Re: RARA-AVIS: A Farewell Knockout

Date: 05 May 2004


Re your question below:

> Something I've always wondered - how likely is it
> that a blow to the
> back of the head will knock you out? Is there a
> certain spot that must
> be hit?

Very unlikely. When cops are trained in the use of a police baton, they are told not to aim for the head, except in extreme circumstances, because a) the skull's so durable that it's very unlikely you'll do anything except make the suspect angry (and maybe draw blood which always looks bad to the public), and b) if you DO cause any damage, it's likely to be fatal and the whole point of using a baton is that you're NOT justified in using deadly force; if you were you'd be shooting him, not hitting him with a baton.

So the cherished hard-boiled cliche of being struck from behind by a blunt object, succumbing to unconsciousness, and recovering a few minutes later is, if not a medical impossibility, at least a medical unlikelihood.

And while I'm here:


Re your compliment below:

> (I'm taking Jim Doherty's on online course, which is
> very good)

Thank you very much!


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