TPS Plans Security Changes After Shooting During Football Game

Tuesday, September 6th 2016, 5:48 pm
By: Emory Bryan

Tulsa Public Schools plans to make some security changes for all schools, after the shooting Friday night at McLain High School.

District leaders from police and athletics met Tuesday afternoon to go over plans to beef up security after a ninth grader went into a football game with a gun, got into an argument and shot an eighth grader.

9/2/2016 Related Story: Juvenile Arrested After Shooting At Tulsa High School Football Game, Police Say

Dr. Deborah Gist said extra security will be on hand at McLain's Driver Stadium ahead of Friday's homecoming game. The district is reviewing its security plan after officials say a ninth grader shot an eighth grader in the bleachers at last week’s game against Tahlequah-Sequoyah.

The eighth grader was hurt, but it was a relatively minor wound that could have been much worse - he was grazed on the temple.

The ninth grader was arrested on a complaint of shooting with intent to kill, but he's young enough that his name wasn't released. Police said it all happened after an argument right outside the field house at McLain.

Gist said her team is reviewing policies and procedures for security at all district athletic events.

She said the isolated shooting "does not reflect the values or spirit of the McLain community or the Tulsa Public Schools family."

The superintendent says 10 campus police and security officers, along with six Tulsa Police Officers, will be at McLain's homecoming game against Central.

She said the district takes the safety of its students seriously.

"We are very carefully monitoring the follow up,” Gist said. “We are taking with students, we’re talking with community members, and we’re very much a presence in the school right now. We are not aware of any concerns about any other actions, safety is a priority.”

Gist told board members the student who was shot is out of the hospital and back at home.

She said the stadium will also close before the game for a security sweep before they let in spectators.

The homecoming game is also being moved back to 6:00 p.m. with the parade starting at 4:15 p.m.

There's been a variety of responses to other situations where there's been violence at a McLain event:

In 1992, the district responded by bringing in metal detectors.

In 2004, the district canceled some varsity home games.

In 2007, the district banned spectators after the crowd got into a fight during a McLain, Booker T. game.

9/3/2016 Related Story: TPS Releases Statement Following Shooting At McLain H.S. Football Game