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Old 03-10-2012, 09:16   #1
3000fps
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Taking a head shot in self defense

Here is my original thread that I asked Mr. Ayoob in GATE: Self Defense

http://www.glocktalk.com/forums/show....php?t=1407347

If anyone could give me any input that would be greatly appreciated.

I really didn't want to throw the "what if" type situation out there, but in the particular circumstance I was referring to in my original question, you would be within arms length of the individual, making it easier to hit the smaller target with such a small gun and crude sights.


Also, provided the same circumstance if you were carrying a BUG or just a small gun in general and were presented with a lethal threat of a firearm, would you put rounds center mass hoping it would be enough to drop him, or try to take out his CNS?

I would also like to thank Mr. Ayoob again if he is reading this. I really appreciate this website, and all the information and expertise you all provide.

I have decided not to leave home without my G23 anymore, I don't get worried when I carry that out the door
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Old 03-10-2012, 09:33   #2
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IMHO if it's self-defense and you are certain of making the headshot I would take it...more likely to stop the attack with 1 shot vs not being able to get off multiple shots at that distance.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:38   #3
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Food for though:
My CPL instructor was a LEO. He was involved in a shootout in Texas in the mid 90's. A gist of what happened was he and his partner pulled a car over. Once the guy pulled over he jumped out of his car and being firing at them with a Glock 17. Him and his partner return fire with the 9mm Sigs. My instructors first shot (he believes his first) hits the guy in the forehead skims up across the guys skull and keeps going. So basically the bullet never even penetrated the guys skull.
Not saying that will always happen just food for thought.
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:04   #4
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Originally Posted by xmanhockey7 View Post
Food for though:
My CPL instructor was a LEO. He was involved in a shootout in Texas in the mid 90's. A gist of what happened was he and his partner pulled a car over. Once the guy pulled over he jumped out of his car and being firing at them with a Glock 17. Him and his partner return fire with the 9mm Sigs. My instructors first shot (he believes his first) hits the guy in the forehead skims up across the guys skull and keeps going. So basically the bullet never even penetrated the guys skull.
Not saying that will always happen just food for thought.


ive heard of that b4 as well... kinda hard to believe tho.. not saying anyone involved is lying, but still hard to believe ymmv
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:25   #5
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The smaller the target, the greater risk of missing, more so if that target is moving. What is behind/near your target in those cases?

Based on what you posted in the GATE; however, I believe the conditions at that very moment were as favorable as you can get to attempt a head shot. The way I understood it, and please correct me if Iím wrong, you were in a sitting position (not the most favorable, but at times we have to work with what we have), the other person was standing close by (not exactly moving around). Had the situation presented itself at that moment, your angle (shooting up) would have yielded the lowest risk of injuring innocent people. If youíre standing, drop a knee low enough to change the angle, if you can.

I also share Massí opinion about the LCP. I can count in one hand the number of times Iíve carried mine in two years, those have been the times when I would have had to go completely unarmed if I didnít own one. It has its purpose and Iím glad I own it; conversely, Iím not about to extend its use when I need to make a quick trip somewhere and I can just as easily take my G19.

Donít take shortcuts! Most vehicle accidents occur while weíre close to our home. It stands also to reason that since we spend more time in areas close to our home, if we were to become the target of a criminal odds are high it will take place in areas we frequent. Iím glad youíre opting for your more efficient pistol for those short/frequent trips.

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Old 03-10-2012, 11:30   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ponders View Post
ive heard of that b4 as well... kinda hard to believe tho.. not saying anyone involved is lying, but still hard to believe ymmv
It is all in the angle of impact. You can skip a stone off of water with ease, at the right angle.
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Old 03-10-2012, 12:09   #7
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It is all in the angle of impact. You can skip a stone off of water with ease, at the right angle.
Thank you! I was trying to respond to pondersí comment but was unable to come up with the right analogy. I canít think of a better one than the one you used!

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Old 03-10-2012, 13:41   #8
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Considering that the majority of shots fired in self-defense miss unless you're talking 2-3 feet, trying to take an even harder shot is a bad choice, generally.

If one really feels "outgunned" perhaps one should reexamine their carry choice.
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Old 03-10-2012, 13:57   #9
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Originally Posted by Misty02 View Post
The smaller the target, the greater risk of missing, more so if that target is moving. What is behind/near your target in those cases?

