Let's get some facts straight about pistols, if you're considering one for home defense.
First, let's talk about accuracy. Face it, pistols aren't accurate much beyond seven yards. And even then, unless you've practiced often and are familiar with your gun, you're likely to tug on the trigger and flinch. If you're right-handed, a tug and flinch trigger-pull will send your bullet to the left of your target. You'll probably miss what you're shooting at all together. So where did your bullet go?
In just about every cop television show or movie, somebody's pulling a trigger. Most people think cops are good shots. Bhwhahaha! Not. In fact, most cops are lousy shots, and they shoot more often than you do. In 2008, the Rand Corporation conducted a study of New York City cop shootings, review processes and training. In doing so, they looked at, among other things, NYC cop shootings from 1998-2006, both where nobody was shooting back and where there was a gunfight. Rand Corporation NYC Cop Shooting Report On page 42 of that report they state that the average gunfight involved 11.1 shots fired, and a hit-rate of 18%. At distances of seven yards or less, the hit rate leaped to a whopping 37%.
Wow! Guess if you hear gunfire you'd be smart to duck.
Barrel length influences accuracy, as do the type of sights used and trigger pull. Of course, if it's dark and you can't see your pistol's sights -- night sights only help in low-light situations, and they glow less bright over time -- barrel length and sights won't help your aim much. And most home invasions occur at night. So you may not know where your barrel is pointing.
Snub nose revolvers, like the one pictured above, are notorious for inaccuracy, even during daylight hours. The reason: a short sight line along the barrel. The same goes for so-called pocket pistols, like the Baby Glock, the Model 26, pictured below.
NYC cops are issued Glocks with a longer barrel length, usually the Model 22, pictured below. Note the longer barrel length.
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