Local schools react to Pittsburgh-area stabbing

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — Recently, gun violence made headlines with tragedy hitting Fort Hood, a gun firing that put the campus of Kent State on lock-down, and Wednesday, gunfire took place inside the Los Angeles Police Department.

But Wednesday’s incident at a school outside of Pittsburgh in which 20 students were injured involved a knife, and some feel there is little to prevent such events aside from preparation.

“It caught me by surprise when I saw that it was a knife that was involved,” said Warren City Schools Superintenent Michael Notar.

Notar said his district approved new safety measures Tuesday and will install special barricades this summer.

Notar doesn’t want to see metal detectors in his school and doesn’t feel they are effective. Former Lawrence County District Attorney Matt Mangino agrees.

“It’s not going to prevent someone who has a plan, who meticulously puts that plan in place and tries to carry it out,” Mangino said.

Canfield Superintendent Alex Jordan said via phone that active shooter training can still be effective in these situations, and Notar agrees.
Mangino feels people need to pay attention to warning signs, but that too may be difficult…

“There are lots of signs that after the fact look like they could have been good predictors, but they’re actually pretty common and almost no one goes and does something violent like that,” said Youngstown State University Professor Michael Raulin.

Raulin feels this behavior is rare and that predicting such violence is very difficult.

Notar said most schools in Trumbull county have completed ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate) training, as did Jordan. Boardman Schools also completed an active shooter simulation drill last year. Both superintendents said they feel these simulations have given their faculty the skills needed to respond should violence happen.

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