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Why one cop carries 145 rounds of ammo

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by noknock1, May 31, 2013.

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  1. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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    Good thing the bad guy didn't grab the available SKS, this may have turned out differently. So many lessons to be learned from this shooting that took less than one minute! 45 ACP, great round, but without a spinal cord or brain hit the bad guy still kept fighting after being shot 14 times... and the liberals want to limit mag capacity... This SWAT officer had a decent hit vs miss ratio, most other law enforcement and civilians with little to no training would have run dry on ammo with zero hits.

    This is an open source article by Chuck Remsberg which is cut and pasted:

    <i>Why one cop carries 145 rounds of ammo on the job

    Before the call that changed Sergeant Timothy Gramins’ life forever, he typically carried 47 rounds of handgun ammunition on his person while on duty

    Before the call that changed Sergeant Timothy Gramins’ life forever, he typically carried 47 rounds of handgun ammunition on his person while on duty.

    Today, he carries 145, “every day, without fail.”

    He detailed the gunfight that caused the difference in a gripping presentation at the annual conference of the Assn. of SWAT Personnel-Wisconsin.

    At the core of his desperate firefight was a murderous attacker who simply would not go down, even though he was shot 14 times with .45-cal. ammunition — six of those hits in supposedly fatal locations.

    The most threatening encounter in Gramins’ nearly two-decade career with the Skokie (Ill.) PD north of Chicago came on a lazy August afternoon prior to his promotion to sergeant, on his first day back from a family vacation. He was about to take a quick break from his patrol circuit to buy a Star Wars game at a shopping center for his son’s eighth birthday.

    An alert flashed out that a male black driving a two-door white car had robbed a bank at gunpoint in another suburb 11 miles north and had fled in an unknown direction. Gramins was only six blocks from a major expressway that was the most logical escape route into the city.

    Unknown at the time, the suspect, a 37-year-old alleged Gangster Disciple, had vowed that he would kill a police officer if he got stopped.

    “I’ve got a horseshoe up my ass when it comes to catching suspects,” Gramins laughs. He radioed that he was joining other officers on the busy expressway lanes to scout traffic.

    He was scarcely up to highway speed when he spotted a lone male black driver in a white Pontiac Bonneville and pulled alongside him. “He gave me ‘the Look,’ that oh-crap-there’s-the-police look, and I knew he was the guy,” Gramins said.

    Gramins dropped behind him. Then in a sudden, last-minute move the suspect accelerated sharply and swerved across three lanes of traffic to roar up an exit ramp. “I’ve got one running!” Gramins radioed.

    The next thing he knew, bullets were flying. “That was four years ago,” Gramins said. “Yet it could be ten seconds ago.”

    With Gramins following close behind, siren blaring and lights flashing, the Bonneville zigzagged through traffic and around corners into a quite pocket of single-family homes a few blocks from the exit. Then a few yards from where a 10-year-old boy was skateboarding on a driveway, the suspect abruptly squealed to a stop.

    “He bailed out and ran headlong at me with a 9 mm Smith in his hand while I was still in my car,” Gramins said.

    The gunman sank four rounds into the Crown Vic’s hood while Gramins was drawing his .45-cal. Glock 21.

    “I didn’t have time to think of backing up or even ramming him,” Gramins said. “I see the gun and I engage.”

    Gramins fired back through his windshield, sending a total of 13 rounds tearing through just three holes.

    A master firearms instructor and a sniper on his department’s Tactical Intervention Unit, “I was confident at least some of them were hitting him, but he wasn’t even close to slowing down,” Gramins said.

    The gunman shot his pistol dry trying to hit Gramins with rounds through his driver-side window, but except for spraying the officer’s face with glass, he narrowly missed and headed back to his car.

    Gramins, also empty, escaped his squad — “a coffin,” he calls it — and reloaded on his run to cover behind the passenger-side rear of the Bonneville.

    Now the robber, a lanky six-footer, was back in the fight with a .380 Bersa pistol he’d grabbed off his front seat. Rounds flew between the two as the gunman dashed toward the squad car.

    Again, Gamins shot dry and reloaded.

    “I thought I was hitting him, but with shots going through his clothing it was hard to tell for sure. This much was certain: he kept moving and kept shooting, trying his damnedest to kill me.”

    In this free-for-all, the assailant had, in fact, been struck 14 times. Any one of six of these wounds — in the heart, right lung, left lung, liver, diaphragm, and right kidney — could have produced fatal consequences…“in time,” Gramins emphasizes.

    But time for Gramins, like the stack of bullets in his third magazine, was fast running out.

    In his trunk was an AR-15; in an overhead rack inside the squad, a Remington 870.

    But reaching either was impractical. Gramins did manage to get himself to a grassy spot near a tree on the curb side of his vehicle where he could prone out for a solid shooting platform.

