Worker tells CNN health center was going through active shooter exercises as attacks took place

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Gunmen opened fire at company holiday party inside a mental health facility in Calif. yesterday killing 14 and injuring 17 more. The suspects, Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and his Saudi wife, Tashfeen Malik, 27, were killed in a shootout with police hours later.

Kirstin Myricks, an employee for the Inland Regional Center told CNN that the health department began conducting active shooter drills last year and that “they were going through the rounds now with that training.”(1)

The Inland Regional Center, located in San Bernardino, Calif., is a mental health facility employing about 700 people in two counties, providing mental health services to more than 30,000 individuals of various ages. Myricks told CNN that her place of employment had decent security, with employees required to carry badges and key cards to enter into the building.

What Myricks meant when she said active shooter drills were taking place “now” remains unclear; however, it has been confirmed that an active shooter drill took place on Monday, two days before the shooting, at a college 40 miles away from the mental health center.

The active shooter drill was carried out at Victor Valley College Nov. 30, resulting in partial closure of the campus, and involved at least six different law enforcement agencies.

“What I want everyone to know is that we have, on an on-going basis been assessing and implementing an improved campus security and response plan for many months,” said the school’s Superintendent/President Roger Wagner. “Many improvements have been made and there are still more to come.”

Victor Valley News reports:

Victor Valley College officials would like to inform students and area residents that there will be an “active shooter” training exercise on the VVC campus on Monday, November 30th. There will be significant police presence at this time according to Chief Leonard Knight who said this training will last several hours.

In order to avoid any confusion, the public is being notified ahead of time. Victor Valley College Police Department (VVCPD), San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department (SBCSD), Victorville Police Station, San Bernardino County Fire Department (SBCFD), Victorville Fire Station, and American Medical Response (AMR) have planned for and are conducting this exercise to ensure coordinated, timely and effective response to the college community, as well as enhance safety at Victor Valley College.

According to the Victor Valley College press release, this drill is to prepare the school faculty, staff and students in preparation of an active shooter occurrence within our campus community as well as a real life simulation. “Conducting and planning for this exercise will allow us to assess our emergency preparedness and review the coordination and rapid response of both police agencies.” stated Chief Knight.

Sources:

  1. CNN.com
  2. VVNG.com