As firearms instructors we constantly scan for lessons learned from shootings. In my research I came across a post at ACTIVE Response discussing the after action report on the Ft. Hood shooting. I found the following most troubling for those of us who conceal carry:
The police officer here was responding to a call involving shots fired. As she approached the scene on foot, she saw a man dressed in army fatigues carrying a gun. The man pointed his gun at the officer and she was temporarily blinded by his laser sight flashing across her eyes. She retreated behind a wall for cover and began to fire as the shooter fired his weapon on the run towards her position.
Her shots were ineffective and the shooter rounded the cover that the officer was using. They traded gunfire at a distance of eight feet. The officer was hit three times (with a 5.7mm pistol) and the shooter was grazed once by the officer’s 9mm Beretta. BOTH of them had pistol malfunctions. The officer was unable to clear her malfunction. The shooter advanced on her and kicked the gun out of her hand. The shooter then cleared his own malfunction, but was shot again by other officers before being able to find another innocent target.(cite)
I conceal carry frequently. So do many of my friends. Unless I am mistaken, most of us expect that in an active shooter situation our adversary isn’t looking to die. After exchanging gunfire the Ft. Hood shooter charged the officer (who would expect that!?) The officer could have just as easily been a legally armed citizen defending herself. How often do we train for charging assailants? No very often at best. Also, malfunctions, Murphy’s law most certainly came into play here. Most shooters expect their firearms to perform perfectly when needed. The responding police office failed to correct her firearms malfunction and the shooter took the advantage. While the officer worked out the problem with her handgun the Ft. Hood shooter covered the distance between them and engaged her at point blank range. I don’t think anything terrifies me any more than a deranged aggressor charging at me without regards for his own life, oh while my gun jams…
Shooters must be physically and mentally prepared to deal with this type of threat. If it happens once, it will happen again. We prepare though effective training based on real world case studies. Our Armed Self Defense Fundamentals program provides an excellent starting point.
Are you prepared?