Some Parents Question Response By Marion Police
There were some tense moments at Vernon Middle School in Marion this week as the building went on lockdown Tuesday morning after a student made verbal threats about using a gun. Now some parents are questioning the police response to the situation.
When the threat was reported by the school, officers from the Marion Police Department were among the first to respond to the incident. Officers from Hiawatha, the Iowa State Patrol, and Linn County Sheriff's office also responded.
Parents questioned some of the equipment used by police to respond to a verbal threat. Students report they saw SWAT personnel entering the school. Police officials say that SWAT was not involved, but officers did carry along the equipment just in case it was needed.
Others questioned the amount of police presence on scene for a verbal threat. The student was arrested and charged with first-degree harassment. No weapon was found. Officials say that all agencies simply followed protocol for the situation.
The question to ask, for all these parents that wonder if these extreme measures by police were necessary: Would you rather they send two officers and then find out it's an active shooter situation with lives on the line? In the day and age we live in, any threat made insinuating gun violence must be taken seriously. No one wants their kid's school added to the list of schools with tragedy attached to their name. This author is one parent who is thankful for the response of law enforcement and the transparency of the school district. Thank you for keeping our kids safe.