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Discussion Starter #1
Was brousing the net tonight and came across the results of the shooting in Miami by the Air Marshals back in December. I use to be a big fan of the 357 Sig till I read the results of that shooting and how the rounds reacted.

Thought maybe others might have opinions that would be good to hear. The report is long (46 pages) but late in the report they cover in depth the actions of the rounds.

http://www.wftv.com/news/9262915/detail.html

Steve
 

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Steve - I downloaded that file and took a peek thru but actually - could not find anything that was particularly damning of the round.

Seems lethality was not at issue but - do come back with a page # perhaps then I can locate that and read in more detail. Could easily have overlooked what you want seen.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
My observations came out of page 38/39/40 where it discusses the bullets reactions. Out of 9 rounds fired there was 10 hits (two grazing). Considering the job they do, I was shocked that out of 9 hits there were 7 fragments from the bullets that exited the body. I am not a big fan of thru and thru. Ya they worked but what if it had been on the plane with folks behind the perp? Thats 7 rounds they had to account for. Dosent make me real happy with the round.

(Ohh btw 9 shots 9 hits....that does show the level of thier weapon skills).

Steve
 

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Ahh OK Steve -
Medical Examiner
Dr. Wendloyn Sneed, of the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office, performed an autopsy upon Mr. Alpizar on December 8, 2005. The autopsy revealed:
• four (4) penetrating gunshot wounds, i.e. no exit point. Trajectory: Front to back
• three (3) perforating gunshot wounds, i.e. with exit. Trajectory: Front to back
• three (3) grazing gunshot wounds.
It should be noted that the amount of gunshot wounds mentioned above do not relate to the number of gunshots fired because one fired shot can cause several wounds.
The Medical Examiner discovered four (4) projectiles directly associated with the four (4) penetrating gunshot wounds, extracted and turned them over to the Miami-Dade Police Department.
Well, true enough - it does beg questions re over penetration but sure as heck - the rounds did a good job! And yes, they were dead on too!

Does not seem to mention ammo make and bullet weight etc - but would be I assume a std issue factory offering.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Gold Dot 125 gr. When you place the hand over the chest that gives you four rounds that went through and through, one graze and four stayed in. Also some how one fragment ended up BEHIND where the weapons were, and two fragments right near the body, and three over 80' away and one about 50' away. Thats alot of extra liability to worry about.
 

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Out of interest Steve - had they used 9mm +P GD's, say 124's too - how well do you think the performance would have been? Adequate?

Thing here I guess is - is one too much and might the other have been too little?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
One thing I have learned recently is that the 357 Sig is nothing but a 125gr 9mm bullet on a bottle necked 40 case. Theory sounded good, but after this review I'd prefer a 200gr 45 (da flying ashtray) or atleast a 115gr +p 9mm.
 

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Sure is food for thought Steve - I had thought the 357 was basically a 9mm on steroids - which it is - but maybe just a shade too potent for a small ballistic coefficient bullet.

Indeed ''da flyin ashtray'' could well be a much better option :wink:
 

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fed_wif_a_sig said:
One thing I have learned recently is that the 357 Sig is nothing but a 125gr 9mm bullet on a bottle necked 40 case. Theory sounded good, but after this review I'd prefer a 200gr 45 (da flying ashtray) or atleast a 115gr +p 9mm.
Your preferences are certainly yours, and you are entitled to them, of course. Damning the 357SIG on the basis of one shooting, with extremely limited information, is a bit of a stretch, though. Particularly since nothing about the ballistic performance was unique to the 357SIG.

The scene of the shooting, in the jetway, was very close quarters with lots of exposed metal trim (an assumption from my own observation of jetways, and the included photographs of the scene). High energy perforating and grazing shots are going to ricochet and fragment if they hit exposed metal of sufficient hardness, regardless of caliber or weight (within reason). I have experienced bullet fragments flying back from downrange targets at indoor ranges, with fragments ending up behind the shooting line and booths. It is not surprising, at least to me, that fragments could end up behind the FAM positions in the confined space of the jetway.

