The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office announced Monday it will send the Sheriff's Posse back to 65 county schools to patrol the surrounding areas.
The sheriff's office will be patrolling six more schools this fall.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio mobilized his posse to patrol school grounds after December's school massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT.
"The ultimate goal is to go in a perimeter and keep the bad guys out," Arpaio said.
The 2013-2014 school year will be the first full school year the Sheriff's Posse will be patrolling Valley schools. Over the summer, the sheriff's office added more volunteers to his posse for these school patrols.
"When you do this job, you see how many bad guys there are out there," Lee Prosser said.
Prosser has spent the last 15 years as a member of the Sheriff's Posse. Each member of the posse receives the same training as paid deputies.
Since mobilizing the posse to patrol streets around county schools, Arpaio has been criticized for placing armed volunteers near school property. Despite the criticism, Prosser believes posse presence is necessary.
"You have to do something," Prosser said. "The idea that you'll sit around and talk about it for a couple years isn't solving the problem."
Several parents told CBS 5 armed volunteers on school property would be a concern, but Arpaio says that is not the goal. The posse will not be on school property but patrolling streets surrounding county schools. Those same parents say they are encouraged by extra patrols.
"We must protect those kids and we must protect those teachers and those schools," Arpaio said.
The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office says this school year will likely influence future plans for posse members around schools.
Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.
Saturday, July 26 2014 2:09 PM EDT2014-07-26 18:09:07 GMT
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