OCTOBER 21, 2021

USA Shooting juniors return stateside with 21 medals, including four new Junior World Champions from Junior World Championships in Lima, Peru held September 28-October 9, 2021.
Orchid LLC and co-host Williams Mullen’s Firearms Industry Group are excited to announce the 2022 Firearms Industry Conference will be held April 25–27, 2022 in Atlanta, Ga.
Rock River Arms is pleased to return to the NASGW Expo this year and encourages buyers to stop by booth 757 to learn more about show specials, RRA’s precision-built bolt action rifles, 1911’s, and more.

High Speed Gear offers additional mounting options for the popular Navigator Tech Pouch to pair with the High Speed Gear Core Plate Carrier.
We all like to carry spare ammunition when in the field, and Galco offers several great options for hunters. All are handcrafted from rich, premium Latigo dark havana leather for both beauty and long-term durability.
Night Fision, a leader in advanced tritium insertion solutions, is pleased to announce that Optics Ready Stealth Sights are now available for the Springfield Armory Hellcat OSP.

Beginning now through December 31,2021, retail purchasers of any new 5.56/.223 Rock River Arms rifle purchased from a retail dealer will be eligible for five free magazines ($80.00 value).
CMC Triggers Corp. announced they will be partnering with Laura Burgess Marketing to expand awareness of the CMC Triggers brand through press and writer relations, social media, and other marketing initiatives.
BPI Outdoors / Bergara has been recognized by the NASGW and POMA as a top nominee for the NASGW-POMA Caliber Award for “Best New Rifle” with the Bergara BMR Carbon Rifle.

Henry Repeating Arms is expanding its operations with an 84,000/sf building on 13.5 acres in Ladysmith, Wisconsin. Located less than an hour away from the company headquarters in Rice Lake, Wisconsin, the new facility will employ over 100 people in the Rusk County area within three years.
The Michigan Knife Rights Act, HB 4066, was passed by the Senate with a bipartisan vote of 25-11. This is Knife Rights' signature Knife Law Preemption bill which passed the House earlier this year, but because the Senate made a minor change in the bill, it now goes back to the House for a concurrence vote.
Springfield Armory announces the release of their new patented LevAR™ charging handle, a radically innovative AR accessory designed to ensure you can quickly and easily extract a stuck case from the chamber.

Apex Tactical Specialties announces the release of two new Failure Resistant Extractors, one for the Sig Sauer P320 model pistols in 9mm, .40S&W and .357SIG, and one for the slim frame Glock models 43, 43X and 48.
According to statistics reported to the FBI, 60,105 law enforcement officers were assaulted while performing their duties in 2020. Data regarding these assaults were released in the Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted portion of the FBI’s Law Enforcement Data Explorer. Based on these reports, there were 4,071 more officers assaulted in 2020 than the 56,034 assaults reported in 2019.
SilencerCo’s new “American Gun” episode challenges the common stigma that guns and mental illness do not mix. “American Gun: The Advocate” dives into the story of Genevieve, a girl who struggles with severe OCD and anxiety. To the surprise of many, recreational shooting is the one thing that quiets the chaos of her mind.

EOTECH’s XPS2 is an operator-grade Holographic Weapon Sight built for close-quarter engagements and fast-moving targets. It's only 3.8 inches long and weighs only 9 ounces.


While everyone readily engages in yarns about gear, few seem to be ready to take classes about the aftermath of critical incidents. Winning the fight on the street is the first stage of the match; being ready for what happens afterwards is about health and an ability to explain your actions to investigators.

Lately, people have been on social media discussing what’s referred to as “range theatrics” and, strangely, the aftermath of a self-defense event. A lot is lost in these discussions and really requires some classroom time and some reading to sort out. Massad Ayoob’s company, Massad Ayoob Group, is one excellent source for this kind of training. There are other resources, online and in class rooms, if you’ll search them out. I began this kind of discussion while training in-service personnel and new hires at our agency, as well as briefing Criminal Justice majors at the local university.

One aspect that’s troublesome includes post-operational disturbances of the physical and psychological sort. There are potential problems that may have an impact on “the story” you tell – and your credibility.

A critical event of this type is, literally, a near-death experience. If you were compelled to use (or contemplate the use of) deadly force, it’s because you were facing an imminent threat of extinction. When suddenly confronted with your own impending mortality, a number of distortive cognitive effects can take place.

Not all of these things happen to everyone and there’s no intent here to program your response. It’s more a warning that these things can arise. Being aware of them is smart money; failure to appreciate the potential perceptual distortion that can arise due to the body alarm reaction can lead to disbelief by investigators and triers of the fact.

