American Handgunner March/April 2013 Digital Edition - Page 28

COPTALK oPINIoN AND FActs FroM tHe MeAN streets MAssAD AyooB . MoDerN Is Better t year or so ago, the St. Paul, Minnesota police department went back to the 9mm Glock 17s they adopted so long ago, the first big department in the country to do so. For some time since, they had used the Glock 22 in .40 S&W. The S&W M&P 9mm will also be optional there. The change back to 9mm saved on ammo costs, reduced recoil and allowed many officers to shoot better than they had with the snappy .40s. The department’s rationale was with modern ammo, the 9mm got the job done well enough that larger-bore pistols were no longer needed. Some months ago the Columbia, S.C. Police Department traded in its SIG P220 .45 autos for FN FNS 9mm pistols. Increased capacity was cited as a major What’s “enough” for duty: reason for the switch. Yet in the Hoosier state, the Indiana State Police announced their .45 Acp (L), .40 S&W or 9mm? 9mm Glock 17s are being swapped for the Glock 21 SF in .45 ACP. Scuttlebutt is the troopers just weren’t comfortable with the power level of the 9mm, and were more than willing to swap four rounds of cartridge capacity to carry .45s. A long list of other .45-caliber pistols will be approved options for those ISP personnel wishing to buy one out of their own pockets. This leaves New Jersey State Police as the nation’s only state troopers required to carry 9mm, to the best my knowledge at this time. he 9mm’s longstanding reputation for sub-optimal power came mostly from older loads. Los Angeles County Sheriffs and LAPD are the .40 S&W reportedly both using Winround was created chester 147-gr. Ranger for to be a compromise between the their issue 9mms and are happy with its 9mm and the .45. here an escambia street performance. The confidence is county deputy sheriff shoots with his not 100 percent across the board, howthe Glock 19 is the most department issue Glock 22 RtF in .40. ever. Many LASD deputies have bought popular of the 9mms Some officers find the snappy recoil optional .45s, and many LAPD officers authorized for nypD. of a .40 hard to manage though. have likewise voted with their wallets so they can carry their own .40 or .45. which have adopted Portland (OR) Police Bureau reports the .45 GAP (Glock high satisfaction with their standard Auto Pistol): Florida, pressure .45 ACP in ballistics, but with issue Federal HST 147-gr. subsonic Georgia, New York, shorter overall length to allow pistols 9mm rounds. Pennsylvania and South Carolina. narrower in girth which will fit a wider This topic came up at the Panel Of None are reporting any dissatisfaction range of hand sizes. NYSP traded up Experts session I chaired at the 2012 with street results of this round, which from 9mm, while the other four agenconference of the International Law is functionally identical to standard cies swapped .40s for their .45 GAPs. Enforcement Educators and Trainers. The panel all but unanimously agreed they were comfortable with modern 9mm ammo. The favorite loads most often cited were the Speer Gold Dot here is no one sidearm perfect for the locally-identified needs of all of 124-gr. +P, which has been used with our myriad law enforcement agencies, let alone one sidearm that will great success by NYPD, Chicago PD be absolutely ideal for the perceived needs of each and every one of and Las Vegas Metro. They also cited America’s 800,000 or so serving police officers. Working alone or in small unit the Winchester Ranger-T 127-gr. +P+, strength, police don’t need the ammo and magazine interchangeability that comes which has performed spectacularly in with a single standard gun so much as they need the absolute confidence and dozens of shootings for the Orlando, competence that comes with carrying what the individual officer can shoot the Fla. Police Department. I couldn’t help best under pressure. but notice, for what it’s worth, many So, is it 9mm to .45, .45 to 9mm, or something in between? It’s simply not of the experts endorsing the 9mm were an issue on departments like Chicago, Las Vegas or Los Angeles where working carrying .40s or .45s themselves. cops have a broad choice of makes, models, and calibers. The one thing certain in Going in the opposite direction, we the matter is the debate as to what’s the best police gun or cartridge is now have five state police agencies probably never going to end. A or…? 45 to or 9mm mm … 9 to .45 … No PAt ANswer t * 28 WWW.AMERICANHANDGUNNER.COM • MARCH/APRIL2013

Page 27 ... Page 29