Pierce County high school scene of active shooters simulation



BUCKLEY, Wash. - White River High School in Buckley hosted an active shooter simulation involving two gunmen Thursday morning.

The simulation, which involved at least 100 law enforcement officers from Pierce and King counties, is an annual exercise in readiness.

The simulation focused on a scenario of a disgruntled graduate of the school coming back with her boyfriend, both of them armed with guns.

The “gunmen” were played by law enforcement agents and they stormed a school theater where 25 to 30 students were injured in the dramatic chaos.

SWAT teams stormed the building, rescuing students and apprehending the gunmen in the exercise that lasted that hours.

Sumner Assistant Police Chief Jeff Engel said the guidelines for such a situation in real life boil down to: "We respond, find that person, hunt them down, take care of them and then make sure that everyone is safe,” he said.

Student Taylor Hillius played a student who was shot in the arm and was rescued and then treated by EMTs.

"I honestly would be very scared if this really did happen. But I know that this will help our community and everyone around,” Hillius said of the simulation.

The exercise typically takes place every spring.

Officials said the exercise has to happen on a regular basis to make sure everyone is up to date on procedures and standards with equipment in a crisis situation.

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