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Rich Z said:
...Danbury police are replacing shotguns that officers carry in their cruisers with AR-15s, which cost about $750 each. The department plans to buy 30 of them through a military surplus program...

M16's thru a milsurp program, I can see; but military surplus AR-15's...? Gotta be either a typo, or reporter carelessness.

Anyway, I myself switched about three years ago. I used to carry my (personally-owned) Mossberg 500 on duty, but after thinking it through, I switched to my (also personally-owned) CAR-15. The shotgun has a great "intimidation factor", but when it came right down to it, the only thing we use a long gun for out here is animals. Usually feral dogs, occasionally a downed (car-struck) animal. The shotgun is just too "random" for me to be comfortable with. The carbine gives me "one shot, one projectile" control, which I much prefer. It can also reach the wild dog that won't let you get within shotgun range.

IMO, about the only shoulder gun that's more versatile than the AR-15, is the more-compact CAR-15 (or M-4) version. Effective out to a further range than most anyone has reason to use it, basically zero recoil, and the short version is much more "car friendly" than the full-size gun. Mine rides between the front seats at night; a full-size AR would be much more cumbersome and awkward in a vehicle.

Lastly, (and surprisingly to me, in this rural of a setting), we've had two hostage situations already this year in one town in my jurisdiction. Both were resolved without shots fired by LE, but the carbine gives options the shotgun just can't offer in those situations.

Even looking at it from the perspective of someone calling the cops, rather than the perspective "of" the cops. Whether the cop's eliminating feral dogs in my pasture (with my cattle & horses out there as well), or trying to rescue my wife who's being held in a gas station robbery gone bad, the carbine usually makes more sense, and offers more options, than a shotgun.

Putting myself in the position of the "customer", if I were a hostage, I'd MUCH rather the cops carried carbines than shotguns.
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