More armed security officers in US schools, study finds

WASHINGTON — Armed security officers are becoming more prevalent at America’s schools, according to a federal study released Thursday amid a heated debate over whether teachers and other school officials should carry guns.

While student and staff fatalities at school persist, students report fewer instances of violence, theft and other abuse during the past decade, the survey found.

Armed officers were present at least once a week in 43 percent of all public schools during the 2015-16 school year, compared with 31 percent of schools a decade before, according to data from a survey conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics.

Last month’s mass shooting at a Florida high school put renewed focus on the role of armed school security guards, after a video showed that a sheriff’s deputy at the school approached but did not enter the building where the attack was taking place.

The study was released a day after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos kicked off a federal school safety panel, which has been criticized for not including teachers, students and experts. It comprises DeVos and three other Cabinet secretaries. DeVos told the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday that the panel will include the secretaries of Homeland Security, Health and Human Services and the Justice Department. The first meeting of the commission was held behind closed doors and few details were released.

DeVos said in a statement Thursday that while there were some positive trends in the survey, “we know — and tragically have been reminded in recent weeks — there is much more to be done to keep our nation’s students and teachers safe at school.” DeVos said commission members will travel across the country to look for solutions to school violence.

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Alabama lawmakers push to arm school security volunteers

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Any trained school employee or citizen volunteer could join an armed security force in Alabama schools under a bill lawmakers are considering — one of several such measures being proposed in U.S. states after the Florida high school massacre.

Rep. Allen Farley, a Republican and former law enforcement officer, filed the bill on Thursday, and it has been referred to a committee for consideration. It replicates a local law in north Alabama’s Franklin County that was twice vetoed by the governor before becoming law in 2013. Rep. Johnny Mack Morrow, a Republican who sponsored the local law, said it was needed because rural schools couldn’t afford School Resource Officers (SROs) and the emergency response time could be 30 minutes.

“We wanted to give students out there in remote rural schools with no resource officer a fighting chance,” Morrow said at a news conference Tuesday.

It’s not clear whether the law is actually being implemented in that county, however. Morrow said he doesn’t know how many school employees or citizen volunteers are armed and the school district wouldn’t confirm numbers for security reasons.

Under the law, school principals can request a volunteer armed security force. They submit names of individuals who are vetted and trained by the sheriff’s department to become reserve deputy sheriffs.

Heath Grimes, superintendent of Russellville City Schools in Franklin County, said not all principals are familiar with the law and none in the city schools he oversees had requested a security force because they have school resource officers. He originally opposed the local law but now supports an individual school’s decision to arm a security force.

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Secaucus to arm security guards at town schools

Secaucus announced on Friday the town will assign police officers to patrol the district’s schools while it provides firearms training to the schools’ currently unarmed security guards.

The announcement came nine days after a school massacre in Parkland, Florida left 17 dead, and in the wake of security scares at schools in Nutley and Bayonne. The Florida killings led President Trump to suggest arming teachers to avoid future massacres.

Secaucus Mayor Michael Gonnelli told The Jersey Journal the town will pay between $500 and $900 a day for each officer assigned to patrol buildings. The 2,100-student district has four schools and a preschool.

The district’s 15 security guards are all retired police officers and will undergo psychological evaluations and other testing so they can possess firearms inside schools, Gonnelli said. He estimates the process will take about two or three weeks. While costly for the town, Gonnelli said town and school officials agreed having armed guards “had to happen.”

“In this day and age, we need to do something,” he said.

School officials did not return a request for comment. The town’s police department directed questions to the mayor’s office.

Secaucus’ school district reported seven instances of violence in the 2015-16 school year, up from four the year before, and zero incidents of weapons possession both years, according to a report submitted by the state Department of Education.

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Security officers capture Utah murder suspect after tip from alert librarian

“As Austin Jeffrey Boutain stepped out of an elevator at Salt Lake City Main Library Tuesday afternoon, an alert librarian recognized him as the man officers had sought in a massive overnight hunt after the fatal shooting of a University of Utah student.

