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One school district in North Carolina is taking school safety into its own hands, with plans to put AR-15 rifles in emergency safes throughout county schools.
Madison County, North Carolina, hopes that by putting AR-15s in schools it will increase security and curb gun violence. After the deadly Uvalde school shooting, which killed 19 students and two teachers, schools are preparing for the worst.
“Hopefully we’ll never need it, but I want my guys to be as prepared as prepared can be,” Sheriff Buddy Harwood told the Asheville Citizen-Times.
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If an active-shooter situation occurs, the sheriff’s office has stored AR-15r rifles in locked safes at each of the six Madison County schools. The safes also contain extra magazines, ammunition and breaching tools, Harwood said.
“In the event we have someone barricaded in a door, we won’t have to wait on the fire department,” Harwood added. “We’ll have those tools to be able to breach that door if needed. I do not want to have to run back out to the car to grab an AR, because that’s time lost.”
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The schools where the safes will be located are Brush Creek Elementary, Hot Springs Elementary, Mars Hill Elementary, Madison Middle, Madison High and Madison Early College High.
Superintendent Will Hoffman is also committed to elevating school safety measures. In the 2022-2023 school year, Madison County school will have an assigned student resource officer, social workers and counselors in each school, an added panic button system to every building, and a school district liaison.