Trends in Arming Police on Higher Ed Campuses

Research indicates that active shooter incidents like the ones that occurred at Virginia Tech in 2007 and at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012 prompted universities to arm their sworn law enforcement officers.

From providing students with a safe escort to reporting and responding to violent crimes, public safety officials at universities help to ensure the physical wellbeing of students, faculty and staff. This charge becomes even more important in light of recent mass school shootings, such as those at Virginia Tech (2007), Northern Illinois University (2008), and Sandy Hook Elementary School (2012), which emotionally affect parents, the education community and the nation as a whole. Although school safety experts typically consider school shootings to be low-probability incidents, they force university officials to re-examine their ability to respond to such events.

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