The librarian greeted Boutain — as he does everyone who visits the third floor — then waited until Boutain was out of earshot and called security, according to City Library Communications Director Andrew Shaw.

Within minutes, security officers apprehended Boutain, who had appeared to be unarmed, in a restroom, Shaw said.
“A big shout out to a librarian,” Salt Lake City police Chief Mike Brown said at a news conference Tuesday afternoon, announcing Boutain, 24, had been taken into custody at about 1:10 p.m.

Brown said Boutain was being questioned and would be booked into the Salt Lake County jail in connection with the Monday night shooting death of 23-year-old ChenWei Guo, an international student at the U. Guo, who is from China, was killed during an attempted carjacking near Red Butte Canyon, police said.

University authorities have declined to say whether Guo was alone in the vehicle when he was shot.

Also Tuesday, University police Chief Dale Brophy announced that Boutain and his wife, 23-year-old Kathleen Elizabeth Rose Boutain, may be connected to a recent suspicious death in Golden, Colo.

Salt Lake City officers had asked Golden police to check on the owner of a green 2000 Ford pickup truck with Colorado plates that Boutain was allegedly driving in Utah.

When Golden officers arrived at the Clear Creek RV Park, they found 63-year-old Mitchell Bradford Ingle dead inside a trailer, the department said in a Tuesday news release. “Preliminary investigations indicate that the man had been deceased for a few days,” the release said.

There were obvious signs of trauma to Ingle, who had been staying at the RV park on a short-term lease, and the Boutains are considered persons of interest in the case, Golden police said.

The stolen pickup truck was still being sought by Salt Lake City area police on Tuesday.

Events in Utah began at about 8:15 p.m. Monday, when Kathleen Boutain went to the U. campus and reported that her husband had assaulted her while they were camping in Red Butte Canyon, Brophy said. She was being treated for an unspecified injury just before 9 p.m. when Guo was shot, Brophy said.

Kathleen Boutain admitted to police that she was “traveling in a stolen vehicle which contained stolen firearms,” according to a probable cause statement filed with the Salt Lake County jail.

She was arrested Monday night and booked into the jail, where she was being held without bail on suspicion of theft by receiving stolen property and drug possession charges. Police said she had a prescription bottle of generic Ambien that was not labeled and other drug paraphernalia.

Police are still stitching together a timeline of how Boutain got from the foothills above the university on Monday night to the library, at 200 East and 400 South, and how long he had been in the library Tuesday before he was spotted.

The earliest Boutain could have been in the library is 9 a.m., when it opened, Shaw said. It had closed at 9 p.m. the night before, at around the time of the homicide.

In an interview Tuesday, security guard Johann Gonzalez-Rubio described approaching Boutain in the library’s restroom on the third floor. He said Boutain nonchalantly told him, “Hey man, I just need to use the restroom real quick and then you can arrest me.”

Boutain appeared calm and unarmed, Gonzalez-Rubio said. Because a bystander also was in the restroom, the guard said, he stepped outside to wait for backup to arrive and for the other man to leave. Then he and another security guard went back in together.

“Hey, you got me,” Boutain said, as he knelt down and put his hands behind his back, according to Gonzalez-Rubio.

The Boutains had been in Utah “a couple days,” Brophy said. Their campsite in Red Butte Canyon was located Monday night, Brown said, and police recovered a rifle and ammunition cans. Police were not sure if the rifle was the same weapon used in the U. slaying.

Police and prosecutors from Golden investigating Ingle’s death were expected to travel to Utah on Tuesday to gather more information, which could include interviewing Kathleen Boutain.

Boutain reportedly has family in Minnesota and as recently as 2015 lived in the Cincinnati suburb of Millvale, in Ohio, according to Fox 19 TV. The station noted that he entered a guilty plea in May 2015 to “obstructing official business” in exchange for a disorderly conduct count being dismissed.

