State campus data on stun guns, Tasers show zero use for self defense

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State campus data on stun guns, Tasers show zero use for self defense

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Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed a campus carry bill in May. Georgia campuses, including the University of Georgia, fought the campus carry legislation and applauded Deal’s veto. Now, the Legislature is trying again with another campus carry bill. TAYLOR CARPENTER / TAYLOR.CARPENTER@AJC.COM

Are Georgia campuses so unsafe that students need to be armed?

That is the contention of Georgia lawmakers, who are making another attempt at changing state law to allow students to carry firearms. Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed a similar bill last year, saying it would not make college campuses safer.

Writing today in the AJC Get Schooled blog, Matthew Boedy, an assistant professor at the University of North Georgia, looks at how the campus safety bill that did pass last year is faring. The state enacted a “campus carry lite” law that allows stun guns and Tasers to be carried anywhere on the campuses of Georgia’s public colleges and universities by those 18 or older.

“One would think with the campus ‘crime wave’ that drove the debate and all the weapons bought, there would now be many instances of people using them,” says Boedy.

But after looking at campus reports for the University of North Georgia (with its five campuses in Gainesville, Dahlonega, Cumming, Oconee and Blue Ridge), the University of Georgia, Kennesaw State, Georgia Tech, and Georgia State, Boedy found, “Campus police reported zero instances of defensive use. Not a single one.”

To read more, go to the AJC Get Schooled blog.

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