Military surplus weapons sent to Virginia college campuses

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WTKR) — The same military-surplus program that has sent more than 300 M-16 battlefield rifles to local police departments has also sent the weapons to local colleges.

A state-police database obtained by NewsChannel 3 shows the College of William and Mary and Old Dominion University have received fully automatic M-16s through the same surplus program at the center of scrutiny in Ferguson, Mo.

There, as police clashed with protesters angered over the shooting death of a teen, officers appeared outfitted with guns, vests, uniforms and equipment meant for the battlefield, but gifted as surplus to police.

Documents from William and Mary show the college asked for the M-16s to protect dignitaries and to combat terrorism. The campus police, like other agencies, was attracted to the no-cost weapons as a way to keep spending down.

“They acquired these weapons from the state, for free, then all we had…

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