Chicago Police DepartmentUniform and Property U04-02-05
Police Carbine Operator Program
Issue Date:08 March 2019Effective Date:08 March 2019
Rescinds:02 February 2015 Version
Index Category:Uniform and Equipment Specifications
This directive:
  • A.continues the:
    • 1.Police Carbine Operator Program .
    • 2.Carbine Operator Course .
    • 3.Carbine Operator Requalification Course .
    • 4.Carbine Familiarization Course .
    • 5.Personal Carbine Operator Zeroing Course .
  • B.provides specifications for:
    • 1.Department-issued carbines .
    • 2.personally owned duty carbines.
    • 3.ammunition.
    • 4.optional accessories.
  • C.delineates responsibilities and procedures for the training, maintenance, transport, security, and use of Department-approved carbines.
  • D.defines certain terms relative to this directive.
  • E.satisfies CALEA Law Enforcement Standard Chapter 4.
  • A.The Police Carbine Operator Program is provided to enhance the Department’s ability to protect the lives, property, and rights of all people, to maintain order, and to enforce the laws impartially. Additionally, the program enhances officer safety in high-threat confrontations involving heavily armed or multiple offenders, active shooting incidents, and violent offenders who are utilizing body armor, shielding, or distances beyond reasonable pistol range.
  • B.Police carbine operators may arm themselves with a carbine when:
    • 1.the operator reasonably believes that he or she is confronting or may soon confront a threat that may require the use of deadly force; and
    • 2.consistent with the carbine operator’s training, the carbine is the appropriate firearm for the situation.
      The nature of the assignment or situation can be enough to warrant the operator’s actions.
III.General Information
  • A.The Police Carbine Operator Program authorizes qualified members to deploy and arm themselves with either a Department-issued carbine or a personal duty carbine while on routine patrol.
  • B.The program is open to all sworn members who meet the requirements established in this directive.
  • C.The Carbine Operator Course , Carbine Familiarization Course , and Carbine Requalification Course , are in-service training programs. The content and parameters of these courses will be determined by the Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division.
  • D.After successfully completing the Carbine Operator Course, members must complete the Carbine Operator Requalification Course once between 01 January to 30 June and again once between 01 July and 31 December to maintain their qualification status. A Carbine Operator Requalification Course schedule matrix will be released and disseminated to each Departmental unit by the Education and Training Division.
    Any member who fails to successfully complete the Carbine Operator Requalification Course within the timeframe established in this directive will not be authorized to deploy with a police carbine until that member successfully completes a recertification course.
  • E.Members are expected to exercise the same high level of judgment as they would with their handguns and be mindful of public perception.
  • F.Members are not required to complete any documentation solely for arming themselves with a carbine.
  • G.Sergeants and lieutenants are encouraged to attend training to be qualified as police carbine operators . However, supervisors are not required to be carbine-operator qualified to supervise and enforce compliance with this directive.
  • H.Upon written authorization of the Chief, Bureau of Patrol, Department members assigned to SWAT will not be limited by any provisions of this directive.
IV.Carbine Familiarization Course
To ensure compliance with the Police Carbine Operator Program , Bureau of Patrol exempt members will ensure that any members within their command whose duties include handling carbines attend the Carbine Familiarization Course .
V.Program Qualifications
To qualify for the Police Carbine Operator Program , sworn members must be in full-duty nonprobationary status.
VI.Approved Carbines and Ammunition — Specifications
  • A.Department-issued carbines will conform to the following specifications:
    • 1.AR-15/M-4 type, semiautomatic carbine chambered in 5.56 mm;
    • 2.A minimum 16-inch barrel, not to exceed 20 inches, with a 1/7 to 1/9 twist;
    • 3.Single-stage triggers with a minimum 5-pound trigger pull;
    • 4.Telescoping or fixed stock;
    • 5.Adjustable tactical sling ;
    • 6.Iron sights;
      Department-issued carbines will have iron sights only, with a secure effective zero for any Department member issued the carbine.
    • 7.Ambidextrous safeties may be installed to support left and right side operation;
    • 8.Two magazines (20 or 30 round capacity);
    • 9.Approved (optional) magazine carrier.
    • 10.No modifications or adjustments will be made to the carbines other than those completed by a member of the Firearms Training Unit, Education and Training Division.
    • 11.Attached flash suppressor.
  • B.Personally Owned Duty Carbines
    Personally owned duty carbines will conform to the following specifications:
    • 1.An AR-15/M-4 type, semiautomatic carbine, primarily black in color, chambered in 5.56 mm.
