It's no secret public officials have been stepping out and labeling Friday's mass shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut as horrifying, senseless and tragic.
But the San Mateo County sheriff's office wants residents to know deputies and the sheriff have also pledged to keep San Mateo County safe and hopefully free of the school massacres that devastated Columbine, Virginia Tech, and Newtown.
Twenty-seven people were killed—the majority of them children between the ages of 5 and 10—at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. The violence is the second deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.
"Moving forward, the best way the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office can honor the memories of those who lost their lives in Connecticut, is by making sure every safeguard is in place," officials said in a statement.
Members of the sheriff's office SWAT team have instructed sheriff’s office personnel on how to respond to active shooter situations. Deputies are trained to arrive on scene, then neutralize and quell violent assaults using specific and directed tactics.
Sheriff’s office school Resource officers are and have been in constant contact with school administrators and teachers regarding the most up to date protocols and responses to schoolshooting situations, officials said.
Area schools routinely conduct Lockdown Drills, where the students are expected to react as they would in an active shooter situation. School resource officers from the San Mateo County sheriff’s office then accompany school principals around campus in order to make sure everystudent and teacher is in compliance.
In direct response to the Newtown incident, and in addition to the safeguards already in place, patrol deputies made themselves a highly visible presence on school grounds to give parents, students andstaff an extra sense of security.
School resource officers reached out to their assigned schools and offered extra assistance to school administrators in whatever way they felt they may need.
“It is our responsibility to work collaboratively with all law enforcement agencies to make sure thecitizens who live and work in San Mateo County know we are watching out for them and protectingtheir safety day in and day out.” San Mateo County Sheriff Greg Munks said in a statement.