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PE01532: Stop Public Bearing of Arms by Police


Petitioner: Garry Stagg


Date Lodged: 07 October 2014

Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to prevent Sir Stephen House, Chief Constable of Scotland, from allowing armed police to routinely patrol the streets of Scottish towns and villages and cities.

Petition History:


11 November 2014: The Committee agreed to close the petition, under Rule 15.7, on the basis that the petitioner no longer wishes to pursue the petition. Link to Official Report 11 November 2014

Written Submissions:

I do not believe in a routinely armed police force. Reluctantly, I accept that there is a need for a small number of police to carry weapons.

However, those weapons must be kept out of sight and securely housed, only to be deployed in exceptional circumstances and at the orders of a senior commander. Furthermore, whenever there is an operational need to remove those weapons from their secure housing, there must be full and public accountability.

I cannot accept that there is a need for officers to carry weapons in public view. I am intimidated by the possibility that armed officers, attending a routine disturbance, could be overwhelmed, causing the weapons to be either removed from them or discharged. I am disturbed that such officers are a potential target for criminals and/or terrorists, thus endangering the public around them whom they are supposed to protect. No matter how well trained, officers are human and can make mistakes. There have already been tragic incidents in Britain involving correctly deployed armed response units, leading to the deaths of innocent people. This becomes far more likely if police are carrying semi-automatic weapons on day-to-day patrol. I would urge you to please call upon the Justice Secretary to rein in Sir Stephen House and reverse this dangerous and unacceptable policy.


It is bad enough that I have seen the miss use of cs gas and extendable batons on the public and if we seek to complain we are told to get away (but not so politely) and now you want a weapon that is fully lethal this is an injustice from those who we are soppsed to trust with justice

Robert Elder

15:31 on 26 Sep 2014

There is no need for the Police to open carry in Scotland. Firearms should be locked up in their safes in the boots of patrol cars until needed and authorised.

Thomas Walker

13:57 on 26 Sep 2014

this is a fundamental change in the way we police and more over the perception of the policing by the public

roy laird

12:02 on 26 Sep 2014

No guns on patrolling police

Allyn brown

0:15 on 26 Sep 2014

Only became aware of this by default, seems strange the links to promote it are disconnected?

Ian B Malcolm

14:13 on 24 Sep 2014

I can't believe only 63 people feel strongly about this. I it anything to do with the fact that I do not seem able to post it on Facebook?

Pamela Dawson

13:27 on 23 Sep 2014

If police want to have guns why don't they train to be in the Armed Police?It's been proved in America that Police having guns STOPS NOTHING then puts more guns on the streets.Then police are known to make mistakes.This country has an armed gun squad.Why more?

Joanne Paton

22:52 on 15 Sep 2014

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