AP NEWS

Policy restricts carrying guns onto Offutt Air Force Base

January 15, 2020 GMT

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A new policy has gone into effect at Offutt Air Force Base south of Omaha that bars military and civilian personnel from transporting privately-owned firearms onto base.

That order came from Col. Gavin Marks, who assumed command of the U.S. Air Force 55th Wing in June. It followed a mandatory review of the base’s defense and anti-terrorism plan, the Omaha World-Herald recently reported.

The change also came in the wake of high-profile gun incidents last year on U.S. military bases, including one in May at Offutt. Marine Pfc. Ali Al-Kazahg, 22, of Milford, was arrested at Offutt’s StratCom gate while carrying guns, ammunition and a silencer. Al-Kazahg, who is stationed in Hawaii, pleaded guilty Tuesday in a court martial hearing to possessing unlawful firearms and other counts and was sentenced to three years’ confinement.

Marks’ order overturned a previous policy that allowed Department of Defense ID card holders with a concealed-carry license from Nebraska or reciprocating states to take personal firearms onto base, provided they were inside their vehicles, unloaded and inside a locked container.

The new restriction doesn’t apply to current and former military law enforcement personnel who have permits that allow qualifying military police to carry concealed weapons.