Kentucky Sheriff’s Office Offers Active Shooter Training for District Employees
The Daviess County Sheriff’s Office teamed up with the Daviess County Public Schools District to host active shooter response training sessions to about 100 DCPS staff members Tuesday.
- By Jessica Davis
- June 07, 2019
The Daviess County Sheriff’s Office teamed up with the Daviess County Public Schools District for the fifth year to host active shooter response training sessions. About 100 DCPS staff members participated in the training this year, which was held at Meadow Lands Elementary School.
“Everything we do is extremely important, particularly when it involves children,” DCPS Superintendent Matt Robbins said. “But safety is the top ‘Kids First’ priority.”
The training was led by Gen. Allen Youngman, a special deputy to the Daviess County Sheriff’s Office, who serves as a firearms instructor and liaison to area schools for emergency preparedness. Youngman has studied active shootings throughout the United States, and gave DCPS staff data he’s gathered about common factors of active shooter events and practices they can put implement if a similar incident were to take place at their school.
“These protocols are not set in concrete,” Youngman said. “They evolve as we learn from tragic events across the country.”
According to Youngman, he’s found that active shooters plan ahead, aim to kill as many people as possible, will continue until stopped, are not interested in surviving and typically act alone. Law enforcement has not been able to create a specific profile of a likely student attacker, but Youngman said 71 percent reported some form of perceived bullying.
Some people believe that active shooter incidents are on the rise or occur often, but Youngman said this isn’t correct. According to Youngman, in the last 30 years, 88 people were killed in nine incidences of K-12 mass shootings.
Sheriff Keith Cain also spoke to DCPS employees at the training, about an incident he faced early in his career, when an administrative assistant at Daviess County High School reported that a student had a gun on campus. According to Cain, DCSO found a loaded gun in the student’s locker, as well as multiple rounds of ammunition and a notebook with detailed attack plans.
“Active shootings are relatively rare, but they can happen and they can happen here,” Cain said. “It almost did happen right here in our own community.”
After Youngman’s presentation, he and the Daviess County Sheriff’s Office held a specialized role-playing simulation focused on best practices proven to save lives in the event of an active shooter on campus. DCPS employees were divided into classrooms with one person designated as the “teacher,” and a DCSO deputy, playing the role of a gunman, opened fire with blanks in the school’s hallway.
The training simulation allowed trainees to implement the lessons presented by Youngman, such as using the blind corner of the classroom, which a gunman can’t see from the doorway. The realism of the training simulation left some trainees shaken, and DCPS had crisis counselors on hand for anyone who needed to talk about it.
Almost 2,000 DCPS staff members have participated in these sessions since the first year they were offered.