Local churches get active shooter training
WASHINGTON CO., Tenn - A local church is thinking about changing its security policies in the wake of the deadly church shooting that happened Southeast of Nashville.
The shooting occurred in Antioch, Tenn., and left one person dead and seven wounded, including the gunman.
Pastor Louis Imsandy at the First Presbyterian church in Johnson City is considering changing his church's security measures after seeing what happened in Antioch.
"The tension exists because you want the church to be open and inviting-- which would mean no security-- while at the same time, you want it to be locked down tight so no one can get in. But churches can't live on either end of the pole," said Pastor Imsandy.
Right now, the church has automatic locks on their doors and security cameras.
Pastor Imsandy said they also have members of the church who are on constant lookout.
"We have people who keep an eye open for anything unusual going on. So, they're open to jumping in if anything happens," explained Imsandy.
The Washington County Sheriff's Office offers active shooter training.
Major Bryan Horton works with churches to spread awareness.
He said with more and more violence at churches, the training is vital.
"I think church members know that no where is really 100% safe. And they want to know what to do in case of emergency," said Major Horton. "They should be listening to the pastor preaching and not have to worry about when the back door opens, that they have to turn to see who's coming in."
Pastor Imsandy said he's interested in working with the sheriff's office to learn more about the training.
If you would like to bring active shooter training to your church, contact the sheriff's office.
The classes are eight hours long and open to the public.