AR-15 Ammunition And Barrel Twist Rate

Herschel Smith · 19 Feb 2017 · 7 Comments

There are a lot of articles and discussion forum threads on barrel twist rate for AR-15s.  So why am I writing one?  Well, some of the information on the web is very wrong.  Additionally, this closes out comment threads we've had here touching on this topic, EMail exchanges I've had with readers, and personal conversations I've had with shooters and friends about this subject.  It's natural to put this down in case anyone else can benefit from the information.  Or you may not benefit at…… [read more]

Wichita Swatting Victim’s Mother Isn’t Even Allowed To See Her Own Son

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

CNN:

Nearly a week after police shot and killed a Kansas man while responding to a prank call, the victim’s mother pleaded with authorities to allow her to see her deceased son.

Lisa Finch wrote in a letter to the Wichita, Kansas, mayor and police chief that she doesn’t know where they’re keeping his body and that she wants to give her son “a proper funeral service and burial.”
She questioned “why Wichita City leadership is compounding our grief and sorrow, by keeping my son from us?”
“Please let me see my son’s lifeless body,” she wrote in a letter dated Tuesday. “I want to hold him and say goodbye. Please immediately return his body to us.”
Her son, Andrew Finch was killed by police last week in his home in a case of swatting. Swatting refers to when a person makes a false report to draw a major police response or SWAT teams to a certain location.

The cops won’t even release the body to the family.  What a bunch of bastards.  In other news, remember I said this?

There are a number of misdirects in this report.  Let’s address two of the most prominent and important.  First of all, the blame will be placed on the illegal practice of Swatting, or calling the police and reporting an active shooting or hostage situation.  The perpetrator will likely be found and dealt with, and the blame will be placed squarely on him.

[ … ]

It doesn’t matter if he was armed, any more than it matters whether he was a gamer or if he was Swatted by another gamer.  While Swatting is illegal, the perpetrator didn’t do the shooting.  Being armed while answering the door isn’t illegal or immoral.  Gaming isn’t illegal or immoral.

True to form, the gaming community is self examining.

A joke gone bad ended in tragedy last week, and it brings into the spotlight one of the worst aspects of gaming culture.

Last week, someone made a fake emergency call (known as swatting) to police in Wichita, Kansas, and the police shot an innocent man. On Friday, police in Los Angeles arrested 25-year-old Tyler Raj Barriss, who reportedly goes by the name SWAuTistic, for allegedly calling in the false report. Social media posts on the incident have continued this week. Let’s hope that this leads to increased awareness of these prank calls among law enforcement and realization that toxic behavior like swatting can have deadly consequences.

While it’s deplorable that someone would do this, it wouldn’t be a problem if cops wore uniforms, didn’t assume that the call was legitimate, and simply knocked on the door to chat with the occupants since, after all, it is their property.

The practice of swatting is a problem only because of the hero soldier-boy complex that infects the police forces around the nation.  Take their guns away from them and they won’t be able to shoot anyone.

Wichita Police SWAT Team Shoots Innocent Man During Police Home Invasion

BY Herschel Smith
2 weeks, 4 days ago

The Wichita Eagle:

Blue and red lights flashed outside of the McCormick Street house just after 6 p.m. on Thursday. Curious of what was going on – Andrew Finch, 28, opened the door.

“I heard my son scream, I got up and then I heard a shot,” his mother, Lisa Finch, said Friday morning.

Finch and other relatives invited reporters into their home Friday morning – more than 12 hours after Wichita police said an officer fatally shot a 28-year-old man, who was identified by family as Andrew “Andy” Finch.

“We want Andy’s side of the story to be told,” his mother said.

On Thursday, Deputy Wichita Police Chief Troy Livingston said a substation received a call that there was a hostage situation in a house in the 1000 block of West McCormick — and that someone had been shot in the head.

“That was the information we were working off of,” he said, explaining that officers went to the house ready for a hostage situation and they “got into position.”

“A male came to the front door,” Livingston said Thursday night. “As he came to the front door, one of our officers discharged his weapon.”

Livingston didn’t say if the man had a weapon when he came to the door, or what caused the officer to shoot the man.

Finch said her son, a father of two young children, wasn’t armed.

As the Finch family talked to reporters, they carefully navigated their way around their foyer, and pointed out a reminder of what happened.

