Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Responding to School Shootings

The Minnesota Public Radio site ran a story on the latest techniques for police officers responding to school shootings. Via Laci.

Police officers from seven states are in Fargo-Moorhead this week, learning new tactics to respond to school shootings. Traditionally, officers wait for a SWAT team before entering the building. The new tactic calls for school resource officers to respond immediately, without backup.

That's the whole story right there, respond without waiting for backup. What do you think? Did they need a special training for something like that? Wouldn't any officer of the law naturally want to do just that?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. SCENARIO: A mass shooting has occurred with 5 dead and 17 wounded. The shooter has killed himself.

    You, as a CCW permit holder, have your gun out.

    A responding LEO sees you and is using the Active Shooter Protocol.

    What do you think she will do?

  2. "You, as a CCW permit holder, have your gun out."

    Sorry, try again.

    The gun only comes out of the holster when faced with a direct immediate threat. If the threat is not immediate or nuetralized, the gun goes back into the holster.

    Nice try though.

  3. School shootings are historically unprecedented. They are a development only in the last couple of decades. The classic procedure of waiting for SWAT to respond has failed in that by the time that happens, kids are dead.

    Training school resource officers and police to respond immediately without waiting makes perfect sense. Most active shooters thus far have proven themselves to be cowards or, at the very least, "programmed". As such they usually stop and will not always engage a police officer or person of authority. At Pearl, Mississippi, an assistant principal retrieved his handgun from his truck and met the shooter in the hall. As soon as he pointed his gun at the kid, the shooter surrendered. At Jonesboro, Arkansas, the kid was given the command to stop, which he did. After killing eight kids he just stopped when told to.

    Getting a police officer there as fast as possible saves lives. The quicker the threat can be ended, the more lives will be saved. Training officers to respond alone and immediately makes perfect sense. Further, it is important that local police officers train and learn everything about the school and local public buildings so they are operating in familiar territory should they have to respond.

    The man leading the training in Fargo, John Benner is smart and is well known in his field of expertise. I am sure has taken all of this into consideration. Hopefully nothing serious ever happens in that school district but I am sure that those resource officers will all be better prepared now if it does.

  4. Odd that scenarios like that have happened several times, yet your specific scenario has never ever happened.

    Oh and generally when a lawfully armed citizen is present these shooters don't amass a body count, so that's flawed too.

    And of course only local media will cover it.

  5. Please. Show me some evidence that there's a problem with cops shooting CCW holders or vice versa.

    I can point to numerous examples of armed civilians stopping active shooters, yet we don't see numerous examples of the scenario you discuss.

  6. Mike W., Maybe the answer is in the fact that DGUs are pretty rare, in spite of what some of your friends say, and the ones that go bad with a cop mistakenly shooting the good guy are even rarer. Even the king of DGU posting, Clayton Cramer reports about a thousand a year or so. And I believe a good portion of them are not defensive but either not necessary or actually offensive.

  7. FWM, I agree with you and like the way you described it.

  8. Surely if Laci's scenario has any basis in reality (which it doesn't) then she has ample evidence to back it up.

    Oh wait, she doesn't because it's nothing but hysterical fearmongering.