BRIMFIELD, Ohio - As the Chardon community holds a day of remembrance to honor the victims lost in the school shooting one year ago, Brimfield's police chief reflects on school violence.
On Facebook, Brimfield Police Chief David Oliver posted his heart goes out to the families who lost loved ones this tragic day in 2012. His prayers are also with them.
Oliver also took time to address those who think law enforcement officers are "fear mongers" and those who think "it won't happen here." He advises those people to take a long hike.
"In 2004 when I became chief of police, if you had told me we were going to have a rampage shooter within the next 10 months and he would kill three people, I would have doubted it. Who expects a shooting at their schools? Did Chardon, Sandy Hook, Columbine, Nickel Mine, Virginia Tech or any other school expect it? Probably not. Expectations and preparations are very different. The police and school staff in Chardon were most definitely prepared and their training and preparation showed that day. They are all class acts.
Being prepared is not being a "fear monger." I am the chief law enforcement officer in this jurisdiction. It is my duty and obligation to prepare for the worst -- and to prevent it, if possible. Putting policies and procedures in place, training officers and school staff and students is not instilling fear in them, it is encouraging them to not be a victim. We display that this police department is always training, studying and preparing. If someone suspicious is observed around the schools, we will ask them questions. If threats are received, we will act on them. We are constantly on the lookout for danger from the outside and from within...
All of this is not to make people fearful; it is to empower them. Ignoring the dangers in our society does not make those dangers go away. As with everything we do here, there will be open conversation about the risks to our residents, schools and our 2,000+ students….all of whom we love.
We owe each victim ever killed during school violence one thing….and that is to learn from those incidents……Chief Oliver"
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