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Could ballistic glass have stopped the Nashville mass shooter?

(Metro Nashville Police Department via WZTV)
(Metro Nashville Police Department via WZTV)
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The horrific circumstances of Monday’s tragedy at The Covenant School will continue to raise questions.

When children and adults die at a school, what happened is analyzed. From Columbine to Sandy Hook, to Uvalde and now Covenant. All of it becomes part of the manual of how to prevent these mass shooters.

What can be learned from Covenant?

Audrey Hale shot through the glass door at Covenant church. The answer to that entrance is ballistic glass.

Last summer, WZTV profiled one of the biggest ballistic glass companies in the south. Ever Safe has wrapped more than 2,400 schools with a ballistic glass film you have to see to believe.

SWAT team members in Williamson County try to breach the glass every way possible. AR-15s make holes in the glass, but nothing more.

“So even if you shoot it 100 times, you’ve still not gained access,” said Wayne Gregory of Ever Safe. “You’ve only put holes in the glass. And then beat it out of the frame of the hammer is the only way to get in.”

But did the Nashville suspect even have the means to breach the glass?

Cinderblocks bounce off like basketballs. Plasma torches don’t work. You need serious breaching tools and it would take time.

Even an aluminum bat is a joke against this stuff.

Interviews that aired Tuesday night were conducted in August, the company did not want to comment this week, so close to the tragedy. But this is as relevant as ever.

One school district that touches Davidson County has this ballistic glass on every pane of glass in its 47 building district.

“So when they make the first impact against a piece of glass door window, whatever the clock starts right then, and their window of opportunity is narrowing,” said Gregory.

Also narrowing the time frame: Artificial intelligence security cameras like the vigil camera Paul Kapu makes in Tullahoma, that talk to people the second they see something like this.

“It sees Audrey Hale at the window and then an alert can be generated real time sent to the officers phone, and they can be alerted seconds, seconds, absolutely in real time, in real time,” said Kapu.

Kapu started his company after the Parkland, Florida shooting.

He decided to dedicate the rest of his life to create a product that would reduce mass school shootings.

“I mean these are our children, our most sacred, right? That’s why when an event happens like this it just tears our souls. We can imagine how something as terrible as this can happen, and, and this is why we have to do something and everyone keeps saying well someone needs to do so. The thing or you need to do something, it’s just, it’s we, it's you you have to do something,” said Kapu.
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Kapu sees school security as an umbrella. An armed student resource officer, an AI security camera and ballistic glass. You put those three elements in a school, you are really telling a shooter to go somewhere else.

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