2015-07-21 / Front Page

Governor Pence Authorizes Arming National Guard At State Facilities And Recruiting Offices

Staff Report

Governor Mike Pence has directed Indiana Adjutant General, Major General Courtney Carr in cooperation with the Indiana State Police, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security and local law enforcement to enhance security measures at all Indiana National Guard facilities and installations in Indiana, in the wake of the recent attack on military personnel and facilities in Tennessee.

On Saturday, Governor Mike Pence issued an Executive Order directing the Adjutant General to enhance security measures at all Indiana National Guard facilities including recruiting storefronts across the state. The Executive Order authorizes the Adjutant General to permit the Guard to arm military personnel at the state’s Guard facilities and recruiting offices and directs several state agencies to assist the Indiana National Guard in implementing this policy in accordance with Indiana state law. Governor Pence is the Commander in Chief of the Indiana National Guard. The Executive Order text can be found in full attached.

The Governor also issued the following statement.

“In the wake of the attacks that claimed four United States Marines and one Navy sailor in Tennessee, I have directed the Indiana National Guard to take appropriate steps to enhance security at all Indiana National Guard facilities and recruiting offices. I have also directed Major General Corey Carr, the Adjutant General of the Indiana National Guard, to authorize the arming of military personnel at all Indiana National Guard facilities and recruiting storefronts in accordance with state and federal law.

“As commander-in-chief of the Indiana National Guard, I will not permit our citizen-soldiers to remain unable to defend themselves and our citizens at facilities in our state. Hoosiers may be assured that those who have stepped forward to defend our state and nation will have the ability to defend themselves.”

According to reports, the governors of Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas and Florida have also issued similar executive orders. The authorizations to carry weapons in Oklahoma and Louisiana do not apply to all Guard personnel, but to certain members who will be identified by commanders.

The orders made Friday and Saturday were in response to the deadly rampage in Chattanooga, in which Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez allegedly launched an attack against a storefront recruiting center and reserve station and killed four Marines. A Navy sailor injured in the attack died Saturday.

Federal officials have said they are studying whether to increase security at national armed forces recruitment centers, including staffing some offices with armed security guards.

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