New program puts armed deputies in Snohomish County schools

Updated:

MILL CREEK, Wash. - The Snohomish County Sheriff's Office is launching a new program Friday in the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut in December.

 More than 100 schools in unincorporated Snohomish County will be regularly patrolled by new School Services deputies.

 After the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, Snohomish County Sheriff John Lovick said he needed to do something to better protect students in his county.  The School Services Unit was created.

 Five deputies were reassigned to the unit and will join the three existing school resource officers in watching over the schools from Edmonds to Mill Creek, the outskirts of Everett and beyond.

 The new deputies will be armed and strategically assigned to specific areas of the county so they can respond quickly to any problems.

 As for the funding of the new program, the initial phase was paid for with existing resources, but the sheriff wants to add more deputies, and setting up the unit the way he wants is going to cost more money.

 Lovick is asking the Snohomish County Council, the state and business and tribal leaders to help fund the program.