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Want your 9mm to hit like a magnum and be accurate out to 100 yards or more without having to carry any specialty ammunition? The AR-15, chambered in 5.56mm NATO, might be the current standard for patrol rifles, but it is not the only option.

For years, many agencies have adopted or allowed pistol-caliber carbines that were fed by the department-issued duty pistol magazine. This meant an officer exiting the car with a rifle on a high-risk call would always have a few spare magazines on his or her duty belt if needed.

The concept is not unique to modern times. Lawmen in the Old West sometimes carried revolvers that chambered the same rounds as their trusty lever-action rifles. Maintaining only one kind of cartridge made sense to a lot of men on the trail back then, just as it still does for many officers on the street today.

The 9mm cartridge has been in police service for many decades, and it remains quite effective today. From carbine-length barrels, the 9mm becomes an even more potent round due to increased velocity.

In my own testing, moving from a 4-inch barrel to a 10.5-inch barrel increased the bullet speed by 100 to 300 fps depending on the load. A 16-inch barrel can wring even more velocity from the cartridge.

Considering that the 9mm round is a fairly mild cartridge to shoot, putting it into a rifle-sized platform makes it nearly recoil-free. For officers who have problems with the 5.56mm NATO or 12 gauge, these light-recoiling carbines can drastically improve their effectiveness in a violent encounter. Add to the mix a longer sight radius, or even a red-dot sight, and getting hits on target is even more likely.

Take a look at the gallery of carbines above for options available for law enforcement officers today. Each of these guns is chambered for the 9mm and will accept at least one kind of popular duty handgun magazine.

For more information on the carbines mentioned in the gallery above, please visit the following websites: