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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The Mystery of the Loaded "Unloaded Gun"

This is Steven Petrick posting.

There is a plot line that has been used several times where in a bad guy (I cannot recall a case where a good guy is the receiving person) is handed a supposedly unloaded automatic pistol and begins shooting people.

I have always been dumbfounded by this.

There are numerous flaws in this.

One is that you should never hand an automatic to someone that has a clip/magazine in it to start with.

But there is also the problem that a fully loaded magazine is a noticeable weight. And it changes the balance of the pistol noticeably when you handle it.

The upshot is that any police officer, bailiff, deputy, or soldier familiar with pistols would notice those two facts before they handed the weapon over.

And a weapon in an "evidence bag" is not going to have a clip/magazine in it at all. If it did, that alone would be a major signal that something is not right. The weapon would never have been put into an evidence bag in that condition.

But the plot of an "unloaded automatic" being handed to someone by someone who should know the difference between the feel of an empty weapon and a loaded weapon has been used quite often in the entertainment industry.