SHOT Show 2008: Report from the Aisles

At this year's SHOT, held last month in Las Vegas, aisles of booths were overflowing into several tent buildings erected in the parking lot. And a good portion of the overflow belonged to law enforcement products.

SHOT Show has never been small, but the Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade Show's expanding law enforcement section is becoming an even larger part of the already enormous show floor. Actually, it would be more accurate to say floors. At this year's SHOT, held last month in Las Vegas, aisles of booths were overflowing into several tent buildings erected in the parking lot. And a good portion of the overflow belonged to law enforcement products.

Despite being held on SuperBowl weekend amid chilly winds and stormy, often rainy, skies, attendance was strong…until the game started. Still, many attendees stuck around and took advantage of the TVs some booths had on hand to keep tabs on the score while browsing for new boots, bullets, and everything in between. And there was a lot to see. Here's a quick look at some of the gear that caught the eyes of our editors.

Tactical & Survival Specialties Inc. (TSSI)

The ParaScope Urban Combat Sight from TSSI allows you to see around corners without exposing yourself.

ParaScope has an optical design that allows for crisp natural viewing of the target area from either its side or rear ports without any mirror inversion or distortion. It is a fully ruggedized 1x optical sight compatible with a wide variety of weapon sights including 1x tactical scopes, magnified weapon sights, laser designators, and iron sights. The ParaScope is compatible with any caliber weapon including rifles, shotguns, and less lethal weapons (gas guns) fitted with a Picatinny rail.

Combat K-9

The D-Muzzle is a trigger-release dog muzzle that can release in as little as .05 seconds. It was invented to minimize a team's concerns about liability, civilian personnel, friendly forces, negative press, and injured dogs.

Because a D-Muzzle can be instantly removed via trigger release, it allows a dog to get in the fight immediately.

D-Muzzle features an open mouth design to allow dogs to properly breathe, drink water, accept treats, and vomit in an emergency. It is available in multiple sizes to fit all breeds.

Point Blank/PACA

You can now wear TASER-resistant ballistic armor. Thor Shield is a T-shirt-thin TASER-resistant material being used exclusively by PACA and Point Blank in ballistic vest carriers. You can also purchase a Thor Shield carrier for the PACA or Point Blank vest you're wearing now.

Thor Shield is a fabric lining created by G2 Consulting that provides protection from non-lethal energy weapons such as TASER, stun guns, and animal control devices such as cattle prods. The product has been tested with stun products up to 900,000 volts.

To allow officers to safely control a subject going through a TASER cycle, PACA and Point Blank to debut gloves incorporating the material soon.

Danner Boots

Danner Boots introduced the Striker II Assault at the show. It has Crosstech to make the boot weather proof and to keep bloodborne pathogens from penetrating to your skin through the boot.

The Striker II Assault is a sharp looking eight-inch boot with an outer tongue cover to give it a "Star Trek" look. It's built on the Terra Force X last/footbed. This is a lightweight and supportive sole with a mid sole that is flexible and gives good traction on a wide range of surfaces. To reduce weight the boot has a leather foot and Cordura upper.


The TASER X12 Less Lethal Shotgun (LLS) Mossberg shotgun debuted during the SHOT Show. It is a fully integrated less-lethal platform manufactured by Mossberg and based on the Mossberg 500 shotgun that has been optimized for the TASER eXtended Range Electronic Projectile (XREP).

The less-lethal weapon includes TASER Radial Ammunition Key technology to prevent the system from accepting lethal 12-gauge rounds.

In addition to the TASER Radial Ammunition Key system, the TASER X12 LLS also features a high twist, rifled barrel system; a Picatinny Rail system with the X-Rail mount pre-installed; ghost ring sighting system; and collapsible tactical stock.


The Defender Halo I from uniform manufacturer Propper is a parka-length Hi-Vis coat with reflective tape. This waterproof, breathable coat is also lightweight. The Halo I has a drop tail to keep your low back warm and posterior dry if you have to sit down. If the weather is really foul, you can pull up the Peripheral Vision Hood, which keeps you dry while allowing you to see all that is going on around you. There are side access zippers for easy access to your duty weapon while keeping it out of the elements.