Fox 19 reported that he had been accused of fleeing police in connection with an unspecified disturbance at Cincinnati’s Good Samaritan Hospital.

Alabama court records system show Boutain was arrested in March in Marion County on drug manufacturing charges, according to WAFF 48 TV in Huntsville, Ala. He also was arrested in February 2016 on charges of theft and attempting to elude in another state. Court records also show he is a registered sex offender who failed to notify officials in Marion County when he moved there in 2016, WAFF 48 TV reported.

On Monday night in Utah, the hunt for Boutain initially focused on an area east of Mario Capecchi Drive. Classes were canceled and that area of campus — which includes the school’s main residence halls, medical complex and research buildings — was locked down until about 3 a.m.”

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City banning anyone who’s not a licensed security guard

“Hamilton city councilors, eager to discourage militaristic white supremacists, are banning anyone who’s not a licensed security guard from flexing muscle on city property.

But some worry that’ll make it harder for volunteer groups who provide their own security at small rallies and festivals.

City council’s general issues committee voted Wednesday to make a new rule that anyone acting as a security guard at functions on city property needs a provincial license.

This comes after the self-professed “patriot group” Canadian Three Percenters did security detail at city hall on July 29, when the Canadian Combat Coalition rallied against federal anti-

Islamophobia Motion 103. Local anti-fascists counter protested.

Council is being “bravely naive” if it thinks these tense events won’t happen again, said Matthew Green, the Ward 3 councillor who moved the motion. And one day, someone will get hurt.

City looks at banning white nationalist groups from flexing muscle on city property

“It’s not a one-off event,” he said.

With the new rule, Green said, when militaristic white supremacists show up for security detail, the city can charge them with trespassing.

Councillors voted in favour of this. But some worried it would unfairly penalize volunteer groups.

“I worry about the unintended consequences,” said Terry Whitehead, Ward 8 councillor, while Judi Partridge of Ward 15 said she needed more information.

Green said later that he can’t think of any group that fits that category.

Larger events hire their own licensed security guards or police, Green said.

Events on outdoor city property, or in the city hall forecourt, are booked through the city’s special events advisory team (SEAT). Security typically isn’t required when the event doesn’t

require opening a city building, says a staff report.

City council will cast a final vote on Oct. 25th.”

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Securitas Mobile Officer Marcus Johnson receives Ralph Day Security of the Year award

“On September 24 at the 63rd ASIS International Annual Seminar and Exhibits in Dallas, TX, Securitas Mobile Officer Marcus Johnson was the honored recipient of Ralph Day Security of the Year award.

In his nine years with Securitas, Johnson has been recognized for consistent superior performance and exceeding expectations in increasingly responsible positions.

Now a Mobile Guarding Supervisor in the Washington D.C. Metro Area, Johnson continues to be an outstanding example of Securitas’ core values of Integrity, Vigilance and Helpfulness.

Johnson was selected for the Ralph Day Award in recognition of his heroic actions while on patrol in Alexandria, VA on July 22, 2016. He came to the aid of a police officer who was being assaulted and jeopardized his own safety to intervene. As a result of his actions, the police officer was saved from grievous bodily harm and possibly death, but Johnson was seriously injured.

As part of the award, Johnson and his spouse were invited to attend the 2017 ASIS Seminar as guests of the Security Services Council. During the award ceremony, he was presented a plaque and a monetary award. His selfless response to this incident also earned him a letter of commendation from the Alexandria, VA Chief of Police and the 2016 Private Security Officer of the Year award from his local ASIS chapter.

“We sincerely appreciate the ASIS International Security Services Council for recognizing the outstanding acts of officers in our industry. We would also like to thank the Alexandria Police Department for its recognition and support of Marcus since the incident,” said Securitas Mobile Guarding Division President Tim Keller, CPP. “All of us at Securitas are extremely proud and appreciative of Marcus, not only for his bravery and the selfless actions that are believed to have saved a police officer’s life, but also for the outstanding dedication and professionalism he demonstrates every day.”

