News release via Senate Republican Caucus:
NASHVILLE — State Senator Richard Briggs (R-Knoxville) said today he is introducing legislation to provide immunity and personal liability protection for Tennessee National Guard members involved in protecting themselves or others in a terrorist attack.
Following the terrorist attack in Chattanooga resulting in the death of five military service members, Major General Max Haston, Tennessee Adjutant General, authorized the carrying of personal firearms on state military facilities by Tennessee National Guard members with valid handgun carry permits. State law, however, does not provide immunity or personal liability protection in the event of damage or injury sustained in defense of the service member or others during a terrorist attack.
“Our Tennessee National Guardsmen have become targets of terrorists as demonstrated by the tragic events in Chattanooga,” said Briggs, a retired Army Colonel with combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. “The intent of this bill is to provide the service member legal cover in defending him or herself and others during a terrorist attack. I believe my fellow Tennesseans and state legislators will agree this protection is necessary for our Guardsmen.”
Senator Briggs is developing the bill in consultation with Haston and other law enforcement officials. The bill will be filed for consideration during the 2016 General Assembly Session which is scheduled to reconvene in January.
“The attack in Chattanooga reminds us of the constant threat, on and off the battlefield, facing our brave men and women in uniform,” added Briggs. “This legislation will strengthen current security measures implemented by the Adjutant General to help protect them.”