The Halo I has shoulder epaulets to secure your radio to or you can use the chest-mounted microphone tabs. To ensure you don't puncture the waterproof membrane, Propper installs a molded badge tab on the chest. If a new high-visibility rain parka is on the shopping list for 2008, the Halo I from Propper should be on that short list.

Springfield Armory

Springfield Armory has had great success with the XD series. This year the biggest news was that the XD45 was being offered with a manual safety. While it may sound like one of those "big deal" things, to many agency lawyers this is a big deal because the XD is classified as a single-action pistol by the ATFE.

The manual safety is located in the traditional 1911 frame position. Locating the safety here allows the operator to easily sweep the safety off and on—something that can't be done with a slide-mounted safety. This safety does nothing to affect the trigger of the XD, which many think is smoother than other polymer pistols on the market. Installing this safety on the XD45 will expand the market for Springfield Armory.

Command Arms Accessories

The Pivot Pod Grip is a vertical forearm with a built in bi-pod. The bi-pod is deployed by pushing the release button or can be manually pulled from the grip. This gives the AR operator a stable shooting platform or a way to set your AR down and not lay the rifle on its side. The Pivot Pod Grip fits any standard Picatinny rail you may have on your AR. I'll be installing this on my M4, replacing the vertical grip already there.

Para Ordnance

Known for its high-capacity 1911s, Para Ordnance has gone to reduced sized 1911s. The new PDA is literally a handful of Para LDA. In 9mm it weighs in at 24 ounces with an overall length of 6.4 inches, a height of 4.75 inches, and a capacity of nine total rounds. This mini 1911 is built on an alloy frame, comes with nights sights, and with a match-grade barrel. Para's PDA uses the LDA trigger system, making it a modern pocket pistol.

Designed to be more than just a backup, the PDA will serve those who work deep cover, are administrative officers, and anyone off duty. Fit and finish of the sample PDA were typical Para; excellent. The PDA is offered in 9mm and 45ACP to meet your personal needs.


This year Streamlight responded to the request for more powerful lights with the Super Tac. Operating on two CR123A batteries, the Super Tac gives the operator 135 lumens of light. Using C4 LEDs, the runtime of this light is more than three hours.

The Super Tac is not much larger than Streamlight's Stinger. This light has a slightly larger reflector than a traditional light. This accommodates the cooling of the LEDs, as LEDs do generate a substantial amount of heat and need to be cooled.

Big Foot Bags

Big Foot Bags come in three sizes: small, medium, and large to carry everything an individual or team needs. The small bag will easily carry and protect an individual's dive, SAR, or SRT gear and fit in the back of a small SUV or duty cruiser. This bag can be easily moved by one person unless you carry unusually heavy gear. The medium and large bags will fit in a large SUV or SWAT truck.

What's cool about ig Foot Bags is that not only do they carry your gear and keep it dry, but they double as a ground cloth. This keeps your gear off of wet surfaces and gives you a place to get organized.

Law Enforcement Targets

Law Enforcement Targets is now the exclusive distributor of LiveSight Target Systems' Virtual Three-Dimensional Shooting Targets. Remember the old 3D glasses with one red lens and one blue lens? Well to see these paper targets in 3D you wear custom-made protective shooting glasses that have the same anaglylph technology.

These targets allow officers to use real guns and real ammunition on life-like, "moving" targets. Target scenarios include traffic stop, armed robbery, hostages, domestic, abductions, and SWAT.


Twice the size of any the company has made before, a new non-magnified, self-luminous sight from Trijicon provides increased field-of-view capabilities that provide fast target acquisition. The larger objective of the new Trijicon RX30 Reflex allows the user to move the firearm freely and remain on target at multiple shooting angles when surveying an area.

