Active Shooter Response

Active shooters evolve quickly. The suspect(s) actively participate in killing or attempting to kill people in populated areas. Chances are you will never find yourself in an active shooter situation, but everyone should take the time to prepare. Take decisive action to improve your chances of survival.

The phrase Run, Hide, Fight ® is a registered trademark of the City of Houston. Training concept is used by special permission.


  • Take decisive action if you hear gunshots—don’t wait until others tell you to act.
  • Know your surroundings, have an escape route and plan in mind.
  • Run and call 911 from a cell or campus phone when it’s safe to do so.
  • Help others if you can, but keep moving.
  • When calling 911, be sure to provide an exact location—don’t assume a dispatcher knows where you are located.


  • If you can’t run, hide as a second option.
  • Do not huddle together as it makes one easy target.
  • Lock and/or use items to barricade doors, shut off lights.
  • Put your cell phone on silent and call 911, but do not speak loudly to avoid being heard.
  • Keep others calm around you.


  • As a last resort, when running and hiding are not an option, fight when your life is in imminent danger.
  • Assume a survival mindset and know that often times active shooting situations are over in a few minutes.
  • Find an object to use as a weapon—fire extinguisher, chair, book bag, letter opener, etc.
  • Develop a plan with others to take out a potential shooter, be decisive and commit to action. Keep others calm around you.

What should I tell the 911 operator when calling?

  • 911 calls from your cell phone will go to the Indiana State Police or Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department dispatch centers, be sure to tell them you are on the campus of Butler University.
  • 911 calls from campus phones go directly to the Indianapolis Police Emergency Dispatch. BUPD emergency dispatch number is: 317-940-9999
  • Be specific about the location where the incident is occurring. (e.g., “There is an active shooter on the campus of Butler University, first floor of Jordan Hall.”)
  • Provide a specific description of those involved, including clothing and weapons.
  • Pre-program your cell phone with the Butler University Police Department emergency number: 317-940-9999.

What should I expect when police officers arrive?

  • Remain calm and be prepared to show your hands to arriving police officers.
  • Do not slow down responding officers, follow their instructions and keep moving. Do advise them where the suspects may be in the building.
  • Don’t assume someone else is calling 911. If you have specific information and have made it out safely, call the police.

How can my dorm, division or department receive training on active shooter response?

  • Every dorm, student organization, division and department at Butler is encouraged to contact the University Police for specific training on active shooter response. Please email Captain Roy Betz to schedule training.