    The suspect was in the street on the other side of the car. “I could see him by looking under the chassis,” Gramins recalls. “I tried a couple of ricochet rounds that didn’t connect. Then I told myself, ‘Hey, I need to slow down and aim better.’ ”

    When the suspect bent down to peer under the car, Gramins carefully established a sight picture, and squeezed off three controlled bursts in rapid succession.

    Each round slammed into the suspect’s head — one through each side of his mouth and one through the top of his skull into his brain. At long last the would-be cop killer crumpled to the pavement.

    The whole shootout had lasted 56 seconds, Gramins said. The assailant had fired 21 rounds from his two handguns. Inexplicably — but fortunately — he had not attempted to employ an SKS semi-automatic rifle that was lying on his front seat ready to go.

    Gramins had discharged 33 rounds. Four remained in his magazine.

    Two houses and a parked Mercedes in the vicinity had been struck by bullets, but with no casualties. The young skateboarder had run inside yelling at his dad to call 911 as soon as the battle started and also escaped injury. Despite the fusillade of lead sent his way, Gramins’ only damage besides glass cuts was a wound to his left shin. His dominant emotion throughout his brush with death, he recalls, was “feeling very alone, with no one to help me but myself.”

    Remarkably, the gunman was still showing vital signs when EMS arrived. Sheer determination, it seemed, kept him going, for no evidence of drugs or alcohol was found in his system.

    He was transported to a trauma center where Gramins also was taken. They shared an ER bay with only a curtain between them as medical personnel fought unsuccessfully to save the robber’s life.

    At one point Gramins heard a doctor exclaim, “We may as well stop. Every bag of blood we give him ends up on the floor. This guy’s like Swiss cheese. Why’d that cop have to shoot him so many times!”

    Gramins thought, “He just tried to kill me! Where’s that part of it?”

    When Gramins was released from the hospital, “I walked out of there a different person,” he said.

    “Being in a shooting changes you. Killing someone changes you even more.” As a devout Catholic, some of his changes involved a deepening spirituality and philosophical reflections, he said without elaborating.

    At least one alteration was emphatically practical.

    Before the shooting, Gramins routinely carried 47 rounds of handgun ammo on his person, including two extra magazines for his Glock 21 and 10 rounds loaded in a backup gun attached to his vest, a 9 mm Glock 26.

    Now unfailingly he goes to work carrying 145 handgun rounds, all 9 mm. These include three extra 17-round magazines for his primary sidearm (currently a Glock 17), plus two 33-round mags tucked in his vest, as well as the backup gun. Besides all that, he’s got 90 rounds for the AR-15 that now rides in a rack up front.

    Paranoia?

    Gramins shook his head and said “Preparation.”

    SIDEBAR

    Lessons learned from facing an “invincible” assailant

    Sgt. Timothy Gramins who fired 17 .45-cal. rounds into a hell-bent suspect before putting him down offers these lessons learned from his extraordinary fight for his life:

    1.) Beef up your ammo reserves. “A lot more rounds are being exchanged in today’s gunfights than in the past. With offenders carrying heavier weapons, going on patrol with just a handgun and two extra magazines no longer cuts it. Carry more ammo. Always have a backup gun. Carry a loaded rifle where you can reach it. I can’t express how quickly your firearm will go empty when you’re shooting for real. There’s no worse feeling than pulling the trigger and hearing it go ‘click’.”

    2.) Practice head shots. “When you fire multiple ‘lethal’ rounds into an attacker and he keeps going, you don’t have the luxury of waiting 20 or 40 more seconds for him to die while he can still shoot at you. Don’t waste time arguing the relative merits of various calibers. No handgun rounds have reliable stopping power with body shots. Pick the round you can shoot best and practice shooting at the suspect’s head.”

    3.) Get addicted to self-improvement. “I realized very quickly after my incident that I wasn’t as good as I ought to be. You should never consider yourself ‘good enough.’ If you have a chance to get to any school, even on your own dime, study what’s going on out there and how to deal with it. Most of the training entries on my resume came after my shooting. I’m constantly thinking, ‘When is my next one?’ And ‘Will I be as prepared as I need to be?’ ”

    4.) Fight for something. “To overcome the evil that wants to defeat you, you have to have something you’re fighting for. What do you care most about? You have to want to win for that more than anything else in the world. It’s going to come down to the strength of motivation: the subject’s determination to kill you versus your determination to stop him. Your turn will come — there’s no doubt in my mind about that any more — and you can’t afford to lose.”

    5.) Read for recovery. “After my shooting, I had some hard days, some things in my head that I had to get sorted out and work my way through. There were two books in particular that were tremendously helpful: Deadly Force Encounters: What Cops Need to Know to Mentally and Physically Prepare for and Survive a Gunfight, by Dr. Alexis Artwohl and Loren Christensen, and On Combat, by Lt. Col. David Grossman. They’re mandatory reading if using or receiving deadly force is part of your job description, because they bring clarity to what’s going on in your body and your brain.”

    6.) Bonus tips. Wear glasses when you’re on patrol, even if they’re just clear lenses. They’ll help protect your eyes. If you can’t see, you can’t fight.

