POINSETT COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - For the first time ever, Poinsett County deputies can look forward to department-issued firearms.
Currently, deputies who join the sheriff's department are required to purchase their own firearms.
"The money has never been there," said Chief Deputy Chris Crews. "It's never been budgeted for."
With the community's help, the department raised enough money to purchase 14 Glock handguns for all full-time deputies.
"There are advantages of us issuing handguns to our deputies," Crews said. "It will save money on ammunition. When we order ammunition to qualify, we will not need to order different calibers. Now, we will only need to order one caliber."
Deputies will soon be able to work better together out on a call.
"It's good to know that we all will have the same weapon and the magazines will interchange," he said. "In case of an incident, something happens to my weapon and I run dry of ammunition, I can ask my assistant deputy or my partner to hand me one of his magazines."
The money saved over time by issuing the handguns will go back into training funds.
"We train several times a month, but we need to buff it up, we really need to focus on training. That's what's going to get us through day-to-day life," Crews said.
The sheriff's office can also send someone to armor school and have parts on hand if any of the guns ever go down.
"We will be able to fix them and have them in service quickly," Crews said. "Our deputies will be more familiar and proficient with one gun that they will always train with."
Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.