Murphysboro police to now carry AR-15s - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Murphysboro police to now carry AR-15s

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)

Police in Murphysboro, Illinois will have a new weapon in their arsenal.

Chief Chad Roberts said every police officer will now carry an AR-15.

AR-15 stands for Arma-Lite Rifle, which allows for greater accuracy at a longer range.

Chief Roberts said violence has changed and active shooter situations have increased in America, so policing has to evolve with it.

"In order to give the officers even playing field, in order for us to provide protection to the public in active shooter situations, for highly-armed situations, rifles have become a fairly standard issue in police work," Chief Roberts said. "It's something Murphysboro hasn't had and I believe they should have."

Chief Roberts said their 16 sworn officers will have to undergo training and annual certification to use this weapon.

The weapon will not use taxpayer dollars but is funded from asset seizures and work of the officers.

Murphysboro police aren't the only ones. Officers at the Carbondale Police Department have had AR-15 rifles for several years.

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