Rutherford County considers adding officers in elementary school - WKRN News 2

Rutherford County considers adding officers in elementary schools

Posted: Updated: Jan 8, 2013 05:55 PM
Sheriff Robert Arnold says it would cost $1.2 million to add 11 SROs to his budget through July 1. Sheriff Robert Arnold says it would cost $1.2 million to add 11 SROs to his budget through July 1.
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -

Rutherford County is the latest Middle Tennessee school district to consider putting an armed police officer in every elementary school.

In a news briefing Tuesday morning, Rutherford County Sheriff Robert Arnold said it would cost $1.2 million to add 11 school resource officers to his budget through July 1.

In the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut massacre last month, the sheriff says he had been asked by the members of the Rutherford County Commission's safety committee to come up with the cost so it can be provided to commission's budget committee on Thursday.

Rutherford County currently has 44 SROs in its high school and middle schools.

SROs at the elementary level are usually assigned to multiple schools.

Sgt. Bill West is one of the current SROs at an elementary school with duties at other grades schools.

"We now see these kids grow up K through 12th grade, and they know when they see what that officer does, they know we are there for them," he told Nashville's News 2 while on duty at Rutherford County's Brown Chapel Elementary. "Since I am not in a patrol car, patrolling on a daily basis, this is my district."

On Thursday, the Rutherford County Commission budget committee plans to consider the proposal.

On Monday, the budget committee of the Williamson County Commission unanimously recommended spending $2.5 million in reserves to fund 32 SROs that would go in each elementary school.

The Sumner County School Board will consider a resolution Tuesday night to hire 20-additional SROs for each elementary at a cost of $3 million.

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