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SRO’s Quick Response Saved Lives at Colo. School

December 16, 2013  | 

On Friday afternoon, 18-year-old Karl Pierson walked into his Centennial, Colo., high school with a shotgun, a machete, and Molotov cocktails with the intent to kill his former debate coach and as many students as possible. Some 80 seconds later he killed himself after critically wounding two students (one critically) and starting a small fire in the school library.

Much of the credit for limiting the carnage from Pierson’s attack on Arapahoe High is being lauded upon an Arapahoe County Sheriff’s deputy who serves as the school’s resource officer.

The deputy was yelling for people to get down and identified himself as a county deputy sheriff, Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson told CNN. "We know for a fact that the shooter knew that the deputy was in the immediate area and, while the deputy was containing the shooter, the shooter took his own life."

He praised the deputy's response as "a critical element to the shooter's decision" to kill himself, and lauded his response to hearing gunshots. "He went to the thunder," he said. "He heard the noise of gunshot and, when many would run away from it, he ran toward it to make other people safe."

Tags: School Resource Officers, School Shootings, Arapahoe County (Colo.) Sheriff


Comments (17)

Displaying 1 - 17 of 17

Rick @ 12/16/2013 3:49 PM

Further evidence that a trained and armed individual can prevent or stop violence. Staff and law abiding citizens should be able to carry into the school also. The criminals will be put on alert that their attack may be stopped before anyone is actually hurt.

TACMED DOC @ 12/16/2013 3:50 PM

Of course he did. SRO's are a breed of brothers/sisters that many have no appreciation of. These brave colleagues have to balance a lot more than the rest of us. In the final analysis, SRO's save lives. Good job Brother!

Brian Clouse @ 12/16/2013 3:53 PM

Kind of blows the ACLU "Pipeline" theory to bits....

David Tonello @ 12/16/2013 4:29 PM

Good job! I hope the deputy gets the full credit he deserves.

3Q2HQ @ 12/16/2013 4:46 PM

Here in the Empire State, Emperor Cuomo, in a knee jerk reaction to Newton, CT, used an asinine emergency clause to circumvent the legislative process and forced the SAFE Act law down our throats. One clause makes every school in NYS a softer target by prohibiting off-duty & retired LEOs the right to carry on school grounds. What a shame.

william ahrens @ 12/16/2013 5:20 PM

I graduated high school 1962, decades ago, and we didn't have SRO's then or were there any I know of in the States. It was a different society then. I spent a year in the ROTC where we had functional BAR's, M1 Garands and .22 target rifles. We settled our differences out behind the gym not with weapons used against defenseless targets. It was a different society then. Access to guns wasn't the problem. It was remarkably easy for me to access weapons even as a 16 year old. The liberalization of society and growing frustrations within society as well as changes to our morals has become the problem, not guns. The use of guns in schools and elsewhere is a symptom not the problem.

John @ 12/16/2013 5:57 PM

Speculative. I wished he was allowed to carry his weapon.

Retired NY Boss @ 12/16/2013 6:37 PM

Good guy with gun stops bad guy with gun!

Tschako @ 12/16/2013 8:15 PM

What really ticks me off is there is not a single word about the Deputy's actions in the paper of television here in leftist Kalifornia. He is not even named in this article. This Deputy should be feted before the media, but no, it doesn't pass the left's agenda.

Serpico @ 12/16/2013 10:27 PM

The same people who want to Disarm US Citizens are the same people who..
Give guns to Egyptian "Freedom Fighters" or Mexican Drug Cartels but somehow think that a responsible Law Abiding citizen doesn't have the right to own Guns! Hypocrites! The media supports the Muslim Brotherhood owning guns, overseas but guns in the USA it's evil! So called Arab Spring people can own guns, and O in the WH can send F-15 with missiles to Foreigners who want to kill US Citizens. But a guy can't shoot an AR-15 because Big Brother and the Nanny State told him "guns are bad for you they kill people". All the while they don't mind sending Death Machines overseas? People in the USA have a right to protect themselves. In the Old West, if a bank got robbed. The towns folk would shoot the robbers dead! If we had more CCW people out there and a "Glock Protection Zone". People would think twice about shooting up public locations like schools and movie theaters.

Robert Hilsman, M.D. @ 12/17/2013 12:29 AM

IT isn't clear whether this deputy serving in his role as a school resource officer was armed or not. if NOT, best supporting example of the need for the officer on campus to be armed! Second if unarmed, he gets my nod for Officer of the Year for his bravery!! Greta job!!

Nichole @ 12/17/2013 4:12 AM

Arm our teachers, enforce SROs, keep our children safe. Give would-be shooters something to consider before storming into a school to play shoot-em up.

And, as I've said, and many others, after every school or otherwise mass shooting... STOP PUBLISHING THE SHOOTERS NAME. Stop giving these people a reason to go out in a blaze of glory. Refusing to give them any publicity might show future mass shooters that there's no glory in it, so maybe the only bullet they'll be firing is the one into their own skull.

Lori @ 12/17/2013 7:37 AM

Great job on the SRO's part, he did exactly as he has been trained. Not only that, but as a fellow SRO, we are willing to give our own lives for the lives of our kids at our schools. He knew that his quick response was imperative to saving lives and he did a fantastic job. There should be SRO's in every school across the nation and they should be given more respect and appreciation.
Nichole, you are absolutely right about not publishing the shooters names. If you take away what they want most (fame and recognition) it gives them little power and they won't be the next "famous" school shooter.

Jeff Courts @ 12/17/2013 8:56 AM

I would think that as an SRO in the school he was armed. His quick response contained the shooter and the coward took own life. Having been a street cop for 25 years and now an ISD officer I see the lack of respect that school officers recieve. I consider being a school officer and protecting our future one of the most important jobs in law enforcement. I am a very strong proponent of the 2nd Ammendment and our right to bear arms. One thing you really need to think about in arming teachers is responding officers do not know everyone who works in a school. Officers making entry on an active shooter are going to see some person not in uniform standing in the hallway with a firearm. Most are going to shoot that person.

proud @ 12/17/2013 9:35 AM

Great job SRO, more than a kindergraden cop. All schools need an SRO.

Ima Leprechaun @ 12/17/2013 9:53 PM

I suppose its nice to think the Deputy made a difference but the shooter was a regular student and knew exactly who would be in the school that day and the presence of a Deputy did not phase him in the slightest. When he accidentally shot the girl that ended his bid for revenge and he knew it. The target had already run out the back door and was gone leaving the kids to block the attacker for him. After having shot the wrong person, suicide was his only next move. The bravest person there was the girl shot since she was trying to disarm the shooter.

S.S. @ 12/23/2013 9:27 AM

C'mon Ima he did his job, and who knows what was going on that psycho's mind. Granted the girl, props need to be given to her, but in the end the SRO did his job and did it well. Helluva job.

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