View Full Version : Question about article on "Quick Peek"?

July 9, 2004, 05:16 PM
I really enjoyed the article on the failing of the quick peek technique when negotiating corners, however I have a question (hopefully the author can answer). In the article it was discussed how to approach an "L" shaped turn in a hallway but the author mentioned you may have to negotiate a "T" shaped intersection. What would be the technique for a lone person to tackle this problem? It wasn't covered in the article. My idea is just don't go there if you can avoid it.

Thanks in advance

Pat Rogers
July 9, 2004, 05:33 PM
Striker 1,
Thanks for the kind words.
As for "T" intersections, the school solution would be take the day off. Attempting to do two things at one time in this environment expedites someone playing a softball game at the memorial park named after you.
yes- it is done. Cops do it all the time due to manpower issues/ time constraints.

It is not something that i am willing to discuss without having the ability to demonstrate it.

July 10, 2004, 06:30 AM

I really like those instructional type articles that cover the how's and why's.
Keep up the excellent work.

Pat Rogers
July 10, 2004, 08:13 AM
Your welcome!
Please remember that reading (or watching a video) is not sufficient to learn a technique. It has to be done- many times- and under the guidance of someone well versed in the art.

Marty Hayes
August 12, 2004, 11:06 PM
One thought on the quick peek.

I have found it useful for closets and other enclosed areas. Afterall, the BG is so close that only a quick peek will guarantee anything other than a contact distance gunfight if it turns to guns, and by using a quick peek, you can determine if BG is in the closet, and if so, order him out. But, if you do a quick peek, DON'T peek again. Just create distance, get to cover and order him out.

Marty Hayes, Director
The Firearms Academy of Seattle, Inc.

Jeff Gonzales
August 17, 2004, 07:09 PM

I respectfully disagree as I am not sure about the enclosed area justifying the quick peak any more than the intersection. I know it can be done, but find it to be just as problematic. When thinking about the closet scenario I see it even more dangerous as the threat will be right there while an intersection the threat can be furhter away. I don't see sufficient time for the target discriminate process with a quick peek to avoid shooting someone who is scared and or afraid. I think folks are more likely to react than think. Closest do tend to be places where good people will hide during emergencies. Like I said, I just don't see any advantage to the quick peek, I think distance any distance is better than being right at the threshold doing a peek, quick or any type.


Pat Rogers
August 18, 2004, 03:40 AM
Marty- I will disagree strongly. A closet is, in the vernacular of those who do this as a job, a "Small Room".
If you have quick peeked a closet, the perp still has options left- specifically to shoot through the walls (remember, the Perp ROE is different than ours) or assault you.
Neither option is viable.

Perps may or may not respond to verbal commands. If he does, voila, but if he decides not to, what then.
You are still- eventually- going to have to do the whole thing again. Now what.
All interior confrontations have the potential for being at contact distance. With an average bedroom being 10'x 12', not clear and open as most shoot houses are, they are all at intimate distance.
House clearing is fraught with danger, and obviously not something that can be accomplished by those without proper training.
Most techniques will work under a variety of circumstances. Working and Getting Away With It are two different balls of wax.
As Jeff said, distance is my friend, and maximizing distance is the best of the available options.

August 18, 2004, 03:26 PM
I am not qualified to disagree..and I am most certianly not trying to pile on.

But it seems to me that the "closet peek" assumes that the BG either does not hear you coming...or has lousy reactions...neither is probably a safe assumption.

I get a mental picture of "peeking" into the barrel of his weapon

And I would hate to have him chasing me (shooting) as I try to create that distance..or worse yet...start shooting through the walls as Pat suggests.

And I agree the what to do if he doesn't come out question bothers me.

At my skill level I would lean towards tossing a grenade into the closet :D

August 24, 2004, 09:51 AM
I can't help but be reminded of the comedian Mike Armstrong, a former Louisville copper who I saw at a club in Indy, who did a "quick peek" into a closet, saw the BG pointed a revolver at him. Mike fired one shot which hit the BG in the trigger finger, detaching it and sending it through the air into Mike's pocket. :eek:

FWIW, I've seen the "quick peek" fail to detect full-sized adult males in very confined spaces (closets, behind frigs, etc.), albeit in training/simulation. I think sometimes you can look without seeing. :o

August 26, 2004, 02:21 PM
And sometimes see things not really there!

