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Liberty News

Off-campus gun ranges set to open for student use

February 5, 2009 : Eric Brown

Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. recently announced that Liberty University will allow students to use the university’s off-campus firearm ranges. Primarily used to train LU’s police officers, the two ranges are located on Gun Range Road across from Liberty Village and permit the use of rifles, shotguns and handguns during designated shooting hours.

"I am a firm believer in using all of the university’s assets to benefit students and to enhance the student experience at LU,” Falwell said. “Recently, we have had students asking for a place to target shoot, so it made perfect sense to open the range to students. Without any cost to the university, we are giving students one more unique and educational activity to pursue.”

On-campus residents will be required to store their firearms with the Liberty University Police Department (LUPD) when not using the range. Commuter students travelling to the range must keep their weapon unloaded and stored in the trunk of their vehicle. Anyone caught in possession of a firearm on university property outside of the shooting ranges will be subject to disciplinary action as defined by LUPD protocol. Off-campus students who fail to properly store their firearm in their vehicle will be disciplined, as well.

Before accessing either range, students must pass a safety course issued by LUPD. The first class begins on Feb. 20, 6-10 p.m., with the final on-site training taking place the following day. Upon completing the course, the range will be available to participants two days per week from 1 p.m. until dusk. Only five students will be allowed on the shooting line at one time with additional shooting times to be added if needed.

Students wanting to access the range must sign up by phone, email or in person at the LUPD office 24 hours in advance. The university will provide a variety of targets as well as a range supervisor who will be on-site during all shooting times.

“The supervisor will be there for safety reasons and will also be available to assist students with their shooting technique,” Lee Beaumont, LU’s director of auxiliary services said. “In addition all students participating will be members of the LU Gun Club, and eventually we hope to have a competitive shooting team in addition to offering recreational shooting opportunities.”  

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