What Police Learned From Accent Signage Shooting

Updated: 09/28/2013 10:44 AM KSTP.com By: Josh Rosenthal

When a gunman entered Accent Signage one year ago, police all over the state took notice.

As Maple Grove Police Detective Travis Pobuda put it, "it could turn out to be just like what happened in Minneapolis but the zip code is different."

Pobuda says the Maple Grove Police Department has worked to become even more prepared for active shooter scenarios in the past year. They've trained in both Maple Grove Senior and Junior High Schools. They've also toured area businesses like Boston Scientific and Maple Grove Hospital.

"Preparation, relationship building," explained Pobuda. "You know they're part of our community, and that's who we serve and protect."

Maple Grove isn't alone. The Hennepin County Sheriff's Office has trained for active shooter scenarios for years. Since the Accent Signage shooting, they've also lobbied for better treatment of the mentally ill because many suspects are also mentally ill.

At Sealed Mindset in New Hope -- where they teach personal safety classes -- there's been a slight uptick in classes about what to do in active shooter situations. Owners say it's likely due to increased awareness.

Pobuda says awareness and training are key, and that might be the most important lesson we learned one year ago.

"We're preparing for the worst," he said, "and hopefully never have to do anything like that cause it's hard for everybody, including us."