Chief Begonis Hopes Country Can Learn From Newtown Tragedy
Wilmington Police Chief Michael Begonis said there is no harm in opening up a dialogue about gun control, but also said it's critical not to rush into anything.
Like countless others, Wilmington Police Chief Michael Begonis watched news reports in the aftermath of Friday’s shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., stunned by what he was seeing and wondering what further impact the horrific tragedy would have nationally and at a local level.
“I reacted first as a parent. To see something like that is just so devastating. Your heart truly goes out to those folks,” said Begonis. “I also look at this from the perspective of a law enforcement professional. What things could be done to protect us from that? I’ll wait for the actions to come out and see what we can do in the Town of Wilmington in the confines of the law and constitution to see if there is anything we can do better.”
Begonis said he will leave the debate about gun control to the politicians who will make the decisions and added that it’s too early to speculate on where the country should go from here regarding the subject.
He said that while it’s important to react if necessary, it’s also critical to not make rash decisions.
“Like everything in life, the more time you put into making a proper and valid decision in coming to some sort of consensus, the better off you’ll be,” said Begonis.
As far as Wilmington’s protocol, Begonis said that what the town does best is that it constantly reviews and discusses policies and procedures and how the school district responds to situations. He said keeping the dialogue open is the best thing districts around the country can do.
In the bigger picture, Wilmington’s police chief said that the most important thing is that in the face of such a major tragedy, it is imperative to be proactive in order to stop something similar from happening again.
“This is a tragedy of immense proportions, and no one is going to soon forget this,” said Begonis. “It is my hope that through tragedy we can learn something that can help us prevent something like this from happening again in the future.”