Local police department faces gun, ammo shortage - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Local police department faces gun, ammo shortage

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A local police chief tries to order new firearms for his officers and is told he'll have to wait a year. He blames it on "panic buying."

Across the country, people are stocking up on ammunition and certain types of guns that could fall under an assault weapons ban.

Hundreds attended a gun show at the Travis County Expo Center this weekend. Last week, people waited for hours outside a South Austin gun store to purchase a part to make an AR-15, since the entire weapon is now so hard to come by.

Up north, even more reason to take up arms after Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, Junior released this public service announcement:

Listen to entire PSA here: http://county.milwaukee.gov/OfficeoftheSheriff7719.htm

"With officers laid-off and furloughed, simply calling 9-1-1 and waiting is no longer your best option. You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back; but are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so you can defend yourself until we get there. "

Rollingwood Police Chief Dayne Pryor says "panic buying" is coming at the expense of law enforcement.

"You tell people something's going to be restricted or you can't buy it and everybody wants it," Pryor said.

Shortly after the Sandy Hook shooting, the mayor asked Pryor if he was equipped to handle something like that. With five schools within two miles of the department, it got him thinking.

"Even though we have adequate weapons the newer models, the ones with better optics, we did some research and decided we do want to purchase these weapons to add to the arsenal we already had," Pryor said.

Pryor sought to purchase AR-15s to replace the department's heavier, larger M-16s.

"Once we started calling to get the prices, get the bids we were told, we don't know when we're going to be able to purchase these weapons maybe a year," Pryor said.

He got the same answer to requests for ammunition.

"We have adequate supplies right now but we're limited to how often we can go to the firing range to train because we want to be conservative right now."

The children in his coverage area are not at risk with the department's current M-16s.

"These are deadly, very accurate," said Pryor.

He just hopes he will find answers soon to make his department's response to any threats even better.

"You just make do with what you've got and stay on it," said Pryor.

Chief Pryor says he is working the phone lines, calling gun dealers nationwide. He will soon phone bigger departments in the area to see if he can get any on loan.

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