EDUCATION

University of Rhode Island police to start carrying guns; final public university to do so

University of Rhode Island campus police will start carrying guns, making it the final public university in the nation to arm its officers.

The school has spent a year getting ready for Friday's change.

The move to arm police came after a false alarm in 2013, when a panic was set off on the bucolic campus after some students in a lecture hall thought they heard someone say they had a gun. It took about five minutes for armed police from South Kingstown to arrive. No gun was found.

University officials say the change will ensure safety. While the change has support among students, many faculty members oppose it.

Frank Annunziato of the faculty union says guns are unnecessary and will only cause problems on a campus with little crime.