SAN ANTONIO -- Free shotguns could be coming to a nearby neighborhood compliments of a project aiming to arm and train citizens.

Guns cost money, and not everyone can afford to arm themselves in order to protect their home. That s where the Armed Citizen Project comes in. The project started in Houston and founder Kyle Coplen spoke to KENS 5 Wednesday via web chat.

We see ourselves first and foremost as a charitable organization out to help folks give them the tools to defend their life, liberty and property, Coplen said.

Coplen said the project was founded with two goals in mind. First, to arm entire neighborhoods and study the impact it has on deterring crime. He also wants to arm the most vulnerable, like single women and the elderly who live in higher crime areas.

It s our hypothesis that criminals have no intention of dying in your hallway. We feel society should use that fear to deter crime, Coplen said.

Anyone interested must pass a background check and training course. Then you get your free shotgun.

We are creating new responsible gun owners, we aren t just simply throwing a handful of shotguns in an area and driving away, Coplen said. San Antonio is the next logical step for us as far as the support and the level of contacts I ve gotten. San Antonio, we hope to be there soon.

KENS 5 asked residents if they would be interested in the project and got mixed reaction.

I probably would because I have an elderly father here and we live by ourselves and sometimes he s by himself, Edmund Lozano said..

No, no I just hope for the best that nothing bad happens, but I don t think single moms having shotguns prevents a lot of things, said single mother Stephanie Orozco.

The non-profit relies on private donations to pay for the shotguns and training course. It also is currently raffling off firearms as a way to raise money.
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