• How do local schools prepare for the possibility of mass shootings?

    By: Marius Payton

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The recovery process now begins for a Florida community seeking comfort from yet another school shooting. Schools, churches and businesses are not only asking could this happen to us, but are we prepared? FOX13's Marius Payton spoke with a DeSoto County deputy who has been preparing people here in the Mid-South. 

    The class is called CRAS or civilian response to active shooter. It's free in DeSoto County and in two in a half hours you will have the knowledge needed to keep you and yours safe. Teaching things like how a book can protect your child from a bullet.

    Another school shooting, leaves another parent miles away asking why?

    "It's sickening. This day and time it's really sick. Things have gotten really out of hand right now," said Norman Tuggle, the father of a high schooler.

    And before that violence strikes closer to home, there's a  Civilian Response to Active Shooter class you can take to help keep your children safe.

    "The main thing that goes through my mind is wanting to make sure at least our community is trained to react to a situation like that," said Alex Coker, a DeSoto County Deputy who teaches the CRAS class. 

    It’s a 2 and a half hour class with one motto in mind. Avoid, Deny, Defend.

    "On the avoid, you want to avoid in any way, shape or form. You want to run like your life depends on it because it does. If you cannot avoid the shooter at that point in time, you want to deny. You want to barricade the situation. Barricade the doors, do whatever it takes to protect yourself." He said.

    Coker went on to say a backpack and the books you put in it could be the difference between life and death.

    "This one book alone, if you look there's a small hole inside there. It's a bullet hole. This is actually one of our duty rounds. If you look halfway in the book. There's a hollow point 9mm bullet stuck right here inside this book," he explained.

    Coker advises kids to use their backpacks as shields. And if ever bullets are flying and you have to run, direction counts.

    "It's a lot harder for you to track me this way..... then running directly back from me. Does that make sense?" As he ran in an empty parking lot to show our cameras.

    But if in the event you or someone around you does get shot, a tampon could save a life as well. 

    "It's about the same size of a bullet hole. Shove that in there to help stop the bleeding as well."

    Coker also suggests using the strap of a purse, to make a tourniquet to stop the bleeding. Tough lessons, but much needed. 

    If you want to attend the next CRAS class it is scheduled for February 26th.

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