Your brain tends to want to "categorize" whatever you see.

Like patterns in clouds

Looking into a closet with stuff hanging and shadows....you might see something....maybe what you wanted to see.

Marty Hayes
August 26, 2004, 09:19 PM

You must be quick peekin different than me. When I think quick peek, the gun doesn't follow, just the head, and it's over in a half a second. I am not identifying targets, deciding to shoot, etc. Just seeing if something is in there, and pre-planned to back away if so.

And, while I believe it is dangerous, I believe that the typical scenario that I see taught, where one inserts whole body into the small opening, prepared to shoot it out with anyone in the closet is more dangerous, because even if the operator does everything perfect, the BG still has a very good chance to kill the GG, because taking bullets is not assured to stop the fight.

Marty Hayes
August 26, 2004, 09:25 PM
To the others:

I'm on the road and don't have the time to get into a long debate over the subject, I am just saying that in some circumstances, (when distance, pieing, partners, etc. are not available), then a quick peek into a close confined area like a closet is a viable alternative, is none other is available. But, do it quick, (half second or less) and if anyone is in there, be prepared to immediately back away.

Pat Rogers
August 27, 2004, 04:14 AM
As one of the "others", i'll stand my ground, based on my experience.
The quick peek is an option, but a poor one at best, for the reasons that i put on paper.

Looking without being prepared to engage can cause you to cease being an earthly oxygen consumer.

While i will never say that any TTP is the only way, I am extremely confident in what i have stated and written concerning the Quick Peek, based on my frame of reference.

Your choice..Your life.

Jeff Gonzales
August 27, 2004, 08:37 AM

I know what you mean by quick peek and I still disagree. I just cannot justify it based off the limited benfits it provides or the fraction of the opportunities to actually get away with it. While you may not have a patner or distance the quick peek still doesn't address target discrimination and a whole gambit of other issues such as the actually time to "see" into the confined area. It will be much more than "quick" if you are to see into the area. If we are talking a shoot house then sure, but it is presumputous since the closet is empty. Get an actual closet with clothes and junk in it and a bad guy you are hunting and I think the quickness of the peek gets severely distorted. Besides, if you planned to back away in case there was someone in there, then you should have stayed away in the first place.

I have had to clear spaces that defy architectural (spelling?) sense such as ships at sea and the best thing I can tell you is to avoid the quick peek. I did this in combat knowing there were bad guys there and these spaces were small, so small I had to abadon my primary for two secondaries. There is no way I would have tried a quick peek on those guys, it had to be from a position of dominance and not weakness. I don't find it advantageous compared to keeping distance and working into the problem with the miniscual distance one can have.


Marty Hayes
August 30, 2004, 10:39 AM
Well, we will just have to agree to disagree. I look forward to discussing this and other tactical matters in person sometime in the near future.

Stay safe...

September 8, 2004, 07:41 AM
I have to agree with Pat on the "quick peek" - it's a good way to shorten your lifespan... as a couple of my friends would testify, if they were still able to do so. NOT a good idea!

However, another buddy of mine is renowned in South African LE circles (well, at least the ones I had contact with) for his innovative closet-clearing technique. He had to do a house search on his own, looking for a small boy who was missing from the family circle, with a BG known to be in the house. Searching the master bedroom, he noticed that the closet door was ajar, and didn't want to peek, knock or anything else. He called loudly to a fictitious partner to "bring the snake", and threw a coiled-up belt (found on the chair in the bedroom) through the partly open door. The BG came out like the devil after a yearling, and the matter was satisfactorily resolved with the application of several 9mm. hollowpoints to center-of-BG-mass. Innovative, no? :D

Jeff Gonzales
September 29, 2004, 08:01 PM
Alright, so there I was minding my own business when I thought the hell with that. I have got to pass on some of the lessons learned from our past Combative Pistol Two (CP2) class. The background, this class is our scenario based training class where we really turn up the gas on the students. The students had eight different scenarios they had to work through that were all focused on accomplishing certain objectives. The class hit ratio for all shots fired was 79%. Very impressive, but I would expect no less from the folks who attended which included our very own Editor.