“There’s where he was shot,” Andrew Finch’s aunt, Lorrie Hernandez-Caballero, said, as she pointed to spots of blood on the home’s porch, and on the carpet just inside the door. “They (police) had to take the screen door as evidence.”

After she heard the shot, Finch said she walked out of her bedroom and into the kitchen. A door leading from the kitchen to the side yard was open, she said.

“The police said, ‘Come out with your hands up,’” she said. “(The officer) took me, my roommate and my granddaughter, who witnessed the shooting and had to step over her dying uncle’s body.”

The family was handcuffed, taken outside and placed into separate police cruisers, she said. They were taken downtown and interviewed by Wichita police officers.

Asked if the family has talked to investigators from the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, Finch said they were told KBI investigators would contact them.

But they have questions now.

“What gives the cops the right to open fire?” Finch asked. “Why didn’t they give him the same warning they gave us? That cop murdered my son over a false report.”

Finch and Hernandez-Caballero said they want to see the officer – identified only as a seven-year veteran of the department – and the person who made the false report held accountable.

“The person who made the phone call took my nephew, her son, two kids’ father,” Hernandez-Caballero said. “How does it feel to be a murderer? I can’t believe people do this on purpose.”

Online gamers have said in multiple Twitter posts that the shooting was the result of a “swatting” call involving two gamers.

There are a number of misdirects in this report.  Let’s address two of the most prominent and important.  First of all, the blame will be placed on the illegal practice of Swatting, or calling the police and reporting an active shooting or hostage situation.  The perpetrator will likely be found and dealt with, and the blame will be placed squarely on him.

The second misdirect for the readers is the question whether the innocent man was armed.  We’ve dealt with this in detail before.  First of all, the Castle doctrine is based on Biblical precept and it’s moral standing is rock solid.  Home invasions, whether by criminals bent on evil, or police criminalds bent on soldier-boy impersonations, are all immoral in the superlative.

Furthermore, we’ve seen that even if the police announce their presence, there is no compelling reason to believe that it is the police.  Criminals have become savvy to the ways of the police SWAT teams and make a pretense of the same kind of entry procedure.  Men announcing that they are the police may be the police, or they may not be and may intend on rape or murder.

It doesn’t matter if he was armed, any more than it matters whether he was a gamer or if he was Swatted by another gamer.  While Swatting is illegal, the perpetrator didn’t do the shooting.  Being armed while answering the door isn’t illegal or immoral.  Gaming isn’t illegal or immoral.

While the media will present all of these misdirects as will the Sheriff when he finally presents his case to the public (the gamer did something illegal, my deputy thought he was armed, blah, blah, blah), the reality of the situation is that the shooter is a murderer, and the team that helped him is guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.

The police in America have become the most dangerous hoodlums, thugs and murderers.  As I’ve said before, I feel more comfortable around gangsters who might threaten me than I do around goober cops who have no discipline or moral compunction about shooting innocent people.

Armed Men Dressed In SWAT Uniforms Invade Home And Rob Couple

BY Herschel Smith
8 months, 2 weeks ago

Before we get to the main subject of this article, let’s cover an incident perpetrated by Carroll County’s Sheriff’s Office in Maryland.

The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office is admitting it was a mistake that led to a SWAT raid at a Montgomery County man’s home where he and his family were detained by police.

Israel Orellana has the same name as a man investigators were searching for in a gun theft case. Somehow, Carroll County got a warrant to search the wrong man’s home.

Orellana says he was in his bedroom Tuesday when he heard the noises. He says his mom had friends from church at their home at the time.

“I thought it was my mom’s friends because sometimes they pray and they start dancing,” he said. “So I get up from my bed and I start walking over to my door. And as I’m opening my door, I make eye contact with the SWAT officer and he pushes up against the door with his shield and he slams me against the wall. He starts screaming at me, ‘Stop resisting! Stop resisting!’”

Orellana showed FOX 5 a bruise on his face and scrapes on his arm. He said his hands were tied behind his back and he was taken upstairs to find that his family and his mother’s friends were also detained. He says officers barged in on his 14-year-old sister in the bathroom.

“It was really horrific,” he said. “You feel really helpless during the whole situation. Like you know you’re innocent, you’re telling them you’re innocent, but they just see you as a criminal.”

The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office got the search warrant for Orellana’s home and requested that Montgomery County police execute it. According to the search warrant, a man named Israel Orellana was linked to a home burglary where 20 guns and money were stolen. The suspect in the case was identified in surveillance video and investigators believed that Orellana’s driver’s license photo matched that video.

