Optimism grows around Laney High’s homecoming security changes

Published: Sep. 23, 2022 at 6:46 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Laney High School will have to wait until October to finish up its battle against Thomson after gunshots sent fans running and players running for cover.

The next day, it was Josey High’s homecoming tailgate interrupted by gunfire, injuring two people. Now Laney High School is prepping for their homecoming Saturday night.

The overall feeling is that they are going to have a safe homecoming weekend here. The prep is already starting to take place.

We spoke with Head Coach Ronnie Baker about what happened, and he calls it inexcusable and avoidable. The goal is to make sure everyone is being checked at the entrances, and law enforcement is active.

“It was really hard to process,” he said. “You hear the gunfire outside, and when you hear the gunfire, the first thing you think of is the safety of the players, the safety of the fans, the safety of your family,” he said.

Quarterback Keshaun Sanders said: “All the friends and family we had out here. The stadium was packed out, and then you hear shots fired, and everyone had to evacuate and get out to safety, and then you worry about everyone out here on the field and if they’re going to be OK or not.”

Safety has been a top priority for the school board and law enforcement all week.

“They have made steps to get this place safer,” said Baker. “The security will be on point.”

Specific safety plans are being kept tight-lipped, but the sheriff’s office says they will have more manpower when people are coming and going to the games.

“The kids on the field want their parents in the stands, and we want our kids and our parents to feel safe while they’re here,” he said.

Baker believes that if law enforcement shows up and stays active, everyone will have a fun and safe time.

Sanders said: “I just want them to make sure the whole game is protected and law enforcement here to make sure we’re safe and keep everyone’s friends and family safe and just have a good time at homecoming.”

They’re reminding people that bringing guns, weapons, and knives onto school property is illegal, and there will be consequences. Everyone’s hoping for a safe and fun weekend. They have signs to remind home and visitor fans who are coming into the game.