Access Control, Emergency Preparedness, Safety, Security

Report: MSU’s Response to Mass Shooting Was ‘Appropriate, Timely, and Correct’

Michigan State University (MSU) has released an independent review of the institution’s response to the mass shooting that occurred on Feb. 13, 2023. Three students were killed and five others were injured during the tragic event.

The 25-page report, prepared by Security Risk Management Consultants (SRMC), details the firm’s findings and recommendations to strengthen campus safety and security, as well as bolster future responses to emergency events.

“This report is a critical next step in our ongoing commitment to ensuring MSU is a safe place for all who come to our campus,” said Interim President Teresa K. Woodruff, Ph.D. “It provides concrete recommendations for strengthening campus safety and reinforces our efforts are on the right track.”

The report details recommendations for 14 thematic areas, including:

  • Public safety department policies and procedures
  • Planning and preparation
  • Officer safety and equipment
  • Leadership coordination and collaboration
  • Command and control
  • Internal communications, situational awareness, and intelligence
  • External communications, public relations, and traditional and social media
  • Interagency memorandums of understanding, support agreements, and practices
  • Emergency medical and psychological care
  • First responder wellness and mental health
  • Victim and witness support
  • Community relations, partnerships, and resilience
  • Institutional continuity and recovery efforts
  • Campus technology evaluation

According to MSU, action either has been or is taking place on many of SRMC’s recommendations, including making improvements to the university’s Family Assistance Center processes and plans; expanding and centralizing the university’s security cameras on campus; implementing a centralized security operations center; upgrading electronic building access; and updating door locks on campus. 

The report recognizes the university’s initial response, saying, “Our overall assessment of the initial response (that is, in the seconds after the initial call and prior to other agencies mounting a response effort) by MSU police officers is that the response was appropriate, timely, and correct.” 

The report later says, “We believe the initial response by MSU police and other police agencies was efficient and effective. The response in no way contributed to the prolongation of the incident, nor did it contribute in any way to additional loss of life.” 

The university’s interim president and executive leadership team are reviewing the report in detail to determine additional action on the report’s recommendations and findings.  

“SRMC highlights equally the complexities of such a tragic event on our campus along with the incredible dedication and response by our first responders and staff,” Woodruff added. “I want to again thank each and every one of them for their swift action and care in the immediate hours following the violence, and their ongoing support in the weeks and months that have followed. At the same time, we continue to keep in our hearts the students we lost that night, those injured, the families, and members of our community who were impacted.”

The full report is available here.

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