Both Israel Orellanas live in Gaithersburg.

“Stop resisting.”  Compliant sheeple, citizens are expected to be.  Shooting home invaders isn’t considered a right of citizens, and it’s questionable what a jury would have found, but there is no question that the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals would have given the cops a pass had they shot the man if he had in fact resisted.

This all put citizens in a dangerous position.  Men need to protect their families, and single women are even more vulnerable in this calculus.  The reason is clear.

The masked men got away with three Rolex watches and five guns. They are also accused of inappropriately touching Ouellette’s wife.

“This reminded her of something she would see in Colombia,” he said. “She never thought she’d see it in America.”

Never forget those words.  “I think it made us hesitate enough to give them the jump on us.”   As I said before concerning armed invaders and the proliferation of police SWAT raids, “For those of you who are LEOs, do you understand?  Does this ring any bells with you as home owners and family members?  Does it make any sense to you that this is number 18,399 on the list of reasons not to conduct home raids, even if they are intended to find evidence of wrong-doing?

Well, does it?  I hope a LEO weighs in, because it’s crystal clear to me and most readers.  In addition to your felt need to “go home safely at the end of your shift,” we have an equivalent need to be safe in our own homes, to prevent flash-bang grenades from being thrown into our toddler’s cribs, to prevent your reflexively shooting our family dogs, and to prevent street thugs like this from raiding our homes under the guise of being police officers.

You see, we can’t just lay down and let people screaming “police, police, get the fuck on the floor, police, police” … come into our homes without countering those efforts with close quarters battle.  Because they may not be police.”

The proliferation of military tactics into ordinary policing work in America was first promoted by progressives fighting a war on drugs, but the police-worship is possibly even worse among the “law-and-order” neocons who also happen to be some of the most virulent Northeastern gun controllers.

This is all setting up a national confrontation between the police and those who are being policed, and whether those who are setting all of this up actually understand the hazard this creates for themselves as well isn’t clear.  What is clear is that this is bound to get much worse before it ever gets any better.

But you simply cannot lay on the floor waiting for your door to be busted down because the home invaders might be police.  No honorable man can do something like that, any more than an honorable man can bust doors in and point guns at other people just because a judge says so.

Police Tags:

Another SWAT Raid, Another Flash-Bang Thrown At A Baby

BY Herschel Smith
1 year ago

Remember that we extensively discussed the idiotic and immoral raid on baby Bou Bou’s house in search of someone who wasn’t there?  The horrible and inept “criminal justice system” didn’t even hold the people who perpetrated that evil act accountable for it.  A grand jury couldn’t even convince themselves that they should have continued legal action against the police, and the raid ended up crippling the poor child and causing multiple surgeries.

The police state in America is so screwed up that it can’t even learn from such a disaster as that.  “Officer safety” must return home at the end of his shift, and the war on drugs must go on.  True to form for the police state, I missed that yet another flash bang was thrown at a baby in Indiana after the raid on baby Bou Bou.  This time, at least the court had doubts and threw out the evidence collected in the raid.  Fortunately, no one was harmed.

The Evansville (IN) Police Department has seen a drug bust go up in a cloud of flashbang smoke. A search warrant for drugs and weapons, based on an informant’s tip, was executed perfectly… if you’re the sort of person who believes it takes a dozen heavily-armed officers, a Lenco Bearcat, and two flashbangs to grab a suspect no one felt like arresting when he was outside alone taking out his trash. (via FourthAmendment.com)

The state appeals court decision [PDF] hinges on the deployment of a flashbang grenade into a room containing a toddler. Fortunately, in this case, the toddler was only frightened, rather than severely burned. But it was this tossed flashbang that ultimately undoes the PD’s case. The evidence is suppressed and the conviction reversed.

Scattered throughout the opinion are some amazing depictions of the PD’s SWAT team at work — and how those officers seem to believe the violence of their entries during warrant service are somehow just the new normal.

Things like the following paragraph. First: some background. In some cases, it’s (theoretically) more difficult for law enforcement to obtain no-knock warrants. Facts need to be asserted that show that warning the occupants of a residence in any way would most likely result in the destruction of evidence and/or an armed response. Some judges are more willing than others to hand these out, but either way, the standard warrant boilerplate can’t be used.

So, here’s the difference between a “knock and announce” warrant and a no-knock warrant, as deployed by the Evansville PD.

