BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)- An Ohio State University police officer is being called a hero. He responded one minute after a call that a man plowed his car into a crowd of people at OSU and then attacked them with a knife.
The officer shot and killed the suspect. Officials said it all happened in less than two minutes.
University at Buffalo Police told News 4 its officers would be able to respond in one or two minutes if something happened on UB’s campus.
UB has 58 armed police officers.
“It can’t be overstated what a great benefit that is because local police, that would have to patrol and respond if you had a non-armed security department, it just couldn’t be the same,” said Chief Jerry Schoenle.
Chief Schoenle said in the 1990’s all 29 SUNY four year schools established full service police departments. He told News 4 statewide, there’s never been a case where an officer has used his or her firearm in their own defense.
Officers go through extensive training.
“Police officers go through over five months of initial training and then you have three or four months of on-the-job training, so our officers have nine to 10 months of training before they’re on their own,” said Chief Schoenle. “That’s huge.”
He said there’s been a national trend towards full service police departments over many years. There are nearly half a dozen colleges in Western New York, however, that are patrolled by unarmed security.
Niagara University, Hilbert College, Daemen College and Medaille College all confirmed to News 4 they do not have armed security.
“We’ve got close personal relationships with the Buffalo Police Department so if anything does happen, they will be the first responders,” said John Crawford, Medaille College Vice President of College Relations.
Crawford told News 4 Medaille security guards are trained to subdue suspects Many are also members of the Buffalo Police Department, EMT’s and parole officers.
Even though they’re not armed, if something were to happen, Crawford said they’re confident Buffalo Police will be able to respond quickly.
“There’s 60,000 students at Ohio State University and those officers are armed, that’s a city in and of itself,” he said. “Our response times would be just as quick if not quicker than they would be at Ohio State.”
Medaille College isn’t the only campus relying on local police.
Daemen College sent News 4 a statement saying, “Similar to many small private colleges, Daemen College does not currently provide armed campus safety officers. However, Daemen places a strong emphasis on the safety of the college community through a cross-campus Emergency Response Team, an extensive training program for officers, and a strong relationship with the Amherst Police Department. Additionally, the college has established several policies and procedures and implemented new technologies to help maintain a secure campus setting.”
Medaille college, Canisius College and other local schools also have an agreement where they share information and respond as back-up if there’s a problem on another campus.
All of the schools News 4 talked to do active shooter training.