Based on what you posted in the GATE; however, I believe the conditions at that very moment were as favorable as you can get to attempt a head shot. The way I understood it, and please correct me if Iím wrong, you were in a sitting position (not the most favorable, but at times we have to work with what we have), the other person was standing close by (not exactly moving around). Had the situation presented itself at that moment, your angle (shooting up) would have yielded the lowest risk of injuring innocent people. If youíre standing, drop a knee low enough to change the angle, if you can.

I also share Massí opinion about the LCP. I can count in one hand the number of times Iíve carried mine in two years, those have been the times when I would have had to go completely unarmed if I didnít own one. It has its purpose and Iím glad I own it; conversely, Iím not about to extend its use when I need to make a quick trip somewhere and I can just as easily take my G19.

Donít take shortcuts! Most vehicle accidents occur while weíre close to our home. It stands also to reason that since we spend more time in areas close to our home, if we were to become the target of a criminal odds are high it will take place in areas we frequent. Iím glad youíre opting for your more efficient pistol for those short/frequent trips.

.
Bolded, exactly!

Secondly Misty, I started carrying FMJ in my .380 a few weeks ago
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Old 03-10-2012, 14:20   #10
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Bolded, exactly!

Secondly Misty, I started carrying FMJ in my .380 a few weeks ago

Good! Buffalo Bore (flat nose) is also very good. From Iíve been told by those that know a lot more than I, an even better option. FMJ is not a bad choice though, now I have both.

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Old 03-10-2012, 14:28   #11
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Double tap, 45ACP JHP, center mass, end of story? I don't know for sure and hope never to find out, but, that is where I'm going if TSHTF!
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Old 03-10-2012, 15:49   #12
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Sometimes we may be attending events that requires more discrete carry. But, generally, we don't have the information beforehand to logically decide to take the smaller gun as we leave the house. In other words, how can we know that a particular quick run to the store is more or less likely to include a need to defend ourselves?

The solution is to always carry the best gun you can handle.

Humans can be bad at statistics. We spend a lot of time in our local area and nothing has happened so far, so we decide it's safe. Yet statistically, our local area could have crime rates comparable to areas that show up in the newspaper.

And crime rates "go out the window" when you are the one having to defend against a deadly threat.

So, I personally always carry the most powerful round I can handle.

About head shots, as a non-LEO, I've had the opportunity to train with a LEO department for several years. This department is very strong on officer training. I use my imagination to stress myself as I draw. At ten yards, I can keep all rounds in a four or five inch circle over a two hour session. That includes moving, shooting quickly at stationary targets.

Can I hit a possibly moving head under stress? Perhaps, but I like the idea of shooting to the body, then to the head if body shots failed to stop.
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Old 03-10-2012, 18:04   #13
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Shoot COM and if you miss, you're still likely to be making some hits, ought to slow him down a bit. Aim for head and miss, you're likely to not hit anything at all, and that will have even less effect than hits to non-vital parts of the body near COM.

I'm assuming people are going to be moving around, consider most folks are lucky to get 25% hits going for COM in very close encounters. So head shot is something I'll save for later. I'd consider hits to the body and transitioning to the head if they don't stop him. I don't think the idea of starting with a head shot is a good strategy.

Just my opinion, I'm a nobody, never been there, never done that, so don't take my advice.

I figure in a real situation I'll be lucky to have half the success I do at the range of doing a quick head shot, considering lack of stress and lack of movement at the range.

Randy

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Old 03-10-2012, 20:56   #14
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Let's hypothetically say he is within arms reach of you. You can practically extend your arm out and be within 1-2 inches of the back of his head, and he has just fired a round into the ceiling demanding money or he's gonna kill the clerk.
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Old 03-10-2012, 21:22   #15
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How easy is it for your barber to mess up if you move your head by leaning forward to scratch your nose? Think of how much information your body is sending him if he is touching you, he can likely even feel/see you tense up right before the movement takes place.

All your senses are likely to be on overload. Personally, I may still look for an angle where if the situation quickly changes between the decision to pull the trigger and the impact, the possibility to harm others is substantially reduced.

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Old 03-10-2012, 21:24   #16
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After reading your OP in GATE I would suggest you sell your LCP. Or spend a lot of time on the range to build your confidence in that little gun. You obviously have no faith in it doing you any good should the SHTF.

That said, I wouldn't hesitate to put a round or two into the head of a BG. I practice shots like that at the range regularly. I know range practice and real life are completely different. My typical practice includes rapid fire of 2 COM and 1 to the head @ 21 ft. At just over arms length I would take it in a heart beat. Take out the connection from the brain to the body and the BG ceases activity, it is just that simple.
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Old 03-10-2012, 22:25   #17
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Head shots should be something that are practiced for regularly when at the range.

