Springs to consider gun measure
Would let guards carry semiautomatic weapons at work
By PAM ZUBECK and PERRY SWANSON
December 11, 2007 - 11:39PM
Colorado Springs City Council members will consider allowing security guards to carry semiautomatic weapons next month.
Although the change has been in the works for months, the revision is sure to draw added interest in light of Sunday’s shootings at New Life Church.
City Clerk Kathryn Young said she will submit a proposal to the council in January that would revise the city’s security licensing laws, including the types of weapons allowed.
She said the proposed measure would allow semiautomatic weapons; the current ordinance limits security guards to revolvers.
Konquest Security President Michael Briggs said the New Life shootings underscore why security guards should be more heavily armed.
“It does kind of make a point here,” Briggs said. “Here’s a guy who went into a church with enough ammo to kill half the people in it. If they continue to knock us down to carrying nothing but a sixshooter,” he said, the ability of security guards to diffuse deadly situations is diminished.
“It should be up to the (security) officer’s discretion which one they want to carry.” Briggs and other security companies have pressured the city to ease its restrictions, but the exact provisions of the proposal aren’t known.
Lonnie Hall with Knight Investigation and Security Service said the current ordinance doesn’t specify types of weapons involved, but that clerk’s officials limit guards to .38- or.357-caliber handguns with either 4- or 6-inch barrels.
“If CSPD (Colorado Springs Police Department) needs assistance, and some security officers have been utilized from time to time, with a double-action revolver, you’re limited on the rounds you’re allowed to carry,” he said, to a total of 18.
Semiautomatic firearms, he said, allow officers to carry up to 33 rounds.
In addition, Hall said, “It allows for a greater accuracy, because most semiautomatic weapons have a little bit less kick. A lot of people now coming out of the military that we employ, they’re used to the semiautomatic weapons because they have to carry them in the military.”