OLATHE, Kan. — Days after the shooting at Olathe east High School there is the burning question: How could this have been prevented? One option being talked about, medal detectors, this after Olathe schools reconfigured entrances to tighten security.
Security experts said the districts plan worked to a tee, but they stress as hard as you try and even with more security measures in place there’s no guarantees you can keep a gun out of a school.
“It was a textbook response with the absolute maximum desired result, short of the fact that three people were shot” said former Overland Park Police Chief Jon Douglass.
But no matter how you prepare the challenges of an active shooter are difficult to handle.
“If you have an active shooter, multiple jurisdictions often respond and that gives a substantial immediate impact, and enough people to do the job,” Douglass said.
The suspected shooter detained, the threat, neutralized and the district’s multifaced plan did what it was supposed to do, that according to Douglass.
“We have massive responses and going straight to the source and no fooling around whoever gets there first goes right to find them because an active shooter in a school is a killing machine,” he said.
But experts said there is some cause for concern, when reviewing just what happened, particularly the video of the student recording the police response from inside of the school.
“When the student videotaped the officer responding, that meant that that student was not protecting themselves,” said Douglas Parisi, director of Safedefend.
Parisi, who has their systems in more than two Kansas City metro school districts said communication has to be the top priority.
“We have boxes that would be installed in the schools, a teacher just simply put their finger down on the box. After it reads it, it’s going to set off sirens and strobes. It’s going to send texts and email alerts to dispatch,” he said about their systems.
Both said the response was grade A and in every situation hindsight is 20/20 but for now appreciation for those who stepped up to save lives.
“The public needs to stop and take pause for a minute, and recognize the heroism of the admitted school administrators and teachers and the police officers who respond to these things,” Douglass said.
The Olathe district is still investigating and reviewing to see what can if anything be done different next time.
All five high schools in Olathe have at least one school resource officer and one school security guard. At Olathe East on Monday the District tells FOX4 it had more security was on campus.
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