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Old August 27, 2008, 05:06 AM   #1
NukeCop
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Warning Shots..Good or Bad idea?

So who thinks a warning shot is a good/necessary thing to do? Any LEO's/CCW permit holder wanna weigh in on this?

I'm bringing it up because where I'm currently at, mandates the use of warning shots unless hostilities are already in progress. Also, when we have to shoot, the Regulation reads, "with intent to disable, never to kill"... It goes so far as to aim anywhere other then the head/heart...
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Old August 27, 2008, 05:44 AM   #2
Sigma 40 Blaster
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I was taught to give a short verbal warning (stop, don't move, drop it...two words or less). I was also taught that a CCW holder is responsible for every round that they fire, once a bullet is fired nothing can be done to bring it back.

If the definition of warning shot is to intentionally miss the target then I have to say it's a bad idea for a lot of reasons, namely because you cannot control where that stray round goes. Also from my experience if your first shot is bad following it up with a good shot is more difficult and takes more time to adjust your aim.

BUT in all fairness if it reads "unless hostilities are already in progress" I wouldn't worry about it too terribly much, most states do not allow you to draw your weapon and fire unless something bad is already happening or imminent. Just my opinions, I'd look more into the already in progress clause and clarify it's definition and intent with a CCW trainer or the local authorities.
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Old August 27, 2008, 05:46 AM   #3
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NEVER, EVER, fire a warning shot.
You'll loose any defense that you were in fear of your life.

I'm an old guy. We were taught "if you pull it you shoot it."
No warnings at all. EVER.

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Old August 27, 2008, 09:35 AM   #4
kraigwy
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No warning shots, EVER.

You want to warn the bad guy, get a crimsen lasor sight and put the red dot on his forhead.

The theory of warning shots was to stop someone who is running away (a theory I never subscribed too and was against our dept policy). In a self defence situation, there is NO justification shooting at a subject that is running away.

The whole ideal of a pistol (or other firearm) in self defence, is Protection and to stop the bad guy from his illegal activitiy. If he's running away then you have accomplished that goal.

NO WARNING SHOTS WHAT SO EVER
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Old August 27, 2008, 09:37 AM   #5
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Quote:
I'm bringing it up because where I'm currently at, mandates the use of warning shots unless hostilities are already in progress. Also, when we have to shoot, the Regulation reads, "with intent to disable, never to kill"... It goes so far as to aim anywhere other then the head/heart.
just Curious, are these rules mandated for your state's CCW or rules for your job ?
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Old August 27, 2008, 09:57 AM   #6
Brian Pfleuger
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[ΒΆ12] Section 12.1-05-03, N.D.C.C., provides:

Self-defense. A person is justified in using force upon another person to defend himself against danger of imminent unlawful bodily injury, sexual assault, or detention by such other person, except that :
1. A person is not justified in using force for the purpose of resisting arrest, execution of process, or other performance of duty by a public servant under color of law, but excessive force may be resisted.
2. A person is not justified in using force if:

a. He intentionally provokes unlawful action by another person to cause bodily injury or death to such other person; or
b. He has entered into a mutual combat with another person or is the initial aggressor unless he is resisting force which is clearly excessive in the circumstances. A person's use of defensive force after he withdraws from an encounter and indicates to the other person that he has done so is justified if the latter nevertheless continues or menaces unlawful action.
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Old August 27, 2008, 10:07 AM   #7
Brian Pfleuger
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As far as I can tell the duty to not kill some one only applies to the defense of property in North Dakota. The state is currently considering a "Stand Your Ground" law. It appears to me that the rules for SD are about the same as other areas, fire until the threat is stopped.
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Old August 27, 2008, 10:29 AM   #8
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The only way I would use a warning shot was if there were two threats, ie. shooting one of the threats would be the other one's warning shot.
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Old August 27, 2008, 10:31 AM   #9
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A *really* bad idea if you're carrying a single-shot
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Old August 27, 2008, 10:39 AM   #10
dipper
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There is no such thing as a "warning shot"!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old August 27, 2008, 10:53 AM   #11
hockeysew
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I know of two people that fired "Warning Shots".
Both were charged with brandishing and unlawful discharge of a firearm and both lost their CCW. They figured each shot cost them about $10K in legal fees.
Bad idea to be sure.
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Old August 27, 2008, 01:08 PM   #12
chrisp0410
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Very Bad Idea

In addition to the aforementioned concerns of being accountible for each shot fired, risk of injury to bystanders, etc. another thing to keep in mind is that firing a warning shot decreases your defensive payload by one round. In a glock-o-matic, you may feel one shot less isn't significant, however think about how much you would want that warning shot back the moment your slide locks back with an enpty gun. In a J-frame revolver, that warning shor deplinishes your payload by 20%.

It just doesn't make sence. The only notable exception for me would be the use of firing a warning shot accross the bow in a potential naval engagement.

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Old August 27, 2008, 01:10 PM   #13
Dewhitewolf
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In New Jersey, the Attorney General's directives for police and retired police qualifications on the use of force specifically prohibit warning shots. The reason included with the directive is that there is no evidence to support a theory that a warning shot will stop anyone. In addition, firing a weapon causes a potential danger to bystanders because of the inability to control rounds once fired.

From a legal perspective, the law prefers that you not fire the weapon at all. Firing the weapon, even as a warning shot, opens the door for a prosecutor or plaintiff to suggest to the court that you were overzealous and eager to use deadly force.

