Real Gunfights: Quick Draw Reaction Time

RockSpringsCantrell2

Michael Bane(CLICK LINK HERE) alerts us to this article (CLICK LINK HERE) from commentary originated by the BBC about gunfight reaction times. (CLICK LINK HERE)

(Whew! Got that?)


Coincidentally, without any reference to the research, the same topic was covered in a murder trial in Rock Springs, Wyoming in 1978.

Attorney Gerry Spence, in the defense of his client Lawman Ed Cantrell, with the aid of legendary gunfighter Bill Jordan, demonstrated in open court it is possible to draw and fire against a fully presented unholstered and cocked revolver before the assailant has time to pull the trigger.

I leave it to the wise among us to explain what this means about real gunfights and quick draws. For Ed Cantrell it meant acquittal.

An excellent account of the trial can be found in Season 3, Episode 37 of the A&E Documentary Series CITY CONFIDENTIAL. (CLICK LINK HERE)

Tantalizing Excerpt from the BBC:

The Gunfighter’s Dilemma
By Tom Feilden

In a series of “laboratory gunfights” – with pistols replaced by electronic pressure pads – researchers found that participants who reacted to their opponent’s movement were on average 21 milliseconds faster to the draw.

Professor Andrew Welchman, who lead the research, puts this down to the “quick and dirty” nature of instinctive responses.

One response to “Real Gunfights: Quick Draw Reaction Time

  1. Back in the 1950’s Glenn Ford starred in a western titled “The Fastest Gun Alive”…which was kind of fitting,actually…since at the time he pretty much was….he could clear leather and shoot in .6 of a second.

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