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What Type of Guns Do Police Use?

When it comes to keeping our neighborhoods safe and ensuring that the law is upheld, our dedicated law enforcement officers face some tough challenges. Their gear, including the guns they carry, plays a big role in helping them do their jobs effectively. But have you ever wondered about the type of guns our police officers use to protect and serve us? In this blog, we'll take a closer look at the type of duty guns commonly used by most police officers to protect and serve our communities. Let's dive right in.

Types of Guns Used by Police Officers

1) Smith & Wesson M&P 9


Smth and Wesson gun on wooden table with magazine
Credit: Parsecboy

The Smith & Wesson M&P 9 is an American-made semi-automatic pistol, part of the Military and Police (M&P) series. It came out in 2005 and became a favorite in the U.S police market.

The M&P 9 is known for its lightweight polymer frame and ergonomic grip, making it a practical choice for officers who may need to carry it for extended shifts. Its U.S. origin also means easy maintenance and readily available parts for law enforcement agencies.

2) Sig Sauer P226


Sig sauer in white background
Credit: Hardenacke

Made in Germany, the Sig Sauer P226 is a well-known semi-automatic pistol. It is available in various models, including standard, tactical, and enhanced versions. It also comes with handy extras like night rear sight options, threaded barrels, and accessory rails. It first gained attention during the US military's pistol trials and has since become a favorite among many departments, especially left-handed officers due to its ambidextrous catch. It is also popular due to its extended barrel, which improves accuracy and precision.

3) Glock 19


Glock 19 with white background
Credit: Eagle Gun Range

Probably the most popular gun on this list, the Glock 19 was made by an Austrian company called Glock. It was originally designed to be an improvement over the bigger and heavier Glock 17. It has a polymer frame, a shorter 4-inch barrel, and is only 7 inches long in total. It's particularly popular among NYPD officers, new learners, and most police departments. It's also a popular off-duty firearm.

4) Glock 17


Glock 17 on wooden ledge
Credit: Pew Pew Tactical

Similar to the Glock 19, the Glock 17 is a full-sized pistol with a larger magazine capacity. Its simple design and ability to give a consistent pull and relatively short reset made it one of the most common choices for law enforcement agencies worldwide. They are usually available as 17 rounds of 9mm caliber ammunition. Higher-capacity magazines are also available, including 19, 24, and 33-round options.

5) .45 Colt Revolver


.45 Cold revolver on wooden floor

The .45 Colt, also known as the .45 Long Colt or simply the .45 LC is one of the most famous military handguns of all time. It was originally designed in the 1870s for use in Colt's Single Action Army (SAA) revolver, also known as the "Peacemaker." It was developed by Colt's Manufacturing Company by gun designer John Browning. The original models were black-powder cartridges, but modern loadings use smokeless powder. It is popularly used by the Houston Police Department for its relatively slow and heavy bullets. Depending on the specific load, muzzle velocities can range from around 700 to 1,100 feet per second (fps). While they may not be as powerful as modern magnum revolver cartridges like the .44 Magnum or .357 Magnum, they're still quite effective for various purposes. They're used by few agencies around the US.

6) Glock 22


Glock 22 on wooden floor
Credit: Shooting Illustrated


It looks quite similar to the Glock 19, with the main difference being that it's a bit longer and heavier. This gun hit the scene in 1990 and became a go-to choice for the military and police by 2006. The reason it's so popular is because it has extra power compared to most firearms. It's especially favored by law enforcement agencies like the Houston Police Department, Boston Police Department, Philadelphia Police Department, the Los Angeles Police Department, and other federal agencies.

7) Beretta Model 92


Beretta gun on silver table
Credit: Vitaly V. Kuzmin

The Beretta Model 92, also known as the Beretta 92 or M9 in military designations, is made by the Italian firearms company Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta S.p.A. It is one of the most iconic and widely recognized handguns in the world. Unlike the other guns we've discussed, it's built with an aluminum alloy frame, which makes it incredibly durable and long-lasting. It's a favorite choice among the Dallas Police Department.

8) .357 Magnum


.357 Magnum with white background with gold bullets
Credit: American Rifleman

The .357 Magnum cartridge has a storied history dating back to the 1930s. It's known for its formidable stopping power, making it a choice for officers in situations where they need the utmost firepower in a revolver. This cartridge has proven effective in stopping threats quickly, which is why some officers still rely on it for specific scenarios.


In this blog, we've highlighted the types of duty pistols used by police officers. These essential duty weapons are meticulously chosen and maintained to empower law enforcement professionals in upholding their responsibilities with utmost professionalism and authority.

And if you're looking to enhance your shooting skills or just have some fun on the range, consider trying out EasyShot shooting targets. Whether you're a firearms instructor, a police officer, or just a civilian our targets are ideal. Shop with us today. 

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