OK, so we had two scenarios that forced the students to move through a structure clearing it as they moved. Without providing too much details or requesting that folks not provide them as well, everyone needs full benefit from time to time.

The first scenario forced them through to a point where are bad guy was waiting to ambush our good guy. Just about every person performed their peek and all learned a lesson...don't do it. The suspect is in one part of a space when they peek, they go back behind cover and the suspect moves and when our good guy peeks back they have to relocate and identify the threat and usually were too slow and took incoming rounds. The lesson learned was utilizing the Press Out technique showed the day before and dominate the space maximizing the distance and minimizing their exposure.

Take it for what it is worth, but there is a class full of people who are convinced.


Denny Hansen
September 30, 2004, 11:54 AM
I can testify to the effectiveness of the press out technique.

Jeff emphasizes four principles in his classes:
Look for a threat.
Look for the threat’s friends.
Look for an obstacle (or cover) to place between you and the threat.
Look for an exit or escape route.

We started the Sims scenario that Jeff is talking about by being shot in the arm from a concealed assailant. Carrying an ammo can in the “wounded” arm, we then had to clear the house to escape. It was at the end of the run, almost at the back door, where many students used the quick peek and got “shot.” I’ll admit that I cheated a little; I opted to utilize principle four and escape through a window before I got to the end of the problem. ;)


Marty Hayes
October 6, 2004, 09:28 AM
Jeff Said...

"The first scenario forced them through to a point where are bad guy was waiting to ambush our good guy. Just about every person performed their peek and all learned a lesson...don't do it. The suspect is in one part of a space when they peek, they go back behind cover and the suspect moves and when our good guy peeks back they have to relocate and identify the threat and usually were too slow and took incoming rounds."

Jeff. You say that the first peek was a freebee, which is what I am saying is a valid option in some circumstances, (and I only mean some circumstances).

I don't advocate the second peek, which according to your post is what got the students shot. If the students would have backed away to cover, and ordered the BG out, what would the outcome have been?


Jeff Gonzales
October 6, 2004, 09:35 AM
In this situation, the BG was placed where he could see the exit the student had to move to end the problem. Those who performed the peek, were forced to reclear the area only this time from the vantage point of looking down the barrel of the gun.

Had they elected to perform the Press Out technique, the peek of any type becomes antiquated. They maintain control of the situation as much as the situation allows.

They could have sat there and discussed things with the bad guy, but doing that would have only made matters worse.

I know you are advocating the peek in some circumstances. What I am saying is you don't want to do the peek under any circumtances and I am basing that off the fact one it is a bad idea and two the Press Out technique elminates the need and provides a much better and safer technique.


Marty Hayes
October 7, 2004, 12:06 AM

Just to clerify though, the GG's didn't get shot by the BG's who were waiting to ambush with the first peak, but got shot after the second peak, right?

And, for what it is worth, I don't advocate a second peak. If he needs shooting, shoot him thorugh the MF'n walls after the first peak.

I of course do not have the benefit of the reference of your "press out" techinque, but I suspect it is something that makes emminent sense, and I probably know and do it simply by a different name.


Don Gwinn
October 8, 2004, 09:23 AM
With all due respect, I believe you're talking past each other because you haven't defined your terms.

Jeff, I believe, thinks of what his students did in that scenario as one "peek" followed by one attack (or whatever term you prefer.) He would not use the term "second peek" because the second time they came around to where they thought they would be able to see the threat, they intended to engage it and remove it.
Since taking the "first peek" gave the threat the chance to reposition and thwart the students the second time they came around, Jeff would not agree that it was a "freebie" just because they didn't get shot as they took that peek.

Firearms Academy, on the other hand, is using the word "peek" to refer to each and every time the student comes far enough around the corner or out of cover to engage and be engaged. Therefore, the way he sees it, whether you peek once and then give orders from behind concealment/cover or engage the first time you break cover, you have executed one "peek." If you peek once and then go back to engage, Firearms Academy would maintain, then you have actually executed TWO "peeks" around the corner, so he believes it's important to make the distinction between that method and the "single peek, then commands" method he is advocating.

