Former Overland Park Chief of Police reflects on JCC shootings one month later

JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. - Tuesday marks one month since the deadly Jewish Campus Shootings in Overland Park and we are now hearing more of what happened that day from the police chief who responded to the scene.

“There were a lot of heroes that day,” said former Overland Park Police Chief John Douglass, who retired just four days after getting the call of a gunman firing shots on April 13.

“There was the officer inside the building when he started anticipating or seeing he was being shot at, whether the guy knew he was there or not, bullets were coming in his direction,” Douglass said.

A gunman had killed three people; one at Village Shalom Assisted Living Center and two others just a few blocks away at the Jewish Community Center. 

“Another 80 feet and he would've been in an auditorium full of children and, if the situation could be more horrific, that is it,” Douglass said.

Douglass told 41 Action News officers responded just like they trained for an active shooter situation, with nearby buildings put on lockdown.

Officers eventually cornered the suspect at Valley Park Elementary School and talked him into surrendering.

“Very proud of the officers," Douglass said. "They went right after him and they stopped him in his place.” 

Glenn Cross, also known as Glenn Miller, is in jail on capital murder charges awaiting his next hearing.

Douglass told 41 Action News he thinks other people knew the suspect had plans before the shooting.

“They may not have known the details or where it was at, but I'm sure they knew some behavior was inappropriate or out of the normal and if those folks had come forward and said something that would be our best chance to stop it,” Douglass said.

Douglass now works as the Director of Safety and Security for Shawnee Mission Schools and said he’s grateful to all the people who called 911 and helped his officers put an end to the shooter’s rampage.

“His intent was to create chaos and violence and what he actually created was although tragedy, he brought a community together," Douglass said.

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