ASIS International is the leading organization for security professionals worldwide. It is dedicated to increasing the effectiveness and productivity of security professionals by developing educational programs and materials that address broad security interests. The ASIS International Security Services Council seeks to facilitate the exchange of best practices to raise the standards and increase productivity of professional security services, as well as to increase awareness of its role in protecting people, property and information. Each year it honors one security officer in the United States with the Ralph Day Security Officer of the Year Award.”

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Woman arrested on suspicion of battery, hate crime against security officer

“Davis police arrested a 24-year-old woman Thursday night following an alleged assault that initially has been classified as a hate crime.
Lt. Paul Doroshov said officers responded shortly before midnight to Red 88 Noodle Bar, 223 G St., to investigate a report of an intoxicated woman assaulting a security employee.

“Security personnel told officers the suspect made comments directed toward the officer’s race,” which is African-American, Doroshov said. “The suspect grabbed the victim by the face, and attempted to strike her. The suspect was overpowered by security staff and subsequently arrested.”

Jessica Garza-Herrera was booked into the Yolo County Jail on battery and hate-crime charges, though Doroshov said detectives will conduct further investigation into whether race was a motivating factor in the incident.”

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Security officer discovers toxic leak after man drilled holes in tanks of cyanide

“A Wooster man faces criminal charges after he broke into an electroplating company he once owned and drilled holes in tanks of dangerous chemicals, Cleveland police investigators said.

The incident sent one employee to the hospital for exposure to toxic chemicals, and risked a potential environmental disaster, according to a Cleveland police report.

Benjamin Dagley, 50, is charged with breaking and entering in the Aug. 22 incident at Cleveland Plating on East 134th Street in the South Collinwood neighborhood.

Dagley was identified in police reports as a former co-owner of the business, but court records indicate he owned a similar electroplating company at the same location before Cleveland Plating took over, and he still owns the property itself.

Employees called police around 8 p.m. Aug. 22 after a security guard discovered gas escaping in one of the facility’s chemical rooms.

Surveillance footage later revealed Dagley drilled into tanks of sodium cyanide, hydrochloric acid, yellow chromate, ferrous chloride, and sulfuric acid, according to a current owner, Ed Cochran.

“If you mix the (cyanide and hydrochloric acid), you basically have the cyanide gas of World War I,” Cochran said. “It certainly would produce a toxic vapor that could kill.”

Employees told police that the released chemicals “are severe enough to cause a large scale catastrophe, and Dagley knew what he was doing,” the report says.

Potential cyanide poisoning is the reason why the 27-year-old security guard who found the leaks was taken to University Hospitals, according to Cochran and the report.

Her injuries and current condition were not immediately available, but Cochran believes she has been released from the hospital.

Firefighters and a hazmat specialist went to the building the night of the break-in, and Cleveland police and firefighters also notified the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the report says.

Cochran told cleveland.com that the business hired a hazmat firm to oversee clean-up. Within 36 hours, that process was complete and the Ohio EPA determined all chemicals were contained inside the building, with no exposure to the neighborhood, according to an EPA spokesman.

The police report does not say how Dagley managed to break into the building. Surveillance showed him walking into the property around 6 p.m., drilling holes into the containers, then leaving about 15 minutes later, the report says.

“Thank god we have security guards there 24/7,” Cochran said. “Otherwise, it wouldn’t have been discovered until (the next morning), and it would’ve been late.”

A warrant was issued for Dagley last week, but he hasn’t been arrested, court records show.

Police didn’t outline a possible motive and Cochran declined to share details due to a pending civil case in Wayne County.

Court records there and in Cuyahoga County indicate that Dagley and his companies are locked in a financial dispute over the property, its mortgage, and Cleveland Plating’s lease, among other things.

“He wants us to settle and we won’t pay, that’s why I think he’s done all this,” Cochran said.