Now, you can both tell me how wrong all that is. ;)
Also, I realize that "break cover" and "come around a corner" are probably not literal descriptions of what you would actually do there. . . . but I don't know a correct term for it, and I hope we all understand what I mean by those terms.

Marty Hayes
October 8, 2004, 10:16 AM

I think you understand. What we have been working on is a viable alternative to a shootout in a very enclosed space, where the actor, (GG) doesn't have a need such as a military mission to absolutely root out and kill all the occupants of a house, but instead, to simply confirm that no-one is in there wanting to kill them.

Because we know that action beats reaction, if one can very quickly check an enclosed space such as a closet in a time of space reasoably likely to avoid being shot, then the searcher has some options. the vast majoirty of people I teach are private citizens LE, both who have options other than needing togo into that small space and initiate a gunfight.

Again, to clerify, if someone is in that small space, don't peek a second time, or engage.

Don Gwinn
October 17, 2004, 12:16 AM
Hey, what do you know? I got one right. :)

However, I think Jeff's point is that if you peek, then let the opponent out of your sight in order to try to command him to surrender, you are surrendering the initiative to him. You're allowing him to do whatever he wants around that corner or in that closet, and if he decides to come out shooting (or stabbing) you aren't going to know about it until he actually emerges--which means he is the actor and you are reduced to reaction.

Frankly, I think I agree with Jeff here, but I haven't tried any of this in real life and don't really know what I'm talking about.

Denny Hansen
October 17, 2004, 09:19 AM
The problem with a quick peek is that it will only tell you where the bad guy was, not where he is. The one-dimensional, flat targets that we shoot in simulators will still be in the same place waiting for what amounts to a marksmanship exercise. Three-dimensional, breathing adversaries (unless they have the same IQ has the above mentioned target) will have moved an/or will be going dynamic on you. JMHO


Marty Hayes
October 18, 2004, 09:55 AM
There are two places where one quick peek might make sense, and doesn't allow the BG to move. One is in a closet, where there is no place to move to anyway. The other place is in a blind corner in a room, where you want to enter, but cannot pie the corner. In this situation, a peek will let you know if someone is in the corner, and and if he then moves from that blind corner due to your peek, you will see him because he will be moving from the blind corner to the area you can see from outside the area.

Whether this is good or bad depends on your mission, of course. A SWAT team, or military operation may need to go in anyway, in which time a quick peek may be counter productive. An armed citizen searching his house because he thought something was suspicious might find the quick peek under these limited situations worthwhile.

Pat Rogers
October 18, 2004, 02:34 PM
I'm not sure if you ever read the article in question.
In the event, i listed one very experienced class of shooters that quick peeked everything. We did a Sims run where i placed a BG role player in a blind corner.
10 of the 13 quick peeked. Once they saw the BG, they backed up away from the corner. All 10 then received a full mag of MP5 Sims (this was a carbine class, they had long guns too) while they were standing around with their thumb inserted into their waste ejection port.
Three pied, with their gun up, and all 3 delivered solid hits on the BG before he could react.
Granted, this is one class. However, i have seen this repeated, by cops, military not involved in DA, and in civilian classes over a lot of years.
I will also rely on my own experience having walked around this particular block once.
Jeff has coached for me several times at Gunsite. We have set up Sims scenarios regularly to see how untrained people react. I didn't write that article because i had nothing better to do on that particular day, but rather that i was tired of seeing people attending these classes who were practicing dying on a regular basis.

I am comfortable in my statements and TTP's.

Giving up space is not good. Doing nothing is not good.

Jeff Gonzales
October 18, 2004, 11:47 PM

I don't think you are going to get me to see the submissive positon the peek generates in an advantegeous setting. If you must clear past certain obstacles such as small rooms or hard corners then do so from a point of dominance using the Press Out technique or other suitable technique. It works and makes the peek pretty much useless.

It doesn't matter what the mission or whose name is on the check you recieve. Everyone bleeds the same color, so the point is to avoid excessive spillage of your own don't employ the peek when other techniques are superior and easier. Then again, it is your choice.