Gunman (Active Assailant)
An “active shooter” is a person whose actions could result in serious injury or death. One or more assailants may be involved. They may be very near or far away, at one or several locations, targeting students, faculty/staff, or random victims. No two situations are exactly alike. A shooting can occur anytime, anyplace, and involve anyone.
If there is a shooter or assault, try to remain calm. Your actions will influence others. A survival mindset can help you and those around you avoid catastrophe. Cooperate in taking responsibility for your personal safety and security.
- If possible, run away from the threat as fast as you can.
- If you cannot flee, lock and barricade doors. If there are no locks, barricade the door with furniture.
- Take adequate cover/protection behind solid objects that are as far away from the door as possible. Examples are concrete walls, thick desks, and filing cabinets.
- If the assailant enters your room and leaves, lock or barricade the door after he or she has left.
- If it is safe to do so, allow others to seek refuge with you.
- Close blinds and cover windows, and turn off lights.
- Turn off all computer monitors, radios, and other electronic equipment.
- Silence cell phones, after calling 9-1-1 and/or Campus Police.
- If it is safe to do so, place signs in exterior windows to identify your location and the location of those that are injured.
If You Are in an Unsecured Area
- If you find yourself in an open area, immediately seek protection. Put a barrier between you and the assailant.
- Consider trying to escape if you know the location of the assailant and there appears to be an escape route immediately available.
- If in doubt, find the safest area available and secure it the best way that you can.
- If the shooter confronts you and you cannot flee, you can hide. You may choose to play dead, if other victims are around you. Your last option may be to fight back. This is dangerous, but depending on your situation, this could be your last option.
Keeping the Area Secure
- The assailant may not stop until his or her objectives have been met or until engaged or neutralized by law enforcement.
- Always consider the risk of exposure by opening the door for any reason.
- Attempts to rescue people should only be made if it can be done without further endangering either yourself or the persons inside of the secured area.
- Be aware that the assailant may bang on the door, yell for help, or otherwise try to entice you to open the door of a secured area.
- If there is any doubt about the safety of the individuals inside the room, the area needs to remain secured.
Law Enforcement Response
- The Campus Police Department will immediately respond to the area, assisted by other local law enforcement agencies if necessary. Remember that help is on the way so try to remain calm.
- Law enforcement will locate, contain, and stop the assailant.
- Remain inside a secure area. The safest place for you to be is in a secure room.
- The assailant may not flee when law enforcement arrives, but instead may target arriving officers.
If There Are Injured Persons Around You
- Initial responding officers will not treat the injured or begin evacuation until the threat is neutralized and the area is secure. Be prepared to explain this to others.
- Once the threat is neutralized, Police and Emergency Medical Services will begin treatment and evacuation.
- Responding officers will establish safe corridors for persons to evacuate. This may be time consuming.
- You may be instructed to keep your hands on your head, and you may be searched.
- You may be escorted out of the building by law enforcement personnel. Follow their directions.
- After evacuation, you may be taken to a triage or other holding area for medical care, interviewing, counseling, or other support.
- Remain in secure areas until instructed otherwise. Once you have been evacuated you will not be permitted to retrieve items or access the area until law enforcement releases the crime scene.