Chicago Police Chief: We’ll Shoot Licensed Gun Holders
During an interview on radio station WVON 1690 am and Newsinblack last week, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said he was disappointed with the media only pointing out problems with crime and not reporting on solutions. But perhaps the most surprising comments from the city’s top cop came when McCarthy commented on the upcoming concealed carry law that must be passed in Illinois within the next six months after a federal appeals court last month ruled the state’s ban on concealed carry unconstitutional. McCarthy made a bold and scary prediction that citizens carrying legally could be shot by Chicago police as he reiterated his stance against arming legal citizens.
“You put more guns on the street expect more shootings,” McCarthy said. “I don’t care if they’re licensed legal firearms, people who are not highly trained… putting guns in their hands is a recipe for disaster. So I’ll train our officers that there is a concealed carry law, but when somebody turns with a firearm in their hand the officer does not have an obligation to wait to get shot to return fire and we’re going to have tragedies as a result of that. I’m telling you right up front.”
“You say concealed carry I say Trayvon Martin. Police officers make mistakes all the time,” McCarthy said. “We spend six months in the police academy, six months of field training and ongoing training on a regular basis and the fact is once in a while we’re going to shoot someone with a cellphone; we’re going to shoot somebody with a flashlight and none of that is okay. But now you take John Q. Civilian, you give them six weeks or 10 weeks of training and you say ‘have at it?’ The fact is more guns are not the solution to the firearm gun violence problem in this country. Less guns and reasonable gun laws are. And just because it’s 49 states to one doesn’t mean the state of Illinois is wrong on that one.”
McCarthy’s comments drew immediate and intense criticism from citizens in favor of concealed carry and from people who teach concealed carry courses. Rick Pere, a civilian military contractor and former police officer who lives in downstate Illinois and teaches both the Utah and Florida concealed carry classes, said McCarthy’s comments were full of ignorance and add to the misinformation being given to citizens in Cook County and Chicago. He said McCarthy’s comments come from his position as superintendent, which must coincide with Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
Here’s where it gets interesting:
Even McCarthy’s own department does not agree with his stance on the issue. Both the Chicago Police Sergeant’s and Lieutenant’s Associations have publicly come out in favor of concealed carry with the Lieutenant’s Association going as far as saying it will enhance public safety.
“We recognize the importance and need for citizens in the state of Illinois to be legally allowed to protect themselves with the right to carry a weapon concealed. We feel that it would enhance citizen safety and in the end make our job easier,” read a statement from Robert Weisskopf, president of the Lieutenant’s Association.
The take-away here: no one, especially a legal gun owner, is SAFE in Chicago. If the gangs don’t kill ya, the cops will have orders to.