    • 2.Complete rifles manufactured by one of the following:
      • a.Colt
      • b.Smith & Wesson
      • c.Bushmaster
      • d.Defense Procurement Manufacturing Services (DPMS)
      • e.Rock River
      • f.Lewis Machine & Tool
      • g.DS Arms
      • h.Armalite
      • i.L.W.R.C.
      • j.LaRue Tactical
      • k.Ruger
      • l.Sabre Defense
      • m.Stag Arms
      • n.Daniel Defense
      • o.CMMG
      • p.Spike's Tactical
      • q.Sig Sauer
      • r.Bravo Company Manufacturing (BCM).
    • 3.A minimum 16-inch barrel, not to exceed 20 inches, with a 1/7 to 1/9 twist;
    • 4.Single-stage triggers with a minimum 5-pound trigger pull;
    • 5.Telescoping or fixed stock;
    • 6.Adjustable tactical sling;
    • 7.Two magazines (20 or 30 round capacity) as follows:
      • a.polymer, aluminum, or stainless steel
      • b.self-leveling followers.
    • 8.One ChamberSafe .
    • 9.The component parts on the personal carbines must be of such size as to be securable in the Department’s vehicle gun locks.
    • 10.Iron sights
      • a.At the members’ discretion, carbines may be equipped with an optical sighting system , but the carbine must also be equipped with a fixed or flip-up rear iron sight that has the same effective zero as the optical sighting system and can be utilized quickly if the optical sighting system fails.
      • b.Members must zero their carbines at a Department range under instructor supervision for both iron sights and, if applicable, optical sighting systems.
    • 11.Before any personally owned duty carbine is authorized for on-duty use, the carbine must be registered as a duty weapon and zeroed in the presence of a Chicago Police Department carbine instructor consistent with the Personal Carbine Operator’s Zeroing Course.
    • 12.Attached flash suppressor.
    • 13.The use or addition of a compensator is prohibited.
  • C.Optional accessories for personally owned duty carbines
    • 1.Optical sighting systems
      • a.The following optical sighting systems (without magnification):
        • (1)Aimpoint Comp M, Comp ML, Pro, and Micro series
        • (2)EOTech HWS Series / "Bushnell's" EOTech
        • (3)Trijicon
        • (4)C-More Systems
        • (5)Meprolight Mepro21
        • (6)Leopold Tactical Prismatic
        • (7)Elcan SpecterRD
        • (8)Bushnell TRS-25
        • (9)Sig Sauer Romeo series.
      • b.The following optical sighting system with magnification power of 1.50 or less: Trijicon.
        Optical sighting systems with magnification of 1.50 power or less must be mounted in such a way that they can be easily removed, without tools, if an optical sighting system fails.
    • 2.D-fender D-Ring for extractor enhancement;
    • 3.Ambidextrous selector lever;
    • NOTE:
      A remote pressure switch for a Department-approved flashlight mounted on a carbine is permitted.
    • 5.A mounted vertical foregrip;
    • 6.Any other accessories must be approved by the Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division, or his or her designee. Subsequent modifications to the carbine require a recertification of the carbine;
    • 7.Lasers, bipods, competition muzzle breaks, or folding stocks are not authorized on any Department-approved duty carbines;
    • 8.For any articuable reason regarding safety, the Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division (or designee), has the authority to deny authorization of any personally owned carbine.
  • D.Authorized Ammunition
    • 1.Department members will load only the following Department-approved ammunition:
      • a.55 grain full metal jacket manufactured by one of the following:
        • (1)Remington/UMC
        • (2)Winchester
        • (3)Federal/Lake City Arsenal/American Eagle
        • (4)Hornady
        • (5)CCI-Speer
      • b.64 grain Winchester Power-Point
      Tungsten, steel, or frangible ammunition is not approved.
    • 2.Department members will be issued the appropriate amount of duty ammunition to load two Department-approved magazines upon qualification and once each year thereafter.
VII.Carbine Registration Procedures
  • A.Prior to registering personally owned duty carbines , members will:
    • 1.submit the Firearms Registration Application in accordance with the Department directive entitled “Department Approved Weapons and Ammunition.”
      Members will not carry or deploy their carbine until after the Police Carbine Operator Program has been completed.
    • 2.submit a To-From-Subject report to the Commanding Officer, Gun Registration Unit, detailing the:
      • a.successful completion of the forty-hour Carbine Operator Course session dates,
      • b.Police Carbine Operator Personal Carbine Zeroing Course date, and
      • c.lead instructor’s name.
  • B.The Gun Registration Unit, Records Division, will:
    • 1.upon receiving a Firearms Registration Application for a personally owned duty carbine, designate the carbine as “registration pending.”
