Shelby County Officers Drill for Potential School Shootings

SHELBYVILLE, Ind. (AP) - Local police are bursting into empty classrooms with their weapons drawn during this week's spring break, practicing their response in case gunmen ever strike at area schools.

"The lesson learned at Columbine was that if you waited for the S.W.A.T. team, you waited too long," said Shelby County Sheriff's Department Lt. David Fisher. "The quicker you can get in there and neutralize the situation, the better."

Officers armed with simulated weapons that shoot wax "lipstick" rounds are drilling at schools in Waldron, Fairland and rural Shelby County, The Shelbyville News reported Wednesday.

If something like the Columbine school shootings ever happens here, the first four officers who arrive on the scene will be trained how to react.

The special training began when officers from Los Angeles went to Littleton, Colo., to study the school shootings there and analyze the police response. Other departments followed, and now officers in central Indiana are being similarly trained.

More than 50 local officers, including local Indiana State Police troopers, are receiving the training this week, The News said. Shelbyville city police already have undergone similar training.

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