NY sheriffs urge lawmakers to provide funding for armed officers in schools

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New York state's sheriffs are urging lawmakers to put armed deputies in schools.

The push comes amid a nationwide debate on how to better protect children and prevent school shootings.

Orange County Sheriff Carl DuBois is backing the effort for state-funded armed officers in each school statewide.

"These government officials on the second floor of Albany should take a real hard look at what we are doing here," said DuBois. "We meet deadly physical force with deadly physical force." 

Rockland County Sheriff Lou Falco says he supports having armed officers in schools. He says he's developing a plan to propose it on a county level.

Orange-Ulster BOCES Superintendent Bill Hect supports the idea, but doubts it will be enough to stop school shootings altogether. He says it would also carry certain challenges. 

"The community has to be accepting of having an armed officer in the building or even around the schools," says Hect. 

The proposal is garnering support from some state lawmakers, including Republican state Sen. Bill Larkin, who said in a statement, "Animals attempting to kill innocent school children need to be met with deadly force, not larger gun-free zone signs and gun bans they'll surely ignore."

Advocates of the armed deputy push say the state already spends millions of dollars to protect a relatively small number of judges statewide, adding protecting defenseless children should be an equal priority.

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