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Old January 14, 2011, 02:07 AM   #12
Senior Member
Join Date: September 15, 2004
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Posts: 713
perfect score?

Sure, depending upon the course of fire, it's certainly possible to shoot a "perfect" score on a qualification course. (I've done it a bunch of times and I've seen it done a bunch of times, by different officers, on different courses of fire, in different agencies, and several times by police recruits I was training)

What does that prove? Maybe that their basic marksmanship skills are pretty good. It does not indicate how they'll do tactically, or how they will perform under stress, and it does not necessarily indicate how they might do on another course of fire where different skills are tested.

But, the first place to start is always to practice so that you can perform at a high level on any "qualification" course that you may be tested on: police/military/security/CCW permit, etc.

And the idea that shooting a perfect score will somehow get you in trouble if you are later involved in a shooting is an old wives tale repeated by people who should know better, or used by the baffled and the under-motivated and undisciplined as an excuse to perform badly.

In a shooing incident, the primary thing that will be evaluated, in both a criminal and civil trial, is this: Did you act correctly based on the information known to you at the time? That's it.

For example: If some goof draws a realistic looking BB gun and points it at you in the dark, and you shoot, your use of force may well be ruled to be correct, because you actions will only be evaluated based on the information known to you at the time.

If you are justified to shoot, and you do so, and you hit a bystander through your error, you have a problem, regardless of your qualification scores or any training that you may have received. Unusual circumstances and a legal concept called "greater danger theory" may somewhat protect you, but you have to use an affirmative defense and explain all that.

I defy anyone to come up with a specific incident, with specific documentation or a case citation, where the score on a qualification course had anything to do with the outcome of a criminal or civil case.
You can only learn from experience if you pay attention!
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