A large 42mm clear aperture lens offers both the biggest sight picture available and better illumination than ever before. With no batteries to rely on, this dual-illuminated sight features both fluorescent fiber optics and a tritium lamp for a clearly defined aiming point in any light condition. Tritium provides amber reticle illumination in dim light, while the fiber optic system automatically controls the brightness of the reticle in all other light conditions. The Trijicon RX30 Reflex features advanced multi-layer coated lenses for distortion-free light transmission and a larger +/- 30 MOA (one click per inch at 100 yards) allows for a greater range of adjustment for mounting to various firearms.


From 911EP, part of BAE Systems, the new Commander Lighting System (CLS) offers a very low-profile interior lighting system. Although it sits at the top of the windshield, its design helps minimize visual obstructions to improve driver safety. With an integrated glare shield, the CLS also is designed to minimize flash backs.

The new CLS utilizes 100-percent LED technology, including takedown lights, and is constructed with durable, lightweight aluminum. A new thermal onboard management design improves heat flow, keeping the system and the vehicle cooler. The new CLS offers multiple flash patterns and comes standard with a five-year warranty.


The FNP-45 features traditional double-action/single-action (DA/SA) operation, a high-capacity polymer frame with interchangeable backstrap inserts, accessory rail, and ambidextrous frame-mounted decocking levers and magazine release.

The FNP-45's 4.5-inch barrel is hammer-forged and the stainless steel slide has a hard, matte black Melonite finish for added durability. The FNP-45 also offers a loaded chamber indicator on the external extractor. Depending on the model, it can be had with a 10- or 14-round capacity and a variety of standard and night sights. All FNPs come standard with three magazines and a lockable hard case.

5.11 Tactical

Built specifically for the plainclothes or undercover operator, the 5.11 Covert Khaki features an 8.8-ounce wrinkle- and fade-resistant cotton twill that's been treated with Teflon for stain and soil resistance. The pants feature a flat front and a total of eight pockets: two traditional-style front pockets, each with interior zipper-closed pockets for magazines or accessories, plus two standard rear pockets and two concealed vertical thigh pockets with zippers hidden along the side seams.


The Phantom from Eberlestock is a modular pack made for snipers. It has a detachable harness, waistbelt, and bag. That's right, the bag is detachable. That means you can convert the weapon carrier into a drag bag or you can completely unfold it so you can comfortably lie down in position.

You can also mix and match parts to configure the Phantom pack for your particular needs. It's hydration compatible, with four places for water bladders. The pack is also easy to use because of its wide open access to interior tuck pockets and PALS webbing. There's also a fold-down interior shelf divider to further organize your gear.

TruSpec by Atlanco

If you want a pair of nice-looking pants to wear on or off duty without attracting a lot of "I'm a cop" attention, you'll probably like TruSpec's 24-7 pants.

Designed to be comfortable, functional, and versatile, their design is more understated than tactical pants, yet they provide secure storage for gear. Constructed of durable 8.5-ounce 100-percent cotton canvas, TruSpec's 24-7 pants look more like khakis with some extra pockets, making them suitable for wear on and off duty.

24-7 pants and coordinated polo-style shirts are available in a wide range of sizes and in the colors khaki, olive drab, coyote, and black.

EHS Inc.

The VidMic from EHS is  a video recorder and microphone in one small package. It also records audio and can take full color still photographs. And it's small enough to clip onto the front of your uniform shirt.

The idea is to turn the VidMic on when you start a call and turn it off when you're done. So three hours of video/audio recording time is enough for even a 12-hour shift. Included with the VidMic are wall and car chargers, computer software, and a USB cable for downloading images and charging from your computer.

Under Armour

Known for its moisture-wicking Under Gear, Under Armour is moving into the outerwear market with its Black Ops jacket made from PolyArmour, UA's waterproof, windproof laminate. Built for use by HRT and SRT teams, the jacket is low profile with a built-in removable tactical vest, and numerous outer pockets to carry everything from a flashlight to AR magazines to a flash bang for a dynamic entry.

For comfort, the Black Ops jacket has underarm zippers to vent heat and to provide easy access to the vest.

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