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Proposed bill makes for safer child exchanges

By: Rebekah Pewitt Email
By: Rebekah Pewitt Email

HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - In the wake of last month’s deadly shooting on the campus of Hazard Community Technical College, there is now more interest in the safety of custodial exchanges.

Senator Brandon Smith has filed a bill in the General Assembly that would give the courts another option of where those exchanges can occur.

It's been one month since three people died in a shooting that occurred during, what police say was supposed to be, a custodial exchange.

Senator Brandon Smith says he wrote Senate Bill 141 hoping to prevent another event like the HCTC shooting from happening.

“We can't stop those random acts, but at least if we can secure the circumstances to negate any of that, that's our job,” said Brandon Smith.

Police are often asked to make sure these child exchanges remain safe.

“There's always some kind of tension and it's very unfortunate that it happens, but we deal with a lot of that,” said Sam Mullins with the Leslie County Sheriff’s Office.

The bill would define safe child drop-off locations as any public building operated by state or local governments where security measures are in place.

“We have talked to quite a few people about it, and they say they would feel a lot safer if they were able to enter a building that was screened by metal detectors. Obviously, that would prevent guns or knives,” said Smith.

A precaution that Smith believes will keep families safer.

Senate Bill 141 is currently in the Senate waiting to be assigned to a committee for a hearing.


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