Knowing the problem exists means you can mitigate it – legitimately.

One reported perceptual distortion is one of the perception of time. Called “tachypsychia” – the “speed of the mind” – it is reported in a couple of ways. One often heard tale is “everything went into slow motion. It’s as if I couldn’t move fast enough to prevent getting shot.”

You’re actually moving faster than you’ve ever moved. If you survive the experience, you may well feel the muscular and joint pain associated with “going from zero to 60 in 9 seconds” over the next few days.

It seems that some interviewees who experience the time slow-down effect reported that they could see things were going down the wrong path; there wasn’t real surprise that there was about to be a fight. There may have been surprise that the offender was armed, but this effect doesn’t seem to be the home of the ‘unprepared.’

One way to prepare is force-on-force training. Competently done, you receive an admittedly weakened dose of the stress of deadly force encounters to build up your mental/physical 'immune system' for the real thing -- especially if you have to write reports after each scenario. Above, the excellent indoor simulators at Gunsite provide that service. Below, a roleplayer is prepared for a rookie-school car stop simulation.

That seems to happen in the opposite extreme: “It happened so fast! One moment, he was yelling and acting crazy and the next thing I know, he had knocked me down and was over me, sticking me with the knife.”

It’s the “I didn’t even realize I was going to be attacked” moment. And, in a real-world, 360° environment, with other people and other distractions, it’s not a hit on the victim that he or she was taken unprepared. There’s a lot to keep track of.

This time distortion tends to be a visual phenomenon. The aural analog is auditory exclusion. This takes a number of forms. You don’t hear shouted warnings. Your gun sounds impotent – like a popgun or a squib while your opponent's weapon sounds like a cannon. Some victim officers reported that they saw the other gun fire – could see sparks, some smoke – and didn’t hear a sound. Why would that be?

Because the brain, having detected the sounds of gunshots in the past, didn’t have the need to fill in that information. It took cognitive resources from that receptor and moved them elsewhere.

The “tunnel vision” that some focus on in the range-world “scan” after shooting is actually an instinctive focus on the threat. It’s truly instinctive, a survival mechanism. The problem that focus phenomenon fails to address is flanking assaults and other potential victims wandering into the middle of the battle. It also can create a perceived increase in visual acuity, seen in some reports as “I could see the hollow-points of the bullets in the chamber of his revolver.” In the same reports, you’ll see the officer didn’t notice a pedestrian twenty feet behind and to the side of the attacker.

Hence “tunnel vision.” Some report the severity such that there appeared a darkened ring or a loss of peripheral focus around the threat.

Finally, there’s cognitive dissonance, not the kind that the current ‘blue checks’ allege on Twitter, but a cascade of information that jumbles the re-telling of the tale. This can present – and often does – as recalling the individual events of the encounter in a different order from which they happened.

Have you ever processed a drunk driver, got all the arrest, seizure, chem testing, booking and ID completed, then sit down to write a report … and find that you got some part of the process out of order?

It happened to me. In the era of the word processing computer, that was no big deal. When we hand-wrote or dictated reports, it was a big deal. “Oh, yeah – I better put that in or it’ll look like I didn’t have cause to arrest.”

Well, that happens in critical incident reporting/interviews too. It’s real and it should be expected.

Cognitive dissonance can also appear as an apparent over-concern with a trivial matter that occurred during a critical incident. The story often told is of an officer who’d been in a fight for his life that ended with the death of his attacker. The officer, shaken and injured, looked down and touched the knee of the rather expensive uniform trousers which had been ripped in the fight.

“Damn,” he was reported to have said. “It’s hard enough to get uniforms out of this outfit and now I lost another pair of pants.”

To say that while standing in proximity of the corpse of the person you had to kill so you could stay alive could be – and likely will be – repeated in a way to make you appear a callous SOB.

These psycho-physiological changes affect your perception of the event – but don’t affect the crime scene. The apparent inconsistencies they create can affect your credibility throughout the phases of investigation.

Remember the phases of “second-guessing” if you are part of a police agency:

The department investigation – in policy, out of policy, or criminal referral;

District Attorney - criminal investigation;

State litigation- criminal (e.g., manslaughter) and civil (e.g., wrongful death), and

Federal – criminal (FBI, civil rights case) and civil litigation (violation of civil rights under color of lawful authority).

Knowing how your mind and body works and how that function can affect your report of the incident is just another phase of “winning the fight.”

-- Rich Grassi

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