Law Enforcement Officers weigh in on Compton Unified’s Urban Police Rifle Policy

cusdCompton Unified School District (CUSD) has created a firestorm through the City of Compton with their recent Urban Police Rifle Policy.  2UrbanGirls thanks Compton Board President Micah Ali and fellow board member Skyy Fisher, for discussing this very controversial topic with us.  The board passed the agenda item 6-1 at the July 8th board meeting, with Trustee Micah Ali being the lone dissenting vote.  Today, August 28th, the Compton NAACP will hold a press conference related to the policy in front the CUSD district offices.

Trustee Ali was adamant that:

Compton Unified is not purchasing the AR-15 rifles for Compton School Police

Trustee Fisher stated:

…how is the Compton Unified policy different from what the Santa Ana Unified Police Department already has in place?  Some of our officers have outside employment so they would be allowed to use their personal weapon, within district guidelines, while on the job.

2UrbanGirls belief is although other school districts may have similar policies, that were used to gauge the policy for CUSD, those policies are only a guide and CUSD board members have the ability to alter as they see fit. Inglewood Unified has rifles in their armory but do NOT carry them while on patrol.

Former SWAT Commander

A police agency can attempt to offload costs by requiring officers to purchase and maintain arms, but can never shed the responsibility and liability inherent in such a decision. If the need to deploy assault rifles is deemed to be a critical need, the funding for acquisition, maintenance and training must be identified. School police like any urban policing force can make an effective case for such armament to be available, secured within a patrol vehicle. Management, however cannot make the acquisition, maintenance and training required to deploy such a fiercely lethal tool the province of individual police officers.

Former sheriff commander

First, from what I read, interested officers will have to purchase the weapons with their OWN money?! That’s the first clue that this is a misguided endeavor. If the school police and the school board/administration felt strongly that arming school police with high-powered assault rifles was absolutely necessary for the safety of the students, wouldn’t the school district pay for the weapons? Also, the policy is not clear – will the officers be CARRYING the weapons as part of their standard equipment or will it be stored in their cars or offices and deployed only when a situation demands it? If the idea is to have school police patrol campuses with the high-powered rifles slung over their shoulders, imagine that visual and the message it conveys to our children and our community. Are Compton schools a war zone? If a violent situation were to happen, the primary job of the first responders is to safely secure the scene until the SWAT experts (who train to handle active shooter situations for a living) arrive. Regular patrol/school officers rarely have the necessary expertise or training. Bottom line in my opinion – this is an idea that has not been well thought out and one which would probably not be approved by parents/community if they were aware of it.

Normally deputies have to be in patrol to receive AR-15 training so about 5 years of law enforcement experience and LASD has a staff of fully dedicated armorers and a collateral armorer at each unit. So maybe 50 to 70 total.

Retired LAPD, Deputy Chief (comments are on the document itself)

Download (DOC, 12KB)

2UrbanGirls again thanks all who contributed to this article.  This policy gives credence that community involvement in your schools is crucial and time should be taken to attend school board meetings, in order to address your concerns, before the policy is voted on, not after an article hits the news that contains no comment from any board member and/or district official.


7 Responses so far.

  1. […] Related article:  Law Enforcement Officers weigh in on Compton Unified’s Urban Police Rifle Policy […]

  2. […] the time to read agendas and/or policies she votes on, proven by her position on the controversial Urban Rifle Policy she voted in favor of, yet denounced after the community was in an […]

  3. […] Related article:  Law Enforcement Officer’s Weigh in on Compton Unified’s Urban Rifle Policy […]

  4. John Ecash says:

    No they don’t have assault rifles and most were not trained on ar-15.

    • 2UrbanGirls says:

      The word “assault” was removed. You are correct, the policy calls for the school police to be trained to use such weapons. Its amazing the board feels the need to pay for the training and not the weapon itself.

      • John Ecash says:

        Why then is one of the tag words to this article assault rifles?

      • John Ecash says:

        I wonder if you read the article that you published while it is true they are not being paid for the weapons is also true this is a voluntary program I want to being forced to join your being allowed the option to carry why would you want to take away the option from security personnel from having the tools necessary for them to perform their duties

About Melissa

I am a lifelong Inglewood resident living in District 4. I serve on PTA and School Site Council as Vice-President, for the last 8 years with Inglewood Unified School District. I volunteer on the Wellness Committee for ICEF Public Schools. I am an alumni of California State University, Dominguez Hills with a degree in Political Science. You can find me on Twitter under @CreoleMommie

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