Official Statement on Airing of Columbine Videotape, Oct. 12, 1999

SOCORRO, N.M., Oct. 12, 1999 - New Mexico Tech's first concern is for the victims of the Columbine tragedy and their families, and the prevention of future tragedies of this kind.

New Mexico Tech has developed a pilot course for school administrators and staff and emergency first responders such as fire and police personnel, to assist them in preventing and responding to violence and threats in schools. This effort grew out of a course Tech has been conducting as part of the National Domestic Preparedness Consortium for Emergency First Responders in response to terrorist acts in general. As part of this pilot project, various training materials have been assembled, with the assistance of numerous professional emergency management organizations, consortium members, and the National Sheriffs' Association. Included in these training materials is a short video clip from a surveillance camera in the cafeteria of Columbine High School. This clip was used in a recent pilot training session given at Albuquerque Academy to local law enforcement and school personnel. There was no intention to distribute the material to the media and general public. This material has not been released publicly out of respect for the feelings of the victims and their families. A decision as to its use in the final training program will be made in consultation with the appropriate authorities.

The Consortium consists of New Mexico Tech, the National Emergency Response and Rescue Training Center at College Station, Texas; the Nevada Test Site; Louisiana State University; and the U. S. Justice Department at Fort McClellan, Ala.

New Mexico Tech believes that this kind of training will help keep our schools safe.




Contact: Kimberly Eiland
(505) 835-5158; (505) 835-3038