St. Louis police union leader wants “outgunned” officers to be better equipped

ST. LOUIS – A leader with the St. Louis Police Union wants officers to be better equipped when patrolling the streets.

Jeff Roorda opened up about his concerns to Fox 2 News after a recent arrest involving an illegal, heavily modified gun.

"Our officers face off with criminals armed like this every day," Roorda said. "They need to have weapons in their hands that sort of level the playing field."

According to court documents, a St. Louis City police officer was conducting a traffic stop Thursday when he discovered a heavily modified handgun. The handgun was equipped with a side-fold stock, transforming it into a short-barreled rifle. Additionally, the handgun was equipped with a silencer and a drum magazine.

Martez Little, 27, was charged with two counts of unlawful possession, transport, manufacture, and repair or sale of an illegal weapon.

"We're up against criminals who have us outgunned all the time and this just shows you, it's another example of how dangerous this job is," Roorda said.

Roorda added that he'd like to see more action from city lawmakers to keep the bad guys off the streets.

"We'd like to see criminals put on notice that the city is not going to tolerate illegal firearms," said Roorda. "We hear out of the mayor's mouth, we hear out of the circuit attorney's mouth, that we need to crack down on weapons, but they're not doing anything to help that cause. They're criticizing the guys and gals—my cops—who are out there in these dangerous neighborhoods trying to get these dangerous guns off the streets."

"And God forbid that one of these criminals points their gun at the cop and he has to take their life, because then they're suddenly a hero in the eyes of these same politicians.”

In this case, Little was charged, but Roorda expressed frustration on getting prosecutors to file charges in gun cases.