Laurel County Sheriff's Office Increasing School Patrols

Reported by: Aaron Adelson
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Updated: 1/16/2013 5:47 pm
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AAdelsonABC36

Laurel County is not waiting for any action from the Federal Government to make schools safer.  The Sheriff's Office is acting immediately.

In the past deputies were encouraged to walk through schools when in the area.  Now, it will be mandatory.

"Each officer makes one trip through each school in our county, at least one time during the month and a half, and then put it on a regular rotation of every 3 months.  The presence of an officer there, or the randomness of his presence may deter some type of action," said Laurel County Lieutenant Rodney Van Zant, who leads the sheriff's Emergency Response Unit.

Also, the Sheriff's Office will exchange emergency response plans with the school district.

"The thing that I hope to bring is the fact that maybe we can coordinate their plans with our plans, so they know what toe expect out of us, and we know more what to expect out of them," said Van Zant.

To increase safety, the Sheriff wants to add full-time deputies to patrol the 18 county schools.  That request needs to go through the county's Fiscal Court. 

"The more the merrier in my opinion.  If I ask for 15, and get 10, I'd be tickled to death.  We have not approached them yet.  The Sheriff just plans to petition for the funding," said Van Zant.

Currently, the Sheriff's Office has two deputies patrolling the schools.
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