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TX:Holes in DHS Houston Air Rifle and SWAT Story
Gun Watch ^ | 23 February, 2013 | Dean Weingarten

Posted on 02/22/2014 3:26:02 PM PST by marktwain


On Monday, 17 February, a soldier in an unfinished development in Harris County near Houston was confronted by a swat team, an armored vehicle, and accusations of criminal mischief, because he was practicing with an air rifle.

KHOU.com reports that an off-duty homeland security agent was looking at one of the unfinished houses (that had been damaged by vandals).  The agent is said to claim that one of the windows was shattered.    The agent then looked out, saw a man with a rifle, and called dispatch.   That became an "active shooter event".

 An off-duty Homeland Security agent – and potential buyer -- just happened to be inside that house when the glass shattered right next to him.
He looked out and saw the soldier holding what he thought was a telescopically high-powered rifle so he called the sheriff.

"An "active shooter" call dropped," said Captain Jay Coons with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

The response was that the swat team and numerous police poured into the neighborhood and approached the soldier's house in full battle gear with weapons at the ready.  They found an air rifle and some pellets on the porch.  The agent has not been identified.

The soldier, Ramon  Hooks, disputes the off duty agent's interpretation of events.  Here are his comments:
“Kinda crazy! It all blew up over an air rifle.  It was real intense,” the 25-year-old man said.

Hooks said he had been target practicing at the house next door to his home when his dog got out and he went to look for her.  Hooks said he even bumped into the Homeland Security Agent who was house shopping in the neighborhood. “He was calm. I said, ‘Had you seen my dog?’ He said. ‘Yes, she ran around the back way,’” Hooks said.  


Shortly afterward, the federal agent called for help, saying shots had just been fired into a house he was walking through.  Deputies confronted Hooks and then retrieved the air rifle and pellets Hooks left on his front porch. They said there’s no evidence the men spoke before that call for help.
It is not clear what is being implied by the above paragraph.  How would Hooks  know exactly when the call for help was made?  Perhaps the agents are trying to imply that if the agent saw Hooks unarmed, he would not have made the call to dispatch?   I do not see how they have a clear time-line on when the men spoke and when the call from the agent was made. 

Hooks disputes the claim that he shot a window, either deliberately or through a ricochet.  From khou.com:
 Hooks, a US Army specialist who served in Iraq, said he wasn’t aiming at the house where the federal agent had been. He said the target next to that house was an old one. “If I felt it ricocheted over here I would’ve said so,” he said.
 KHOU shows some of the broken windows on the house in question.  Most of the windows appear to be broken by vandalism.  Only two show a hole that might have been caused by  small projectiles, and they do not look much like holes in glass that I have seen caused by small, fast, projectiles.   Here is one of the images in question:


The framing is likely .5 of an inch in width, which would put this hole at about 1.5 inches in diameter.

Here is the reporter pointing to what appears to be the above hole:


Here is another picture of a hole in glass found at the site:



Notice the size of the holes.  The framing appears to be about 1/2 of an inch.  The paper label on the inside, would typically be 3/4 of an inch wide.  The windows panes seem to be close to a standard 12 inches square.  That puts this hole about an inch in diameter.

I have seen a fair number of bullet holes in glass over my life, and these seem rather anomalous.  Holes from high speed projectiles tend to have numerous radial cracks and concentric rings.   There are only a few radial cracks in these pictures, and hints of concentric rings.  They do not seem consistent with holes from an air rifle to me.  

Here is a test that was done with an air rifle on glass.  It is not quite the same, because the glass was taped to help preserve the fracturing patterns:

The concentric pattern in this image appears to be about 3 inches in diameter.  This is closer to what I would expect for damage to glass from an air rifle.  Here is the YouTube video that shows damage from a few types of pellets:

Pellet holes in glass

The holes at the site, from my experience, might be made from a slingshot and marbles, or pebbles. 

Having said that, there are many types of glass, and there is considerable difference in air rifles and pellets.  The windows appear to be double paned, which further complicates the matter.   From video of a target at the site, it appears that the air rifle in question is either a .177 or a .22 caliber, by far the most common air rifle calibers.   As both the rifle and pellets are in custody, it should be easy to do a test on a sample of the glass in question and see if the damage is consistent with what was observed at the window that the agent says was smashed.  It is unlikely that a .177 or .22 caliber pellet would smash a window, but they can certainly put a hole in  it.  Damage from a ricochet would be less because of the energy used in the initial impact.

Forensic evidence could determine if a vandal with a slingshot flung a marble or rounded stone at the window with the off duty agent behind it, or if an air rifle pellet could have done the damage.   Perhaps the soldier had the bad luck to be visible from the vantage point of the agent when the agent looked out.  It would have been easy to draw a false conclusion.  A simple forensic test should be able to determine if the damage witnessed by the agent is consistent with the air rifle and pellets recovered at the scene. 

Based only on the evidence gathered by the news crew, my experience is that the damage does not look like that done by an small caliber air rifle.


©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch


TOPICS: Government; Science; Society
KEYWORDS: airrifle; banglist; swat; tx
Perhaps other freepers have experience with air rifle pellets impacting glass and can shed light on the above holes.
1 posted on 02/22/2014 3:26:03 PM PST by marktwain
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To: marktwain

Idiocy abounds in America these days. If an “agent” cannot discern an air rifle, good grief.


2 posted on 02/22/2014 3:37:18 PM PST by F15Eagle (1Jn4:15;5:4-5,11-13;Mt27:50-54;Mk15:33-34;Jn3:17-18,6:69,11:25,14:6,20:31;Ro10:8-11;1Tm2:5-6;Ti3:4-7)
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To: marktwain

I have a couple dozen air rifles.

A lot would depend on caliber and power. It sounds like he was using pellets instead of BBs.

Typically they put a tiny hole in glass but I could see some making holes similar to those shown. If I had to guess tho it would be something larger made them and like they suggested, a slingshot would be a prime suspect.

I remember a group at a retreat had a kid who broke 200 windows in one night. Some were totally shattered but most had just the tiny hole of the BB.

I think the most likely result would be a cracked window without a hole at all.


3 posted on 02/22/2014 3:38:22 PM PST by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: marktwain

Haven’t seen much glass shattered by air rifle pellets but have seen many windows vandalized by kids throwing stones or using slingshots. That’s what the damage appears to be.

Is “Homeland Security” becoming populated by SOF wantabe pussies? Jeesh!


4 posted on 02/22/2014 3:38:32 PM PST by House Atreides
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To: marktwain
An off-duty Homeland Security agent ..

That alone is enough to impart more than a whiff of bullshit to all that follows.

5 posted on 02/22/2014 3:38:41 PM PST by tomkat
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To: marktwain

I shot a pellet into a window. One of those old style 9 panel windows so the actual glass surface area is small thus tighter cohesiveness. Anyway I would say the hole is similar. Very round, near perfect round, with spidering and crevacing. The hole is about right, though they show much greater spidering and crevacing.

However, that’s not what a store front window would look like. They would have a very small entry and very large exit pattern.


6 posted on 02/22/2014 3:38:57 PM PST by Usagi_yo (Standardization is an Evolutionary dead end.)
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To: marktwain

Well, someone shot an upstairs window of mine. Clean hole. No cracking at all.


7 posted on 02/22/2014 3:39:38 PM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
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To: Usagi_yo

So how large was the hole you observed? Was it a half inch, quarter inch, one inch in diameter? I think much depends on the thickness of the glass and how it is made.


8 posted on 02/22/2014 3:43:57 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: Dr. Bogus Pachysandra

Any idea as to th caliber of the projectile? How large was the hole?


9 posted on 02/22/2014 3:45:39 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

The top ones don’t look like BB or pellet holes... don’t ask me how I know this.


10 posted on 02/22/2014 3:47:40 PM PST by Tijeras_Slim
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To: marktwain

The inside pane is the one with the round hole. That would mean the pellet would have to have shattered the outside pane and THEN made an almost perfect round hole. No way, no how. Looks more to me that it was shot from the inside.


11 posted on 02/22/2014 3:47:51 PM PST by raybbr (Obamacare needs a death panel.)
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To: raybbr

It is possible that the outer pane was already broken, or a hard projectile, such as a round rock or marble could have shattered the outer pane and holed the inner pane. At least that seems possible to me.


