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TULSA, Oklahoma –
A 21-year-old man is recovering after police say a security guard shot him in the neck at an apartment complex Wednesday night.
The complex near 88th and Delaware employs security guards to keep the property safe, but some people have been questioning why the guard had a gun.
Security guards in Oklahoma have five levels of training and education where they can be licensed unarmed guards or licensed armed guards.
Shots fired at the Deerfield Estates left one man seriously injured.
Police said the trigger was pulled by an apartment complex security guard. 2/4/2015 Related Story: Tulsa Police: Security Guard Shoots Man Who Tried To Run Him Down1
The guard told police the man hit him with his car and that’s when the CLEET-certified guard fired his gun.
Which begs the question, how far can security guards go?
Mark American Horse is a criminal justice instructor with Central Tech in Sapulpa and said the level of training is just one difference between working security and being in law enforcement.
“The difference is, you may enforce the law, a police officer shall enforce the law. They don’t have an opportunity to walk away, so if they see a crime they can’t just turn their back and walk away, they’re compelled by statute to enforce the law,” he said.
Meaning security personnel have a choice whether to get involved in a dangerous situation.
Estaline Palmore has owned her own security company since 1982 and also teaches security at Central Tech.
She said, in all her years as a guard, she only used her weapon once.
“It was a guy trying to run me off the road and on the third count I decided I didn’t like that anymore so I took my weapon out and I aimed it at him and I shot and the bullet went into his pick up and he left,” Palmore said.
She said a security guard’s best weapon is communication.
“You have to be able to talk to them, and you may stand there for quite a while and try to talk them out of a situation,” she said.
Like anyone, when talking doesn’t work and a security guard fears for their life, they have every right to shoot.
Not because you can, but because you have to.
That’s really the question that they have to ask themselves.
You know you have to live with what you’ve done, right or wrong, so it should always be the last resort,” American Horse said.
Police said the guard involved in last night’s shooting was questioned and released.
As of right now the shooting is still under investigation.
Detectives are asking for anyone who saw what happened to call police.
TULSA – Recent shootings involving police officers gained a lot of scrutiny, but security guard related shootings can be just as deadly. Armed security guards in Oklahoma and most other states receive only a fraction of the training and screening police officers do. Wednesday night at the Deerfield Apartments in south Tulsa,1 a security guard shot a man after they had an altercation.
That 21-year-old suspect was hit in the neck by a bullet. Police said he went to the ICU and could be paralyzed. In January at the Western Pine Apartments, a security guard shot and killed Dale Long after an incident there.
The security guards from both cases were interviewed by police and released. Officers said they found no wrongdoing or cause for arresting the guards; the district attorney is reviewing the cases. Unlike officers involved in shootings, security guards can return to armed duty immediately after an incident if they are not arrested.
Most police departments take officers off active duty until after an investigation is completed.
Though they can use deadly force, armed guards only need 72 hours of training to be licensed in Oklahoma. Compare that to a manicurists in the state who are required to have 600 hours of training to be able to give manicures and pedicures.
Data complied by the Center for Investigative Reporting2 found Oklahoma has tighter screening for armed security guards than other states. However, Oklahoma does not check to see if a potential guard has been a police officer who’s been disciplined or fired; does not check mental health reports and does not check to see if a guard is federally prohibited from carrying a gun, according to CIR’s reporting3 .
Armed guard companies in Oklahoma said they have additional training not mandated by the state.
For the two recent security guard involved shootings in Tulsa, there are no indications of pending charges.
5 February 2015
Last updated at 15:54
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Athletes and staff taking part in the 2014 Games were staying at the Carnoustie Golf Hotel
A Commonwealth Games security guard was caught carrying a knife when he arrived for his first shift.
Jordan Perkins arrived at the Carnoustie Golf Hotel on 21 July to act as security for the teams of shooters involved in events at Barry Buddon.
Police found a credit card-shaped fold-out blade in the 21-year-old’s backpack during a compulsory x-ray screening.
Perkins lost his job, and was sentenced to 180 hours of unpaid work.
Forfar Sheriff Court heard that Perkins was submitted to a search at the front door of the hotel, which housed staff and athletes during the 2014 Commonwealth Games, after travelling up from his home in Tredegar, Wales.
During an x-ray scan, a fold-out knife with a 2.5in (6.35cm) blade was found in his backpack.
Depute fiscal Joanne Smith told the court: “The accused freely stated that he had removed the knife from somebody in Wales.
“He said he did not know he had the knife in his possession and would not have travelled with it.”
Defence solicitor Jennifer Strachan said her client had removed the item from a youth while working at a carnival in Wales, placing it in a wallet he kept for contraband items before mistakenly bringing it with him to Scotland.
She said: “It was stupidity rather than anything malicious.
He has lost his job in the security industry as a result of this.”
Sheriff Gregor Murray said Perkins could “just avoid” a jail term due to the fact he was a young first offender.