MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The aunt of a 17-year-old killed by a fellow student at an Alabama high school last week is calling for school safety reform and action against gun violence.
"We've all failed our children. We've failed to keep them safe," Shenise Abercrombie, the aunt of victim Courtlin Arrington, told The Associated Press on Monday. "There needs to be something done about it for sure. We want her death to not be in vain; we want it to mean something. We want it to be the start of change."
Abercrombie said her family wants to work with the city to make Birmingham schools safer. She suggested more security officers and increased searches at school entrances.
Arrington was fatally shot inside a Huffman High School classroom Wednesday. Michael Jerome Barber, 17, was charged with manslaughter and illegal firearms possession Friday.
Huffman has metal detectors, but Birmingham City Schools Superintendent Lisa Herring said they were not in use the day Arrington died. Herring closed the school on Thursday and announced plans to coordinate with the city's police department to review safety protocols when it reopened Friday.
"Our schools are for learning. When there is a threat to that, it's a threat to all of our students. We will not sit idle in the face of this tragedy. We will stand up, roll up our sleeves and chart new safety measures to protect our students from harm," Herring said in a statement....