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Liberal City’s Police Union Calls For Armed Officers To Protect Schools In Wake Of Texas Shooting

A Baltimore police union official called for armed police officers in the city’s schools Thursday, citing the deadly mass shooting at an Uvalde, Texas, elementary school that killed 19 children and two adults.

“We need to ensure each school has locked doors, security cameras, metal detectors and armed police,” Sgt. Clyde Boatwright told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “You cannot see a judge, attend a sporting event or meet with an elected official without passing through multiple security measures. Our precious children deserve the same level of protection.”

Boatwright, the president of the union representing Baltimore City School Police and president of the Maryland Fraternal Order of Police, told Fox Baltimore yesterday that security measures in the city’s schools are “minimal at best.” No elementary schools have metal detectors, and long lines were reported at some schools with metal detectors, the outlet reported.

School police officers in school buildings during school hours must store their weapons “unless and until a legal and necessary ground requires the officer to retain possession and control of the firearm” according to a written directive on the Baltimore City Public Schools website. The presence of an active shooter is one situation when officers may retrieve their weapon, a second directive on the site says.

“Seconds count,” Boatwright told FoxBaltimore. “So, our officers would have to hope that they’re not in the direct path of the gunman that’s committing mass murder and they have to go to a secure location, retrieve the firearm and then attempt to address the threat.”

A man shot a staff member at Frederick Douglass High School in Baltimore in February 2019. Legislation allowing school police officers to be armed was introduced in 2020 but did not pass.

Baltimore City Public Schools did not respond to requests for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.

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