MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Still reeling from the shooting deaths of seven officers over the last 13 months, multiple Alabama sheriffs traveled to Montgomery Tuesday to discuss a new way they’re working to protect those in law enforcement.
Standing in front of a large sign showing the names and photos of each fallen officer, the Alabama Sheriff’s Association held a press conference in which they gave support to legislation that would create a new system with the state’s concealed carry permits.
The system is called the Alabama Responding Officer Warning System, or AROWS, which they believe will help law enforcement detect fake concealed carry permits.
Supporters say law enforcement could automatically access the system any time they perform a traffic stop or engage in an investigation. It will provide officers “a clear picture of the persons they are dealing with,” according to the sheriff’s association.
In addition to the statewide concealed carry permit repository, House Bill 308, introduced on Thursday, codifies the AROWS system. It standardizes all concealed carry pistol permits across the state so officers can better spot fake permits.
“We owe an absolute duty to every Alabama officer who puts his life on the line for us every day to see that he or she makes it home to their family safely," said Montgomery County Sheriff Derrick Cunningham, who also serves as the association’s current president. "The AROWS system is a huge step towards arming him with as much information as possible to ensure that happens and we don’t suffer yet another officer shot or killed.”