Cleveland Plating’s current owners asked a judge for a temporary restraining order against Dagley earlier this year, saying that he entered the building April 8 and put locks on almost all the doors, court records show. The judge denied that request.

About two months later, Dagley was charged with misdemeanor assault after he returned to the property with two other people and broke into the business through a roll door, the reports and court documents say.

A security guard told police that an irate Dagley yelled at him through a crack in an office door, then slammed the door into his knee and punched him in the mouth, the report says.
One of the other men said he rode to the business with Dagley that day to “help him lock the building up,” the report says.

The assault case is still pending in Cleveland Municipal Court, court records show. Dagley’s next court appearance is scheduled for Sept. 7.”

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Public Safety Academy At School Aims To Prepare Students For Careers

“Is high school too early to figure out what career path to follow?

The Olathe School District doesn’t think so.

When the new Olathe West High School opens for all students on Thursday, the district will have a total of 17 specialty academies in its five high schools.

For as long as most people can remember, the main mission of Johnson County schools has been preparing kids for college.

“I think we’ve done, for years, a really good job of helping kids be college-ready, but the career piece is something that kind of went in a different direction,” says Jay Novacek, principal of the new high school.

The Kansas State Department of Education wants to refocus districts so students are ready for college or a career when they graduate.

So Olathe West will offer courses for kids who are looking for a first-responder career.

“Not every kid has to go to college to be successful,” Novacek says. “There are a lot of awesome professions, public safety included, whether I’m a police officer or firefighter, an EMT person, that are going to give kids a great opportunities and a long career.”

Jeff Van Dyke, who was a Wichita cop for eight years, runs the public safety program and most recently taught middle-school physical education. He says there is a lot of practical experience students can get in the large space that houses the public safety program.

“We can use it for all kinds of real world-type learning situations such as setting up a crime scene, having the kids come in and process the crime scene in here,” Van Dyke says.

The Public Safety space is tucked into the side of the $82 million dollar building. Students pass a girder from the World Trade Center as they enter.

It’s a reminder, says Olathe Fire Chief Jeff DeGraffenreid, of the kind of people police and fire departments around here want to hire.

“A strong moral compass and a willingness to assist their fellow man is really what we’re looking at. Helping these students see the value of that, and hopefully someday we’ll be able to hire a great student from here,” he says.

An Olathe fire captain will teach the firefighting classes in the academy.

Olathe West is certainly not the first high school in the country to offer courses in public safety. But it’s one of the few that’s fully integrated with the rest of its academic courses, DeGraffenreid says.

Students, he says, will get a quality Olathe School District education and, after passing the state firefighting test, be ready to work.

“They’re great at math. They’re great at science. They’re great at writing. But they’re also fully prepared to work on a fire truck soon after graduation,” he says.

In addition to the public service academy at Olathe West, the district has also created a new, green technology academy at the school. It’s the 17th such academy the district has added since 2003.

Most of them, like the engineering or business academies, are geared toward college-bound students.

The crucial thing, says Deputy Superintendent Allison Banikowski, is finding the student’s passion and finding it early.
“And making sure, then, all the content and course work is geared toward that passion,” he says.

The Public Safety program is an acknowledgment, the district says, that it plays a significant role in getting kids ready to work in the community.”

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Security officer helps recover 13 year old girl missing for a year

“A 13-year-old girl who has been missing for a year was found in Ohio, according to police.

Aireona Smith was reported as a runaway to the Flint Township Police Department on Aug. 1, 2016, according to a statement from police.

Police asked the public’s help in locating the missing girl and while numerous tips flooded in, investigators were not able to find the girl.

On Thursday, Aug. 3, Smith walked into a public library in Toledo, Ohio, according to police.

A security guard recognized the girl from a missing person’s poster and called 911, police said.

Responding officers confirmed the girl’s identity and notified Flint Township police.

Police said the girl ran away on her own, was not being held against her will and was in good health.

Smith was brought back to Flint on Monday, Aug. 7, and will now receive assistance from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the statement said.”

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