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SC leaders call for metal detectors in schools after AC Flora stabbing incident

Published: Feb. 26, 2019 at 11:21 PM EST
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - A 15-year-old is behind bars and a 17-year-old is recovering in the hospital after a fight between two girls lead to a stabbing at A.C. Flora High School on Monday.

This all started when police said the fight broke out in the school courtyard and the 15-year-old began stabbing the 17-year-old repeatedly with a pocket knife. According to the report, the 15-year-old told police that she regularly brings that knife to school.

The report said that someone at the school tried to stop the bleeding for the 17-year-old girl by applying their belt to one of her wounds. She was later rushed to the hospital. Police said this fight started after an “ongoing dispute” between the two girls.

On Monday, the 17-year-old was reported to be in serious condition. Today, that has been upgraded to critical.

WIS spoke with Representative Wendell Gilliard (District-111 Charleston) who said tragic events like this can be prevented if metal detectors are installed at schools. Critics have argued over the cost of the metal detectors in the past, but Gilliard said we can’t put a dollar sign on keeping students safe.

“Don’t wait until an incident happens,” he said. “At that point, you’ve declared that you’re being reactive and not proactive. The goal here is to have a mandate on metal detectors at all these institutions.”

Representative Gilliard is co-sponsoring a bill that would require a metal detector at all public entrances to public schools in the state, and he’s hoping for bi-partisan support. Gilliard said having School Resource Officers is important, but said those officers can’t be everywhere at all times.

“We already have the human element, that’s the safety officers in the schools,” Gilliard said. “But one can not work without the other. When the human factor fails, you have to have the technology waiting right there. It’s the same methodology that we have at airports and NFL stadiums.”

Gilliard is hoping to gain bi-partisan support with this bill.

The Richland County Sheriff’s Department said that the 15-year-old still has to go through family court before we know whether she’ll be charged as an adult.

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