UNCW responds to After Action Report regarding near campus shooting
UNCW Police Chief Dave Donaldson told his staff to send out a three-fold emergency alert of a text message, phone call and email to notify the campus of a shooting nearby. No alerts were sent.
WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – Officers with the Wilmington Police Department arrested a man earlier this year in connection to a shooting at the Seahawk Square apartment complex, adjacent to UNCW.
Reginald Gagnier Jr. is accused of shooting 42-year-old David Carroll July 29, 2011. Carroll received non-life threatening injuries and was able to drive himself to the hospital after the incident.
Because the incident took place so close to the university, UNCW Police Chief Dave Donaldson told his staff to send out a three-fold emergency alert of a text message, phone call and email to notify the campus of a shooting nearby.
No alerts were sent. Students only received and email after the situation was over. Donaldson said he wasn't sure why the system failed and worked to figure it out.
The university completed an After Action Report that describes its response to the incident, along with the timing of communications related and public safety issues.
According to UNCW, the report shows the proper procedures were followed in responding to the shooting, but information was not pushed to the campus community as quickly as it should have.
"Our ultimate goal as a police department and as a university is to provide the safest possible environment in which our students and employees can study and work," said Donaldson. "Discussing and implementing the findings and recommendations in this report will help us meet that goal by improving our emergency notification to the campus community."
The report recommends a number of action steps to ensure timely communication to the campus in future off-campus incidents.
The review identified the need for additional training on telecommunications and more equipment, a separation of duties among the communicators to improve response time, and specific procedures related to handling notifications of off-campus incident.
According to the report, the Wilmington Police Department had jurisdiction over the incident and inadvertently switched to a radio frequency that was unavailable to University Police Department. UNCW says they will work to coordinate radio frequencies used by responding law enforcement agencies.
UNCW said they are acting on the recommendations made in response to the findings described in the After Action Report.