It may be the only shot you have, it may be the only shot that will stop the fight. The Perp may be wearing body armor.

Failsafe drill: Two to the body and one to the head. Repeat as necessary.
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Old 03-11-2012, 00:34   #18
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I would feel fine if I hit the center of mass. The head shots would be for special situations that I cannot predict. They are a lot easier is the bad guy stands still, like those paper targets.

Before I start thinking of a head target, I will go with something with more punch.
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Old 03-11-2012, 01:32   #19
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Originally Posted by xmanhockey7 View Post
Food for though:
My CPL instructor was a LEO. He was involved in a shootout in Texas in the mid 90's. A gist of what happened was he and his partner pulled a car over. Once the guy pulled over he jumped out of his car and being firing at them with a Glock 17. Him and his partner return fire with the 9mm Sigs. My instructors first shot (he believes his first) hits the guy in the forehead skims up across the guys skull and keeps going. So basically the bullet never even penetrated the guys skull.
Not saying that will always happen just food for thought.
Certainly possible with just the right angle (as in an officer firing from a crouch position). Skulls are pretty hard & also round. Isn't that how a military helmet works?
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:32   #20
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Certainly possible with just the right angle (as in an officer firing from a crouch position). Skulls are pretty hard & also round. Isn't that how a military helmet works?
Oh I'm sure he was certain about the round hitting the guy in the forehead then going up and across the guys skull. I just wonder how he would know it was his round that did it or that it was his first round that did that.
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Old 03-11-2012, 11:28   #21
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Originally Posted by 3000fps View Post
Here is my original thread that I asked Mr. Ayoob in GATE: Self Defense

http://www.glocktalk.com/forums/show....php?t=1407347

If anyone could give me any input that would be greatly appreciated.

I really didn't want to throw the "what if" type situation out there, but in the particular circumstance I was referring to in my original question, you would be within arms length of the individual, making it easier to hit the smaller target with such a small gun and crude sights.


Also, provided the same circumstance if you were carrying a BUG or just a small gun in general and were presented with a lethal threat of a firearm, would you put rounds center mass hoping it would be enough to drop him, or try to take out his CNS?

I would also like to thank Mr. Ayoob again if he is reading this. I really appreciate this website, and all the information and expertise you all provide.

I have decided not to leave home without my G23 anymore, I don't get worried when I carry that out the door
Well if I had a good 380 with a laser I might chance a head shot, but mostly I would just let the guy rob the place and not get in the way unless he wanted to put everyone in the back room(bad idea as he might just kill everyone.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:56   #22
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A head shot in a gun fight ?????
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Old 03-12-2012, 05:21   #23
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A head shot in a gun fight ?????
A .380 in a gun fight????
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Old 03-12-2012, 20:49   #24
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Also, provided the same circumstance if you were carrying a BUG or just a small gun in general and were presented with a lethal threat of a firearm, would you put rounds center mass hoping it would be enough to drop him, or try to take out his CNS?
3000,

You do what you have to do with what equipment you have. And if all you have is a BUG and the shot is long well, lots of luck!

I practice every week, but then I love to shoot, and I practice with what I carry. That being sub-compact Glocks and J .38s.

Hope I never need a 15 yard head shot with a DAO 642 but never know what will be handed to you. Lots of people get up every morning, dress, eat a bit, and start to drive to work and get killed. So you just never know. Might live to 100 and ever pull your gun, or next time at the stop-n-rob you are confronted with several armed robbers and you plumb forgot to even bring your gun.

But yes, learn to shoot as fast and accurate as you can and pack your best shoot 'en gun that you can conceal.... and then stay away from the stop-n-rob in the late evenings!

Deaf
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:50   #25
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It's all situational and you have to know your limitations for your abilities and incident. I know an officer who was being choked out while the offender was on top of him - he used a single shot to the head to save his own life.

Don't get too caught up in others fantasies how a self defense shooting could happen. It could be a very dynamic quickly unfolding situation where even using your sights was an after thought. Don't count on a whole lot of time to make a decision.

Think about this situation:

Not the idealistic shooting scenario many on this board think will happen to them. You can't count on people standing still in an old west duel.

It's all very situational...it's not to be ruled out completely in my opinion, but pretty rare where the opportunity would present itself in most situations. Just remember that the force is used to stop the threat - not to just kill someone. Like the above example I gave, the quickest way to incapacitate the offender was a head shot. Head shots aren't a "finishing move" like a video game.

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