- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - A legislative committee has defeated a measure to authorize legislators to carry concealed weapons in the state Capitol to defend against a violent attack.

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday killed the proposal. It would have required lawmakers to go through law enforcement-approved training and petition legislative leadership before receiving a permit.

Republican Sen. Brock Greenfield said he wants to increase the level of security in the state Capitol. He said disconcerting reports of violence are increasing.

The South Dakota Highway Patrol, tasked with Capitol security, opposed the measure.

Republican Sen. Mike Vehle said lawmakers should concentrate on legislating, not scanning a committee audience searching for potential threats.

The committee approved a proposal to allow sergeants-at-arms to carry concealed weapons in the Capitol under similar circumstances.

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