Putnam County elementary school locked down over airsoft gun
PALATKA, Fla. (WCJB) - Putnam County Sheriff’s Office is touting its school shooter protocol as a success after an elementary school was locked down on Thursday morning when a student brought an airsoft gun to class.
Sheriff’s deputies say a lockdown was initiated at James A. Long Elementary School just before school started. A bus driver dropping off students noticed one of the students had something suspicious.
Using the EMMA app the campus was locked down as deputies arrived on the scene.
Deputies determined a 7-year-old student had an airsoft gun in his backpack. While the device looks like a real firearm, it is a toy. Deputies say the child did not threaten anyone and the sheriff’s office is investigating to determine if charges are appropriate.
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“This was a great test of all of our tools, training and updated safety techniques in the schools, from our apps to our school personnel to our behind the scene guardians and our deputies,” Sheriff H.D. ‘Gator’ DeLoach said. “The student was quickly isolated, the Airsoft removed and verified as a toy and school started on time because of an observant bus driver.”
The EMMA app is an internal system used by Putnam County schools to allow employees to contact 911. Deputies say it works like a “virtual panic button” allowing officials to quickly lockdown a school if there is a danger to the campus.
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