true elephant guns are...
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    Member Array mousehunter's Avatar
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    AA initially tried to push that rifle to .mil and law enforcement. While not a true elephant gun (I guess a 50bmg could take an elephant at 300 yards if you could hit a vital), they tested against more likely targets (vehicles and bullet proof glass) and it performed quite well.

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    Senior Member Array jualdeaux's Avatar
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    I've never heard an EOTech referred to as a laser sight.

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    Distinguished Member Array Bob The Great's Avatar
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    "elephant guns" and super-accurate "semi-automatic machine pistols", eh? right...

    how do people come up with this stuff?
    "A well-educated electorate, being necessary to the continuance of a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books shall not be infringed."
    Is this hard to understand? Then why does it get unintelligible to some people when 5 little words are changed?

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    Member Array mtnfreak's Avatar
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    Who wants to bet that the SO would have a big problem with me owning a weapon that left me "grinning like an idiot"?
    As for the performance, it must be one of those movie guns that never runs out of ammo, doesn't kick (except for comic relief) and always hits what you want to hit, even if you point it 90 degrees off (unless you're a 'bad guy', of course).
    Law without force is impotent.
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    I looked at the comments, got to about the 5th before I had to start looking for duct tape.
    "and suddenly I can not hold back my sword hand's anger"

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    Senior Member Array Musketeer's Avatar
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    Essentially an assault rifle on steroids, the $800 weapon has "the power to kill anything that walks, swims or crawls!" according to a 2003 product review by gunblast.com. "Everyone who shot the gun was grinning like an idiot, and muttering phrases like, 'I gotta get me one of these.'"
    ahhhh right. I guess gunblast.com is the site for LEOs looking for firearms information these days... NOT. (I hope...)

    39" of drop with a .50 cal is not a rifle, it is indirect fire artillery.

    Rather than buying 14 of these things if they really were concerned about large predators how about some proven African big game rifles... Oh, those aren't as cool looking as an .50 cal AR.

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    Keep in mind that the Beowulf was designed as a CQB cartridge, to up the close range power of the AR platform. It is a big, heavy hitting round, but it is not a 300 yard gun, "laser sights" not withstanding... Heck, the ballistics tables go out to 500 yards (where the least amount of drop listed is 185" - yes, fifteen and a half feet), why not call it a 500 yard gun?
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

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    VIP Member Array aus71383's Avatar
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    Great article. The machine-pistols were definitely the high point, but the original topic of elephant guns was quite entertaining as well. Judging by the quotes from the OCSO, I'd say they knew the person doing the interview was a moron and tried to dumb it down so they'd understand. Still, there's not excuse for this kind of ignorance being published.

    Austin

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    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OPFOR View Post
    Wow. Just....wow. I don't know what is worse, the reporting, or that someone actually called the Beowulf a "300 yard elephant gun." Sheriff's spokesperson Solomons was either wildly misquoted, or is a complete idiot...
    Agreed 100%

    - Janq
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    Senior Member Array Devone6's Avatar
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    Funny Stuff! How often do rampant elephants storm Orange County?

    Think I'll just keep my 375H&H

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    Think I'll just keep my 375H&H
    Infinitely better choice for ''reaching out"
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    and I always thought a 416 Rigby would make a good elephant gun round.
    -Bark'n
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    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

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