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Tennessee Bill Seeks to Take Away LEOSA Carry for Former Officers with DUI Convictions

April 12, 2016  | 

State Rep. Curry Todd, a retired Memphis police officer who has pleaded guilty to drunken driving and gun charges, is speaking out against Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to keep retired law enforcement officers with DUI convictions from being able to carry firearms in public.

Todd was arrested in Nashville in 2011 after he failed a roadside sobriety test and police found a loaded .38-caliber gun stuffed next to the driver's seat. The Collierville Republican later pleaded guilty, but has easily been re-elected to the Legislature ever since.

The Haslam administration bill carried by Majority Leader Gerald McCormick, R-Chattanooga, would give the Tennessee Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission the authority to ban retired officers from obtaining handgun carry permits if they were convicted of drunken driving once in the previous five years or twice within the past decade. It would only apply to new applicants.

Todd said any state law on the matter would be superseded by the federal Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act, which gives off-duty and retired officers the ability to carry their concealed firearms nationwide. Todd told his colleagues that he expects to obtain his certification under the federal law next year.

The bill was up for a House floor vote on Monday evening after passing the Senate unanimously last month. But the vote was delayed after Todd questioned the need for the bill.

Comments (19)

Displaying 1 - 19 of 19

Donald mitchell @ 4/12/2016 4:23 PM

Here in NC. . There are people convicted of ROD, drug charges, I have seen few, that had past assaults I think DUI should not be on that list. Or if the are doing it then they need to do it for everyone and hold everyone accountable.

Bob W @ 4/12/2016 5:39 PM

Under the L.E.S.O.A. one of the necessary documents is a valid license to carry (CCW) from your home state. If the passage of this bill will dis-allow everyone from Tennnessee from obtaining a license to carry (CCW), then you are not allowed to carry under L.E.O.S.A.

Jank @ 4/12/2016 5:49 PM

Under LEOSA, you don't need a carry permit from your home state, just meet the federal qualifications, LEOSA is so you don't have to have a CWP.

Danny @ 4/12/2016 5:53 PM

"An individual who qualifies under LEOSA does not require a state-issued permit to carry a concealed firearm."

kevCopAz @ 4/12/2016 6:33 PM

Correct, if he qualifies under Fed regs then he carries, I might agree that perhaps some changes be made in LESOA but as of now, Tennessee can take their law and you know what with it..

Capt. Crunch @ 4/12/2016 8:03 PM

But they elect a president who snorts coke.

Mickey @ 4/13/2016 2:52 AM

I don't know about Tennessee, but I do know there's no law in Illinois that prevents people with DUI's from being cops. The only way this law would even be considerable is if current leo's loose their job upon dui conviction.

If you can trust a guy on duty with a gun, why can't you trust him off duty/retired?

Jimmy @ 4/13/2016 6:06 AM

I suppose they'd rather have some sober criminal out with a gun - before they'd want a sober retired police officer with a past bump in the road dogging him forever... Face it, lots of folks have guns, I'd rather see a carload of ex-officers with a sullied past coming to my aid than a carload of ubangees that have slipped by the law....

RG @ 4/13/2016 7:16 AM

As a Chief I issue carry permits to the public for our state. A DUI does not disqualify you from getting one. I obviously am not an advocate of LE driving intoxicated but you can't have a double standard. I am not an expert on Federal law so I am not sure what LESOA has for standards. I just know the LE would not lose his permit in his current state.

Ordinary Joe @ 4/13/2016 7:37 AM

Seems to be a political maneuver. I think they should pass a law that says you are disqualified from running for office if you have a DUI conviction.

Adrian Stroud @ 4/13/2016 12:23 PM

That is ridiculous. A civilian would not lose his permit. Don't they get it that Bush signed that into law to get more cops out there, even retired ones?

Martin S @ 4/13/2016 7:48 PM

The comment by Bob W is indicative of how much disinformation there is out there about LEOSA. A lot of it is due to people who want the law to be what they think it should be instead of what it actually is. Nothing new in that.

Manuel @ 4/18/2016 12:51 PM

Sounds good to me, they shouldn't be getting arrested for DUI any way, if any offense, that is the one that no officer should be arrested for. If they get caught no one to blame but themselves

Manuel @ 4/18/2016 12:52 PM

Of all the offenses , DUI is what any officer should never be arrested for. if they are caught, that is on them and they should accept it and move on

Clay @ 4/18/2016 7:59 PM

Don't break the law and you can keep your gun. Simple fix.

Ima Leprechaun @ 4/27/2016 1:29 AM

I disagree with any law that denies due process. Making something a crime that was not a crime when it happened is not be legal. If it were me I would sue the State of Tennessee for double jeopardy and civil rights violations. I have no dog in this fight but the FOP should be all over this. Future crimes I have no problem with but retroactive criminal laws are just plain denial of due process and they have already been struck down by SCOUS so there is case law here. Shame on Tennessee!

Richard Martin @ 10/19/2018 9:01 AM

I am a retired New Jersey police officer living in Tennessee. How can I obtain a permit to carry a firearm in Tennessee?

Richard Martin @ 10/19/2018 9:03 AM

I am a retired New Jersey police officer living in Tennessee. How do I obtain a firearm permit to carry ?

Glen Hoyer @ 10/22/2018 9:44 AM

@ Richard Martin: Richard, if you are referring to carrying under the federal law known as the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) it is not a permit, but a benefit allowed for officers who meet the criteria of the law. If you have the proper credentials (retired identification) and proof of a qualification within the past 12 months then you meet the requirements for LEOSA.

Assuming you have the credentials and you need the qualification you can either return to the agency you retired from to qualify and get the proof, or you can qualify within the state you now live by the procedure they have established. I would recommend you contact a local law enforcement agency, the state POST and see if they can advise you of the procedure for Tennessee.

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