Armed School Resource Officer Ended Shooting at Maryland High School: Report

March 20, 2018 Updated: March 20, 2018

A school resource officer at a Maryland high school took action to end a shooting there on Tuesday, March 20, according to a report.

The shooting on Tuesday morning at Great Mills High School left at least three people injured, including the shooter, Brad Bell of ABC 7 reported.

Bell also reported that “A school resource officer was on duty and took action to end threat [sic].”

The St. Mary’s County school district confirmed the shooting.

If the armed resource officer did indeed end the shooting, it would be the complete opposite of the situation in Florida in February.

The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on Feb. 14 left 17 people dead.

The high school there also had an armed school resource officer, who is a sheriff’s deputy assigned to the school, but the officer came under fire for not responding to the shooting.

Scot Peterson, the officer, was later suspended by the Broward County Sheriff’s Department. He resigned shortly after being suspended.

Peterson initially said he wasn’t sure where the gunshots were coming from that day, but radio dispatches showed that Peterson believed the shots were coming from inside the building, yet he did not go in to try to confront the shooter.

Nikolas Cruz, who allegedly admitted to being the shooter, was not apprehended on school grounds and was later found outside a nearby apartment complex.

According to the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office, the School Resource Officer (SRO) “performs a variety of roles to include being a mentor, teacher, and a law enforcement resource for both students and staff.”

“They work with the school faculty to maintain a safe learning environment. Each SRO is certified through the National Association of School Resource Officers as well as through DARE America to teach the middle school DARE curriculum,” the office stated.

The program started during the 1998-1999 school year. In the 2005-2006 school year, more deputies were added. Nowadays, a deputy patrols each of the three county high schools while two additional deputies split their time between the four middle schools.

Many officials have endorsed the program, saying it helps stop shootings or end them quicker than they would be ended.

Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger of Washington, D.C. recently wrote in the Baltimore Sun how an officer helped defuse a tense situation at Loch Raven High School in Baltimore County, M.D.

“One day after a student killed 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Fla., Loch Raven’s SRO received a tip that a student was concealing a gun in a backpack. The weapon, which turned out to be a realistic-looking pellet gun, was recovered and the student was taken into custody without any injuries,” he wrote.

“It’s true that an SRO won’t stop every school shooting—in fact, there was one on duty in Parkland on Wednesday. But we will never know how many shootings these officers will prevent. SROs don’t just provide physical protection for students from outsiders and each other. They also help to identify bullies in the classroom and online. They are intelligence officers for the precincts where they work: SROs are the first officers their colleagues go to if a crime appears to be juvenile-oriented. In Baltimore County, SROs have helped to solve crimes ranging from homicides to destruction of property.”



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