Marianna church hosting community active shooter training

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Marianna church hosting community active shooter training

MARIANNA, Fla. (WMBB) – The United States has had more than 300 mass shootings this year alone, and it’s only July.

Schools seem to be the highest profile targets, but churches and other places of worship are also vulnerable.

Trinity Security Allies will soon hold a training seminar at a Marianna church to educate community members on how to respond to an active shooter event.

Executive Director Jim Howard knows the situation all too well.

“When I was 16 years old, my father shot and killed a deacon at a church that I was going to, so it happens to anybody and everybody so we have to be prepared,” Howard said.

Howard teaches how to be proactive instead of reactive to get ahead of these situations before they happen.

He said being aware of your surroundings is critical.

“We take a look at the West Freeway Church of Christ shooting that happened,” Howard said. “The guy walked in with a wig and a fake beard. That to us is one of those things where we would immediately address that. Not let him come in and sit without having a conversation with him.”

Marianna Police Chief Hayes Baggett believes training citizens will save lives.

“Any training you can get whether it be a civilian or a law enforcement officer is beneficial,” Chief Baggett said. “I’m a firm believer in the training because the more you do it the quicker you would respond.”

Risk assessment specialist Rodney Andreasen feels the timing is right for this training.

“With the way things are going in our country now, churches have been under attack either by vandalism or firebombing or shootings and it’s just not safe anymore and we’ve got to take action to start protecting these churches,” Andreasen said.

Rivertown Community Church is hosting the training from 9:00 a.m. to noon this Saturday.

Click this link to register.