New York legislators suggest police shoot criminals in arms or legs only

Unbelievable. Brooklyn Assembly members Annette Robinson (D-Bedford Stuyvesant) and Darryl Towns (D-East New York), have put forth legislation that would require police officers – when a life is threatened – to shoot for arms or legs instead of center of mass. They mistakenly have replaced reality with a Hollywood movie.

Why not just demand they shoot the gun out of the hands of the attacker?

The legislation will probably go nowhere, but this is the type of crap lawmaking that would ensure criminals are protected through rules of engagement intimidation. The bad guys – similar to terrorists, Taliban and al-Qaida overseas – need not worry about rules of engagement, but if this law passes, law enforcement in the state of New York will know they could be charged with manslaughter if their shot placement is not “just right” or if they fire one too many rounds.

Law enforcement officers are trained to shoot until the threat is stopped, not to shoot to kill. As it turns out, becoming involved in a two-way shooting gallery is a stressful situation – who would have known? With that stress in mind, law enforcement and civilians trained in self defense are taught to shoot for center mass, the largest part of the body that can be hit effectively and stop the threat. In other words, it’s damn hard to hit a target under stress, so to make it easier to engage and stop the threat, take the easiest shot – center mass.

When a firearm is drawn to stop a threat, three factors come into play before and during the trigger pull. First, a conscience decision to fire and stop the threat has been made. Second, the threat (target) must be available. And third, it must be safe to engage the target. Every round must be accounted for, so why add the additional burden of aiming for an arm or leg during the legal use of lethal force?

Using a firearm to shoot anyone – anywhere on their body – is lethal force.

But in the world of Hollywood movies and the minds of Robinson and Towns, there is some sort of racist component to pulling the trigger of a firearm.

Here are the details for bill number A02952, currently held for consideration as of May 18 in the New York State Legislature. The following is not directly from the bill, rather the official justification attached to the bill listed on the site. Note the racial component.

In recent years, the killing of criminal suspects by police has focused the public attention on how police respond when the suspect is a member of an ethnic minority. The issue is highly controversial, with critics accusing the police of racism while supporters deny any racism and assert that the killings have been in good faith or an unfortunate mistake.

This bill would modify how a police officer responds when he believes he must use his gun to defend himself or another, or to apprehend a suspect who is resisting arrest. It requires the officer to use his weapon with the intent to stop, rather than to kill such a person. There is no justification for terminating another’s life when a less extreme measure may accomplish the same objective.

For example, an officer would have to try to shoot a suspect in the arm or the leg. The bill will not penalize a good faith effort to shoot with this intent, even though the shot may prove fatal. Further, the number of times an officer shoots a person should not exceed the minimal number necessary to stop the person. If one shot accomplishes the purpose, it is neither necessary or appropriate for an officer to empty his barrel. The bill is intended to limit the use of force to the minimal amount needed.

This is dangerous and absurd legislation, and to think we have leaders in our government who think this way is disgusting.

21 replies
  1. Dimsdale
    Dimsdale says:

    Once again, proving two things: 1) liberals do not trust police; and 2) they want the criminals to remain alive so their lawyer supporters get plenty of business.


    Maybe it is time for "take your liberal legislator to work day" for the police….

  2. Bolder63
    Bolder63 says:

    Ok lets say that I am a Police Officer, I'm married and have children.  In the course of my work a criminal points a weapon at me.  He can and will shoot to kill me,  my option is to shoot to wound?

    These legislators have completely lost touch with reality.

    PS.  I'm that cop, I shoot that criminal in the chest 'til my gun is empty and go home to my family.

    • Dimsdale
      Dimsdale says:

      Let's say you are a criminal with little to lose, and know that lefties passed this law.  Wanna bet that you will take advantage of it, both before and after the crime, i.e. you are caught and scream up and down that the cop was trying to kill you with torso shots?


      The criminals are laughing almost as hard as the illegal immigrant in the story preceding this one.

