U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Going for the Gun

NCJ Number
Police: The Law Enforcement Magazine Volume: 29 Issue: 3 Dated: March 2005 Pages: 52-54,56,58
Derrick Bartlett
Date Published
March 2005
5 pages
This article presents the results of a study which examined the pros and cons of the police sniper disarmament tactic; the disarming of a subject with a well-placed shot.
All around the United States, snipers, tactical commanders, and departmental administrators debate the controversial tactic of a police sniper shooting a weapon from the hand of an agitated person to disarm them. A study was conducted by members of the American Sniper Association to provide anecdotal information and to demonstrate a spectrum of possible outcomes when using this controversial tactic. Results indicate that shooting a weapon from the hand of a subject is as much luck as it is skill. In addition, tactical disarming was demonstrated to be dangerous for the subject and bystanders. The study demonstrates how hazardous this tactic can be. Knowing in advance the high level of risk involved in employing tactical disarmament, any agency choosing to use this tactic is encouraged to have an unlimited supply of settlement money.