Dallas Police

Last Revolvers Retired as Dallas Police Service Weapons

Revolvers are no longer allowed for DPD officers

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It's like a traveling through time to look at the guns used in the past by the Dallas Police Department.

"This is what's commonly called a Thompson machine gun,” Dallas Police Department Sr. Cpl. Paul Schuster said while he showed off the antique. “This is the only one the department ever owned. It was purchased in the 1940s and 50s when there was a problem with gangsters in Dallas."

But for a few officers time has stood still when it comes to their weapon of choice.

"After this many years, there's only been five of us left that were still using the revolvers," Schuster said.

Schuster was issued a .38-caliber revolver in 1983 and still used it to the shock of some fellow officers.

"A lot of times they'll make a little comment about how we are sort of the ancient ones on the department,” Schuster said. “We take that in stride, so it's sort of fun to be the ones still carrying that it's so historic because it goes back so far."

Using the revolver goes back even further for now-reserve officer Jerry Rhodes. He joined the force in 1973 with a revolver and has used one since.

He was required to give it up last week.

"It kind of hurt,” Rhodes said. “It kind of hurt from the standpoint of nostalgia. From the standpoint of that I felt very comfortable shooting my revolver."

They are being forced to give them up because DPD is outfitting the entire agency with semi-automatic handguns.

DPD started to change to semi-automatics in 1990-91. But it wasn't mandatory until now.

It took some getting used to for some.

"You have to grip the gun totally differently when you go to an automatic,” Sr. Cpl. Steve Potrykus, who's been on the force for 33 years, said. “Changing of the bullets during combat reload is totally different. You have to go from a speed loader to a magazine."

But instructors made sure they were well trained with their new weapon.

"To the point where when I did qualify with the semi-automatic I did actually qualified better than I did with the revolver," Potrykus said.

Since they won't be by their side on duty, some of their officers have plans for their retired weapons.

"I want my grandsons to have it," Rhodes said.

NBC 5 checked with more than 114 police departments in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Out of 79 responses, it was discovered only one Plano officer still carried a revolver.

However, approximately 40 pool bailiffs with the Dallas County Sheriff's department still carry revolvers.

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