In a crime-ridden city dominated by progressives, one might not expect the police chief to advocate citizens protecting themselves. But that’s exactly what happened in Detroit on Thursday.
Detroit Police Chief James Craig was speaking at a press conference at police headquarters when he revealed how his opinion of concealed carry permits radically shifted over the years.
“Coming from California, where it takes an act of Congress to get a concealed weapon permit, I got to Maine, where they give out lots of CCWs [carrying concealed weapon permits], and I had a stack of CCW permits I was denying; that was my orientation,” Craig, who had a 28-year career with the LAPD remarked.
“I changed my orientation real quick. Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed,” he added.
Craig was appointed chief of police for the Portland, Maine Police Department on May 4, 2009, before returning to Detroit as chief of police July 1, 2013.
In 2013, Detroit saw a 7 percent drop in violent crime. Craig said the department recorded a 50% clearance rate for 2013 homicides, which was an improvement, but his goal this year is 70% clearance rate.
The Detroit News points out that this isn’t the first time Craig has spoken out in favor of concealed carry permits.
Speaking on the Paul W. Smith show several weeks ago, Craig remarked: “There’s a number of CPL (concealed pistol license) holders running around the city of Detroit. I think it acts as a deterrent. Good Americans with CPLs translates into crime reduction. I learned that real quick in the state of Maine.”
Rick Ector of the Firearm Academy of Detroit said Craig’s comments represent a “huge, radical departure” from other police chiefs.
“I’m not ready to say he’s pro-gun just yet, but it’s vastly different from what police chiefs have said in the past,” Ector said.
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