Recently we had Grand Junction Police Chief Nordine and Officer David Godwin, the School Resource Officer for Grand Junction High School from the Grand Junction Police Department in the studio to discuss the increase in violent threats against students and faculty and what we as citizens can do about it.

The questions we wanted to ask Chief Nordine and SRO Officer Godwin dealt mostly with gaining a better understanding of how these threats are treated and what sorts of things we could talk to our children about. The responses from the video are paraphrased here. For the full response, please see the video.

What is the definition of a threat?

Although difficult to define, a threat is making statements against people or buildings. The difficult thing is determining if the threat is credible.

What happens when a threat is made?

Whether on social media, a face to face discussion or something overheard, if the threat is made, they first see if it's a credible threat, does the person have the ability to carry out that threat. Once that is determined, any schools that are threatened are placed in lock-down until the threat is over.

What involvement does the Police Department have in regards to safety and security at our schools?

Educating and informing students, maintaining a presence in the schools and being an available resource are just a few of the things a School Resource Officer (SRO) does. Maintaining security and safety is what District 51 does, and the police service to help in that regard.

What advice can you give students?

Communicate. If you see something, if you hear something and if you know something, tell someone.  There are ways students can get that information to the authorities in a non-threatening way.

What advice can you give parents?

Talk to your children. Let them know they have resources available to help them. Monitor their usage of social media. Sound advice before an event is the best preparation you can have.

As a community, what can we do?

Stay informed. Listen to what your child is telling you. If there are threats, real or veiled, report them to the authorities.