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Does your department authorize back up guns?

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Thread Killa
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If so what is the policy, if not why - if you know.

Also if you carry a BUG, what do you carry? firearm, caliber, ammo, holster, where, etc.
 

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Almost all of South Florida Law Enforcement allows back-up guns, I know Boca Raton PD issues (3) guns - duty, off-duty and a back-up!!
 

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Zombie Hunter
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The MSP issues small pistols as backup/deep cover weapons for narcs and other detective units, however I am reluctant to provide details of make, model, caliber, holster(s) etc., due to security concerns; remember anyone can read this site!
 

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Killjoy";p="51627 said:
The MSP issues small pistols as backup/deep cover weapons for narcs and other detective units, however I am reluctant to provide details of make, model, caliber, holster(s) etc., due to security concerns; remember anyone can read this site!
Is that a "detective, narc, etc are issued small weapons"
or
"All are issued BUG's which are used by narc, det, etc for deep cover while on duty"
 

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Only detective units/narcs are issed the small backup pistols.
 

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If you don't carry a BUG, you are NUTS. Airweight S&W five shot hammerless revolver w/ ++P silvertips, carried on a holster attached to your vest. To access, rip shirt open: you are dead if you reach this point anyway...now just poke it in his guts and take the SOB with you...and, hey, you just may survive. Guess what? There are only two kinds of shoots: good and bad...if your shoot is lawful, the fireairm used doesn't matter. All right, it may to your department, but that chickenshit will not make muster if the shoot is good and the decedant is a known scumbag.
 

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All right, it may to your department, but that chickenshit will not make muster if the shoot is good and the decedant is a known scumbag.
I agree completely; as long as you have good shoot, the DA in your jurisdiction could not charge you with anything, even if you used "unauthorized" weapon. I suppose your department could try to hold you in violation of their particular policies, but this is not the same as breaking the law, and it would be a highly chickensh*t department that would.
 

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We are issued the Glock 21. Most guys carry the 36 as backup. Only policy is it must pass an armorers inspection, and you must qualify on a 16 yard (max distance) course of fire. Ammo is provided, no matter what you bring to qual.

Wouldn't the HR218 law cover "authorized" issue? And as was quoted above, if you need it, you are in the crap locker anyway, so what have you got to lose? Since the concept of a BUG is no one knows you have it, just expand that "no one knows" stuff to the morons who are home curled up with their teddy bears when the excrement strikes the oscillating air circulator.
 

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I carry a Glock 27, same caliber & operation as my service Glock 23. I also use department supplied duty ammo. I carry it in a BUG vest holster (available from Caliber Press).
 

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We in Los Angeles do carry back up guns. While it is not actual policy, most everyone here carrys one. We are encouraged to do so while in the academy. The department authorizes several specific guns to carry as a back up. I carry a nine shot, 9mm S&W. All guns have to be registered with the department.

It's foolish for a department to deny an officer the right to carry a back up. It might save your life one day. I wonder what the mind set is as to why officers are not allowed?
 

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There really isn't any logic to it, but two things come to mind;
1. There are concerns that back-up guns could be used as "drop" guns...a completely ridiculous assertion considering firearms can be traced. If an unscrupolous police officer wanted to do something like that they could use a completely untraceable knife.
2. Departments in Mass are cheap, they cry and moan about once a year qualification with a duty weapon, the last thing departments want to do is pay for qualification for 2 weapons.
 

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Killjoy";p="58776 said:
There really isn't any logic to it, but two things come to mind;
1. There are concerns that back-up guns could be used as "drop" guns...a completely ridiculous assertion considering firearms can be traced. If an unscrupolous police officer wanted to do something like that they could use a completely untraceable knife.
2. Departments in Mass are cheap, they cry and moan about once a year qualification with a duty weapon, the last thing departments want to do is pay for qualification for 2 weapons.
You are right, a back up gun can't be used as a drop gun as long as it's registered with the department and DOJ. We in LA qualify with our duty gun every other month! We qualify with the shotgun twice a year. Some of us carry M-16s. We have to qualify three times a year with them. But, we don't have to qualify with our back up guns, although the department encourages us to practice with them.

I guess we are a "bit" more progressive in our thinking out here in the west.
 

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Killjoy has it right!

Our PD used to qualify 2x/year and I don't recall any policy about BUGs either way. But that was "the old days" . . . Now they qualify 1x/year or even less frequently.

