Security chief: Shawnee Mission Schools have thwarted multiple active shooter situations

Bill Grady
February 28, 2018 - 4:07 am
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The head of security for Shawnee Mission Schools says the district has had multiple close calls over the past few years involving potential school shooters.

John Douglass was a veteran of law enforcement long before he took over as Executive Director of Emergency Services in the school district. He spent 20 years as Chief of Police for Overland Park. 

The near misses involved suspects with plans to attack schools and the means to carry out their intentions. All were stopped before they could get into buildings, Douglass said in an interview with KMBZ. 

Constant vigilance is necessary because not all active shooter scenarios are the same, Douglass said.

"They mutate constantly," Douglass said. "Things that happened in Columbine were much different than what happened at Newtown and what happened in Newtown was much different than what happened in Peducah, Kentucky."

Each threat is thoroughly reviewed, said Douglass, who goes on to discuss counter measures with his staff. 

The district has a multi-level security plan in place, Douglass said, but he feels it is necessary to add a worst-case-scenario component to the training for all faculty, staff and students.

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