Following the Sunday evening threats of violence on social media to two area schools, Columbus Mayor Robert Smith and Police Chief Fred Shelton have added additional Columbus Police Department resources to local schools on Monday and committed to an increased presence on campuses all year.
“We are committed to the safety of students and we will continue to work with school officials and use the resources of the City of Columbus toward this goal,” said Mayor Smith. “We will do whatever it takes at any cost to protect students.”
The increased presence includes walk-thru of the campuses by officers and assistance to school resource officers and other security measures in place at these schools. Additional CPD officers have been staffed for the patrols.
“We are working with school officials at each facility and this work will continue throughout this school year,” Shelton said.
Shelton said officers have already increased their presence and walk-through of schools and businesses in the past two months.
“We are already increasing our foot patrols in all parts of town and schools are at the top of the list,” he said. “Our officers are getting out of their cars to patrol on foot in a way that can’t be done in a car. We will continue this growing presence in Columbus.”
Shelton encouraged the public to report threats to law enforcement.
“Many people have notified us of the threats made Sunday night on social media,” he said. “We received calls from local citizens and calls from all over the country. We want that to continue. If you see something, let us know. We monitor our Facebook and Twitter accounts and 911 will also take these calls. If you see something, then say something and encourage students to do the same.”