St. Louis County Police beefs-up patrol of elementary schools

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by Sharon Reed/NEWS-4

KMOV.com

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 5:37 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jul 2 at 12:42 PM

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- Friday morning’s mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school has got St. Louis County Police on high alert for fear of copycat crimes.  There are additional officers patrolling elementary schools across the area and telling people to always be prepared.

Shortly following the shooting in Connecticut, St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch tweeted, “St. Louis County officers will provide extra patrols at elementary schools until further notice. We hope our presence will calm fears.”

The chief quickly ordered his commanders to mobilize extra patrols at elementary schools throughout the county.  Officers want people to know that if such a tragedy were to occur nearby, they’re ready.

“Our tactical officers receive terror training on a regular basis,” said St. Louis County Police officer Randy Vaughn.  “We decided a few years ago that this should extend to all first responders.”

Following the mass shooting at Kirkwood City Hall in 2008, many police officers suggested to parents to teach their children about making a plan.

“If you are ever part of an active shooter event, your survival depends on whether you have a plan,” Vaughn said.  “We provide security for the neighborhoods.  It’s up to the parents to care for their children.  I really think that included having conversations with their children about ‘What-ifs’.  As horrific this as this conversation may be, it’s important they know what needs to be dealt with if something happens.”

 

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