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    Greg and Beth

    the political and personal musings of two
    mountaineers living in west-central Florida
     
    Strange and Stupid Comment
    Gregory Morris, 6/29/07 9:55:11 am
    Here is a bit of a followup on a previous post.

    Ok, this dude seems pretty off. But the doctor decided that he is not a danger to himself or anyone else.
    Found with the weapons, 651 bullets including hollow-points, "we don't have much that we wear thatís going to stop that," says Harrington.
    Yet another amazing quote from a seemingly clueless cop. I'm not entirely well versed on ballistics and such, so correct me if I am wrong. It is my understanding that hollow points are actually less likely to penetrate body armor. The ones I keep loaded in my (already wimpy) .380 are advertised as "less likely to penetrate a wall", so I assume that would also hold true for a Kevlar vest. It seems that the media, once again, was jumping on the chance to demonize "hollow point" bullets, leaning on a connotation of "cop killers".

    Now, I have a hard time believing that the cop actually thinks this... it is easier for me to believe the author of the story took his quote out of context, and he was actually referring to to the rifle ammunition or something. Of course, I try to be an optimist.

    The point of the story is that this guy wants his guns back. Well, legally, I don't see how the cops can not give them back. He didn't commit a crime. He was given a clean bill of mental health. I say give 'em back.

    [Comments are closed after a month.]

    Re: Strange and Stupid
    Armed Canadian, 6/29/07 11:10:01 am
    I'd love to know where the "hollow points pierce body armor" meme comes from.

    You are correct: hollow point rounds are less likely to penetrate armor. It sounds like Officer Harrington is clueless, misinformed or being deliberately deceptive about the capabilities of hollow points.

    HPs are less likely to penetrate a vest because they contact more surface area than a FMJ round and because of they design, as soon as they hit an object denser than air (such as Kevlar or flesh), their tendency is to expand, further increasing their surface area. This expansion results in the impact energy being dissipated over a larger area than a round that is pointy and hard. Since vests work by transfer impact energies across their surfaces laterally to below the threshold of penetration energy, the larger coverage of an HP round means it will be easier to stop.

    Same principles apply to flesh and blood. The expansion of the round in tissue spreads the impact energy out rather than concentrating it. Since flesh, like Kevlar, has an energy that once exceeded, allows the round to pass through, HP rounds are more likely to stop in flesh for the same reasons as a vest is more likely to stop them.

    Keep impact energies high related to a round's impact surface area and it will cut through a vest or a person like butter.

    HP rounds are not "cop killers". A high velocity rifle round (any rifle round basically) is a "cop killer". Wait, correction, any man firing a weapon is a "cop killer" but you get the point. Small and fast will always win over big and slow in piercing armor.

    Why don't they teach cops basic ballistic and vest fundamentals? I'm obviously paraphrasing the physics involved but the concepts are easily understood and applied once you know how a vest works. And what HP round are designed to do (expand and fragment). And so on.

    It doesn't help that the media believes the crap about HP round being "armor piercers". Trust me, if I am in armor, please shoot me with an HP round. Without armor, I'd rather get hit with non-HP. Funny, eh?

    Matt
    < "More Gun Violence, and a New Law"
    "The iPhone" >


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