    • 2.upon confirmation from the Firearms Training Unit, Education and Training Division, that the requesting member is a qualified police carbine operator and the carbine has been zeroed , designate the carbine as “registered."
      Upon successful completion as a qualified carbine operator, the weapon will be classified as a duty weapon.
  • A.The Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division, will ensure continual and regular schedules are maintained for the in-service:
    • 1.Police Carbine Operator Course
    • 2.Carbine Familiarization Course
    • 3.Police Carbine Operator Requalification Course
    • 4.Police Carbine Operator Personal Carbine Zeroing Course .
  • B.The Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division, or the authorized designee will determine which members assigned to field duties have priority in attending the Police Carbine Operator Course.
    All requests will require watch operations lieutenant/unit commanding officer approval.
  • C.Course registration and scheduling
    • 1.Members seeking to register for the Carbine Operator Course will use the In-Service Training module of the CLEAR application. Members will be notified of scheduled training via the automated notification system.
    • 2.Members seeking to schedule the Carbine Operator Familiarization Course or the Personal Carbine Operator Zeroing Course will make an appointment at the Department's police carbine training range.
    • 3.Members seeking to schedule the Police Carbine Operator Requalification Course will follow the course schedule matrix as delineated in Item III-D of this directive.
IX.Responsibilities and Procedures
  • A.Requirements
    • 1.Members who successfully complete the Police Carbine Operator Program are required to deploy with either a Department-issued carbine or a personally owned duty carbine during regular field duties.
    • 2.Department members certified as police-carbine operators are required to keep their certification current unless authorized in writing by the Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division, or his or her designee.
    • 3.Supervisors have the authority to order a member at any time to secure a carbine in a vehicle gunlock at the scene of an incident. However, supervisors will not prevent qualified members from deploying from a unit of assignment with a carbine unless the:
      • a.nature of the assignment clearly indicates that it is inappropriate to do so (e.g., a parade detail).
      • b.member is displaying unsafe or inappropriate carbine-handling skills.
        The supervisor will document this on a To-From-Subject report addressed, through the chain of command, to the Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division.
      • c.unit does not have a vehicle with an operational gun lock available.
        Supervisors will make every effort to match qualified officers wishing to deploy a carbine with a vehicle that has a gun lock.
      • d.member is assigned to participate in the execution of a search warrant. In this case, the search team supervisor will have final authority in determining who, if anyone, will be equipped with a carbine.
        Search team supervisors will consult with a SWAT supervisor when high-risk entries are anticipated.
  • B.Securing Department-Owned Carbines in District/Unit Facilities
    • 1.Department-owned carbines, ammunition, and magazines will be stored in locked racks/containers in the secure location designated by the district commander/unit commanding officer.
    • 2.The ChamberSafe will remain in the carbine with the bolt eased forward.
    • 3.The selector lever will be on safe.
    • 4.Magazines will remain loaded two rounds short of full capacity.
  • C.Securing Personally Owned Duty Carbines
    • 1.Personally owned duty carbines will be transported to and from duty assignments or secured in an assigned unit locker as follows:
      • a.the selector lever on safe;
      • b.a ChamberSafe inserted;
      • c.the magazine well empty; and
      • d.secured in a plain black padded nylon bag or hard case.
    • 2.Members transporting carbines to and from duty assignments are responsible for its security. Members are prohibited from leaving carbines unattended in their personal vehicles.
    • 3.Members are responsible for securing their duty carbines at home in the same manner as their duty handguns as delineated in the Department directive entitled “Department Approved Weapons and Ammunition” and are required to exercise sound judgment and caution to prevent unauthorized access to firearms.
  • D.Issuance and Deployment of Carbines
    • 1.At the start of each tour of duty, a supervisor or a sworn-member designee will issue a carbine and two magazines to members qualified as carbine operators, as requested.
      • a.Department vehicles will have one gunlock; only one carbine per vehicle will be authorized for routine field duties.
      • b.If two or more officers assigned to a vehicle are qualified, either officer may deploy with the carbine.
        If a personal carbine has been placed in the vehicle’s gunlock, only the owner will arm that carbine unless exigent circumstances exist. If exigent circumstances exist, either qualified member assigned to the vehicle may be armed with the carbine.
      • c.Members' assigned supervisor will have the final authority to determine which member will deploy with a carbine should there be multiple carbine-certified members assigned to the same vehicle and a deployment conflict occurs.
    • 2.Members issued Department-owned carbines will sign out the carbine using the Personal Equipment Log (CPD-21.919).