The SWAT team rode in a Lenco Bearcat that followed a patrol vehicle to the residence. At least a dozen officers were involved. Upon arrival and prior to entry, three officers and a police vehicle approached the rear of the residence and at least nine officers, most armed with assault weapons, approached the front of the residence. At 10:30 a.m., the police knocked on the residence and one of the officers announced, “Police – Search Warrant – Police – Search Warrant,” and another officer announced over a loudspeaker “Search Warrant. 314 Illinois.” State’s Exhibit 1 at 3:55-4:00. One second later, the SWAT team knocked down the door with a battering ram.

ONE SECOND. Technically, still a knock-and-announce warrant, even though the residents had been given no chance to respond.

Within the next couple of seconds, a flashbang grenade was tossed into the front room, which contained a playpen and a baby’s car seat. The toddler was in the playpen.

After the flash bang grenade was deployed, Detective Gray entered the residence and picked up a nine-month old baby crying on top of blankets in a playpen just inside and “very close to the door.” Id. at 332. The room also contained a baby’s car seat and a toddler’s activity center in the line of sight of the front door. One of the officers moved the car seat with his foot to proceed further into the residence.

The officer who tossed the flashbang said he could see more than what was captured by his helmet cam, but still admitted he could not see everything in the room into which he tossed the grenade. This grenade was thrown within two seconds of the officers’ announcement that they had a warrant and roughly one second after the door was breached.

Officer Taylor testified that his perception of things involved a much wider view than what the camera could see. At a time stamp of 4:01 on the video, a member of the SWAT team rammed the door open several inches with a battering ram. From an angle to the right, Officer Taylor tossed the flash bang into the house at 4:02, and it detonated at 4:04. The video at 4:02 shows only a portion of the right rear of the couch and the wood floor on which it sat. The video reveals that about five minutes after the initial entry someone stated: “Make sure you get a picture . . . are you taking a picture of that?” State’s Exhibit 1 at 8:50-8:55. This appears to be a reference to a charred stain on the floor. The person then stated: “Because the baby was in this room, but I put it right there for a reason.” Id. at 8:55-9:00.

The lower court found these tactics unreasonable on the whole and granted suppression of the evidence obtained during the search. The state argued that suppression wasn’t the proper remedy and anything resulting from the “unreasonable” use of a flashbang grenade in a toddler’s room was something to be addressed in a civil lawsuit.

The appeals court disagrees, finding nothing justifiable about the SWAT team’s violent entry into the home.

The video shows almost no time lapse between when the door was battered in and the tossing of the flash bang. The door was barely opened when the flash bang was immediately tossed into the room, and the angle at which Officer Taylor was standing to the door did not allow him an opportunity to see what was inside the room. Indeed, Officer Taylor acknowledged that he could not see portions of the room in which the flash bang was placed. Specifically, he testified that he could see “from the couch over to the left, I can’t see the corner, the left corner inside the room and I can’t see the hallway in front of it, that’s why the flash bang goes in the threshold.”

That’s the flashbang, delivered two seconds after the police announced their presence. This is only part of it. The attempt to salvage the fruits of the search with a claim that the house potentially contained dangerous criminals also receives no judicial sympathy. The state makes assertions, but cannot back them up.

The State does not point us to any other evidence indicating the criminal history of Watkins or the other occupants of the house. The record contains no evidence that law enforcement could not have safely presented the person matching Watkins’s description with the search warrant during the time that he was outside the house and before he re-entered it.

The court basically gets it right in terms of the correct way to do this kind of police work.  Observe the residence, proceed with entry when no one is at home, and then present an arrest warrant to the perpetrator when he returns.

Or better yet, we could give up this ridiculous war on drugs.  Either way, it will never be necessary to throw grenades into homes towards babies for any reason under the sun, unless you’re immoral and a coward.  As for the objection that they didn’t know a baby was there (if that is indeed the objection), that is no excuse.  They should have done the rudimentary investigative work to find out.  That’s what detectives are for.

The smart people are supposed to work as detectives.  Call them first.  They can think about smarter ways of doing this sort of thing.  Finally, rather than just throw out evidence, the court should have imprisoned the officers who did this and the judge who approved it for violation of the Fourth and Fifth amendments to the constitution.  They deserve to be in the state penitentiary with the general prison population.

The constitution is a covenant under which stipulations we are all supposed to live.  Failure to do so means that the covenant has been broken, and breakage of the covenant means that punishments are supposed to ensue.

