Albertville Officers Review Police Jurisdiction

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ALBERTVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -- The Albertville City Council recently overturned a firearms ordinance enforcing city rules outside city limits.

Albertville Police Chief Doug Pollard said changes to ordinance enforcement in the police jurisdiction will have minimal impact on his officers.

"The 25 years I've been in law enforcement, that's the way we was always taught to begin with, that we enforced only city ordinances only in the city, not outside the city limits," Pollard said.

It turns out they could.

While dealing with complaints about a private shooting range, city officials discovered a 65-year-old ordinance banning the discharge of firearms in the city limits as well as the police jurisdiction.

Pollard said the city was probably only about 20 square miles back in 1947.

"You can imagine our jurisdiction in the city wasn't probably much bigger than downtown here then.  Now we're covering jurisdiction and city, probably covering around probably about 70 square miles."

Most police jurisdictions extend about three miles outside the city limits.

Albertville's is slightly less on Alabama Highway 75 south, where it meets with the Douglas police jurisdiction.

The city council recently amended that firearms ordinance to only apply inside city limits.

Plenty of other ordinances are already that way.

"When we go out on a loud music call, if they're in the [jurisdiction], we can go out and tell them to turn it down," Pollard said.

But the chief said they can't write a citation, and neither can Marshall County Sheriff's Deputies due to a home rule vote two years ago.

"We can ask them to shut it down and actually if they refuse and they continue, they can actually be arrested for disorderly conduct, disturbing the peace.

"That's a state law."

Chief Pollard said his officers will continue to enforce state laws inside the jurisdiction.

"If you call the police we're going to come."

Albertville's neighbor city Boaz stopped police coverage and patrol in their jurisdiction in October.

That decision was a cost-cutting measure and also involved future annexation.