Bluffton parents, officials praise teacher for taking action - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Parents, officials praise teacher for stopping dangerous situation

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Bluffton Police Chief Joey Reynolds Bluffton Police Chief Joey Reynolds

Student safety was a priority Wednesday during the lockdown at Bluffton High School. Just two weeks ago, police officers in Bluffton learned how to take down an active shooter in schools. This course helped prepare each officer to isolate, distract and neutralize an active shooter, but it was the quick works of a teacher that stopped what could have been a dangerous situation.

"This has triggered emotions and concern," said Leslie Wilson, parents.

Memories of Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting flooded parents minds as they were told their children were locked in a school with a student brandishing weapons.

"There was an announcement that we were on lock down, then 30 minutes later we got an announcement there were police in the building and they were there to keep us safe," said Alison Reinhardt, student.

Bluffton High School was put on lockdown after police say a student brought multiple weapons, including a loaded handgun, to school. Police say Austen Almeida, 17, told a teacher that he had weapons in his clothing, which prompted the teacher and guidance counselors to take action and alert police.

"Looks like the teachers diffused this morning what could have been a horrible situation that we too often hear about these days," said Andew Glaser, grandparent. "I am glad to hear that. I heard about this while at work when this unfolded. I commend the teacher that noticed something and acted."

All schools in Bluffton were quickly put on lockdown as police made sure the students would be safe. It's a situation they were prepared for just two weeks ago.

"We train with our schools. Training pays off and it did in this incident," said Bluffton Police Chief Joey Reynolds. "This could have been a bad situation and it wasn't because of the quick response of the school staff and quick response of our law enforcement partners with EMS, fire department and sheriff. All that worked and worked because of training."

No one was hurt during this incident and school will go on as normally scheduled on Thursday.

School officials also say they will review the schools security plans and the possibility of adding metal detectors.

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