Handgun Radio 249 - Unusual Law Enforcement Handguns

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Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wild woods of Central Maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.

This week, we talk unusual law enforcement handguns! 

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Main Topic: Unusual Law Enforcement Handguns


(Thanks to listener Mike S. for providing the list)


Our list of “unusual” law enforcement handguns are those that are generally not Glock, Sig Sauer or Smith & Wesson (the largest in market share) in 9 mm, .40 S&W or .45 ACP. However, if either brand is used in a caliber other than those, I think it qualifies as an unusual model.


Thanks to my friend Chris McCarthy of Castle Rock, CO who helped a lot with this list.


This is not primary source information and some of it may be a little stale. Interesting nonetheless. 


  • Maine State Police-HK45 with LEM trigger. Prior to that, they carried HK USP 

  • NY State Police-Used to have Glock 37 in .45 GAP, have since gone to .45 ACP

  • Tennessee Highway Patrol-Glock 31 in .357 Sig. Also issues Glock 32 and possibly 33.

  • US Coast Guard: Sig P229 DAK in .40. USCG Investigative Service (like NCIS) also uses P239 DAK in .40.

  • NC State Highway Patrol: Sig P226 .357 Sig. However, there is info out there that they formerly carried the Beretta Cougar in .357 Sig.

  • VA State Police: Sig P229R DAK in .357 Sig. Transitioning to P320 in .357 Sig

  • KY State Police: Now have Glock 17. However, used to carry Glock 35, and prior to that, carried S&W 1076 (the “FBI gun”).

  • NJ State Police: Now carries G17. However, Used to carry P229 Elite in 9mm and had P228 for a while. There was a bunch of controversy with the P229 related to likely modifications their armorers were doing and ammo. There was a lawsuit against Sig. Before that, they famously carried the HK P7M13 in 9 mm.

  • FBI-We all know they have carried Glock for a while. However, the Hostage Rescue Team had/has carried Browning Hi Power for a long time. HRT also uses Springfield Operator 1911. They also issued the S&W 1076 in 10 mm after the infamous “Miami shootout”. That was a very usual gun as it’s a S&W with a frame mounted decocker. 

  • Florida Highway Patrol: Glock 37 in .45 GAP

  • Hillsborough County, Florida (Tampa) Sheriff’s Office: FN FNS-9 and some 509s, but are transitioning to Glock 45.

  • Chicago PD is dependent on one’s date of hire. Newer members are restricted to striker-fired guns. However, some of the more unusual pistols approved are the Glock 41, Sig P225, P239 (I have a childhood friend who is on CPD who carries one of these-great for ladies with smaller hands), P245 (later called P220 Compact), and Sig Pro series. 

  • Texas Rangers’ uniforms are not necessarily “uniform”, but must be in “Western style”. Same often carries over to firearms. Highly decorated 1911s with matching holsters and carry belts are common. Per the Texas Ranger Museum, they may carry any firearm they want so long as they qualify with it. 

  • The Royal Canadian Mounted Police carry S&W 5946 that are specially engraved with a department logo. They also carry the 3953.

  • Canadian Military Police carry Sig P225. The entire Canadian military also famously carry Browning Hi Power.

  • Pennsylvania State Police Carry Sig P227 (the double stack .45 ACP). They previously carried Glock 21, and prior to that, Glock 37 in .45 GAP. 

  • Delaware State Police carry Sig P229 DAK in .357 Sig.

  • Indiana State Police carry Sig P227

  • Montana Highway Patrol-Sig P229R in .357 Sig

  • Utah Highway Patrol may carry a personal weapon in 9 mm, .40 or .45 ACP, or a Glock 17. The governor’s protection detail carries G18 machine pistol! 

  • US Border Patrol carries HK P2000, with USP and P2000SK also authorized.

  • US Secret Service P229 .357 Sig. They JUST announced they are transitioning to Glock 19 Gen 5 for both Special Agents and uniformed personnel.

  • US Customs HK P2000 in .40

  • Florida Wildlife Commission LE Glock 37 in .45 GAP

  • Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) (French for Montreal Police Service) until recently used the Walther P99, but now uses the G19.

  • Tacoma, WA Kimber Pro Carry II, Pro Carry II HD, or G21, G22 or G23.

  • Rhode Island State Police carry P226R in .357 Sig (they also have the coolest state trooper uniforms ever)

  • DHS/ICE: P226R DAK, P229R DAK and P239 DAO

  • US Air Marshals P229 in .357 Sig

  • Jamestown PD in ND and the Stutsman County Sheriff’s Office (presumably in ND) all carry 1911’s.

