This is hindsight not for accusation but for immediate tweaking of tactical rules:
- Practically speaking, there is no such thing as an unloaded gun. You always treat all guns as hot. The next guy to take the gun makes sure it’s cold. Obvious right? Even the best of the best don’t do this every time. And they shoot themselves or others accidentally. In the same way, there is no such thing as a room unoccupied by injured victims in immediate need of medical attention. Every room needs to be cleared, starting with the room from which all indicators scream is the room with the shooter.
- To repeat: No matter what anyone says, there are no dead victims in a mass shooting, ever. You always assume that they are still alive and that you must rescue them now, but the shooter is blocking you from doing that, which blocking you must assume is actively murdering people.
- There are no active shooters that become “barricaded” for all the reasons above, always, without exception.
- You always do the rescue immediately, regardless of the guy having better weapons, regardless of his being strapped with bombs, regardless of his better ballistic protection. Take the brain-box shot, every time.
“But those rooms are vacant!” But say that teachers, admin, faculty, staff of the school, and all law enforcement officers already on scene tell you insistently that it’s a barricaded situation, that no one was in the room when the shooter went in and barricaded himself. DON’T BELIEVE IT. You treat the room as full of victims bleeding out who must instantaneously be rescued.
Proof of concept: Remember that little kid in the first seconds of the surveillance video who was coming out of the restroom two seconds after the shooter walked by on his way to that classroom to shoot up everyone there? Do you remember how that little kid turned back and ran into the restroom to hide?
Let’s turn that scenario around. Let’s say that the classroom was out for recess (and the shooter came into the school from a different direction). Let’s say the little kid had been an extra long time in the restroom and the teacher forgot about him before everyone going outside. Let’s say that little kid goes back to his classroom and is shot by the shooter who went into the classroom before the little kid saw him. Let’s say that that little kid looks dead to the shooter but is only slowly bleeding out and can be saved by immediate medical attention. Let’s say that law enforcement officers arrive to the classroom minutes later and are told that those classrooms are vacant because everyone was out for recess, and that surely the shooter was using the room as a base to shoot out at the playground, but that after an initial barrage of shots, stopped shooting. So he’s barricaded, right? Wrong. That little kid who had gone to the restroom is dying because someone made an assumption.
NEVER make assumptions. See the rules up top.
Let’s call those rules: “The Little Kid Protocol.”