Chief Kehoe Tells White House: 'Ban Assault Weapons'

Kehoe said the weapons used in the Dec. 14 shooting were stronger than those his department carries, according to NBC News.


Newtown Police Chief Michael Kehoe didn't mince words in his message to the White House.

"Ban assault weapons, restrict those magazines that have so many bullets in them, shore up any loopholes in our criminal background checks," he said in an interview with NBC News.

In the interview, Kehoe spoke frankly about what he saw at Sandy Hook Elementary School on the day in December when 20 children and six adults lost their lives in one of the worst school shootings in U.S. history.

Newtown's Police Chief said the shooter was carrying heavier firepower than his officers. "We never like to think we're outgunned in any situation we're dealing with," he told NBC News.

Since the shooting, Kehoe has taken an active leadership role in his response. A week afterwards, he issued a statement to the community assuring residents schools were safe and police were hard at work.

"Our police, fire, and emergency medical personnel reacted quickly and without hesitation, rapidly responding to Sandy Hook Elementary School," he said. "Their professionalism was heartwarming to witness; our community is proud of them."

More recently Kehoe and the Newtown Police Department have been working to ensure officers have access to health benefits and leaves of absence as they recover from their work on December 14 and afterward.

Kehoe's message comes as the advocacy group Sandy Hook Promise launches a nationwide campaign for change in the wake of the shootings. Gun control remains an option on its agenda, as U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy told reporters.

"We have to fundamentally change our approach," co-founder Tom Bittman told press Monday. "It’s not just what government should do. It’s not just what I should do. It’s not just what you should do. It’s what we should do together."

socrates January 19, 2013 at 04:27 PM
Adam Lanza killed himself when he heard the sirens. Maybe Kehoe ought to explain why it took 20 minutes to get to the school.
joe_m January 19, 2013 at 07:03 PM
No one disagrees that the police did all they could, however, they were too late and were able to do very little. It was all over when the police arrived. All Kehoe is suggesting is that individuals leave themselves indefensible and let the police come in later to do the investigation.
joe_m January 19, 2013 at 07:05 PM
"Adam Lanza killed himself when he heard the sirens" All we know is that he killed himself. The when, and why are unknowable. The sirens may have had nothing to do with it.
Sean January 19, 2013 at 11:25 PM
Not one of these "solutions" will solve anything. Police use firearms with more than 10 rounds. Why? Because it is needed to defend yourself in situations. Citizens can face the same circumstances that police do. Why should we have less right to defend ourselves? The term "assault weapon" was created by Democrats in the 1990s. It has no relevance to gun classification. Let him explain what his goals are in more laws and how his proposals will stop this type of violence. Too many Americans do not understand firearms and react emotionally to the mention of them. Gun owners want to stop gun violence. These types of proposals stop nothing.
George Wall January 20, 2013 at 02:54 PM
Yesterday NBC news reported that no "assault" weapon was used in the killings, but 4 handguns were. How are they going to explain this to the public? I know how, they won't. it doesn't fit Obama's agenda to remove all privately owned weapons from responsible owners.


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