County Executive Kevin Kamenetz posted on his Facebook page that the police department has instituted a "Keep a Check" program for all Baltimore County schools without resource officers. Police will drop by every school, walk through and ensure that everything is secure.
Kamenetz writes that the walk-throughs will occur multiple times per shift. He notes that Police Chief Jim Johnson is keeping in regular contact with national law enforcement officials and Baltimore County Public Schools Superintendent S. Dallas Dance.
The officers will continue the patrols beyond Friday for an unspecified amount of time, the county executive wrote.
Louise Rogers-Feher, a police spokeswoman, confirmed the increased patrols.
"They’ve been directed to go to the schools, talk to the principals, make an appearance so that people realize that we know what’s going on," she said.
A gunman allegedly killed 27 people, including 18 children, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, according to Newtown Patch. The gunman was reportedly found dead inside the school.
Charles Herndon, a Baltimore County spokesman, said there is no threat to Baltimore County schools but Dance and Johnson had thought the additional patrols were needed as a precaution and to alleviate worry. He noted that the schools without resource officers were primarily elementary schools.
"On behalf of Baltimore County Public Schools, I send our heartfelt sympathy to all the families of Sandy Hook Elementary School who are mourning the loss of life of their children and loved ones," Dance said in a release. "We are saddened and outraged by the tragedy."
According to the statement, Dance has asked the school system's department of safety and security to review current crisis plans.