Police officers in Nashville will now be allowed to carry personally-owned high powered assault rifles while on duty. The policy change is in response to recent shootings in Newtown and Aurora.
SWAT teams already carry AR-15-style rifles. But for beat cops, Metro Police chief Steve Anderson says a pistol and shotgun may not be enough to “stop a threat to innocent citizens.” He says in a statement allowing officers to carry their own weapons is “in the best interest of public and officer safety.”
Each gun has to be inspected, and officers must complete a three-day course.
Given the AR-15s cost around a thousand dollars, police officials say they won’t be purchasing any more. But its estimated that a third of the city’s 1,400 officers have their own at home.