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A gun that can't miss

5:41 PM, Sep 4, 2013   |    comments
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PEACEMAKER NAT'L RANGE, WV (WUSA) -- Remember Tom Cruise in Top Gun? How he'd lock on to a target on a heads up display in his fighter jet, then pull the trigger?

Now a Texas company has put similar technology in a rifle.

SWAT teams, hunters, military snipers, the idea that seems so obvious in hindsight, you wonder why it's taken so long: a rifle that promises you'll never again miss a shot or hit something you don't want to. 
 
TrackingPoint is demonstrating what it calls a precision-guided firearm. And it can make a marksman of a novice.

An on-board computer calculates almost every variable but windspeed. Temperature, barometric pressure, the magnetic pull and spin of the Earth. You plug the windspeed and direction into the computer manually.

A little training and we start at 300 yards. Bang! "Good job," says the instructor. Then you hear the ping of the bullet hitting the target. 

850 yards...1000 yards. "That was five seconds for sound to get here!"

1100 yards, nearly three quarters of a mile; bullseye every time.

"It usually takes years and years of practice to do what you just did," says Darren Jones of TrackingPoint. "It's all technology?" I ask. "It's all technology." 

"You took four shots, 300 to 1100 yards,. and you didn't miss once," says Cole McCulloch, owner of Peacemaker National Training Center. "In variable windspeed. Outstanding."

'You don't think this makes it any more likely that a psycho is going to go out and kill schoolchildren?" I asked Darren Jones. "No first of all, this is a bolt action rifle. It's not an AR platform, which was what was used at Newtown." That means it only fires as fast as you can pull back the bolt and reload. 

The TrackingPoint rifles start at $25,000. 

"We are in a six month back order statues with this rifle...Actually our most expensive model is our most popular," says Jones.

We asked the Secret Service if it had any concern about the rifle being put to nefarious purposes. And a spokesman offered no comment.

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