Terror Suspect "Headshots" Debated

By: Kara Tsuboi
By: Kara Tsuboi

Suicide bombers in Israel. Kidnappers and gunmen at a Russian school.
And most recently, London's subway bombing. These examples of worldwide violence is what triggered the International Association of Chiefs of Police to approve of officers shooting terror suspects in the head.
Reno-based anti-terrorism expert, Larry Martines, is part of a similar police organization; he agrees with the guideline, saying that there are few other ways to stop suicide bombers effectively. Some critics, however, have suggested the shootings are now more like assassinations...and leave too much room for error, like we saw in the London shooting of the Brazilian man.
Right now, most police officers are simply trained to shoot to stop or neutralize...which doesn't mean aiming for the head. Of course, accuracy depends on the shooter, the weapon, the distance from target and whether or not it's moving.
Along with shooting the head, the new guidelines also state that officers do not need to be under an imminent threat, like before. And, they don't have to wait until a suspected bomber first makes a move.


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