Proposal to align with state, student handbook regulations

Carteret Community College’s trustees are considering a weapons policy that could be adopted in February. (Cheryl Burke photo)

MOREHEAD CITY — The Carteret Community College Board of Trustees is developing a policy to regulate weapons on campus.

Trustees heard the first reading of a proposed policy during their meeting Tuesday in the McGee Building boardroom. The policy will be up for adoption in February after a second reading.

CCC President Dr. John Hauser said that during a policy review last year officials realized there was no official weapons policy.

“We continue to focus on student safety and the safety of our campus,” Dr. Hauser said. “We believe we need a policy.”

The college’s student handbook has a section that addresses weapons on campus, and CCC Security Chief Richard Abell said there are state statutes that already regulate weapons on school and college campuses. The policy will codify the existing rules.

While there are exceptions to the rule, the proposed policy prohibits employees, students or visitors on campus to bring weapons on college-owned or operated property. Items listed under the policy include handguns, long guns, BB guns, air rifles, stun guns, bowie knives, explosives, including fireworks, slingshots or “any other device or instrument that can be considered a weapon.”

The policy does allow items that are being utilized as instructional materials or in the course of regular academic instruction and approved college activities.

The policy does not pertain to law enforcement officers required to carry a firearm while in uniform or in the course of duty. It also excludes criminal justice technology and basic law enforcement training students when firearms and other weapons are training aids in the course being taught by qualified instructors.

The policy also allows people who have a valid concealed handgun permit or who are exempt from obtaining a permit to bring a handgun as long as certain requirements are met.

A person with a concealed permit must have their handgun in a closed compartment or container within the locked vehicle or in a locked container securely affixed to the person’s vehicle. They can unlock the vehicle to enter or exit while the firearm remains in the closed compartment at all times and immediately lock the vehicle following entrance or exit.

A person with a permit can have a handgun concealed on them as long as they remain in a locked vehicle and only unlock the vehicle to allow the entrance or exit of another person.

A person with a handgun within a locked vehicle is allowed to remove the handgun from concealment only for the amount of time reasonably necessary to either move the gun from concealment on the person to a closed compartment or container or move the handgun from a closed compartment or container to concealment on the person.

Mr. Abell said CCC security officers don’t carry weapons, and when an incident may require weapons, the Morehead City Police Department is called.

“They can be on campus in about two minutes. They also maintain a heavy presence on campus,” Mr. Abell said.

Trustee June Fulcher asked if those with conceal permits are required to notify the college. Mr. Abell said they are not.

As for those who violate the policy, they will be referred for criminal prosecution. Faculty and staff violators are also subject to the college’s disciplinary action, suspension and dismissal policy.

In addition, student violators are subject to the Student Code of Conduct and consequent levels of disciplinary action outlined in the handbook. Disciplinary action for students can range from verbal warnings to suspensions.

Two CCC students the News-Times interviewed Friday said they felt the proposed policy was fair.

“I think that having the policy in place will help protect us and make the campus safer,” Phi Beta Kappa Vice President Victoria Washington of Beaufort said. “As long as people have their permit and keep their guns locked in their vehicle, I’m OK.”

CCC Student Government Association Secretary Nyquan Wilson of Beaufort agreed.

“We want to follow the state law to enhance campus safety,” Mr. Wilson said. “I think it’s OK as long as they have their permit and have a mental background check and ensure they’ve had no problems previously.”

Contact Cheryl Burke at 252-726-7081, ext. 255; email Cheryl@thenewstimes.com; or follow on Twitter @cherylccnt.

(9) comments

sonsofPepe

Gotta love those gun-free zones, you gotta watch out for guns that can just set themselves off . . .

CARTERETISCORRUPT

Gun free zones are simply and perfectly free fire zones for criminals to murder. In the time police respond, many will be killed. Even then, if the killer is competent, it would be some time before police could contain the situation. Time after time, a good citizen with a gun has ended a criminal from killing or further killing. The most recent incident in a church. Those with Concealed Carry Permits are cleared to carry in other places; such should be the case on campus. It makes no sense to expose students to this insanity, the gun free killing zone.

Core Sounder

A terrorist or lunatic wishing to shoot up the school can do a heck of a lot of damage before the law shows up even if they arrive within 2 minutes. In short the school really has no plan of action to stop a would be threat.

Osprey

Train the security guards to carry. What good are they if they only have a flashlight and mace ?

CARTERETISCORRUPT

Uniformed security guards are of little help; a half way intelligent bad guy shoots the uniforms first, then there is a pile of disarmed folks to kill. Sorry, but it is true.

CARTERETISCORRUPT

This is really a lot over nothing; state law already addresses specifically, firearms on campus. The school cannot make rules in conflict with state law.

CARTERETISCORRUPT

A Phi Beta Kappa commenting on gun issues? You must be kidding. Sororities and fraternities are the least ones to comment on serious issues; they are better qualified to comment on drinking than on weapons. Citizens who bear State Concealed Permits should be able to carry on campus. What specifically would make a community college different from any other public place? The students there are all adults, eligible to be tried in court as adults, responsible for their own actions. Unless, as a society, we deem colleges places of diminished mental capacity or judgement. Maybe the latter is the case?

David Collins

Really think this whole thing is about making points with the social justice folks . After all it is a dept. of education branch with it’s snowflakes and all that rot . Comes handy when funding time rolls around . Suspect you would be surprised at how many students are packing every day .

JusticeForAll

Whether it is a "good" person or "bad" person that uses a gun to take out another "good" or "bad" person is irrelevant. It is opinion. The only fact is that a human died.

Welcome to the discussion.

As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, anti-Semitism, or personal/abusive/condescending attacks on other users or goading them. The same applies to trolling, the use of multiple aliases, or just generally being a jerk. Enforcement of this policy is at the sole discretion of the site administrators and repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without warning.