The Entangled Gunfight

One of the first lessons Joe Smith, Hershel Davis, and Dave Wittrock pounded into our thick skulls at the Police Academy is that there is always at least one gun involved in any tussle. Every time an officer goes hands on it can at any moment become a fight over control of the officer’s weapon. (Not only the pistol, but OC, taser, baton or any other weapon on the officer’s person can be taken by the opponent and used against the officer.) This lesson has stuck with me, and driven the direction of quite a bit of my training efforts for the last 20 years.

Mas Ayoob had said many times that the moment you strap a pistol to your body you give up the right to flip someone the bird for cutting you off in traffic. That simple traffic altercation can rapidly escalate to a fight over your pistol or even a shooting. This is something Claude Werner might refer to as a negative outcome.

While some folks will quibble about the term entangled gunfight, or whether we need to learn to integrate our skills, it remains a fact; if you go hands-on with someone while carrying weapons it is indeed moments away from becoming an entangled gunfight.

It’s ironic to me that while some were arguing that entangled gunfights don’t happen the world was watching the George Zimmerman trial. I’m thinking those arguing could have benefited from some time around Smith, Davis, and Wittrock.

Bottom line, should you find yourself in a hand to hand altercation, while bearing weapons, you better treat it as an entangled gun-knife-OC-expandable baton fight… Because in an instant it can be.

There’s a reason they call him Super

Super Dave Harrington doing what S-Dave does. Check it out, and get motivated. Maybe drag a treadmill onto the range and shake things up a bit. All hits, while moving. That’s how it’s done!

 

 

I talked to S-Dave about this clip and some of the backstory regarding this. One of the challenges of shooting on the move is the shooter will slow down to accommodate their vision, stabilizing the pistol, essentially taking it easy on themselves. Using a treadmill forces the shooter to keep the pace, and break the shot in a less than ideal moment. However, if we mount and stabilize the gun properly, see what we need to see to make the shot, and trust our technique we will be okay.

It’s incumbent upon us to find ways to challenge ourselves, and force ourselves out of our comfort zones. Only performance matters, and we should be ready to do whatever it takes to reach a higher performance level even if it is a little unorthodox.