Casings were found in very close proximity to the suspect, as well as at the opposite end of the 60-ft jetway. Alignment of the hands and wounds was consistent with the hands holding a backpack. The JHP bullets penetrated a lot of material and who knows what else, like the plastic Coke bottle. Might the JHP's have closed up and acted as ball rounds? Yes. Do ball rounds overpenetrate? Yes, frequently. Were the perforating shots possibly rounds behaving as if they were ball rounds shot from point blank range? Possibly, we don't know. Is the phenomenon of JHP rounds closing up and acting as ball rounds unique to the 357SIG? Not at all.

At least one of the perforations, based on the coroner's diagram, shows a shot penetrating the trapezius muscle near the AMC joint. This is only a couple of inches of tissue, at most. I respectfully submit that any round from 9mm standard on up, shot from close quarters, hitting this area, would perforate and continue traveling until it embedded itself in something or fragmented on impact, as would grazing shots that grazed the arm and hand, but did not penetrate the torso. I think this would include slower rounds like a 200gr .45, and faster rounds like a 115gr 9mm, but that's JMO.

With respect for your experience and opinions, I disagree with your conclusions regarding the 357SIG, based on this report. A 124gr 9mm +P+, or 125gr .357Mag, or 115gr 9mm +P, or 200gr .45acp might have performed similarly from similar distances with similar placement. Any of these rounds, penetrating a narrow cross-section portion of the body, would be likely to overpenetrate, given normal performance/penetration expectations. Even premium JHP's, when encountering multiple layers of heavy fabric, like ballistic nylon used in backpacks and multiple layers of clothing, may fill up, close, and behave as ball rounds. The majority of the shots on target penetrated and remained in the body. A few perforated narrower sections of the torso, and overpenetrated. A few grazed the extremities and missed the torso altogether. None of this seems peculiar to the 357SIG.
 

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We have had several OIS's with the .357 SIG. It has been a performer for our department. Several perps have expired and one will never walk again. I can say based on my first hand experience with the caliber it is a performer if the right ammo is chosen.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks J for your comments. My main concern with the round is in a steel tube full of 200+ people a round that will split up and over penatrate is another worry to deal with. Most shots in the simulator end up being taken at less than 10 feet and knowing that what is carried stands a good likelyhood of continuing just dosent settle well. Dont know what the answer is. It just adds another issue to worry about.
 

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I would have thought there was extensive testing of over penetration in airplanes would have been done before the caliber was adopted.. Am i wrong ..

Of course no matter what i don't fly usually so just a wondering point for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
The round was selected because the USSS chose it. Over time the "word" was that this round did not overpenetrate. Penetrating the aircraft skin isnt a problem, its the cartridge splitting up and sending several smaller projectiles out of the skin and into the mass's behind. When I was on the streets, that wasnt a problem (as in the Miami incident) but if it had stayed on the plane? Imigian where those three projo's whould have ended up? Somewhere 50 to 80 feel back? That worries me. Like I said earlier, I dont know the answer but it just is something to discuss.

Steve
 

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Wasn't there talk about the Air Marshalls using a frangible round on board aircraft? I wonder what happened to that idea?

fed_wif_a_sig said:
The round was selected because the USSS chose it. Over time the "word" was that this round did not overpenetrate. Penetrating the aircraft skin isnt a problem, its the cartridge splitting up and sending several smaller projectiles out of the skin and into the mass's behind. When I was on the streets, that wasnt a problem (as in the Miami incident) but if it had stayed on the plane? Imigian where those three projo's whould have ended up? Somewhere 50 to 80 feel back? That worries me. Like I said earlier, I dont know the answer but it just is something to discuss.

Steve
 

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I think having a round that will probably go though an airline passenger seat or bulkhead is a plus. That's what a terrorist would use for cover. Even whole bullets going throught the jet's skin isn't a problem. Mythbusters busted that myth wide open.

I noticed that none of the rounds hit his upper chest or head. Perhaps, they were trying to avoid the backpack that was supposed to be a bomb. They are very well trained and knew what they were doing. IMHO
 

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No kidding, I though Air Marshals would use frangable rounds , so passengers behind the intended target would not be hit.
 
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