Model Policy

     Effective Date                                                    Number
     January, 1994

     Protection of Firearms and Explosives' Repositories During Civil Disturbances

     Reference                                                         Special Instructions

     Distribution                     Reevaluation Date                No. Pages
                                      December, 1995

I.        PURPOSE
          The purpose of this policy is to provide direction and procedures for securing repositories
          containing firearms, explosives or incendiary devices that may be vulnerable to looting
          during civil disturbances. It is designed to accompany this agency's policy on civil

II.       POLICY
          Civil disorders have been demonstrated to present highly fruitful opportunities for
          violence-prone elements of society to steal firearms, ammunition, explosives and
          incendiary devices. In the 1992 Los Angeles riots alone, over 4,300 automatic and semi-
          automatic weapons were stolen from gun stores, pawn shops and other locations. The
          availability of these weapons on the street represents a significant threat to the public
          safety. Therefore, it is the policy of this law enforcement agency to take all steps possible
          to prepare for such eventualities through establishing this emergency preparedness and
          deployment plan.

          A.  Emergency Plan Preparation
              This agency's planning authority shall, with the assistance of personnel designated
              by the chief executive, be responsible for establishing, as part of this agency's
              overall civil disturbance plan, a mobilization and deployment protocol for
              protecting firearms and explosives during periods of civil disturbance or natural
              disaster. The preparedness and deployment plan shall include but shall not
              necessarily be limited to the following considerations:
              1.      A procedure for monitoring, assimilating and evaluating potential civil
                      unrest and disturbance locations shall be established. Potential sources of
                      intelligence and information in this regard include but are not limited to
     a.      media reports, particularly those related to incidents or patterns of
             ethnic, religious or socioeconomic unrest of a local nature;
     b.      field incident reports, arrests and criminal intelligence, particularly
             as they relate to hate crimes, inter-racial disturbances, community
             unrest and related matters;
     c.      information from community leaders in economically
             underprivileged, culturally or ethnically isolated areas; and
     d.      information from state and federal law enforcement agencies.
2.   The street location and telephone number of repositories for firearms and
     explosives shall be identified within this jurisdiction generally and within
     potential disturbance areas in particular, to include
     a.      manufacturers and distributors,
     b.      pawnshops, and
     c.      publicly known firearms and explosives dealers and manufacturers.
3.   The name, location and telephone number of all local federal firearms
     licensees shall be obtained and verified through the Bureau of Alcohol,
     Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). A determination regarding police
     protection for these locations during civil disturbances will be made based
     on available security and firearms/explosives inventories in relation to
     available police personnel.
4.   The owners of all subject locations shall be contacted by designated
     personnel of this agency to voluntarily
     a.      participate in evaluations of their physical security and related
     b.      make needed improvements in security, and
     c.      if possible, develop contingency plans for the systematic and
             secure removal of firearms/explosives in case of emergency.
5.   Schematic drawings of subject locations, to include points of entry and
     exit and routes of access and egress, shall be included in contingency
6.   The plan shall include procedures for mobilizing and coordinating this
     agency's responses with other municipal, county, state and federal law
     enforcement agencies, fire and emergency services and the state national
     guard, among other agencies.
     a.      State and local mobilization and deployment issues that are not
             adequately addressed in this agency's mutual-aid agreement and
             civil disturbance policy shall be resolved through developing
             separate memoranda of understanding where appropriate.
     b.      Overall efforts of this agency to respond to civil disturbances in
             general and to protect firearms and explosives storage and
             distribution points in particular shall be reviewed and coordinated
             where appropriate with any similar contingency plans of ATF or
             other federal agencies.
     c.      Interagency coordination of support services to include pre-event
             and strategic field intelligence, field communication and command
             operations shall be established through the emergency plan or a
                    memorandum of understanding with other local, state and federal
                    law enforcement agencies and local fire and emergency service
B.   Training
     1.     This agency's training authority shall be responsible for developing and
            implementing all pre-service and in-service training necessary to ensure
            the efficient and effective use of personnel for staffing this agency's
            emergency plan. Particular emphasis shall be placed on, but shall not be
            limited to
            a.      crowd control and the use of chemical agents;
            b.      crowd behavior and dynamics;
            c.      arrest teams and strategies;
            d.      officer organization, supervision and management;
            e.      use of force generally and under conditions of civil unrest or
                    disorder in particular;
            f.      mass arrest procedures, prisoner control and processing during
                    civil disturbances; and
            g.      laws, statutes and ordinances relating to civil disorders.
     2.     The training authority shall be responsible for coordinating the above and
