Shooting To Wound Is Hollywood Hoopla

Shooting To Wound

If you’ve ever wondered about the viability of shooting to wound, let any ideas about the viability of doing so be hereby dispelled. If you must shoot, shoot to stop the threat – if that means your assailant dies, they die, and if they live, they live. If a situation has unfolded that requires use of a firearm to save yourself or someone else from death or near dismemberment, shooting to wound is a terrible idea.

Only Some Wounds Are Disabling

Shooting To Wound

Not all wounds are disabling and handgun bullets don’t do as much damage as one might think. The majority of gunshot victims survive, though it partially depends on where they are shot and whether they are able to get medical care shortly afterward.

There are only a few parts of the human body that, once done the trauma bullets are capable of dishing out, are totally disabling. Most effective of all is the brainstem, and specifically the medulla oblongata. The medulla is the base of the brainstem and more or less the “on-off switch” for existence.

A direct hit to heart or lungs can prove fatal, but not always and may not instantly stop a person. They may keep fighting for minutes before succumbing.

A wound to the limbs may not slow a person down much. Someone shooting a handgun may simply switch to their non-dominant hand if their dominant hand or arm is wounded. Leg wounds can be fatal if the femoral artery is damaged, but may also be mere flesh wounds.

Outside of the medulla oblongata, the two most reliable parts of the anatomy to wound that will stop anyone are the pelvis and the kneecaps. These parts of the anatomy will curtail ambulatory capacity, but a mere wound to the thigh or calf will not.

Accuracy Under Stress Is Severely Compromised

Shooting to wound is possible on paper, but doing so requires putting a bullet in the exact right place, which requires accuracy. Accuracy under the stress of being in a situation where gunfire is required is going to be severely impaired. Improving your shot groups is certainly good, and is valuable for self-defense, but not to the degree you might think.

Under extreme stress, tunnel vision sets in so that focus is almost entirely on what is essentially right in front of you. Peripheral vision declines to nil. As a result, a person who could otherwise shoot all three leaves of a clover at the range will struggle to hit the broadside of a dog.

Look into statistics about officer hit rates. Periodically, major police departments publish data about officer-involved shootings; most departments average a hit rate around 20 percent. In other words, the professionals only make 2 out of 10 shots under stress.

As a result, trying to hit the kneecap – about the size of the top of a baseball and obscured by clothing – or the pelvis is a problematic proposition at best. (So is trying to hit the medulla.) The aforementioned femoral artery is about the size of a long, narrow carrot. This is why most people train or are trained to hit center mass. The chest is much larger, and while not instantly disabling…will still have a dramatic effect if perforated.

Thus, trying to hit such targets under stress is not likely to result in success. It’s not that people haven’t, but that it’s so unlikely that it’s just not worth it.

There Is No Such Thing As Non-Deadly Deadly Force

Shooting at someone is use of deadly force, period. Using it is only justified if confronted with a genuine threat to life and limb. While it may be humanitarian to try and use it in a non-lethal manner, it could be used against you.

Whether you’ll face charges for a defensive shooting comes down to an economy of scale, which includes the exact circumstances, local police, prosecuting attorneys and a grand jury. If you use lethal force, you may be called upon to justify it, and shooting to wound under the auspices of trying to avoid lethal potential could raise the question of whether lethal force was warranted.

“The defendant didn’t feel threatened enough to kill this person,” a prosecutor might say, “and according to the laws of our state, use of a firearm is not justifiable unless you have a reasonable belief of lethal harm or serious injury. If the defendant feared for their life, they would have shot to kill. The reason why the defendant didn’t shoot to kill is they didn’t fear for their life, which means this is not self-defense; this is attempted murder.”

Or something to that effect.

This is also the reason you don’t fire warning shots. If you have to shoot, shoot to stop the threat, not to wound. If you are facing a legitimate threat, the justification to shoot them dead is already there.

$599.99 (Reg.$ 799.99)
No Code Needed
Sig Sauer P365 9mm Pistol 12 Rd RTT Tacpac, Coyote

Sig Sauer P365 9mm Pistol 12 Rd RTT Tacpac, Coyote

The award-winning P365 has redefined the micro-compact pistol category, quickly becoming one of the most coveted firearms in the industry.

$449.99 (Reg. $549.99)
No Code Needed
Smith & Wesson M&p Shield Ez 9mm Pistol With Manual Safety, Black - 12436

Smith & Wesson M&P Shield EZ 9mm Pistol With Manual Safety, Black

The next evolution of the M&P Shield EZ pistol, the M&P9 Shield EZ encompasses all of the M&P Shield EZ features, now in the powerful 9mm caliber.

No Code Needed
3 Pack Of Blem Psa Stealth Ar-15 Lowers

3 Pack Of BLEM PSA Stealth AR-15 Lowers

These forged lowers are quality made using material is 7075-T6 and are marked "CAL MULTI" to accommodate most builds. The finish is Black Hardcoat Anodize per MIL-8625 Type 3 class 2.

1 2 3 17
Previous articleWaffle House Employee Fired for Firing a Warning Shot
Next articleTransitioning from Handgun to Hand-to-Hand: A Wakeup Call
Sam Hoober is Contributing Editor for Alien Gear Holsters, where he writes about gun accessories, gun safety, open and concealed carry tips. He also contributes a bi-weekly column for Daily Caller. In his free time, Sam enjoys camping, hunting and spending time at the gun range as often as possible.
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Jesse Mitchell


Jesse Mitchell


Jesse Mitchell

I’ve generated $84 ,000 at this point these days working on the net and consequently I am a full time university student . I’m using a business online project I observed and consequently I’ve generated such type of decent money . It’s really simple to use and also I’m just so happy that I found out about that . The potential within this is never ending . Here’s what I do>>> FL-Y.COM/3kz7


Read following report to determine how an individual parent was able to generate $89,844/year in her spare time on her laptop or computer without selling anything>>> FL-Y.COM/3m17

Jake Powell

Look over following report to determine how a single mother was able to generate $89,844/year in her free time on her PC without selling anything>>> FL-Y.COM/3m1c

Brett Sullivan

Look at following article to understand how an individual mom was able to acquire $89,844/year in her extra time on her personal pc without selling anything>>> FL-Y.COM/3m24

James Cox

Go through following information to figure out how an individual parent was able to acquire $89,844/year in her extra time on her computer or laptop without selling anything>>>FL-Y.COM/3m24

Marie Barnett

Check out following article to learn how an individual parent was able to make $89,844/year in her extra time on her personal pc without selling anything>>>SECURE88.WEEBLY.COM

Wade Cox

I was paid $104k in last 12 months by doing an online job a­­n­­d I was able to do it by wor­king part time f­o­r few hours daily. I was following an earning opportunity I stumbled upon online and I am thrilled that i made so much money. It’s so user-friendly a­­n­­d I am just so grateful that i found this. This is what i did… STATICTAB.COM/gptmadp


I’ve made $104k in last 12 months by working online a­­n­­d I was able to do it by w­o­r­k­i­n­g in my own time f­­o­­r 3 or sometimes more hours /daily. I used work opportunity I found online and I am so happy that i was able to make so much extra income. It’s really newbie-friendly a­­n­­d I’m so grateful that i found it. Here’s what I did… STATICTAB.COM/x4biwaa