Our current chief would ban all guns if he could, he absolutely hates them (even in the hands of police)! He created a policy in the mid-1990s that states that any officer who carries anything except the issue weapon, OFF-DUTY . . . if he gets involved with anything "he is not acting as a police officer"! Thus the chief will let anyone swing if they are carrying a PDW off-duty. Net result was that one officer who always CCW'd said he wouldn't get involved in anything at all if he was off-duty, period!

I left the PD in 1996, so I no longer worry about the idiocy except as it can affect my friends who are still there.
 

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He created a policy in the mid-1990s that states that any officer who carries anything except the issue weapon, OFF-DUTY . . . if he gets involved with anything "he is not acting as a police officer"!
I would take serious issue with this....the Chief cannot "create" law; if you are issued a Class A LTC for "all lawful purposes" you can carry whatever you want off-duty. He can no more tell you what to carry on your own time as tell you what kind of car to drive off duty. According to Mass law, if, during a critical incident, you identify yourself as a police officer, you are acting under protection of the law until the local on-duty police arrive.
 

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At least in my town, if the chief tells the town admin that "he wasn't acting as a police officer" due to his policy (all policies are supposedly reviewed by town counsel), they would NOT allow town insurance/counsel represent said officer in any action. They would also probably start disciplinary proceedings against said officer.

In our town, the law be damned, they do what they want and they do get away with it. They screwed one of our Sgts who served in the sandbox, allegedly cheating him out of thousands in benefits he was entitled to. The story was even published in the newspaper (and it involved the chief, selectmen, town admin and they all agreed in the actions taken), and it possibly violates Fed Law regarding soldiers protections (but IANAL). The Sgt chose not to make a big deal out of it (probably knew that it would end his career here if he pushed it).
 

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Before I subject myself to the inevitable barrage of negative responses, let me qualify my statements. I am a firearms instructor, and I am trained in SWAT tactics, hostage rescue, etc. By no means am I anti-gun, quite the contrary, I enjoy shooting and am very officer safety oriented.

I have two problems with back-up weapons, one from an instructor standpoint, the other from a chief's view. First, I would ask all of you to take a look at your individual departments. How many of your co-workers actually "train" as opposed to just doing mandatory qualification? Qualification isn't enough to make you proficient in the use of one weapon, let alone two. For those of you that do carry a BUG, do you practice retrieving that weapon and firing it in any sort of tactical simulation? If you don't, the chances of you retrieving that weapon and deploying it effectively under stress is very thin. You are talking about employing fine motor skills for which you have not acquired any muscle memory. Under stress, fine motor skills go out the window unless they have been practiced. There is also a concern with handgun retention. Can you effectively retain two weapons?

From the Chief's perspective...you have to remember, policies and training have to be to be written to cover the "worst officer" scenario. We all know the guy who hasn't broken leather or even cleaned his weapon since the last qualification! This is the guy keeping you from carrying a BUG, not the Chief. Many of you will say, "Well punish him, not me". You all know that this type of selective policy enforcement would bring hell-fire from your unions.

I would venture to guess (I have no statistics) that the number of times an officer has saved his bacon with a BUG pales in comparison to the number of officers shot with their own weapon. If someone were to attempt to disarm you of your primary, you may pull out your BUG and avoid being shot, but as I stated earlier, without "real" training, it probably ain't gonna happen. What you have done by bringing another weapon into the mix is actually increase your chances of being shot by one of your own guns.

Be honest with yourselves. How many of you actually train aside from qualifications? For those that do, and are willing to notch up the amount of time you spend training to include a BUG, I commend your commitment, and you should be allowed a BUG. For those that don't, BUGs are a bad idea.

But then again...what do I know? 8)
 

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Here is few sections of the (Warwick, RI) policy that relates to your question.

General Order #310.02 A Nationally Accredited Agency

I. PURPOSE
The purpose of this policy is to regulate authorized weapons and ammunition for on and off duty use.

II. POLICY
It is the policy of the Warwick Police Department to specify the caliber, type of ammunition, and weapons for on and off duty use.

