In Lawrence, Kansas, Police Chief Tarik Khatib has asked his city commission to create a new program allowing patrol officers to purchase their own rifles for on-duty use. City commissioners delayed action on that
proposal, saying they wanted to gather public feedback first.
“But Khatib said the program is needed,” the Lawrence Journal-World (LJW) reported. “He said college communities aren’t immune to violent crime, and that more-advanced weaponry may be needed by police to protect the communities from criminals who could be heavily armed.”
Lawrence is home to the University of Kansas.
“We have just as great a likelihood for a major incident to happen here as it would anywhere else,” Khatib said. “We hope that it never happens, but if it does we want to make sure that we have the tools and training to deal with the situation.”
Lawrence officers have been able to have patrol rifles since 2003, “if the officer purchases a rifle that meets department regulations,” LJW explained. “But Khatib is seeking a program that would allow police officers to purchase patrol rifles through the city. The lease-purchase program would allow the city to buy the rifle, and then the officer would repay the city through 26 automatic payroll deductions. The city has a similar program in place that allows officers to purchase their patrol pistols.”
Said Khatib about the need for his officers to have patrol rifles, “Everything is good until it is not. In this line of work, you do not want to be caught unprepared.”
Source: Lawrence Journal-World 11/22/11:
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