12 posted on 02/22/2014 3:51:35 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: raybbr

Both of the round holes show the outer glass broken with much larger holes than the inner one, also the outer glass breaks appear to be irregular.

Not sure that it means a great deal, but if both were broken at the same time, then it does not look like air rifle damage at first glance.

You really have to try to duplicate the circumstance to see what sort of damage that air rifle with those pellets would do. Even then, I am not sure that you could prove that the soldier did the shooting.

Air rifles are very common.


13 posted on 02/22/2014 3:55:38 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

” How large was the hole?”

I’d say about .22 caliber,,, but it only penetrated the outside pane, not the inside. When I replace it, maybe i’ll find the projectile.


14 posted on 02/22/2014 3:56:12 PM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
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To: Dr. Bogus Pachysandra

The large size of these holes makes them suspect to me. They appear to be at least an inch in diameter.


15 posted on 02/22/2014 3:58:05 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

“The large size of these holes makes them suspect to me.”

Yup!


16 posted on 02/22/2014 4:05:40 PM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
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To: F15Eagle

Idiocy abounds in America these days. If an “agent” cannot discern an air rifle, good grief.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Especially “a telescopically high-powered rifle “


17 posted on 02/22/2014 4:05:43 PM PST by loungitude (The truth hurts.)
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To: marktwain
that an off-duty homeland security agent was looking at one of the unfinished houses (that had been damaged by vandals). The agent is said to claim that one of the windows was shattered. The agent then looked out, saw a man with a rifle, and called dispatch.

Something doesn't pass the smell test.

that an off-duty homeland security agent was looking at one of the unfinished houses (that had been damaged by vandals).

Was he OFF DUTY and touring the home?

Why was he touring an UNFINISHED home?
Especially one damaged by vandals?

Was he looking at one of the unfinished houses (that had been damaged by vandals), because it was damaged by vandals?
If he was, then he really wasn't off duty.

Why would DHS be looking at a vandalized house?

18 posted on 02/22/2014 4:10:09 PM PST by mountn man (The Pleasure You Get From Life Is Equal To The Attitude You Put Into It)
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To: loungitude
“Especially “a telescopically high-powered rifle “”

To be fair to the agent, from a distance, you may not notice more than a rifle with a scope on it.

Many air rifles have scopes on them these days.

I have had two in the last 10 years. They are fun, and can be used for small game. Much less energy than a .22, but can still be dangerous.

19 posted on 02/22/2014 4:10:41 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: mountn man

“Why would DHS be looking at a vandalized house?”

He was considering buying it.


20 posted on 02/22/2014 4:11:49 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain
what he thought was a telescopically high-powered rifle so he called the sheriff.

What exactly is a telescopically high-powered rifle?

Does the telescope make it more high powered?

21 posted on 02/22/2014 4:12:53 PM PST by mountn man (The Pleasure You Get From Life Is Equal To The Attitude You Put Into It)
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To: mountn man

“What exactly is a telescopically high-powered rifle?

Does the telescope make it more high powered?”

I have come to expect reporters and reporterettes to be ignorant about guns. Many in “law enforcement” types only know enough to get through a basic qualification course.


22 posted on 02/22/2014 4:15:01 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

A neighbor kid shot a window of mine with a BB some years ago. Popped out a conical shard of glass inside and left a hole just slightly bigger than the BB.


23 posted on 02/22/2014 4:18:55 PM PST by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: TigersEye

“A neighbor kid shot a window of mine with a BB some years ago. Popped out a conical shard of glass inside and left a hole just slightly bigger than the BB.”

Yes, I have seen a lot of holes like that, clearly done by BB guns.

I do not believe that these holes were made by BB guns.


24 posted on 02/22/2014 4:21:34 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

I don’t think so either. I think an air gun pellet would have much the same result as a BB. Just an opinion but the damage looks like it was made by a larger object at a lower velocity.


