WESTON, Conn. – Weston police are already “ahead of the curve” in safety procedures and have improved their tactics since the Sandy Hook School shooting last year, Chief John Troxell said in a presentation last week.
Troxell was invited by the Weston Democratic Town Committee to speak to residents last Wednesday about his department’s security plans since the Newtown tragedy. In his presentation, he said his officers are “improving on what we already had in place.”
“[The presentation] was informative and gave us a first-hand look into how our town prepares for any and all emergency safety issues that might arise,” Weston DTC Chair Barbara Reynolds said in a statement.
For example, his officer already undergo more than the required training for target shooting and scenario-specific classes for building lockdowns, home invasions and other potential emergencies. The department also has had improved tactics since the Columbine shooting in 1999, such as a policy not to wait for a SWAT team to come from a neighboring town before entering potentially dangerous situations.
“We learned from that experience,” Troxell said. “We are trained not to wait for a SWAT team to arrive; we go in with the focus on eliminating the threat.”
Troxell also talked about the “Mile of Safety” program for Weston’s schools, which establishes a heightened police presence in the mile of road surrounding each school. The program will extend beyond traffic safety and will now focus more on overall security, he said.
The police are also working on better communication with the Board of Education to keep improving school security. For example, the board decided earlier this month to add a school resource officer at Weston High School, setting up a direct link between the police department and the school.
“We all work very well together to ensure that our school campus and town will continue to be a safe place in which to live,” Troxell said.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.