NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Metro Nashville Police officers will be allowed to carry their personal AR-15 rifles in patrol cars in the wake of school shootings.
While the decision came after the December shooting that killed 20 students and six adults at Newtown, Conn., Police Chief Steve Anderson said it had been under consideration for some time.
The Tennessean reported Anderson called the decision "in the best interest of public and officer safety."
Police spokesman Don Aaron said officers who own high-power rifles will be allowed to carry them in police cars after the weapons have been inspected and authorized and the officers take a three-day course on patrol rifle deployment.
Officers now have semi-automatic service pistols and the department issued shotguns to carry in police cars.