2014 Tennessee Code
Title 38 - Prevention And Detection Of Crime
Chapter 8 - Employment and Training of Police Officers
Part 1 - General Provisions
§ 38-8-116 - Law enforcement shooting ranges -- Methods for retired law enforcement officer to meet annual requirements to carry firearm shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce -- Maintenance of a list of approved certified firearms instructors.

TN Code § 38-8-116 (2014) What's This?

(a) All law enforcement agencies are allowed to open their shooting ranges for public use when such ranges are not being used by law enforcement personnel. The law enforcement agency in charge of a shooting range may establish reasonable regulations for the use of the firing range in order to promote the full use of the range without interfering with the needs of law enforcement personnel. The law enforcement agency may also charge a reasonable fee for persons or organizations using the range and may require users to make improvements to the range.

(b) A law enforcement officer acting as an individual and not as an employee, agent or on behalf of any governmental entity who has retired in good standing, as determined solely by the chief law enforcement officer of the retired officer's law enforcement agency, may utilize any one (1) of the following methods to meet the annual requirements to carry a firearm that has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce in the same manner and to the same extent as authorized for an active law enforcement officer to carry a firearm of the same type:

(1) Obtaining a photographic identification issued by the agency from which the individual retired from service as a law enforcement officer that indicates that the individual has, not less recently than one (1) year before the date the individual is carrying the concealed firearm, been tested or otherwise found by the agency to meet the standards established by the agency for training and qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type as the concealed firearm;

(2) Meeting the standards established by the Tennessee peace officer standards and training (POST) commission for qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type by qualifying at and obtaining such an annual certification directly from the Tennessee POST commission; or

(3) Upon payment of any customary associated fees, utilize a private shooting range and engage the services of a certified firearms instructor to provide the training and verify that the retired law enforcement officer has met the standards established by the Tennessee POST commission for qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type. The certified firearms instructor is authorized to issue a certificate indicating that the retired law enforcement officer has met the applicable standards.

(c) (1) (A) For purposes of this subsection (c), "retired law enforcement officer" means a retired law enforcement officer, as described in subsection (b), or a retired correctional officer previously employed by the department of correction or a retired inmate relations coordinator previously employed by the department of correction.

(B) A retired law enforcement officer may become certified to carry a firearm within this state that has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce in the same manner and to the same extent as authorized for an active law enforcement officer.

(2) To become certified pursuant to this subsection (c) for the first time, a retired officer may utilize any of the methods set out in subsection (b) to meet the standards established by the Tennessee POST commission for qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type.

(3) (A) To complete the criminal history background check requirement for certification, a retired officer shall go to the sheriff in the county where the officer resides to have fingerprints taken. The officer shall be required to present photo identification at the time the fingerprints are taken. If the presented photo identification does not accurately identify the officer, then the sheriff shall refuse to take the officer's fingerprints. The sheriff may charge a fee not to exceed six dollars ($6.00) for taking the officer's fingerprints and sending two (2) copies of the same to the Tennessee POST commission.

(B) At the time an officer submits an application to be filed with the Tennessee POST commission, the officer shall present photo identification; if the name on the photo identification and the name on the application are not the same, the Tennessee POST commission shall refuse to accept the application. If the person whose picture appears on the photo identification is not the same as the officer, the Tennessee POST commission shall refuse to accept the application.

(4) Upon receipt of the two (2) copies of an officer's fingerprints from a county sheriff's office, the Tennessee POST commission shall send the fingerprints of the officer and the application filed by the officer to the Tennessee bureau of investigation (TBI).

(5) Upon receipt of the fingerprints from the Tennessee POST commission, the TBI shall:

(A) Within thirty (30) days from receipt of the fingerprints, conduct computer searches to determine the officer's eligibility for a permit under subsection (c) as are available to the bureau based solely upon the applicant's name, date of birth and social security number and send the results of the searches to the Tennessee POST commission;

(B) Conduct a criminal history record check based upon one (1) set of the fingerprints received and send the results to the Tennessee POST commission; and

(C) Send one (1) set of the fingerprints received from the Tennessee POST commission to the federal bureau of investigation (FBI), request a federal criminal history record check based upon the fingerprints, as long as the service is available, and send the results of the check to the Tennessee POST commission.

(6) The Tennessee POST commission shall deny a permit application if it determines from information contained in the criminal history record checks conducted by the TBI and FBI pursuant to subdivision (c)(5), or from other information that comes to the attention of the Tennessee POST commission, that the officer does not meet the eligibility to carry a firearm under this section. The Tennessee POST commission shall not be required to confirm the officer's eligibility for certification beyond the information received from the TBI and FBI, if any.

(7) Certification of a retired officer under this section shall be valid for a period of four (4) years from the date the Tennessee POST commission issues the officer's certification under this subsection (c).

(8) For a retired officer to recertify under this subsection (c) upon the expiration of the initial certification, the officer shall only be required to undergo the criminal history background check portion of the certification process. No fewer than ninety (90) days prior to the expiration of the officer's initial certification under this subsection (c), the officer shall undergo a criminal history background check in accordance with the procedure set out in subdivisions (c)(3)-(5).

(9) Because the certification requirements of this subsection (c) do not meet the requirements of 18 U.S.C. § 926C(d), a retired officer certified under this subsection (c) is not permitted to carry a firearm outside this state unless otherwise authorized to do so with a handgun carry permit issued pursuant to § 39-17-1351.

(10) If the provisions of 18 U.S.C. § 926C(d), or any other provision of federal law change to permit an officer certified under this section to carry a firearm outside this state, such officer shall be permitted to carry a firearm as permitted by federal law.

(d) The Tennessee POST commission shall maintain a list of approved certified firearms instructors, which may include any instructor utilized by a person to receive a handgun carry permit under § 39-17-1351, that it considers qualified to train and verify that a retired law enforcement officer has met the standards established by the Tennessee POST commission for qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type.

(e) A retired officer may bring the certificate issued by the certified firearms instructor pursuant to subdivision (b)(3) to the Tennessee POST commission. If the certificate was issued by an instructor who is on the POST commission's approved list and the commission determines, in the manner prescribed in § 38-8-123, that the applicant is eligible to carry a firearm under federal law, the commission shall issue the officer a certification that the officer has met the standards established by the Tennessee POST commission for qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry a firearm of the same type. A certificate so issued by the Tennessee POST commission shall be considered a certification issued by the state for purposes of 18 U.S.C. § 926C(d)(2)(B). A certificate issued to a retired officer pursuant to this subsection (e) shall be automatically revoked by operation of law upon the officer becoming ineligible to carry a firearm under federal law.

(f) The Tennessee POST commission is authorized to establish and charge a fee for issuing a certification under this section.

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