Placing armed guards in schools. That’s one recommendation law enforcement plans to make at a meeting with school leaders in Sangamon County this week.
Some schools already have armed guards. Most do not. Undersheriff Jack Campbell says it would provide a layer of security that might prevent situations like the one in Newtown, Connecticut.
CAMPBELL “And I know this is expensive. But I really think that is the key. We need a trained police officer to look someone in the eye when they come through that door. And that would be the perfect set up for us. You get buzzed in to the school and then an armed police officer looks you in the eye. Because you know it could be a parent you recognize that normally, everything is fine. But something is wrong that day.”
Campbell says he opposes arming teachers and administrators. He says it’s best to leave weapons to trained officers.
Campbell says all schools in the county have emergency plans in place. But they have differences, including various code words. He says making the plans more unified will help teachers and administrators as well as law enforcement when responding to a crisis. Campbell says having cameras at locked entry points is a good practice. But he would also like someone from the school to go to the door and talk with the person before they are allowed inside.
Hear Undersheriff Campbell’s interview that first aired on WUIS’ Illinois Edition: