Do you have a weapon light mounted on any of your rifles or handguns? If so you’re a bad person. At least that’s what I get from the Denver Post’s recent article disguised as a study that attempts to link weapon lights to negligent police shootings:
In a deposition, Flanagan expressed his remorse and made a prediction.
“I don’t want anyone to ever sit in a chair I’m in right now,” he said. “Think about the officers that aren’t as well trained, officers that don’t take it as seriously, and you put them in a pressure situation, another accident will happen. Not if, but will.”
Flanagan was right. Three months after the October 2010 shooting in Plano, a 76-year-old man took a bullet in the stomach from a New York police officer trying to switch on the same flashlight model.
At least three other people in the U.S. over the past nine years have been shot accidentally by police officers with gun-mounted flashlights, an investigation by The Denver Post found. Two victims were fellow officers.
In Colorado, Denver’s police chief banned the use of tactical flashlights with switches below the trigger guard after two officers accidentally fired their guns last year.
One of the officers may have shot a suspect when his finger slipped from the flashlight switch to the trigger, firing a bullet into a car window of the fleeing driver.
How your finger could slip off of a light activation button located on the grip is positively beyond me. But reading through this article one is supposed to take away how dangerous weapon mounted lights are. In reality the article demonstrates that police departments provide poor training for offices.
I’m a firm believer that you should become intimately familiar with any weapon you plan to carry. You should know how everything on it operates normally, how it will likely fail, and how to recover from any failures. If you add accessories to a weapon you plan to carry you should know how to properly use them. Any failure due to inadequate training isn’t an indicator that the equipment is faulty, it’s an indicator that the training is faulty.
If police departments are having problems with officers and weapon mounted lights it demonstrates that those departments really suck at teaching their officers how to use weapons with attached lights. In my opinion it also demonstrates the poor quality of the officers since weapon mounted lights aren’t fucking rocket science. On lights with with a switch in front of the trigger guard I guess I can kind of see a scenario where a very inept person could negligently discharge the firearm when trying to activate the light. But I can perceive of no scenario where a light with a grip mounted switch could lead to a negligent discharge when the user went to activate the light. The trigger finger doesn’t even touch the switch. I think you would literally have to be retarded to fire a gun when you were really trying to press the grip mounted light switch.