Police Prepare For Threat Of School Shooting

Friday, March 16th 2007, 8:41 pm
By: News On 6

It's a scenario law enforcement hope they never have to encounter, but if a school shooting happened in their town, Tahlequah wanted to be prepared. The News On 6 had the only camera crew there on Friday when they found out what it would be like if shots rang out at Tahlequah High. Education reporter Ashli Sims was inside the building. She reports that with so many last year, school shootings are too much of a reality for this to be just a drill.

"Being there it was a lot more scary than I expected. More than I had prepared myself for," said one Tahlequah students.

"It was so dark in the room and they were yelling and we had to have our faces in our arms down on the floor," a Tahlequah student said.

Officials tried to make Friday’s drill as realistic as possible. And even though the student participants knew the shots were blanks, the gunmen actually police officers, it still hit home.

If gunmen were in the High School for real, law enforcement wanted to be prepared. So Tahlequah police organized Friday’s drill, involving more than 13 different organizations.

"We want to be prepared. We want to work together. See how each other works, so that we know we're doing the best we can," said Tahlequah Police Chief Stephen Farmer.

Farmer says many of these agencies don't work together on a regular basis, so the goal was for everyone, from tactical teams to paramedics, to learn how to work together as a unit.