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D.C. Police Chief Has 'Counterintuitive' Advice for Those Confronted With Active Shooter: 'It's the Best Option for Saving Lives

"Your options are run, hide or fight."

Image source: CBS News

If there's an opportunity to take out an active shooter, D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier encourages civilians to do so.

In an upcoming segment of CBS' "60 Minutes," Lanier said she's no longer preaching a passive message to people confronted with an active shooter. In the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks and threats from the Islamic State, Lanier said calling 911 for law enforcement's help might not be enough because of response times.

"Your options are run, hide or fight," Lanier told Anderson Cooper. "The facts of the matter is that most active shooters kill most of the victims in 10 minutes or less. The best police department in the country is going to be about a five minute to seven minute response."

"I always say if you can get out, getting out is your first option, your best option," she continued. "If you're in a position to try and take the gunman down, take the gunman out, it's the best option for saving lives before police can get there. And that's kind of counterintuitive to what cops always tell people. We always tell people, 'don't take action, call 911, don't intervene in the robbery.' We've never told people, 'take action.' This is a different scenario."

Lanier said it's possible for society to be "prepared" and "resilient" without scaring people and lauded education as a way to help create an environment where people are safer and more alert.

The "60 Minutes" special airs Sunday night on CBS at 7 p.m.

 

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