    • dwbrezy
      dwbrezy says:

      Why do the police shoot un–armed minors 10+ times in the back and wait an hour to call for medical help?  The NYPD has a horrible track-record with shooting and KILLING UN-ARMED mentally handicapped and minors, this law makes those who enforce the law ACCOUNTABLE.  I am sorry that the high school educated trigger happy police cannot kill everything in sight.  GROW UP.  If a airline pilot gets scared and makes a decision that kills people, the pilot gets fired.  He or she does not try to defend themselves and say "I was scared."  They loose their jobs or possibly their life.  BTW I myself am a conservative libertarian, but want an accountable police force at the same time.  Is that too much to ask for?

      • Steve McGough
        Steve McGough says:

        Welcome. I'm not familiar with the case you are referring to. Can you provide the link to the story where police in NYC shoot unarmed minors more than 10 times in the back and wait one hour to call medical help? I'm not saying it did not happen, but a quick search yielded no results. If you're going to drop something like that into a comment section on a blog post where the only connection is New York, provide a link at least.

      • dwbrezy
        dwbrezy says:

        My apologies, I had mis-typed.  I did not mean to say anything about minors, that remark would indeed be incorrect.  I will re-phrase, minors are sometimes shot elsewhere in the nation by police.  I have not been able to find anything supporting that the NYPD has any incident like this.

        But the chilling fact remains that there are many line of duty deaths inflicted on police officers by other police officers due to the aggressive tactics.  And the NYPD still has issues with excessive force.… (official NYPD report posted on NY Civil Liberties Union Website).  This is also a link on blotched police raids of un-armed, armed and non-violent offenders.  Zoom into the New York city area.  It has many more cases than other places. (Cato Institute).

        Furthermore, the bill makes assertions to take away peace officers rights in defending themselves in court when a police involved shooting takes place.  It's biggest suggestion actually has to deal with the amount of times an officer should dis-charge their firearm at a suspect.  50 shots for one person is considered excessive by any means. (official NY state website containing actual proposed legislation).

  3. Wind
    Wind says:

    I hope every Peace Officer out there, when threatened, will defend themselves to the fullest. If they miss an arm or leg..well whoops…too damn bad….live to go home.

  4. patriot artisan
    patriot artisan says:

    In order for this kind of shoot scenario to be fully effective you must have hollywood style tire screeching when driving to the crime scene. If screeching tires are not available or not in use at the time, it is recommended that torso shots be employed. If screeching tires are employed at the time of confrontation, limb shots should be used only as a last resort if torso shots are not effective in stopping the perp.  In both scenarios, hand shots are prohibited unless there is a clearly marked bullseye target visible on the perpetrators palm.

    • GdavidH
      GdavidH says:

      In keeping with the hollywood is reality theme, you would also be assured that an arm shot disarms the perp so the human shield he is holding can safely get away, or a leg hit causes the perp to drop his weapon in order to cover the bleeding wound.

       In the words of my "Call of duty" playing older teenager…. " BOOM, head shot"

  5. Army Strong
    Army Strong says:

    I'm not at all surprised by the new Dumbocrats decision to shoot for the Arms or legs !  What I am surprised with is, that it took them all these years to get to this point.  Democrats have and alway's will be about Crime Inc. It's a real high volume money maker for this country, it keeps the lawyers employed, it keeps the judges busy, and it keeps all of the prisons filled  and over filled to capacity $ $ $ , and most of all, it keeps all of the democratic congressmen and senators gainfully  employed.  It won't be to long , before we get to the point, to where we have the law enforcement officers using " Rubber Bullets". This is just another perfect example , of the Dumbocrats  showing there distain for "law and Disorder, the Military,  Immigration laws,  and anything that is just plain Right and Good for this Country!   Remember Nov. 2nd  2010!   These people actually scare me way more then do the  " Terrorists " !  In the words of Donald Rumsfeld……. " MY Goodness"

  6. PatRiot
    PatRiot says:

    Put these legislators in a squad car for a week.  If they don't drop thier plans, fire them for incompetancy and insanity. 

    And I bet you a cup of coffee that the criminals don't care about the racial background of the officer.

  7. Jeremy In Farmington
    Jeremy In Farmington says:

    What we need is a law that mandates legislators have an expertise in the areas they intend to legislate.

