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Augusta, GA (WJBF)—Local law enforcement is starting gun safety lessons early. This month, the Richmond County Marshal’s Office started a program called Eddie Eagle that teaches students the dangers of guns. On Monday, we went to their office to learn more about what they are doing in schools.
Lt. James Sabb says he knows there are other groups teaching kids the importance of gun safety, but felt the need for the Marshal’s Office to get involved in the topic also. “You can never do too much,” says Lt. Sabb.
He says hearing the stories of kids bringing guns to some of our local elementary schools over the past few years was part of the catalyst for starting the Eddie Eagle program in Richmond County.
“I grew up in the downtown area where Hornsby elementary school is at.” Lt. Sabb continues, “And I heard about the incident that happened down there. Then, once hearing about the incident out at Windsor Spring Road Elementary, um, I was just trying to think of something that I can do to get into the school system to educate the kids on the importance of gun prevention.”
Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program is sponsored by the National Riffle Association and has been around since the 1980s. Lt. Sabb says they brought it to Richmond County Schools a few weeks ago and the kids love it!
“It’s been a kick! It’s a little catchy song that has the four steps,” Sabb explains. “The first thing you’re going to do—you’re going to stop.”
The song is simple. The chorus reads—“Stop! Don’t touch. Run away. Tell a grown up.”
Along with the song, there is a short 7-8 minute educational video.
“It’s animated, and it holds their attention because kids at that age, their attention span isn’t but so long,” Lt. Sabb says.
The program is short, easy and allows the kids to interact by singing and dancing. However, Sabb makes sure they know the message is serious.
“That’s what I try to stress when I go to schools,” Lt. Sabb describes. “Yes, we’re going to have fun, but this is a serious topic that we are talking about.”
Lt. Sabb in about 2-3 schools a week and says the principals have welcomed the program with open arms.