IMO, leave warning shots to TJ Hooker, along with shooting suspects in the leg or arm to stop them, and the fancy shots where you shoot the gun out of the suspect's hand!
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Old August 27, 2008, 01:29 PM   #14
Recon7
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Who do you work for?

imho you should really consider quitting.

This sounds like a place that will throw you overboard if you respond reasonably to a lethal force encounter. they would probably testify in court that you failed to follow company policy and try to take blame off themselves and place it on you.

"Sue him, not us. He broke company policy"

And if you do follow company policy... read all them other posts.
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Old August 27, 2008, 01:35 PM   #15
M1911
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Warning shots are almost always a bad idea. You are responsible for the final resting place of each and every shot you ever fire. That shot you fire up in the air will come down somewhere. That shot you fire into the ground may ricochet. So you greatly risk hitting an innocent with your "warning shot."

Furthermore, you may well need that shot later.

If you are not justified in using deadly force, then you shouldn't shoot. If you are justified in using deadly force, you should shoot at the upper center of the chest, with a secondary target of the head if shots at the chest don't stop the attack.
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Old August 27, 2008, 01:44 PM   #16
NukeCop
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Sorry, I'm currently on a host nation air base.... Not in North Dakota...
And its rules for my job. They mandate 2 shots, 1 by their head, thena verbal warning, then another shot in the vicinity of their feet....
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Old August 27, 2008, 01:50 PM   #17
Recon7
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center mass is within 1' of head and 4' of feet
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Old August 27, 2008, 02:00 PM   #18
M1911
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Quote:
And its rules for my job. They mandate 2 shots, 1 by their head, thena verbal warning, then another shot in the vicinity of their feet
Sounds like a good way to die.
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Old August 27, 2008, 02:17 PM   #19
Hornett
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Let's try to think like an armed bad guy and a bullet whizzes past his head.
The bad guy can only assume that the shooter is trying to kill him and just missed doing so.
Potentially, the bad guy will never hear the verbal warning because he is emptying his magazine at the com of the poor sap that fired the "warning shot".

If you are stationed somewhere that has an unarmed population, then maybe it would work. But, if not, I agree with M1911.
Quote:
Sounds like a good way to die.
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Old August 27, 2008, 02:56 PM   #20
OuTcAsT
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Quote:
Sorry, I'm currently on a host nation air base.... Not in North Dakota...
And its rules for my job. They mandate 2 shots, 1 by their head, thena verbal warning, then another shot in the vicinity of their feet.
Thanks, that clears it up a bit, If those are the ROE then I guess you don't have much choice (as asinine as they are)

All of the aforementioned reasons against a warning shot are valid,IMHO.

But,
Quote:
This sounds like a place that will throw you overboard if you respond reasonably to a lethal force encounter. they would probably testify in court that you failed to follow company policy and try to take blame off themselves and place it on you.
If it's .gov then you can almost count on it !

Quote:
imho you should really consider quitting.
Sage Advice !
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Old August 27, 2008, 03:18 PM   #21
#20fan
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And its rules for my job.
What's the next step? Shoot them in the leg or arm?

Sounds like a private contracted post?
If that is indeed the "rules" then you have no choice in the matter. You have to follow them as long as you wish to be employed by that Co. If it's just something you heard check with your Legal Dept.
I was taught that warning shots are bad on so many levels.
Illegal, liabilities are off the chart, sends a message to the BG that you are not serious about shooting him, you are not actually in fear for your life.
We all need to thank Hollywood for the idea that you can use warning shots or just wound them.
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Old August 27, 2008, 03:30 PM   #22
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C'mon guys, hey was being facetious. One by (to) the head, warning as he falls, another shot in the area of his feet (he fell backwards).

I seen the humor in it.

I gave a dog a warning shot once, in the grass infront of him as he charged. It worked great and turned him right around. But dogs you can reason with unlike most humans...

I'm not positive that I agree with the doctrine of if you draw you shoot. What if they see your drawing motion and cease hostilities? Happened to me once, drew to low ready and it was over with no shots fired. You may not have time to see him cease being hostile in his body language, and in that case I guess he gets shot. But I had time to see and am very glad I didn't have to shoot. Critique this as you will.
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Old August 27, 2008, 03:44 PM   #23
Tombstonejim
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We had that warning shot nonsense when I was in Korea. We had to say three times in Korean "Stop or I will shoot" and fire one warning shot. We used to practice at guard mount saying what ever the phrase was as fast as it could be said and firing a warning shot. It was something like gobbled gook, gobbled gook, gobbled gook, bang, bang. The second bang is the for real shot.
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Old August 27, 2008, 04:43 PM   #24
NAKing
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Can you believe that? I'm shocked we win wars with rules of engagement so suicidal. :barf:

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. I'm more of a target guy (not so much self defense), but I don't think I would give a warning shot. Any bullet that comes out of my weapon is either intended to hit a target at a range or center mass of an attacker at home. What would I shoot at for the warning shot? Shooting in the air is dangerous. What if I hit an innocent person? I can't see anything good coming from a warning shot.
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Old August 27, 2008, 04:53 PM   #25
David Armstrong
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Quote:
I'm bringing it up because where I'm currently at, mandates the use of warning shots unless hostilities are already in progress.
When standing fixed guard posts, particularly in military settings, the use of a warning shot has long been practiced without too much trouble. I certainly don't promote the idea, but I also don't see it as much of an issue given the situation. The bright side is that they apparently let you stand post with a loaded weapon, which is better than some.
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