Nashville 911 call suggests some Covenant School staff might have been armed

Metro Nashville Police Department via AP

I’ll caution against reading too much into an unverified claim from a 911 caller frantically trying to report an active shooting incident, but according to one of the 911 calls that was made from the Covenant School on Monday morning, some staff members at the private school may have been armed when the shooting began.


As the New York Post reports, one teacher who called 911 as the shooting unfolded told dispatchers “We do have a school person — or two, I’m not sure — who would be packing, whose job it is for security,” adding, “We don’t have security guards, but we have a staff.”

The 911 call — one of about two dozen made during the terrifying 14-minute bloodbath — was the first suggestion that staff at the Christian school may have been armed.

It challenges pro-gun activists who claim allowing teachers to carry is an easy recipe to end such violence.

Well, not really. Again, at this point we don’t know whether or not there actually was an armed staff member who was present, much less if or how they responded to the active shooter. If it was a teacher, for instance, they may have made the choice to shelter in place with their class, ready to defend the kids if the classroom door was breached. Clearly there were some security measures that prevented the killer from targeting more victims, given that 14 minutes elapsed between the first 911 calls and the moment she was shot and killed by responding officers, but we don’t know if armed school staff were among them.

The statement made in the 911 call doesn’t really change anything. Until the Nashville police or school officials detail the security procedures in place that day, including any armed staffers and how they responded, it’s far too early to do anything but hazard semi-informed guesses.


Armed or not, we do know that some of adults who died at the hands of the cowardly killer in Nashville ran towards the danger.

A school spokesperson would not comment on who might have been armed for security. A spokesperson for Metro Nashville Police said she was unable to confirm if any staff had been armed at the time.

Citing the ongoing investigation, the police rep also could not tell The Post if any of the three staff who were killed had attempted to shoot at heavily armed 28-year-old [name redacted by Bearing Arms].

Previous reports said at least one of the three slain adults, 60-year-old headmaster Katherine Koonce, was gunned down while rushing to confront [the killer].

“She did what principals and headmasters do: She protected her children,” Nashville City Councilman Russ Pulley, an ex-FBI agent, told Fox News.

Friends also believe school custodian Mike Hill, a 61-year-old dad of eight, likely sacrificed himself to try to protect the students.

“Mike deserves to be remembered for his selfless act protecting our children,” said a GoFundMe — which by Friday had raised more than $575,000, more than 23 times its $25,000 target.

The New York Post is pretty clearly opposed to the idea of armed school staff, snarking about Rep. Thomas Massie’s claim that no school shootings have taken place in schools where there’s an armed staffer present, but research has shown that the most effective and fastest way to stop an active shooter on a school campus is to have both a school resource officer who can engage the attacker and armed staff who can shelter in place with students in case the attacker enters their room. Of course there are always going to be human variables; officers who stand pat rather than immediate pursuing and engaging the attacker as we saw in Uvalde and Parkland. But if we want to end these attacks as quickly as possible that means getting an armed response to the attack as fast as we can, and having an armed presence already on campus is the best way to do that.




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