Compton, Calif. School Board Allows Cops To Carry AR-15 Rifles

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Police at a school district in Compton, Calif. will be allowed to tote something a little more high powered on campuses this fall: AR-15s.

Public radio station KPCC reported on Monday, the day classes began in the district, that local residents were concerned about the increase in firepower by the police. The measure was passed by the school board in July and will require officers to go through a process to buy the semi-automatic rifles, which will then be carried in their cars while on duty, the station reported.

Compton Unified Police Chief William Wu argued for approval of the policy in front of the school district, according to KPCC, saying: “This is our objective — save lives, bottom line.”

Wu said officers are improperly outfitted for situations such as terrorist attacks and mass shootings. While Wu acknowledged that semi-automatic rifles can be deadlier, he heralded their improved accuracy.

Some residents of Compton have voiced concern over the presence of the rifles in neighborhood schools, especially in light of allegations of racial profiling, KPCC reported. Wu said his officers “do not engage in racial profiling.”

h/t The Atlantic

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ahiza Garcia is a newswriter based in New York City. Before joining TPM, Ahiza interned and freelanced for Nightline, Fox Sports, and ESPN the Magazine. She holds a B.A. in psychology from Columbia University and an M.S. in digital journalism from Syracuse University. She can be reached at ahiza@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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