Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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philip964
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Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by philip964 »

The woman who was inside her apartment answering a knock at the door at night, could be seen inside with a gun in her hand, through a window. She was shot from outside her apartment though the window. She never got to the door.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by bbhack »

When breaking your window is your 2nd preferred method of going into your apartment after forgetting your key, well, I'll leave it at that. In no way excusing the way things were done, but...
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by Excaliber »

Going to the door with a gun in your hand is a bad tactic anywhere.

If you're not going to use a Ring doorbell or other intercom system from somewhere else in the home (best tactic), keep the gun concealed and speak through the door until you establish that the visitor(s) is someone you want to let inside. If not, just speak through the door.

This woman put the LEO's in an extremely bad position where they had to make a decision on what reasonably appeared to be a deadly threat in a second or two.

I'm not going to comment on the number of rounds fired.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by Paladin »

I'm looking at the video. One officer did a mag dump, reloaded, and did another mag dump.

Very nearly also killed one of the other officers:
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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I've go nothin' except, that sucks.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by The Annoyed Man »

bbhack wrote: Sat Feb 10, 2024 11:42 pm When breaking your window is your 2nd preferred method of going into your apartment after forgetting your key, well, I'll leave it at that. In no way excusing the way things were done, but...
I can’t seem to find it on YouTube because they posted it a long time ago, but Active Self Protection has a video in which police responding to a call shoot a male homeowner in the same manner. I can’t remember if it was a wrong address, or if the victim was the one who called the police, but he never even got the door open. They pounded on the door. They could see through the window right next to the door that the homeowner (who it turns out had just been roused from sleep by the pounding) was coming to the door with a gun in his hand when the officer in question shot him through that window. The cop's bullets hit him in the lower abdomen and he went down hard. Blood everywhere. He survived, barely, but only because the police quickly realized their terrible mistake and began lifesaving measures. Imagine what that cop who shot him went through, even if it was ultimately decided that he acted correctly (which, in my opinion he did not). Any sentient person would feel terrible about nearly killing an innocent person. And if the man had actually died? Even if exonerated, I would imagine that the officer in question would quit the force…not wanting to ever be placed in that situation again.

These things place officers in a terrible situation. On the one hand, they have legitimate lawful reasons to respond to apparent threats as defined by law; and like anyone else, they have a reasonable hope and expectation of going home alive at the end of their shift. On the other hand, if their information isn’t accurate, they’re going to kill someone who had done no wrong and was equally legitimately protecting their home. Armed citizens should at all times exercise tactical awareness when confronting what they fear might be a middle of the night home invasion; but police have the heavier responsibility (which is how it should be because we pay them to get things right), and that is to NEVER take down the wrong address.

It’s not even arguable that, between police and a homeowner (criminal or not), police have greater resources at their disposal. They have greater intelligence gathering resources, greater personnel numbers resources, greater communications resources, and greater tactical resources. (No matter how many guns I own, the police own more; and I can only wield one or two at a time, when police can wield dozens.) Even in a case where the address is correct and the occupant is a genuine bad guy, the police have overwhelming resources at their disposal.

When these things happen, how easy would it have been to phone the occupants before pounding on the door? How easy would it have been to do a last-minute verification of the address on the home versus the address on the warrant? How easy would it have been to knock on a neighbor's door the day before, during daylight hours, to verify who were the occupants of the home in question? Gunfire and general ruckus are going to wake up the neighbors anyway, so how easy would it have been to address the home's occupant(s) over the squad car's loudspeaker? I’ve never had any police training, and perhaps my viewpoint is naive, but these thoughts seem very common sense to me.

The "desire" to close with the enemy should never be mistaken for the "need" to close with the enemy. We have a right and a duty to protect our homes. OTH, we have no more right or duty to shoot cops than they have to shoot us…especially if we’re not criminals. It’s a tough situation all around, but at the end of the day, I believe that it is immoral to permit police to shoot innocent people (gun in hand or not) without consequence. After all, I am held to that standard. If I miss during a lawful self defense shooting, and my bullet unintentionally kills an innocent bystander, there WILL be consequences, and I likely WILL do time in prison. Police should either be held to that standard, or I should be relieved of it. Since it’s obviously not true that I would be relieved of that standard, then the logical conclusion is that police should be just as rigidly held to it.

My personal opinion is that, while the individual officers involved in the shooting of an innocent may or may not be protected from civil charges by qualified immunity, their department should not be. When departments have to shell out enough money in damages, they’ll find it cheaper at some point to insist on better and more frequent training, cheaper to hire better qualified officers, and cheaper to pay those officers more to ensure that they only get the best and brightest.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by 03Lightningrocks »

Excaliber wrote: Sun Feb 11, 2024 9:20 am Going to the door with a gun in your hand is a bad tactic anywhere.

If you're not going to use a Ring doorbell or other intercom system from somewhere else in the home (best tactic), keep the gun concealed and speak through the door until you establish that the visitor(s) is someone you want to let inside. If not, just speak through the door.

This woman put the LEO's in an extremely bad position where they had to make a decision on what reasonably appeared to be a deadly threat in a second or two.

