Calexico May Bring Police Back To Schools After Recent Incidents
BY MARIO CONDE
The Calexico School Board discussed the possibility of bringing back School Resource Officers to work at the schools.
The Board met on May 25, to discuss an item brought by Board President Lorenzo Calderon to bring back police services back to the high school and Jr. High Schools. This item coincided with the lockdown that occurred at Calexico High School when a “toy gun” was found in classroom that caused law enforcement to intervene. Calexico Police Department and Border Patrol immediately responded and ordered a lockdown at CHS.
Law enforcement quickly secured the campus and worked to secure the students in the suspected classroom. They next initiated a methodical search and uncovered an “imitation firearm” in the class. It has since been described as a black plastic gun, with orange tip. Three students were taken by Calexico police for questioning.
In early May, Calexico Police Department arrested three individuals accused of planning a shooting at Calexico High School.
Trustee Lorenzo Calderon said that based on the events that happened that day, the district should bring back SROs to work at the high school.
“In the past we had two officers assigned to Calexico High School campus during school hours and based on what has been happening at our schools recently and the concern by the community, we met with the Calexico City Manager and they are looking into getting another officer on our campus,” Calderon stated.
The Calexico Police Department had two police officers at Calexico High School but due to the shortage of officers it stopped a few years ago. Back in 2012, the City of Calexico through its Measure “H” funded SROs in the amount of $242,402.00 for FY 2012/2013.
This request included the salary and benefits for the two police officers assigned to the SRO Program, with payment for the services to be paid directly to the City of Calexico. The Department provided and additional SRO as part of the overall Police Budget.
Trustee Michael Castillo agreed on the SROs since there are benefits of having them on campus and working along with the school and the students.
Aurora High School Principal John Moreno asked to have two SROs because there are issues on the west side of town and include one at Aurora High School since two months ago there was another lockdown.
“A big role that SROs is that of a counselor and not necessarily as a good cop or bad cop, I ask you to consider the approval of two that will cover the west side as well,” Moreno advised.
Direction was given to the Superintendent to talk to the city manager and bring an action item in June.