CPD starts new security response teams to prevent tragedies

By Stacy

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Since the new school year started, Officer Mark Rosborg has spent most of his days shuffling between schools in his patrol car. He was selected as one of the 19 officers that make up the Charleston Police Department's new School Security Response Team.

The team has 18 officers and one supervisor; they're divided between six geographical "clusters."

"We're there to make sure the schools are as safe as they can be," Rosborg said.

Ashley Hall is one of the schools in Rosborg's cluster. It's a school that understands the need for security all too well. Police said a woman pulled a loaded gun on an administrator in February.

Jill Muti, who heads the school, said the Ashley Hall crisis plan worked that day, but the incident also helped raise awareness.

"If Ashley Hall can serve as a catalyst to make our community a stronger, better place for all of our children, then that's exactly what we want," Muti said.

The team trained to cover all 35 schools in the city's jurisdiction. Officers are expected to both prevent and respond.

"We're ready for a bomb, bomb drills, evacuation procedures, and worst-case scenario -- an active shooter enters the school," Rosborg said.

As part of Rosborg's patrols, he walks around the perimeters of all the schools. He checks each door to make sure it was appropriately locked and then looks inside to make sure everything looks normal.

"An open gate like this close to the street would be something we'd like to see secured up," he said as he inspected a gate by the playground at Mason Preparatory School.

Now that the school year has started, the officers are getting to know staff and students.

Rosborg said he was just as happy to see them as they are to see him on campus every day.