I'm not going to comment on the number of rounds fired.
This is my advice as well. I have a firearm located within reach of each door in my home. It is not just the police I worry about. It is also the local girl scouts selling cookies or even a neighbor with some issue. I don't have a desire to show up at the door with a gun in my hand, scaring some neighbor that is simply wanting to ask a simple question. If I recognize the person at the door to be a likely solicitor, I don't answer it. With ring cameras being so inexpensive these days, it is pretty easy to know who is at the door without approaching it.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by The Annoyed Man »

This video is deeply disturbing…


More comments on coming the door with a gun in your hand…
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by Mike S »

The Annoyed Man wrote: Wed Feb 14, 2024 5:15 pm This video is deeply disturbing…


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The Annoyed Man wrote: Wed Feb 14, 2024 5:15 pm This video is deeply disturbing…


More comments on coming the door with a gun in your hand…
So many things that disturbed me watching this cringe -worthy event unfold...

1. Judgment. Just wow. I'm not an LEO, and I wasn't there in these two officer's shoes. But tactical blunders as well as decision making that make me question the training program of HCSO in general, or at least with these two officers. Again, I wasn't there, and from the body cam footage WE don't know the demeanor or posture of the person approaching the door. She may have presented as an "objectively reasonable" threat to the officers, which may fully justify the use of deadly force. However, just as arguably the mere presence of a handgun in the hands of an unknown contact from within the apartment, at least in my mind, WOULDN'T immediately justify THREE mag dumps without a better articulation of an Immediate Necessity.

Some tactics used seemed sound, such as backing away from the door waiting for a response, & the covering officer using the stairs to get a lower & better vantage point to observe thru the open window, and once the shooting started the covering officer stepped forward to mitigate shooting right past her partner's head.

Buffoonery: Blond officer left her pistol -mounted light on while waiting for the occupants to answer the door highlighting her position, & used her pistol light to peek inside. At one point, she seems to lose situational awareness and leans down to peek under the window blinds, MASKING the covering officer's observation & sector of fire.

2. Panic Button. In Special Forces, we weren't averse to fully automatic fire WHEN IT MADE SENSE. However, every threat or situation had to be evaluated in a split second & the appropriate response meted out. From an outside-of-LEO observer, there seems to have been a generation of LEO that was institutionalized to dump a magazine at a threat until the threat was 'neutralized'; I would like to believe the 'mag dump' mentality has gone away, but obviously not.

I agree that we need to continue engaging WITH ACCURATE FIRE until the threat stops doing whatever gave us justification to use deadly force, but once our brains catch up & process that the justification has elapsed WE, as civilians, are expected to stop our application of deadly force. Handgun terminal ballistics aren't stellar, so multiple rounds may often be necessary, AND our brains need time to process the incoming data to recognize that its time to stop engaging. That data is also being filtered via tunnel vision, auditory exclusion, & time dilation. I preceded with that to provide a bit of grace to these two officers firing multiple times at what THEY perceived as an imminent threat. ((Not that I agree with their decision making, but they're also judged on what they reasonably perceived & NOT on perfect 20/20 hindsight)).

But two officers dumping an entire magazine, with one officer reloading & dumping a second magazine, at 10'? (10' was the distance given in the video; not sure where he got that, but till something more official is released I'll go with that for discussion's sake)) I say their tactics were flawed, which set them up for a very hasty judgment, then panic response took over.

I'll refer to the first body cam footage as the 'covering officer', as it was the other officer that approached & knocked on the door & was closest to the window. It appears to me that the both officers began firing nearly simultaneously, but without going frame by frame it seems the covering officer may have fired first. ((Not sure which officer yelled at the occupants, but almost simultaneously with that yell the guns began blazing at the woman inside the apartment; no time for compliance. But, again, we don't get to see what the officer or officers saw thru the open window; there may not have been time to wait for compliance IF she was actually presenting a deadly threat)). The covering officer dumped an entire magazine; reloaded, (forgetting to let the slide go forward...); makes a radio call of "Shots fired"; releases the slide; then appears to have dumped a second magazine before reloading again. Her first mag dump may have been "objectively reasonable" if she believed there was a deadly force justification (not saying she had justification for dumping an entire mag thru an apartment window, just that it could be argued she had a reasonable belief deadly force was immediately necessary)). However, what did she observe between mag changes that she can articulate was objectively reasonable to dump yet another magazine into the apartment window??

3. Atrocious Handgun Skills. If the video is correct, the woman inside the apartment was at a distance of about 10', and by the Grace of God was ONLY STRUCK 5x with three mag dumps by the officers. It appears the officers were carrying Glock 17's, so that was approx 50 rounds fired. Even using Common Core Math skills, that's an unfathomable hit:miss ratio at 10'. Even if it's found that the use of force was somehow justified, that's nearly a complete box of ammunition that went somewhere other than the intended target. How many rounds went through the neighbor's apartment??

