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Sen. Murphy: SROs Could 'Criminalize Behavior' in Schools

During a visit to Foran High School in Milford, Senator Chris Murphy voiced concerns about criminalizing behavior.

During a recent trip to Milford, Senator Chris Murphy spoke with Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Feser, Police Chief Keith Mello and Mayor Ben Blake about plans for added security in the wake of the elementary school shooting at Sandy Hook.

While will be added to Milford elementary schools, the City is exploring the idea of adding School Resource Officers, officers are specially trained police officers who carry guns and become part of the school's environment, to Foran and Law, as well as to the middle schools. 

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Brookfield's Board of Education recommended hiring four SROs for the school district.

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Murphy asked Chief Mello and Dr. Feser how they would deal with the concern that police officers in schools could "criminalize behavior in schools."

Chief Mello responded by saying that they were creating a program "that fits the needs of Milford."

"There has been a lot of discussion in the past about criminalizing behavior in schools, is that appropriate. I think you've seen the trend go the other way. I know in Milford we have a criminal diversion program," Chief Mello said.

"There are a lot of things that need to be handled within the schools," Chief Mello continued. "And that's a conversation that we'll have." 

"I share your concern," Chief Mello told Senator Murphy, "but I think we'll address that in our program appropriately."

Milford Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Feser seconded Chief Mello's comments, saying that "it's really the administrators that really take the lead in respect to making the decisions around schools."

"Unless a crime_ a serious crime — was committed," Dr. Feser added.

Lucia February 02, 2013 at 01:28 PM
Murphy is an idiot, he is blindly following his messiah's lead, as he does 100% of the time. It is just amazing that after the poor job he did in congress he was voted in as senator. It goes to show how stupid the voters of CT can be.
Steven DeVaux February 02, 2013 at 03:05 PM
Nevermind how SRO's criminalize behavior - look at what school adminstrators do!: http://realtalkrealdebate.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/5-year-old-pennsylvania-girl-suspended-for-threatening-to-use-toy-bubble-gun/
Missy February 02, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Criminal behavior is criminal behavior, whether it takes place within the walls of schools or not. It should be addressed according to the law either way, period. Selling drugs, teachers having relations with students, harassment and assault are crimes that need law enforcement involvement. Senator Murphy needs a wakeup call.
Steven DeVaux February 02, 2013 at 06:20 PM
People elect the government they deserve.
Daniel McGrath February 02, 2013 at 07:57 PM
The core of the story: Chris Murphy had a reasonable question, so he asked two experts. Good for him.
Steven DeVaux February 03, 2013 at 05:22 PM
That's quite an assumption that the two he asked were "experts". That's like saying veteran is an expert on war. Hardly - and I'm a veteran.
Mary Davis February 04, 2013 at 01:03 PM
I don't think Murphy asks the right questions... didn't he vote for Obamacare before he even knew what he was voting for? He basically does what his party tells him. SRO's are fine, but if a teacher, administrator or parent wanted to carry in the school , there is no good reason to prohibit them. Pilots are allowed to carry in the cockpit now... because a defense free cockpit didn't work and neither does any other defense free zone. Pilots don't HAVE to carry but if they want to they can take the training and additional background check to carry. The SRO's in schools will be like the "pilot with a gun" and anyone else that chooses to be trained can be an "air marshal." The beauty is, the bad guys never know who the air marshals are... this is why defense free zones everywhere need to be eliminated.

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