However after a good guy-bad guy shoot, and the bad guy took 5 in the torso, they went to .40s. Shots were taken at about 10 feet.
This is not surprising, and has little if anything to do with the caliber of weapon. People want to believe that one caliber or bullet is inherently better at stopping a person than another, when in reality the differences are amazingly small. Pick the heaviest bullet weight in any given caliber and the differences between them are mostly personal preference.
Simply put, the only way to stop an aggressive act by a human is to disrupt the central nervous system. The only two ways to do that are to sever the spine or brain stem, or to deprive the CNS of oxygen by lowering blood pressure to the point it cannot replenish the O2. That takes time. A minimum of six seconds, actually.
Six seconds is the minimum amount of time a person can keep functioning in a meaningful (aggressive and harmful) way once their heart has stopped pumping. A fit person or a person on CNS stimulants can go a lot longer.
In other words, unless you manage to hit the upper spine or the brain stem, you can expect at least six seconds of active, coordinated hostility regardless of how many rounds you pump into a person. It doesn't matter if you're shooting 9mm or .45acp, the results will be the same. If too much TV and pulp articles in gun magazines has made this hard to believe, go shoot a 200 pound deer through the chest with a 30-06 and watch how far it runs. Now think about how much more powerful that 30-06 is than any of your pet handgun rounds, and what the result would be if instead of running, Mr. Deer pulled out a Glock 17 and started lighting you up.
The FBI went away from the 9mm because it lacked penetration they wanted...specifically one 9mm bullet fell approximately one inch short of penetrating a suspects heart during the famous Miami shootout. As it was one of the first rounds fired, the end result would have been a lot different if it had done a better job.
In shutting down an aggressive attacker, shot placement is by far the single most important factor. Penetration is the second, as the parts which need to be destroyed lie deep withing the body cavity and are well protected. This is why the Glazer Safety Slugs have proven to be completely and utterly unacceptable for any mission other than wounding. I've seen the damage they do, and while it's impressive, it poses little risk to the internal organs and they are a completely useless manstopper. Under attack the human body restricts blood flow to vital organs. The only way to cause significant bleeding is by damaging those organs, so superficial wounds, regardless of how extensive, have little effect.
Obviously, all else being equal, the bigger a hole you make though a vital organ, the faster the blood loss. I personally think 9mm is a little light, but then again I think ANY handgun round is a bit light. They are great for murdering a person, but they outright suck for stopping a person once they have started the process of murdering you.
Gun writers go on and on about the big and slow verses small and fast debate, but there's nothing to it. No handgun round developes enough energy to make the temporary wound cavity a factor. The only objective is to disrupt the CNS, and the ONLY two ways to do that are to sever the CNS directly or to lower the blood pressure enough that it suffocates. Everything else is just crap gun writers make up to sell magazines.
As a case in point, I personally know three deputies and a deputy K9 who sustained multiple wounds at close range from 12 gauge slug and 00 buckshot rounds. All of them survived (a blue-eyed miracle if ever there was one), since none of those huge, high energy projectiles hit a vital organ. All the deputies continued to return fire after being hit, so if anyone out there thinks they have a one-shot-stopper handgun round, think again. There is no such thing.
Sorry if I grossed anyone out, but talking about guns without discussing killing is a bit like talking about planes and not discussing flying...it's what they were meant to do, so if you're going to own one you might as well know something about it.
Next week I'll discuss the best way to suffocates someone with a pie...