Metal detectors, firearm-sniffing K-9 at Vero Beach High School

The metal detectors will provide a 'secure environment for everyone,' school district says
Posted at 6:41 PM, Jan 26, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-26 18:42:02-05

VERO BEACH, Fla. — A "secure environment for everyone" that's what the School District of Indian River County said is the goal behind the pilot program placing metal detectors at Vero Beach High School. The district partnered with the Indian River County Sheriff's Office for the initiative.

"We went in half. We spent about $30,000, the school district spent about $30,000," Sheriff Eric Flowers said. "We purchased several of these products."

Flowers said they've been using the metal detectors since the latter part of the football season. After Monday's incident of a student with a gun at Vero Beach High School, Superintendent Davis Moore called Flowers. He said their conversations led to putting the plan for metal detectors in place.

Indian River County Sheriff Eric Flowers 01262024.png
Indian River County Sheriff Eric Flowers talks about the metal detector pilot program at Vero Beach High School and how they plan to expand to other schools.

"Our team put together a plan and this morning we deployed those portable metal detectors at entrances of Vero Beach High School," Flowers said, "and what I've been told everything went rather smoothly."

Daniel Correa is a parent of three. He is in support of the detectors on campus.      

"I think it's a good idea. As a parent when we drop our kids off at school, we imagine the that's the second safest place other than our home," he said. "So, When we're looking at that and see that schools and they're working with the police, the local sheriff's and everyone is working together to prioritize that safety at least for me it makes me feel more comfortable."

Daniel Correa is a parent of three Vero Beach High School metal detectors 01262024.png
Daniel Correa is a parent of three and he says he supports having metal detectors at Vero Beach High School.

Flowers said there were lines at school Friday, but thankfully nothing of concern was found. He added there are plans in the work to expand to more school campuses.
"We can ensure there are random checks. The kids will never know when we're going to do it," he said. "The parents were not notified in advance of us doing it this morning."

Flowers said not only do they have metal detectors, but they also have a firearm-sniffing K-9. That dog is trained to sniff out gun oils to gun powder. The dog regularly checks lockers, cars to an entire campus.