Rockingham Co. Sheriff’s Office stepping up training for response to shootings

ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, N.C. — Security measures are being stepped up throughout the county to keep bailiffs, deputies and court officers safer days after recent shootings across the country against law enforcement.

“They are the first line of defense,” said Sgt. Kelly Lipford, a firearm instructor for the Rockingham County Sheriff’s Office. “They have to be able to act and deal with whatever threat is being posed to them at the time.”

Lipford will be doing tactical shooter training drills with bailiffs and other law enforcement who work in the county courthouse.

The focused training comes just days after deputies were shot at outside the Forsyth County Courthouse in Cumming, Ga., by a gunman.

“Anytime I see something happen across the country, I try to bring that back local,” said Sheriff Sam Page. “What are we doing?”

A question Page asked himself again Sunday after two Las Vegas police officers were shot and killed by a husband and wife.

“You never know,” Page said. “You cannot predict when a threat is going to come. All you can do is respond.”

That’s why Page is making sure security stays tight at the county courthouse, along with doing the focused shooter training drills.

Dangerous situations the county wants bailiffs and deputies to be ready for no matter where it happens.

“It comes down to the officer being prepared,” Lipford said. “Okay it’s happening; I got to do something about it.”

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