    I'll bet not one of those morons has even held a handgun let alone tried to defend themselves with one.  "It's not necessary for an officer to empty his barrel?" Are these people serious?  They don't even have a basic understanding of firearm function.

  8. David R
    David R says:

    Follow the money: It's both parties that like to bring home the bacon in terms of more prisons, maximum sentences to keep them fulll and good will they generate for themselves by being tough on crime. When are we going to get it that as long as pols and their supporters (by this I mean the people who can make a killing building and supplying more prisons,  the worried public  and other self interested parties) want you to think crime is a partisan issue nothing will change. Corporations rule at all levels of government. Bickering between voters only helps them do it with impunity. " Corporatists" a term I first heard used by Ron Paul seems to more clearly identify the true power, and agenda  in government.

  9. Gerry-M
    Gerry-M says:

    Let me see, my wrist is 2.5" wide, my upper arms 4" wide, my chest about 17" wide. Which is easiest to hit? And you should shoot the arm without the gun in it to give him a fair chance to kill you and get away or maybe I should shoot him in the leg. How long do I have to decide?  And if he has no arms and holding a weapon with his feet, then you must shoot him in the eye. If you think what I just said is ridiculous, then this bill is a hundred times more ridiculous.

    Please issue a gun to both Brooklyn Assembly members Annette Robinson and Darryl Towns then give them an area to patrol until they come face to face with a weapon aimed at them and see how they react.

  10. Wyndeward
    Wyndeward says:

    You target the center of mass for two reasons.  One,  you want to hit the target and the torso is the largest target a body presents.  The second reason is that you want to his the target… because every bullet that doesn't hit the target has to go **somewhere**.  Given the choice, lets do everything we can to make sure that the bullets hit the hoods and the cops go home to their families.

  11. robert999
    robert999 says:

    This stupid proposal for shooting an arm or a leg is as lame as building a mosque at ground zero. This is obviously thought up by some D.A.'s that probably never fired a gun.  Now I remember what I hated about NY & will never move back there again. I live in Florida & thank God.

  12. Steve McGough
    Steve McGough says:

    @dwbrezy, so you fabricated a story about NYPD shooting minors, in the back, ten times and waiting one hour to call for medical assistance? Then you say you "mis-typed"? When posting here, you're not in some college course where a student or a professor can get away with that kind of crap. I called you out and you never thought I would. You lied, fabricated a story and then posted some other links to cover yourself.<cite>


    I'll freely admit there are situations concerning raids and LEO-involved shootings reported across the country that may or may not include excessive force, but that is not what this thread is about. This legislation specifically seems to require that LEOs – who find themselves in a situation where they must use lethal force – are tasked by law to shoot an arm or a leg unless they want a manslaughter charge held over their heads. That's just flat out wrong and suggests the lawmakers are either 100 percent against law enforcement, or have watched too many stupid Hollywood movies.

  13. Steve McGough
    Steve McGough says:

    And by the way @dwbrezy, 50 shots fired when only 17 percent are hitting the target is not many rounds when four or five officers are involved. You shoot until the threat is stopped, that's how you are trained.

    The stress these guys and girls are under during these type of situations and the adrenaline pumping is through the roof.

    It certainly would be nice if no firearms (defensive weapons) were needed, but that place does not exist, nor will it exist, nor has it ever existed.

    • dwbrezy
      dwbrezy says:

      Very true only 17% actually hit the target in that incident.   But what is the police to do about 5+ incidents in the last 12 months alone about their own officers being killed by police in shoot-outs?

      Furthermore, our brave men and women of the armed forces sometimes have rules so strict that in the heat of the moment, they are not able to fire at all unless fired upon.  If you ask me our military personnel have it a lot harder than local police.

      And that is true the police are in a heated situation, but they still must account for what they do.  Did you get around to reading the legislation?  What would your reaction be if that were your son or daughter or friend was the one turned into swiss cheese by the police?

  14. Barb
    Barb says:

    I know, why don't we just ask those bad guys first before we shoot them in the arm or foot if that would be okay.   Pul-leeez!!  2010 can't come fast enough.  Vote the libs out!

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