By: Robert Davis
Georgia Tech students living in the crime-ridden Home Park neighborhood bordering campus, where there were seven armed robberies in just 30 days, are taking matters into their own hands by getting trained in handgun self-defense techniques and taking advantage of the state’s recently passed Campus Carry law.
“Before Campus Carry was enacted, I would not have felt safe walking back from school back to home in Home Park,” Phillip Yamin, president of the Georgia Tech Marksmanship Club, told Fox5 Atlanta.
With the safety of his fellow students in mind, Rob Montgomery, vice president of the club, spearheaded an effort to recruit fellow students to learn how to use guns to defend themselves. The Georgia Tech Campus Police Department offered its services by allowing Montgomery and Yamin to be trained using their threat simulator tool.
“What we really think is the best solution to these problems is to have people properly trained in the use of firearms,” Montgomery told Fox5 Atlanta.
Georgia’s Campus Carry law permits people with a state concealed carry permit – and those from states with reciprocal laws – to carry concealed handguns on Georgia’s public college campuses. The law states that weapons must be carried “in such a fashion that does not actively solicit the attention of others, and is not prominently, openly, and intentionally displayed except for purposes of defense of self or others.”
Overall crime in Atlanta has dwindled in recent years, but the murder rate has risen in each of the past three years. Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Darryl Tolleson announced last year the city’s homicide rate had umped 17 percent from 2015. Overall shootings in the city have increased nearly 50 percent since 2009. Montgomery says being armed is a great deterrent to would-be criminals.
“If someone thinks you have a gun, they are far less likely to target you for a robbery,” Montgomery said.
Robert Davis is a journalist from Colorado. He covers defensive gun use and Second Amendment litigation for Gunpowder Magazine. Contact him at RobertDavis0414@gmail.com.
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