III. DUTY WEAPON
A. The department issued handgun is the SIG P-229 .40 caliber.
B. Any officer accepting a department issued SIG P-229 .40 caliber handgun agrees to carry it at all times when on duty, including court, special details, and assignments.
C. If the officer chooses to carry a personally owned firearm, the department gun will be immediately surrendered.
D. The only authorized handgun caliber for on-duty use is .40 caliber.
E. On-duty backup weapons are subject to the following caliber restrictions:
1. .32 caliber.
2. .380 caliber.
3. .38/.357 caliber.
4. .45 caliber.
5. 9 mm.
6. .40 caliber
F. Off-duty weapons are not subject to caliber restriction.
G. While on and off duty, police officers shall carry only weapons and ammunition authorized by and documented with the department. This provision does not apply to off-duty recreational shooting.
1. If in a off duty capacity, an officer, while carrying a department issued weapon becomes involved in an off-duty shooting or utilizes any type of lethal force than adhered to, General Order #320.18, “Off-Duty Conduct: Powers of Arrest” is mandatory.
2. Authorized weapons are those with which the police officer has qualified and received department training on proper and safe usage, that are registered and comply with department specifications.
 

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chief801";p="58802 said:
Before I subject myself to the inevitable barrage of negative responses, let me qualify my statements. I am a firearms instructor, and I am trained in SWAT tactics, hostage rescue, etc. By no means am I anti-gun, quite the contrary, I enjoy shooting and am very officer safety oriented.

I have two problems with back-up weapons, one from an instructor standpoint, the other from a chief's view. First, I would ask all of you to take a look at your individual departments. How many of your co-workers actually "train" as opposed to just doing mandatory qualification? Qualification isn't enough to make you proficient in the use of one weapon, let alone two. For those of you that do carry a BUG, do you practice retrieving that weapon and firing it in any sort of tactical simulation? If you don't, the chances of you retrieving that weapon and deploying it effectively under stress is very thin. You are talking about employing fine motor skills for which you have not acquired any muscle memory. Under stress, fine motor skills go out the window unless they have been practiced. There is also a concern with handgun retention. Can you effectively retain two weapons?

From the Chief's perspective...you have to remember, policies and training have to be to be written to cover the "worst officer" scenario. We all know the guy who hasn't broken leather or even cleaned his weapon since the last qualification! This is the guy keeping you from carrying a BUG, not the Chief. Many of you will say, "Well punish him, not me". You all know that this type of selective policy enforcement would bring hell-fire from your unions.

I would venture to guess (I have no statistics) that the number of times an officer has saved his bacon with a BUG pales in comparison to the number of officers shot with their own weapon. If someone were to attempt to disarm you of your primary, you may pull out your BUG and avoid being shot, but as I stated earlier, without "real" training, it probably ain't gonna happen. What you have done by bringing another weapon into the mix is actually increase your chances of being shot by one of your own guns.

Be honest with yourselves. How many of you actually train aside from qualifications? For those that do, and are willing to notch up the amount of time you spend training to include a BUG, I commend your commitment, and you should be allowed a BUG. For those that don't, BUGs are a bad idea.

But then again...what do I know? 8)
Sir,
I certainly understand some of your points. But, there are answers for each. As a chief, you have the chance (and the duty) to make things better for your people.

A back up gun is just that, a back up, just in case........
You are right about some officers not practicing with their weapons (and shame on them). But then again, those particular officers probably wouldn't care about carrying a back up anyway. Even so, they should have the option of having that extra gun, just in case they need it to save their own life. If a bad guy gets your gun, you're pretty much screwed. If you have a back up, at least you have a fighting chance. Same thing if you're in a gunfight and for whatever reason, your primary gun is disabled.

As for policies, that would be up to you, as chief (or your designee) to write a policy that all of your officers would have to abide by. Although in my opinion, you can't write a policy that could cover each "worst officer safety" scenario. As most of us know, anything is possible, especially in today's society, and it would be difficult to have a policy that would cover all scenarios. You could write a policy that would cover the carrying of back up weapons in general but that would be it.

Our policy: the weapon shall be carried in a holster and it shall be concealed on the officer. The weapon itself has to be approved by the department. It is recommended that the officer practice drawing and shooting the weapon so that they would be proficient in its use.

Using your rationale about carrying a back up and probably not needing it, then why even carry a primary weapon? Why wear a bullet resistant vest? They probably won't be needed.... But then again, what if.......?
The officer should be given the option to save his/her life, if that circumstance comes up, even if only once in his/her career!
 
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