Ogden SWAT Team Raids Wrong Home

BY Herschel Smith
5 years ago

From The Salt Lake Tribune:

Eric Hill woke at 2:30 a.m. on Dec. 20 to his scared daughter telling him she had heard knocking near her closet.

Hill thought the 10-year-old was hearing things, but then came the banging on the front door of his Ogden home.

He went from his basement bedroom to the front door and asked who was there.

No answer.

Another bang.

Hill said he finally armed himself with a baseball bat and asked again who was there.

“Ogden Police,” a voice called out from outside the home, located in the 1000 block of Harrop Street.

“At that point, I didn’t believe it,” Hill said. “It took them so long to respond to me.”

But Hill opened his front door and was met with six men who he said were dressed in black, with no police identifiers that he saw. Three had assault rifles, Hill said; two were carrying tactical shotguns.

The men pointed their guns at Hill and told him to drop the bat and come outside.

“They just automatically placed me in handcuffs,” Hill said. “I [told] them my name, and they [kept] telling me my name is Derek.”

Hill said the officers told them that a felony arrest warrant was being served because he had gone AWOL from the military. But Hill, 28, had never been in the military.

The man police were looking for was a 23-year-old whom officers found a couple of hours later, according to arrest records. Second District Court records show the man has been charged with desertion.

While Hill was upstairs trying to reason with the officers that he was who he said he was, Melanie Hill, his wife, said she was in their basement bedroom with their two children, ages 4 and 10, trying to make out what the voices were saying upstairs.

She said she grabbed her phone to dial 911, thinking the voices were that of a distraught neighbor. But when she went to the stairwell, she was met with a man holding an assault rifle.

“I thought we were getting robbed,” she said. “I had no idea who the person on the stairs was.”

Melanie Hill said she was told to go downstairs and grab her husband’s wallet so he could prove his identification. She said her children followed her up the stairs and were terrified to see armed strangers in their home.

Here is where the report really gets good.  Pay close attention to what the police didn’t say … and said.

Melanie Hill said one of the officers made a comment about her husband coming to the door with a bat, saying that had it been a gun, the officers would have “blown you away.”

Ogden police Lt. Will Cragun said officers initially thought Eric Hill matched the description of the man for whom they were looking. He said once the officers verified Eric Hill’s identity, they released him and apologized for the error.

“These things are going to happen on occasion,” he said. “It’s unfortunate for Mr. Hill. His response [in holding a bat], I totally get. He has the right to protect his family. I would hope [the officers] are professional.”

Cragun said instances of mistaken identity are not common, but do happen. He said that the officers who went to the home were patrol officers working the night shift and would have been dressed in a patrol uniform, which includes a navy blue shirt with police patches, and tan pants.

Eric Hill said he received a phone call from police Chief Mike Ashment several days ago, explaining that the warrant was served at his house because it was the last known address of the man facing the arrest warrant.

No muzzle discipline.  In our world, if one of us does that, we get charged with assault with a deadly weapon (which includes the threat of use) and brandishing a weapon to the terror of the public.  If the police do that, they get to brag about blowing people away.  They get the support of the judges, who are on their side.  Thus do poor people like Eurie Stamps perish at the hands of idiots in homes holding rifles pointed at people.

But to rehearse a bit, here is the impeccable and tightly woven logic of the evening.  The syllogism goes something like this.  The person whom we are after at one time lived in a specific location.  We have never met this person and don’t know him to be a threat of any kind.  Therefore, since people never move and always live at the same address their entire lives, and since people are known to go crazy if you talk calmly to them, we will send in an armed team in the middle of the night to point rifles at the people in this home, who must be our target because, after all, people never move.

There you have it.  Wonderful, isn’t it?

These officers are morons.  As I have said a hundred times, this is the time for calm detective work and uniformed officers knocking at the door in the middle of the day, asking for a conversation.  If you want to play Soldier-boy or Marine and get into “stacks” and do room clearing and CQB, join up, get the training, fly across the pond, and do it for real.  Otherwise, you’re just cowards.

As for “blowing people away” who are attempting to defend their loved ones from an unknown threat, I hope that if any of them ever cause an innocent victim to perish, the officers sees the face of that victim every night before going to sleep.  I hope the memory of that victim haunts that officer’s existence, and I hope he lives with the shame of having shot an innocent man to death the rest of his life.  And I hope his wife and children feel and have to live with that shame.


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