Staff shortages in the Milwaukee police department have led to a fairly radical public safety announcement from Sheriff David Clarke Jr.
In a radio ad, he calls on local residents to take gun safety courses to protect themselves, because "calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option."
Clarke says: "I'm Sheriff David Clarke, and I want to talk to you about something personal...your safety. It's no longer a spectator sport; I need you in the game, but are you ready? With officers laid-off and furloughed, simply calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option."
"You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back; but are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so you can defend yourself until we get there. You have a duty to protect yourself and your family. We're partners now. Can I count on you?"
Clarke defended his controversial advice on CNN: "There are certain situations - and I think most people get that - where 911 is going to be of no use," he told the network. "For instance, once the wolf is at the door, once the intruder is inside your home, once you're on the street and someone sticks a gun in your face to take your car or your wallet, you don't have the option of calling 911."