FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

Departments : Officer Survival

Bullet Proof

What do you do when the bad guy seems invincible?

June 01, 2003  | 


When presented with a deadly force situation, we have been trained to aim and fire our duty weapon at the chest, or "center mass." Why? This area presents the largest portion of the body. Typically speaking, we also know that once shot in this area, most people will stop their aggressive actions against us.

So imagine your disbelief when a threat continues to progress-even after you've delivered what would normally be considered "incapacitating" rounds. You think to yourself, Is it the gun? The ammo? Did I hit or miss? I had to have hit, but he keeps coming. Imagine the thud of realization when you determine your adversary is wearing body armor.

Good guys are not the only ones wearing armor these days. Some high-profile incidents have made this painfully clear.

In 1997, we watched in awe as two California bank robbers absorbed numerous rounds of fire and were able to continue their assault on officers in the North Hollywood bank robbery shootout. In 2000, escaped convicts dubbed the "Texas Seven" stole a vest from the lifeless body of Officer Aubrey Hawkins after he was murdered while responding to a robbery call. The Midland County SWAT team recently encountered a suspect wearing armor and brandishing an AK-47 while serving a narcotics warrant. An investigation revealed he had purchased the vest from a local gun store. These days, a suspect can sit back on his newly stolen computer, tap into the Internet, and order a vest for a couple of hundred bucks or less.

A technique known as the Mozambique, or "failure drill," helps address this growing problem. To follow this technique, if an oncoming threat appears unaffected after a couple of rounds to the chest, you are to raise your weapon and secure a single shot to the head. That will work. However, it doesn't hurt to have more than one alternate plan up your proverbial sleeve. Why not submit a third option?

Center Mass is Center Mass


A kneeling position helps to avoid over-penetration.

The "A, B, C" or "1, 2, 3" method of training presents three options for taking down a deadly threat.  Instead of aiming for the torso, usually considered center mass, and then not knowing what to do if it doesn't work, change the way you think of "center mass." When viewed as a target, a person can be divided into three zones:

A=torso (Center mass)
B= head and neck
C= pelvic/femur joint area

For the traditionalists who teach "center mass" target acquisition, you can continue to teach the center mass concept. Just further break down the area into center mass of chest, center mass of head, and center mass of the pelvic joint area.

CONTINUED: Bullet Proof «   Page 1 of 2   »

Tags: Deadly Force, body armor, Tips for Success


Be the first to comment on this story





POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.

Other Recent Stories

Revisiting the "21-Foot Rule"
The so-called "21-Foot Rule" was born and soon spread throughout the law enforcement...
Leadership in Reverse
Every profession espouses the virtues of leadership. But what about followers, which are...

Get Your FREE Trial Issue and Win a Gift! Subscribe Today!
Yes! Please rush me my FREE TRIAL ISSUE of POLICE magazine and FREE Officer Survival Guide with tips and tactics to help me safely get out of 10 different situations.

Just fill in the form to the right and click the button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.

If POLICE does not satisfy you, just write "cancel" on the invoice and send it back. You'll pay nothing, and the FREE issue is yours to keep. If you enjoy POLICE, pay only $25 for a full one-year subscription (12 issues in all). Enjoy a savings of nearly 60% off the cover price!

Offer valid in US only. Outside U.S., click here.
It's easy! Just fill in the form below and click the red button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.
First Name:
Last Name:
Rank:
Agency:
Address:
City:
State:
  
Zip Code:
 
Country:
We respect your privacy. Please let us know if the address provided is your home, as your RANK / AGENCY will not be included on the mailing label.
E-mail Address:

Police Magazine