            related training protocols with other local, state and federal law
            enforcement agencies who would implement this policy's emergency plan.
     3.     Practical exercises shall be developed and scheduled periodically to ensure
            proper interagency coordination and interaction of personnel, resources,
            and command and control structures.
C.   Implementation
     1.     The emergency plan shall define protocol procedures for activating and
            implementing the emergency plan, to include
            a.      procedures for tactical alert and mobilization;
            b.      establishing command and control structures and logistical support;
            c.      establishing and maintaining communications on both tactical and
                    command levels and interfaces with other local, state and federal
                    law enforcement agencies, emergency service providers and
                    support services;
            d.      following procedures to activate mutual aid assistance; and
            e.      delineating media relations responsibilities and staging areas.
D.   Legal Considerations
     This agency's legal advisor shall identify and respond to all legal issues bearing on
     the implementation of this emergency plan, to include
     1.     the authority for and potential limitations on other municipal, state and
            federal officers to engage in enforcement actions under this emergency
     2.     the liability of this agency and jurisdiction for acts or omissions of extra-
            jurisdictional peace officers serving under this policy's emergency plan;
     3.     the legal authority of this jurisdiction's chief executive to issue, and
            cooperating law enforcement agencies to enforce, emergency orders to
            a.        banning the sale of firearms, ammunition, explosives,
                      containerized gasoline and related dangerous products or
             b.       emergency closing of businesses engaged in such commerce;
             c.       placing restrictions on travel access or egress from critical
             d.       confiscating weapons and dangerous substances not normally
                      subject to seizure; and
             e.       enacting such other emergency provisions that may be necessary to
                      protect public safety and welfare during a civil emergency or to
                      otherwise facilitate the implementation of this policy's emergency
             4.       The legal authority for this jurisdiction's chief executive to order,
                      when necessary, that federal firearms and explosives' license
                      holders install both alarm systems that activate in this agency or
                      another acceptable monitoring station and vaults or other
                      acceptable secure storage for firearms, ammunition and explosives.
             5.       The capacity of this agency's mutual aid plan and interagency
                      agreements to accomplish the goals and objectives of this policy's
                      emergency plan.
E.   Interagency Coordination
     All services and material that may be used to facilitate efficient and effective
     implementation and the accomplishment of goals and objectives shall be
     identified and, to the degree necessary and possible, integrated into this
     emergency plan. The type and level of support and the role of each shall be
     defined and clearly specified in the plan. These include but are not limited to
     1.      city and county public works facilities, vehicles, equipment and personnel
             that may provide specialized aid or consulting expertise;
     2.      civil preparedness and emergency management/operations agencies and
             staff, the Red Cross;
     3.      fire protection and suppression services, paramedic and emergency
             medical responders and local/regional medical service facilities,
     4.      local military installations exclusive of the national guard;
     5.      public school facilities and public areas that may be used for staging
             and/or detention;
     6.      local and federal prosecutors' offices and the courts, particularly as it
             relates to mass arrests, and
     7.      federal agencies, in particular, ATF, which has jurisdiction over thefts
             from federal firearms and explosive licensees.
F.   Post-Event Critique and Documentation
     Following any civil disturbance in which this plan is activated, it shall be the
     policy of this agency to conduct a complete and thorough evaluation of actions
     and activities in order to assess the effectiveness of the emergency plan, the
     effectiveness of the response and the identification of areas for improvement in

                    future operations.

This project was supported by Grant No. 93-DD-CX-K009 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice
Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The Assistant Attorney General, Office of Justice Programs, coordinates the activities of
the following program offices and bureaus: the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Institute
of Justice, Office of Juvenile and Delinquency Prevention, and the Office of Victims of Crime. Points of view or opinions in this
document are those of the author and do not represent the official position or policies of the United States Department of Justice.

Every effort has been made by the IACP National Law Enforcement Policy Center staff and advisory board to ensure that this
model policy incorporates the most current information and contemporary professional judgment on this issue. However, law
enforcement administrators should be cautioned that no "model" policy can meet all the needs of any given law enforcement
agency. Each law enforcement agency operates in a unique environment of federal court rulings, state laws, local ordinances,
regulations, judicial and administrative decisions and collective bargaining agreements that must be considered. In addition, the
formulation of specific agency policies must take into account local political and community perspectives and customs,
prerogatives and demands; often divergent law enforcement strategies and philosophies, and the impact of varied agency resource
capabilities among other factors.


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