Boston is making itself vulnerable to a terrorist attack like the rampage in Mumbai by not adequately arming its police with the semiautomatic assault rifles widely available to officers in many other major cities, Warren Bamford, the top FBI agent in Boston, told the Boston Globe. Not only could the police force not easily defend against an attack by well-armed terrorists, but the absence of weapons could make the city a target, Bamford said.
He said a recently shelved plan to arm as many as 200 neighborhood officers with the weapons “should be revisited sooner rather than later.'' Said Bamford: “All things being equal, if a terrorist decides, 'OK, we're going to do something like what took place in Mumbai,' well, where would you go?' If you have a choice of a metropolitan city, would I go to New York, with 40,000 police officers, would I go to Los Angeles, with 8,000, or would I go to Boston, with 3,500?  And I know there's no assault rifles in the Boston Police Department?'' Said Police Commissioner Edward Davis: “The mayor has made it clear, and I agree, that this is not a weapon that an average patrol officer should have in his car or slung over his shoulder.”