McMinn County Sheriff's Dept. hosts simulated school shooting

McMinn County Sheriff's Department takes part in simulated school shooting

Posted:
The McMinn County Sheriff's Department took part in a simulated school shooting exercise Wednesday at Niota Elementary. The McMinn County Sheriff's Department took part in a simulated school shooting exercise Wednesday at Niota Elementary.
Staff members and their children pretended to be bodies lining the floor with their faces bloodied, all creating the realistic scenario of a shooter inside the school. Staff members and their children pretended to be bodies lining the floor with their faces bloodied, all creating the realistic scenario of a shooter inside the school.
"The more realistic your training is, the better your officers are to respond to a situation like this," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy. "The more realistic your training is, the better your officers are to respond to a situation like this," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy.
Niota Principal Melasawn Knight says taking part in the drill was both eerie and empowering. Niota Principal Melasawn Knight says taking part in the drill was both eerie and empowering.

By DREW GARDNER
6 News Reporter

NIOTA (WATE) - The McMinn County Sheriff's Department took part in a simulated school shooting exercise Wednesday at Niota Elementary.

With school shootings still regularly making headlines, law enforcement across the country are working extra hard to make sure their schools are prepared with what's called an "Active Threat Response Drill."

If the Niota students weren't on fall break this week, you may have thought something very serious was happening.

The sounds of gunshots filled the halls as staff members and their children pretended to be bodies lining the floor with their faces bloodied, all creating the realistic scenario of a shooter inside the school.

"The more realistic your training is, the better your officers are to respond to a situation like this," said McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy.

Several staff members and their children took part in the drill playing wounded victims.

"They go through different scenarios that they have to react to, with those staff members trying to distract them being panicky and wounded, simulating all those things that they will encounter in a real situation," said Guy.

Niota Principal Melasawn Knight says taking part in the drill was both eerie and empowering.

"Just seeing the officers as they respond, and I'm the first person to come to the door and tell them which way to go, you just see how serious it can be," said Knight.

Several local law enforcement agencies took part in the drills. The officers were armed with training weapons and orders they would get just as if an active shooter were really in the school.

"It gives everyone a little insight about what would really occur and should an incident ever happen. You've already been there, and you've already been to that school, and you've already been through that stressful scenario, and you know what to do and are able to react quicker," said Guy.

"It makes me feel like if this did happen, that we would be in the best hands possible," said Knight.

This is not the first drill the department has taken part in and they say they plan to continue holding them every spring and fall.

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