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Indiana State Police Train Schools to Respond to Mass Shootings

Indiana State Police are training to respond to mass shootings inside area schools.
Indiana State Police are training to respond to mass shootings inside area schools.   State troopers gathered at East Noble Middle School in Kendallville for an active shooter demonstration.

Teachers, students, and administrators all took part in creating the simulation.  The bell rings, students are in their seats, and they're ready to start another school day but what if it's not just another school day? Are these students prepared?

"Are you going to run, are you going to hide, or are you going to fight?  We are not gonna have our students and our teachers sit in a corner and cower and become helpless victims.  Their next choice would be to run or to fight."

With recent school shootings on the minds of educators, parents, and students, Indiana State Police are approaching school corporations across the state to provide a real-life simulation of a school shooting.

Currently, most schools have in place a system of lockdown during emergency situations but as Trooper Tony Casto says, what happens if an individual defeats that plan?

"Preservation of life.  26 individuals lost their lives in Sandy Hook.  How many of those people bled out?  26 lives, 4 minutes and 37 seconds is 277 seconds.  So basically, a life every 10 seconds."

Casto explains to the students, hiding may not always be the best option.  Perhaps the best advice given was to not make it easy for the intruder.

"Make the bad guy work to get to you.  Whatever you have to get your hands on, protect yourself and buy time.  Don't live your life in fear, but use that to your advantage and develop a sense of your own security."

Being the first simulation presented in Northeast Indiana, marks a first for many presentations to come.

"This is the first time the schools have had an opportunity to take advantage of the school scenario and see just exactly everything we talk about in a classroom and how does it take effect in reality."

Casto says Indiana State Police will continue visiting school corporations.

"What we want to do is empower faculty and students so that they know they have control over their lives.  They don't just have to be victims."

Authorities say awareness is priceless.  Just 10 seconds could be the different between life and death.

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