Berwick police hold a school safety training exercise Tuesday at Berwick Elementary School to train faculty how to respond in the event of a school shooting. From left, are officers J.P. Henry, Billy Chapman and Justin Morvant. (The Daily Review/Zachary Fitzgerald)

Berwick police hold school shooter training exercise

Ideally, no one would ever have to experience a school shooting.

But Berwick police trained teachers Tuesday how to react just in case such a shooting should ever occur as they prepared to return to school Wednesday following the summer break.

The Berwick Police Department held a school safety training exercise at Berwick elementary, junior high and high schools to prepare teachers and faculty how to respond in the event of a school shooting.

Police typically hold the training exercise every other year to refresh teachers on the proper way to respond to such an event, Police Chief James Richard said.

In Tuesday’s scenario, one law enforcement officer played the role of a shooter while other officers responded and showed how they would enter a building and get the suspect in custody.

“We’ve tried to change it up (from year to year). One year we did where we had actors, kid actors from the high school come in here and pretend to be shot,” Richard said.

This year officers just did a quick scenario to show teachers how having a shooter on campus may sound and look like in case that were to ever happen, the chief said. Teachers watched the scenario unfold through a window in an adjacent room.

People rarely actually hear gunshots at schools.

“It’s uncommon, so it gives them an idea of what it could sound like and if they hear that, report it,” he said.

“A lot of times people don’t report things because they’re unsure what they heard” or what they saw, Richard said. “It’s just to get them aware of what could happen.”


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