Tuesday, April 14, 2009

"They're going to have rifles, shotguns, pistols--whatever they get their hands on"

From ABC News 10:

STOCKTON, CA - The Stockton man who wants to put a militia on the streets if police layoffs happen, said he's got 270 people signed on to help.

"They're going to have rifles, shotguns, pistols--whatever they get their hands on," said 66-year-old Alan Pettet. "We're not going to go out looking for trouble, but the first person who fires on us, will get a lot of return fire going is way."

Pettet said a militia is needed if the City of Stockton follows through with police layoffs that could come as early as this summer.

"If they don't lay off police, there won't be a militia," Pettet said. "But with the first person laid off July 1st, 270 men will be out on the street."

The idea of an armed militia patrolling Stockton streets doesn't have many supporters around the city.

"I think it's a terrible idea, that's all you need--a bunch of folks who aren't trained and not accountable to be running around with guns," said Andrea Pinkham.

"I think it would be crazy, like chaos, said Stan Shortt. "It wouldn't be good."

The Stockton Police Department is happy to have citizens who want to help make the city safer, but not in this fashion.

"What our officers do, is go through extensive training," police spokesperson Roseann Clark said. "They have 800 hours of academy time before hitting the streets."

Pettet doesn't seem bothered by the negative reaction. If police layoffs happen, he's planning to be busy up to three nights a week, patrolling the streets.

"We'll have four men in a car, and as many cars as we can put out there", said Pettet.

But wait, there's more:

That it is illegal in most circumstances in California to carry a loaded firearm in one's car did not disturb Pettet.

"If you look under the Constitution, a militia can be formed," he said. "Watch and see. Who's going to stop us?"

Pettet said the militia will bill the city $350 per hour for its services. 

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