LA Schools Get Daily Police Patrols
Los Angeles police began patrolling each of the city’s 600 public elementary and middle schools Monday in a beefed-up security plan implemented after the shooting last month in Newtown, Conn., that left 20 students and six staff members dead, according to an article in USA Today.
The plan calls for officers to spend a half-hour everyday at each school on a random time schedule to meet with school members, and possible teachers and parents, the article says.
The move was a precautionary measure, KCBS-TV reported, not a response to any specific threat. The increased LAPD presence is one of the latest such initiatives taking place in several states, including Alabama, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania in the wake of the Dec. 14 killings.
The plan was announced on December 16, 2012, when LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said that officers and detectives would be assigned or would “adopt” a school and make beat checks part of their routine patrols, USA Today reports.
The Los Angeles Daily News notes that member of the Los Angeles United School District’s 350-person police force are already stationed at the district’s 100-plus high schools, and private schools requesting patrols will also be included.
In Upper Merion, Pa., police began foot patrols inside the township’s schools last week, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. Police were also given key cards to school property.
In Marlboro Township in central New Jersey, armed guards were on duty last week to check every child, teacher and visitor arriving at the district’s eight schools, according to Reuters.
The Totowa School District, also in New Jersey, began using armed police officers in two elementary schools.
WPRI-TV in Providence, R.I., reported that a uniformed police officer would be on hand at all of the elementary schools in Cranston, R.I.
In New York state, police will patrol the entire Mamaroneck school district for the week, as officials meet Tuesday to consider additional security measures after an armed man entered Hommocks Middle School last week, The Journal News reported. A district spokesperson told the newspaper that the board is considering an emergency resolution to install entrance equipment and monitoring systems at the middle and elementary schools.
In Vestavia, Ala., nine officers have assigned to make sure that at least one officer is on hand at all times in the community’s elementary, middle school and two high schools, USA Today reports.