    • 3.Carbines will be issued:
      • a.without a round in the chamber,
      • b.with a ChamberSafe device placed in the chamber and visible from the ejection port, and
      • c.with two loaded magazines.
    • 4.All police carbines, whether Department-issued or personally owned, will have a minimum of two magazines (20 or 30 round capacity), each loaded two rounds short of capacity.
      Magazines are loaded two rounds short of full capacity to ensure proper seating of the magazine.
  • E.Department Vehicle Storage and Carbine Accessibility
    • 1.Carbines will:
      • properly secured in the designated vehicle gunlock installed in the Department vehicle, unless as otherwise indicated in Item IX-E-2 of this directive.
        Supervisors will ensure that police carbine operators are given priority assignment to Department vehicles equipped with gunlocks.
      • b.not be left in Department vehicles between watches or overnight.
    • 2.Members may carry an armed carbine in the front passenger compartment of a vehicle, with the selector in the “safe” position, when:
      • a.assigned to a directed mission, and
      • b.the assigned mission consists of two or more vehicles, and
      • c.the member is under the direct supervision of a member the rank of sergeant or higher.
        The supervisor assigned to the directed mission will determine which members are authorized to carry the armed carbine in the passenger compartment of a vehicle, consistent with that on-scene supervisor’s training.
    • 3.Members traveling to and from the location where a search warrant is to be executed may transport an armed carbine in the passenger compartment of a vehicle, with the selector in the “safe” position.
  • F.Carbine Arming
    • 1.When arming a carbine, members will:
      • a.unlock the gunlock and remove the carbine;
      • b.remove the ChamberSafe ; and
      • c.chamber a round while pointing the carbine in a safe direction with the finger off the trigger.
    • 2.The carbine will remain on safe and the finger off the trigger until the operator has made the decision to fire.
    • 3.Members will utilize a tactical sling whenever carrying a carbine.
    • 4.Members will make every reasonable effort to avoid making physical contact with an offender while carrying a carbine. Members carrying carbines will act in a cover-officer capacity whenever possible.
    • 5.Whenever possible, members will notify the dispatcher when they are assigned to citizen-dress field operations and are arming themselves with carbines.
    • 6.Members assigned to citizen-dress field operations will have clearly visible identification, utilizing a warrant team vest or other appropriate Department-approved specialized personal garment.
    • 7.Upon termination of the event in which the carbine was armed, the operator will:
      • a.when clearing the weapon, relocate to a safe and discrete location minimizing the likelihood of personal injury or property damage in the event of an unintentional discharge.
      • b.inspect the unchambered round and remove it from service if damage or defects are observed.
  • G.Care and Maintenance
    • 1.Members are responsible for the care and maintenance of their personally owned duty carbines.
    • 2.All qualified members are responsible for the care and maintenance of Department carbines within their control, including cleaning them after firing.
    • 3.All other maintenance will be the responsibility of the Firearms Training Unit, Education and Training Division.
      The Firearms Training Unit, Education and Training Division, will be responsible for the routine inspection and repair of Department-owned carbines except those assigned to SWAT.
(Items indicated by italics/double underline were added or revised.)
Eddie T. Johnson
Superintendent of Police
18-037 RCL
1. -
The overall program developed by the Department for the approval, procurement, training, security, issuance, use, and maintenance of Department-approved carbines.
2. -
A voluntary five-day course members must initially pass to be qualified to participate in the Police Carbine Operator Program.
3. -
A block of training required for members in the Police Carbine Operator Program. This course is taken subsequent to the Carbine Operator Course and must be completed to maintain qualification.
4. -
A block of instruction relative to the safe handling, loading, and unloading of the carbine as well as placement and removal from gun racks and locks.
5. -
A block of instruction required for police carbine operators who own personal carbines that must be zeroed before approval for duty use.
6. -
A short-barreled, lightweight semiautomatic rifle.
7. -
A member trained by the Department to be armed with a carbine while assigned to routine field duties.
8. -
Removing a carbine from a Department vehicle and chambering a round.
9. -
The act of issuing / placing a carbine into a Department vehicle gun lock for duty.
10. -
A device used to carry the rifle in a hung position in front of the body.
11. -
At a prescribed distance, the point of aim is aligned with the point of bullet impact.
12. -
A high-visibility device, normally orange in color, used to readily identify, from a distance, that a rifle chamber is empty and safe.
13. -
A duty carbine purchased, registered, and owned by a member participating in the Police Operator Carbine Program.
14. -
A device mounted or attached to a rifle that assists a shooter with quick target acquisition. An optical sighting system is NOT a laser sight.