Alabaster police to get assault rifles

ALABASTER &8212; Police officers in Alabaster will soon start carrying some heavy artillery.

The city council voted Monday to send out bids for 12 AR-15 assault rifles.

The guns will be given to city officers who have completed a training course with the Shelby County Sheriff&8217;s Office.

&8220;You got to qualify. You&8217;ve got to be trained to use it,&8221; said Police Chief Stanley Oliver. &8220;If we don&8217;t think you&8217;re qualified to tote it, you won&8217;t.&8221;

Councilman Jerry Workman said he was initially concerned about which officers would carry the guns.

&8220;But now I think this is a good situation,&8221; said Workman. &8220;The guns will be placed with more experienced officers who have the proper training and certification.&8221;

Mayor David Frings has repeatedly said he hopes the guns are seldom used but that he also doesn&8217;t want his officers to be ill-equipped.

The council expects the guns to cost around $14,000