25 posted on 02/22/2014 4:26:45 PM PST by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: marktwain
 photo IMGP0886copy.jpg This is a .22 caliber Daisy pumper. It is not one of my most powerful air rifles but it would put a hole through glass at close range. At longer ranges I am not so sure. I could see someone not knowledgeable on guns mistaking it for a powder burner. I have a Crosman which looks just like an M4. I have a Diana model 48 which is one of the most powerful springers on the market. No doubt it would blast glass or put a hole in it. There are plenty of exotic air rifles which are on a par with centerfire rifles but that is not what he was using I am sure.
26 posted on 02/22/2014 4:29:53 PM PST by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: marktwain

The news report said there had been some squatters in the neighborhood. There appears to be a smaller hole on the inside pane of glass and the outer glass is broken-out. That would lead me to believe that the window was broken from the inside.


27 posted on 02/22/2014 4:32:49 PM PST by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: marktwain
Perhaps other freepers have experience with air rifle pellets impacting glass and can shed light on the above holes.

Maybe, maybe not. What's the statute of limitations in case Ma is reading this?

28 posted on 02/22/2014 4:42:28 PM PST by eartrumpet
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To: marktwain

Does not look like damage from an air rifle pellet.

More like slingshot. A ball bearing or steel nut loosed from up to several hundred feet away. It could have even bounced off pavement before striking. The first hole pictured has a weird up-angle look to it.

I remember reading that Houston has potential for floods, as the terrain is flat. A new development would have a series of swales to catch and divert runoff. The little devils could hide there.


29 posted on 02/22/2014 4:57:25 PM PST by Stalwart
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To: eartrumpet

“Maybe, maybe not. What’s the statute of limitations in case Ma is reading this?”

I believe 5 years after high school graduation is a reasonable period.


30 posted on 02/22/2014 5:01:00 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: Stalwart

“More like slingshot. A ball bearing or steel nut loosed from up to several hundred feet away. It could have even bounced off pavement before striking. The first hole pictured has a weird up-angle look to it.”

Yes, I saw that as well, but not being there when the picture was taken, I was not sure how much might be camera angle.

Still, that hole appears to be well over four feet above the ground.


31 posted on 02/22/2014 5:11:10 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: eartrumpet

I only have experience shooting arrows through windows, myself, but Ma knew about that right away!


32 posted on 02/22/2014 5:14:44 PM PST by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open (<o> ---)
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To: marktwain

It was slightly larger than a Morgan Dollar.


33 posted on 02/22/2014 5:16:23 PM PST by Usagi_yo (Standardization is an Evolutionary dead end.)
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To: Usagi_yo; All

“It was slightly larger than a Morgan Dollar”

That sounds suspiciously close to what we are seeing in the above photographs. Was the glass fairly thin on the 9 pane window? I have a theory that thin glass might fracture in a way to make a fairly round hole like that. It is hard to be sure, but the glass in the pictures looks thinner than .2 inches, maybe even less than .125.


34 posted on 02/22/2014 5:31:02 PM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: marktwain

The pane of glass was supposed to be very old, I thought it was thinnish, but that’s really taxing my recollection.


35 posted on 02/22/2014 5:42:44 PM PST by Usagi_yo (Standardization is an Evolutionary dead end.)
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To: F15Eagle

I have shot pellets through glass before. Didn’t get a hole that big.


36 posted on 02/22/2014 6:54:27 PM PST by Real Cynic No More (Border Fence Obamacare!)
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To: marktwain

Where is the projectile .....a pellet passing through a window loses much of it’s energy. It’s not going to go too
far after that and certainly will not penetrate an interior wall. It should be childs play to find that pellet....If it
actually exists.


37 posted on 02/22/2014 6:58:13 PM PST by nvscanman
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To: marktwain

Something a lot bigger than a pellet broke that glass.


38 posted on 02/22/2014 7:18:33 PM PST by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: marktwain

Glass breakage looks like result of a rock that was thrown at the window.

Now this leads to some other questions of the “off duty DHS agent”.

What was he thinking?


39 posted on 02/22/2014 7:24:18 PM PST by Texas Fossil (Texas is not where you were born, but a Free State of Heart, Mind & Attitude!)
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To: nvscanman

Yes, it should be easy to find what broke the window where the agent was.


40 posted on 02/23/2014 4:47:27 AM PST by marktwain (The old media must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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