- Associated Press - Saturday, July 18, 2015

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Gov. Mike Pence authorized the Indiana National Guard on Saturday to have its personnel be armed at all recruiting offices and state military facilities.

Pence cited a gunman’s deadly attack Thursday on a recruiting center and a Marine-Navy reserve facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee, for his decision to join governors in Florida, Texas and other states in taking similar steps.

“I will not permit our citizen-soldiers to remain unable to defend themselves and our citizens at facilities in our state,” Pence said in a statement. “Hoosiers may be assured that those who have stepped forward to defend our state and nation will have the ability to defend themselves.”

The Republican governor’s executive order also directs state Adjutant General Corey Carr to review ways to improve security at all Indiana National Guard facilities and recruiting offices.

The Navy announced on Saturday the death of a sailor who was injured in the Chattanooga attack that also killed four Marines and wounded two others.

Authorities say the gunman unleashed a barrage of shots at a recruiting center in Chattanooga, then drove several miles away to a Navy and Marine reserve center, where he shot and killed the Marines, and wounded the sailor. Kuwait-born Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, 24, of Hixson, Tennessee, was shot to death by police.

U.S. military officials have said they will review security measures for their recruiters but that it’s too early to say whether the facilities should have security guards or other increased protection.

Pence oversees the Indiana National Guard and can act without federal involvement. His executive order said the state “will take all measures within the law to protect those who have volunteered to protect us.”


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