California City Police in collaboration with the CDCR, held an active shooter simulation at California City Middle School Wednesday.
Principal Ronald Riley said these trainings along with school drills are mandatory in his mind. "You hate to say that that's what is happening in the world today, but the more you are prepared, the safer your kids are," Riley said.
A handful of students from the school participated in the training exercise and said they've been through drills before. CCMS held a lockdown drill last year and was actually put on lockdown in 2015 due to a dangerous suspect in the area.
The drill simulated an angry parent who wanted to pick up their child from school but had a restraining order against him. He left campus and came back with two guns (which were plastic orange and blue western toys).
The parent then ran to the multipurpose room, where he revealed he had a bomb vest and three hostages standing in front of him, protecting himself from the officers.
The first two officers who arrived immediately confronted the gunman in the multipurpose room and talked him into letting a hostage go. Then an officer took aim and rescued the other two students.
Other students were tied together in a classroom that was booby-trapped. The CDCR officers entered the classroom after hearing the students screaming and rescued them while being careful to not initiate the trip wire.
This scenario was something the department took from a real life situation, the Columbine shooting.
While this particular training was for the officers in the area, Riley said it's a great way to get parents and students talking.
"Talking out scenarios, what would you do if this happened.. where do you hang out the most.. where's the safest place to go to," Riley said.
CCMS advises students if they are in a classroom when there is an active shooter, to lay down on the floor. If you are out in the open, run for cover (i.e. a classroom, the office, etc.). Officials advise anyone on campus during this sort of situation to not open the door for anyone.
There are ways to prevent this kind of situation from unfolding. If you see something that is out of place, say something.
Eighth grader, Anijah, said she feels much safer after volunteering to be a part of the simulation. "You never know when it can happen and what police officer [would be responding]," she said.