    Shoot at targets that have clothes on them. Hits are sometimes harder to see with clothing than when you’re shooting paper. Knowing that in advance will keep your confidence up in a gunfight.

    Seek out force-on-force Simunitions training. Get accustomed to seeing guns pointed at you and fired at you — and firing back to win without hesitation. You’ll be better prepared than officers who experience this for the first time on the street and scramble to comprehend that their life is actually on the line.”</i>
     
  2. skeeljc

    skeeljc Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    “He bailed out and ran headlong at me with a 9 mm Smith in his hand while I was still in my car,” Gramins said.<br>
    ---------------------------------------------------------<br>My first instinct would have been to just run over him. Then I would have backed up to see how I did.

    Jim Skeel
     
  3. oz

    oz Active Member

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    10mm
     
  4. napawino

    napawino TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    He hit him 14 times on the body and 3 times in the head. The head shots stopped the fight.
     
  5. blizzard

    blizzard Active Member

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    Sounds Like a BS story to me.
     
  6. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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  7. SBray

    SBray Active Member

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    noknock1,

    Thank You!

    Steve
     
  8. slic lee

    slic lee Active Member

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    What brand 45 cal was he using?
    Fired thru windshield?
    He must have gone to hell and back in those few seconds
     
  9. pendennis

    pendennis Well-Known Member

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    I don't doubt the officer's recounting of the incident. However, I do question his marksmanship protocol.

    Why did he not try a head shot earlier in the fight? His "center mass" shots had obviously not put the assailant down. Shots in the "center mass" while probably fatal, are notoriously slow in fatally putting down the BG.

    Two of the three head shots, while technically "head shots" aren't man stoppers. Shots in the jaw area would require a lot of oral surgery, but wouldn't be fatal.

    Didn't he realize that things weren't going well before he had to reload?

    What happens in the next fight, if he doesn't end it with 145 rounds?

    Best, Dennis
     
  10. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

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    I think a lot happened in less than one minute and I bet this officer if ever is presented with another situation will go for head shots. Again, it goes back to training, not many officers nor civilians would have had the presence of mind to move from the death trap to a different position, etc... Good lessons for all who carry a firearm to defend themselves. Shoot until the threat is stopped, center mass doesn't mean squat!
     
  11. skeet_man

    skeet_man Well-Known Member

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    And yet our "government" here in NY allows us just 7 rounds for personal protection... So a NYS resident would need to carry 21 magazines loaded to legal capacity to afford himself the same level of protection that the law enforcement officer is allowed to have.

    And as of next year, it will be ILLEGAL to own ANY magazine who's capacity is greater than 10 rounds.
     
  12. grntitan

    grntitan Well-Known Member

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    "Why one cop carries 145 rounds of ammo"


    'Cause he couldn't get 146 in his magazines.
     
  13. smokintom

    smokintom Well-Known Member

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    As an ex cop I can tell you its not BS. It happened. I remember Police Officer`s shooting back in the 80`s where the cops shot the bad guy 17 times with 357`s before he went down. When it was all said and done the guy even survived. There was a web site called Cop Talk or Cop Stories where you could read about a lot of this stuff. All posted by Police Officers.
     
  14. blizzard

    blizzard Active Member

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    Not the first time I've been wrong.
     
  15. GW22

    GW22 Active Member

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    Like User1 asked, "why would he now carry a 9mm?" That part seems too dumb to be true. Why not go to a .40 S&W like most police, FBI, CIA?

    -Gary
     
  16. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like he needs to switch to a flame thrower.
     
  17. Shooting Coach

    Shooting Coach Well-Known Member

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    Quick kills on the street are a myth, unless spine or brain is hit, then they may STILL attack.
     
  18. Catpower

    Catpower Molon Labe TS Supporters

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    I think if I shot one with my weapon of choice they would go down no matter how Billy bad a$$ they were

    An 870 with 00 buckshot
     
  19. Avatar

    Avatar TS Member

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    This was an unusual situation with an unusually tough bad guy (who fortunately was not a good shot) and should not be allowed to dictate protocol. Cops usually outnumber and outgun the bad guy in a gun fight and do not need additional personal firepower. While carrying extra ammo does no harm (except maybe loading down the cop uncomfortably), I do not want to see police militarized--way too much of that already.
     
  20. YOTESLAYER

    YOTESLAYER Member

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    How can anyone of you possibly comment on how you would have handled this situation??? I would bet you anyone of us could not shoot as accurately as this officer did in the face of death, or think as straight as he did. Why do you think a cop only wears a bullet proof vest and not full body armor??? By instinct everyone shoots center mass. To a point training goes out the window when someone starts shooting at you, im almost sure of that. The will to survive saved this cops life and the BGs apparent lack of marksmanship helped too. Why do you shoot a deer in the rib cage and not the head everytime?? The shot in the rib cage will be deadly a head shot has a much smaller kill zone. The same could be said for shooting people. I would probably shoot center mass just like 95% of us would.
     
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