Landgraf files bill to create active shooter alert system

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FILE – In this Sept. 1, 2019, file photo, a U.S. Mail vehicle, right, which was involved in Saturday’s shooting, sits outside the Cinergy entertainment center in Odessa, Texas. The mass shooting in West Texas spread terror over more than 10 miles (16 kilometers) as the gunman, Seth Aaron Ator, fired from behind the wheel of a car. Ator zigzagged through Midland and Odessa, two closely intertwined cities now brought closer by tragedy. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

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AUSTIN, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – State Rep. Brooks Landgraf has filed legislation to create an active shooter alert system, following the mass shooting in Odessa a year ago.

HB 103 would require the Texas Department of Public Safety to implement an alert system to be activated on the report of an active shooter. The alert system would then notify residents within a 50-mile radius of the shooter’s location.

The bill would also require the Texas Department of Transportation to establish a plan for providing relevant information to the public within a 50-mile radius using their existing dynamic message signs throughout the state.

“Over the Labor Day weekend last year, my hometown of Odessa, joined an ever-growing list of American cities that have tragically experienced a mass shooting,” Landgraf said in a statement. “In the aftermath, I receiver countless calls and messages from constituents with ideas on how to address the problem and prevent massive losses of life in the future. Everyone I’ve spoken with agrees that we have a need for this statewide active shooter alert system, similar to the Amber Alert.”

As you may recall, at least seven people were killed and several others were injured in the mass shooting in 2019 between Midland and Odessa. Law enforcement caught up with the suspect behind a local movie theater where he was killed.

Landgraf says he’s worked closely on the bill with families of the victims.

“The goal of HB 103 is to save lives and assist first responders,” Landgraf continued. “An alert system of this kind could have helped spare the life of Odessa High School student, Leilah Hernandez, who was killed almost an hour after the shooting rampage began. That’s why Leilah’s family – and other victims’ families – are passionately advocating for this alert system. Not it’s time to get to work and get this bill to the governor’s desk.”

The 87th legislative session will begin on Jan. 12, 2021.

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