  • New Mexico State Police M&P .357 Sig

  • Clayton, NC PD HK USP in .45 (isn’t that a HK45?), but have since switched to M&P .45

  • Whitman County, WA (near Spokane) Kimber 1911 5” barrel. 

  • Charlotte, NC Beretta PX4, unknown caliber

  • Chicago Transit Police Glock 32 (.357 Sig)

  • Richmond, VA Sig Pro (AKA SP2022)

  • LAPD SWAT Kimber Custom TLE II

  • Oklahoma Highway Patrol P226 .357 Sig

  • Broken Arrow, OK SWAT: Wilson Combat 1911 CQB (wins the award for the most expensive pistol!)

  • Costa Mesa, CA PD USP 40

  • Cordova, AK HK P7M10 (.40) (second place for most expensive, but probably 1st in 2019 values), though this data is from 2010

  • Maryland State Police used to carry Beretta PX4 in .40, but I think they carry Glock 22 now.

  • Wilmington, DE was carrying S&W SW99 in .40 (American-made version of Walther P99), but have switched to M&P .40

  • Chesapeake, VA PD HK USP 40 and USP 40 Compact.

  • Wilson, NC P226 in .357 Sig

  • US Dept of Veterans Affairs Police: Beretta 92D Centurion (I think that means DAO), 92FS, and P229R DAK and P239 DAK.

  • Virginia Capitol Police Beretta PX4 .40

  • PA Fish and Boat Commission Beretta 96D DAO (.40)

  • Newport and Lincoln City, OR police depts: Springfield TRP 1911

  • Las Vegas Metro PD has a plethora of pistols to choose from: Beretta, Colt, S&W, Kimber, HK, Ruger, Glock, Para Ordnance, Unertl, Sig, Wilson Combat, Springfield or Steyr. Must be DA/SA, SA or Striker fired and a minimum of 3.5 barrel length (new recruits are given a $575 voucher for purchase). Data as of 2010.

  • Cochise County, AZ Sheriff: Colt 1911

  • Graham County, AZ, Sheriff: Springfield XD Tactical .45


State Police/Highway Patrol consolidated list (majority of data from 2010, but have made updates as I get them):

AL = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

AK = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

AZ = SIG P229 (.40S&W)

AR = Glock 21SF RTF2 (.40ACP)

CA = S&W Model 4006TSW (.40S&W). They are currently switching to another pistol.

CO = S&W M&P40 (.40S&W)

CT = SIG P220 (.45 ACP) Rumor that 1911 may be an optional choice.

DE = SIG P229 (.357 Sig)

FL = Glock 37 Gen4 (.45GAP)

GA = Glock 37 (.45GAP)

HI = S&W Model 5906 (9x19) don’t know who this is as they have no state police.

ID = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

IL = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

IN = Glock 17 (9x19)

IA = S&W M&P40 (.40S&W)

KS = Glock 21 (.45ACP)

KY = Glock 17. Used to carry G35 (.40S&W) and S&W 1076

LA = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

ME = H&K USP45 (.45ACP)

MD = Beretta PX4 (.40S&W). May have Glock 22 now.

MA = M&P 45. Used to carry SIG P226 (.40S&W)

MI = SIG P226 (.40S&W)

MN = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

MS = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

MO = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

MT = SIG P229 (.40S&W)

NE = Glock 21 (.45ACP)

NH = S&W M&P45 (.45ACP)

NV = SIG P229 (.40S&W)

NJ = Glock 17. Used to carry Sig P229 elite in 9, SIG P228 (9x19) and HK P7M13.

NM = S&W M&P 357 (.357SIG)

NY = Glock 21 (.45ACP), used to carry G37 (.45GAP)

NC = P226 (.357SIG)

ND = Sig P320 9 mm. Used to carry P226 in .357 Sig and S&W Model 4506 (.45ACP)

OH = SIG P226 (.40S&W)

OK = SIG P226 (.357SIG)

OR = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

PA = Sig P227 (.45 ACP) used to carry Glock 37 (.45GAP)

RI = SIG P226 (.357SIG)

SC = Glock 37 (.45GAP)

SD = SIG P229 (.357SIG)

TN = Glock 31 (.357SIG)

TX = SIG P226 (.357SIG)

UT = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

VT = SIG P229 (.40S&W)

VA = SIG P229 (.357SIG)

WA = S&W M&P40 (.40S&W)

WV = S&W Model 4566TSW (.45ACP)

WI = Glock 22 (.40S&W)

WY = Glock 22 (.40S&W)


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Until Next week, have fun and safe shooting!