As far as the other officer, watch closely how her support side thumb wraps around the back of the slide MORE THAN ONCE as she dumps her mag thru the apartment window... Watching the grip on the gun shift with each shot fired made me cringe, which also may explain why the occupant was only hit 5x. She grabs the baseplate of the spare magazine like a monkey grabbing a shiny object thru a bottle neck ((loss of fine motor skills, yes it's a thing, but can also be mitigated to an extent by conditioning the neural pathways for smooth technique)). I can't tell clearly from the video, but it appears that she also didn't release the slide after inserting the spare magazine. The audio sounds as if she doesn't close her slide until they've retreated all the way down to the grass, where the audio has a distinct sound like a slide closing while she's making a radio call for backup ((if this was the case, then she had an inoperable gun to cover her partner's movement down the stairs IF the occupant had been shooting back)). This officer stopped engaging after her first mag dump. What she observed & how she made her decisions would be judged somewhat independent from the covering officer, as each may have processed different data points from their vantage points.

Hopefully the Harris County Sheriff's Dept will be more transparent than Houston P.D.' s investigation of the botched Harding Street 'raid'.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by carlson1 »

A lot of long post and I don’t read books. :). I just want to say unbelievable.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by Rafe »

I read fast :mrgreen: and thought Mike offered a very interesting analysis. Do we as yet have any sort of confirmation that the engagement distance was only 10 feet? Doesn't seem terribly improbable, but I can't quite visualize what apartment structure layouts look like. I guess it would have been farther with that final mag dump since that was done from the stairwell...and why would Deputy #2 evidently remain at the apartment level while Deputy #1 remains only one step down after 36 rounds have been fired with having received no return fire? IMHO, both deputies should have gone another step lower before that final magazine was shot. When they could still have a good view of the apartment, why not reduce their target area by another 30%+ by taking just one step?

But I liked Mike's mention of "Common Core Math" skills. ;-) I'm no J.J. Racaza or Rob Leatham, but even I think I could manage a 0.1 hit-rate at 10 feet under duress (actually 0.094 if we had two full (one in chamber) dumps of Glock 17s plus another 17-round mag dump for a total of 53 rounds). And one question noted is super important: where did the 48 rounds that missed end up?

To add a bit to the tactics conversation, a car alarm starts blaring before the first shots are fired. This most definitely caused an auditory recognition issue if someone in the apartment tried to call out to the officers, but perhaps even more alarming is: How often do armed burglars act alone in 2024? If it truly was a guns-out armed robbery threat, am I correct that, from the video, neither of the officers seemed to even look at their six to attempt to confirm that another perp or two had come up behind them?

That this bodycam footage was released barely one week after the incident speaks highly of transparency from the sheriff's office, but there's lot to digest in what unfolded in only a few seconds. In fact, a grand total of 41 seconds from first knock on the door until the last shot fired.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by The Annoyed Man »

Mike S wrote: Fri Feb 16, 2024 6:06 pm
The Annoyed Man wrote: Wed Feb 14, 2024 5:15 pm This video is deeply disturbing…


More comments on coming the door with a gun in your hand…
So many things that disturbed me watching this cringe -worthy event unfold...

1. Judgment. …

2. Panic Button. …

3. Atrocious Handgun Skills. …

Hopefully the Harris County Sheriff's Dept will be more transparent than Houston P.D.' s investigation of the botched Harding Street 'raid'.
I’ve never had either police or military training (BTW, I don't think I knew that you’d been in Special Forces), but so much of your analysis seems like just plain common sense to me. I’ve watched more than one analysis video of this shooting…IIRC one was on the ASP channel…and I came to exactly the same conclusions you did before I even posted those two videos. I was specifically struck by two of the things you mentioned: the absolute panic causing the dark haired officer to continue dumping two full magazines (35 rounds) long AFTER the victim was already down (without having fired a shot); and the really poor gun-handling and poor tactical awareness of the blond officer.

I don’t know what the final career outcome was or will be for these two officers, but AT THE VERY LEAST they should undergo mandatory re-training before they’re ever turned loose on the public again. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if both of them made a sober assessment of their response and will conclude that police work is not for them, and they resign their commissions. And I think that is probably the best outcome.
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by C-dub »

No glass/windows in my door. No windows next to my door. I don’t want bad guys being able to look inside my home and see what there is for them. Now I have to worry about what the good guys can see? Good grief!
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Re: Don’t go to your door at night with a gun in your hand in Harris County

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Post by Rafe »

C-dub wrote: Wed Feb 21, 2024 12:53 pm No glass/windows in my door. No windows next to my door. I don’t want bad guys being able to look inside my home and see what there is for them. Now I have to worry about what the good guys can see? Good grief!
Future version of the Ring Doorbell (all fiction, of course, but there may a marketing niche here):

We'll have an option for video and audio on both sides of the door. So you can directly address who's there without being the near the door at all. Plus, advanced AI capabilities will allow you to use a variety of avatars and voices so the person at the door will think he's talking live to whatever persona you choose to project.

Sketchy-looking guy at the door with face tattoos? Choose a visual avatar of retired SEAL commander Jocko Willink and the deep, gravelly speaking voice of Trace Adkins:

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