‘Keeping our children safe will continue to be our No. 1 priority’

CCSO sponsors law enforcement safety event prior to new school year

Representatives from multiple law enforcement agencies across the state, probation offices, churches and schools attended the free safety event. (Lauren Estes for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) hosted a law enforcement safety event at Desperation Church Tuesday, just a couple of weeks before area students head back to school for the new year.

The event featured Phil Chalmers, a true crime writer, law enforcement and real estate agent trainer and criminal profiler whose expertise is in profiling teen killers, school shootings, mass murders and serial killers. Chalmers is the author of several books, including “Inside the Mind of a Teen Killer” and “The Teen Killer Whisperer.”

Cullman County Sheriff Matt Gentry said the recent, deadly school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, prompted his department to set up the event.

“With the recent Uvalde shooting weighing on our hearts, we at the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office wanted to do something to help ensure the safety of the students as the new school year begins,” Gentry said. “We are so thankful that Phil Chalmers was able to come to us to provide this invaluable training. Multiple law enforcement agencies from across the state, probation offices, church representatives and school officials were able to attend.”

Phil Chalmers speaks during a law enforcement safety event Tuesday, July 26, 2022. (Lauren Estes for The Cullman Tribune)

During the event, Chalmers actually made phone contact with a serial killer who is currently in prison. The prisoner communicated his reasoning for committing the seven murders for which he was found guilty.  

Chalmers talked to the audience about school shooting trends, school safety tips, dangerous youth culture and myths about serial killers. He also conducted live audience interviews.

Keeping our children safe will continue to be our No. 1 priority,” Gentry said. “Today’s training provides another tool for law enforcement and school officials to make our schools as safe as possible. I am honored to have Mr. Chalmers here and so grateful to be able to make this training available to so many.”

Each summer, the CCSO prepares for the upcoming school year by training, planning and working in conjunction with the Cullman County Board of Education. Recent events and the current climate of school safety, Gentry said, prompted him to invite surrounding law enforcement agencies and school administrators to Tuesday’s training.

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