Lon Horiuchi, member of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team (HRT), alleged "Quarter Club" sniper in said unit, and world renowned woman killer, exercised his Constitutional right against self incrimination on 06 September, 1995, during closed testimony in the congressional hearings on the Weaver case. While speculation surrounding his refusal to testify centers around who gave what order when, the real reason does not rest on his ability to follow orders. His ability to do so has already been demonstrated. Indeed, as we reported in our Vol.II, No.1 issue, he told one of our observers that he "jumped on it" when the rules of engagement changed, and that he has no remorse about killing Vicki Weaver.
The real reason he refused to testify rests on his professional competence as a "sniper." He actually used the techniques taught to him by the USMC Scout Sniper Instructor School at Quantico, VA, and relied upon the mil dot fraud in conjunction with moving target training taught there (and everywhere else in the military), with the inevitable and logical consequences.
While everyone is blaming Horiuchi for deliberately shooting Vicki Weaver, the facts, given his training, are less dramatic. But the facts are a telling indictment against the competence of military instructors, both in respect to their craft, and their competence to train law enforcement.
In military sniper schools moving target engagement is taught using the mil-dot ambush method. This involves placing the crosshair on an aiming point a certain distance in front of the target, and guessing the time to shoot as the target moves along your mil-dot reticule. This parlor trick works fine in a school environment on a known distance range when the target is moving according to a rigidly enforced pace and the sniper student gets a number of "sighters" sufficient to refine his guess at what point to shoot. This allows the student "dope" the target-speed-of-the-day. When the target speed is thus known, the hit probability is about 85 percent at 200 yards against a walking body-width "E" silhouette target. In the real world, against human targets moving at random speeds, the hit probability against a running target at 200 yards is less than 15 percent.
This is how Mrs. Weaver got shot. Randy Weaver's friend, Kevin Harris, was running for the cabin. Horiuchi put his crosshair on the cabin door and concentrated on watching Mr. Harris run along the horizontal wire of his mil- dot reticule. When Horiuchi guessed Mr. Harris was at the "ambush point" he shot. The bullet went exactly where it was aimed--the door, where Mrs. Weaver was standing.
On 20 September, 1995, other FBI HRT snipers also took the 5th in testimony before the Senate hearings. An SFU observer who has trained with HRT snipers put their refusal to testify in clear perspective. "The bottom line is that they are punks," he said. "They are bad-asses on a known distance range when they are shooting at quarters--after about 10 sighting shots to get their zero 'refined.' But operationally they are losers."
Any law enforcement sniper who shoots at a moving target should reflect upon his lack of judgment in a prison cell. His cell mates should be the legally incompetent military instructors who taught him that a school house parlor trick was applicable in an operational setting.