Greenwood City Officials Vote To Add Third School Resource Officer

GREENWOOD (KFSM) -- Greenwood City Council unanimously approves adding at third resource officer to the school district.

School campuses nationwide are ramping up security measures in the wake of the Parkland Florida school shooting, and the Greenwood School District teamed with the Greenwood Police Department is hoping to do the same by adding the new resource officer.

The new officer will be a reserve officer, Richard Lunsford who has spent the last several years with Greenwood police and spent 24 years in the United States Air Force and Arkansas Air National Guard in Fort Smith.

Lunsford said he isn't a stranger to the schools, though, as he has worked closely with the district for the last few years. Lunsford said he is excited to hit the ground running.

"Unfortunately in today's climate, there are people out there who have desires that don't coincide with the rest of society," Lunsford said. "It's a shame, but we have to safeguard our children and they are our future. I believe if I can get hired for this position, that would be my number one priority."

5NEWS spoke to parents who said they support the idea. The parents said they want their children to be safe and look froward to having the extra police presence on campus.

Greenwood school officials have agreed to pay for the officer's salary and benefits. The police department will take care of the officer's uniforms, vehicle and insurance for that vehicle.

The current two officers work throughout the week. One works at the junior high and high schools, and the other rotates between the other three schools.

Greenwood Police Chief William Dawson said, "If you're listening to what's going on in the nation you should know additional school, security is very important to us and it's just vital that we have good coverage we have four thousand students with six different campuses so just to make sure adequate coverage is my biggest concern."