4 min read
I'm sitting here wondering my police officers have their gun in a open holster. Would it be easy for someone to grab it? I did some research and here's what I found.
Well, the holster retention system, it turns out, is not an open holster. Police gun holsters are not open as they would appear. In fact, you would need about two process steps to unlock the gun before grabbing it away. The systems are designed to allow pulling the gun from a given angle only. In addition, the holster system grips the gun well and makes it difficult to release from the holster unless the officer is wearing it.
The fact that the gun is displayed openly does not mean it is easy to grasp from an officer. What happens is a psychological play – given that the gun is openly visible, most people are discouraged from committing a crime at the sight of the gun. Heck. 90% of the job of security men is to make you an obvious deterrent rather than use the guns.
To understand how the holster works – and especially a holster that holds a security officer’s gun, the holster has a lock that secures the weapon. Some lock the gun using a single and others double locks. Hence you will first need to unlock it and draw it at the same time, which means the officer would need to be entirely unresponsive.
Additionally, it is obvious that police officers on highway patrol and other places of duty are trained extensively on and have to qualify quarterly on firearms use including drawing the weapons from holsters. If you get someone's license to use a weapon, they are trained in handling it. Some think that the weapon is on an open holster because the officer appears to draw it so fluidly and effortlessly.
That’s what they should be good at in the first place. In fact, the officers spend hundreds of hours training how to handle a gun and draw it out effortlessly to respond to emergencies. They are trained to do it without even thinking about it. Police officers are trained to prepare to encounter unexpected violent confrontations even though you expect them to have some information about the probability of such happening, even before deployment.
Plus most departments will require a cop to mostly carry weapons only when on duty or deployed. Otherwise, it is hard to find a police officer who is mishandling a gun and exposing it unnecessarily. They all know the consequences of losing it. Even in situations where a police officer on highway patrol or other places has a permit to carry a weapon, most departments will establish that he carries the authority of the commission even when off-duty. So you have it now. Police officers won’t first carry a gun anyhow because there are restrictions on using them and second, because they can only be used for life-threatening situations.
To the untrained, it appears like it is easy to draw the gun. However, the holster is usually set to make it physically safe to carry, move, and use the gun without endangering the officer. In fact, if you are not at the correct physical angle to draw the weapon, it will not really work. Back to the point on the type of holsters used because that is where the real deal is in addition to the training! Duty holsters will not allow you to draw the gun from any direction but a specific one.
The draw angle combines with the locks to make it impossible to snatch away the gun while standing next to the officer. In fact, the officers are trained on what angle and how to respond to unlock. Plus you might realize how far the officer with a gun will stay away from a suspect who they think would try to do this. This is part of the training too!
Securing the weapon is so part of their training because they know how harmful it can be if it accidentally falls into wrong hands they are about to arrest. In fact, if one officer has a gun, in most cases you find a second officer who does all the rest.
So in short, it's basically impossible to pull a gun of a police officer's hip.
If you were for instance standing next to them, snagging a gun would probably require one to pull the officer off their balance, but this also complicates the situation because the gun stays firmly in place. It means you would also need to fall in the same direction as the officer to really get correct on the angle required to grab it. In such a confrontation, you would expect an exchange that untrained persons won’t handle successfully.
In addition to the training, if you are willing to really try and grab a gun off of the holster from a cop’s hip then be prepared enough. For instance, you expect cops to have additional small weapons to safeguard themselves. They might have a taser, chemical irritants, baton, or probably a second backup weapon.
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