DOCJT Hosts Advanced Pistol Course
Brandon Wright with Smith & Wesson observes an officer during the advanced pistol training course at the Boonesboro range on Tuesday, Sept. 10. The course content focused on student assessment, acceptable sight procedures, target-focused shooting, trigger management and hand speed. (Photo by Michael A. Moore)
Refining shooting skills is necessary for any law enforcement officer. To that end, the Department of Criminal Justice Training hosted Smith & Wesson and Bud’s Police Supply to conduct two four-hour advanced pistol classes at the Boonesboro range on Tuesday. The course brought officers from as far away as Ashland and Bowling Green.
Course content focused on student assessment, acceptable sight procedures, target-focused shooting, trigger management and hand speed.
“We focus on the fundamentals of shooting, but we take them outside the box of common teaching,” said Brandon Wright with Smith & Wesson. “We talk about slapping the trigger (where the shooter takes his or her finger off the trigger each time before engaging again) and target-focused shooting.”
Wright brings to the table credibility of being a former Kentucky State trooper and the many situations he experienced.
“I’ve worked the road and been in situations where you’re telling (the suspect) to ‘Show me your hands, show me your hands, show me your hands,’” Wright recalled. “The threat always dictates whether we’re going to have to pull the trigger or not. One of the goals is to provide as close to real-world scenarios as possible.”
The training differs from traditional teachings by being target-focused with a real-world feel.
“Our vision is always focused on (the threat),” Wright said. “In typical shooting, what we’re teaching is front sight focus and slow, steady trigger press. However, in real life, when it happens, we’re target focused, and we’re slapping the trigger.”
Law enforcement officers typically fall back on training and experience. Tuesday’s training is designed the help officers when they face a critical situation.
“The first time we experience something is when our life is in danger, or someone else is in danger,” Wright said. “We may not perform to the best of our ability. So, if we can experience it in training and understand what our limitations are here, when we get out on the street, (officers) will rise to the occasion.”
One of the benefits of training is the ability to think and react fast, Georgetown Police Sgt. Joe Payton said.
“The biggest benefit I’ve taken away so far is getting our guys to speed up,” he said.