Shiawassee Co. Sheriff’s Office cracks down on church security

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SHIAWASSEE CO., Mich. (WLNS) – Churches around the country are finding ways to add security after a recent shooting in Texas where three people were killed, including the gunman.

Here in mid-Michigan, one sheriff’s department is offering to help.

In just a few seconds, two people were shot and killed at West Freeway Church of Christ in north Texas. Then, a member of the congregation pulled out his own gun and killed the shooter.

“Years ago you wouldn’t think about somebody coming into your church to cause harm, but nowadays we do have to consider that,” said Pastor David Ross of Owosso Church of God Seventh Day.

Ross says he wants to beef up his security.

“Definitely could use some kind of training, some kind of information on how we can be more secure during our regular services,” said Ross.

That’s where the Shiawassee County Sheriff’s Office comes in. The department plans to host an Advanced Church Security Training to help places of worship be more prepared in situations like this one.

“We’re able to go in and go through the building, help them develop plans,” said Chaplain Todd Evans with the Shiawassee County Sheriff’s Office.

“To give the churches and places of worship a better understanding of what security means, what security looks like, and the protocols and things that they can put into place to make it safer for their leadership and their congregates,” said Jeff Weiss, the Shiawassee County Emergency Manager.

Pastor Ross says he’s all in.

“We definitely don’t want anybody coming in here feeling threatened,” said Ross. “They can’t hear the good news, they can’t hear the word we’re trying to minister to them if they’re worried about safety. Anything that we can do to be safe is on the table.”

The Advanced Church Security Training will take place Saturday, March 14, 2020.

For more information, you can visit the Shiawassee County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.

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