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Active Shooter and 4 th /5 th Generation Warfare. How to minimize loss of life as crime and terrorism blend A Resource for Law Enforcement. Credits.

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active shooter and 4 th 5 th generation warfare

Active Shooter and 4th/5th Generation Warfare

How to minimize loss of life

as crime and terrorism blend

A Resource for Law Enforcement

credits
Credits

People: Chief Bert DuVernay, Sergeant Michael Conti, John Giduck, Colonel Thomas Hammes, LTC Dave Grossman, John Holschen, Captain Al Sharon, Chuck Remsberg, Chief Richard Fairburn, Todd Rassa, Lt. Frank Borelli, Paul Howe, Nick Minzghor, Keith Jones, Sgt. Allan Garcia, Dr. Laurence Miller

Organizations: PoliceOne.com, LAPD, AIS/Prism, NTOA, ILEETA, IL SP Academy, NC DOJ

purpose
Purpose

The purpose of this resource is to:

  • Familiarize law enforcement officers and command staffs about trends in active shooter/terrorist events
  • Help them to understand the nature of emerging threats
  • Suggest plans and training that will minimize the loss of life in these events

This resource is not meant as training in and of itself. Training for these events is a complex endeavor in which there is no substitute for hands-on work. There are many good organizations that can provide such training.

We aren’t trying to tell you how to train and plan, but rather what to plan and train for.

how to use this resource
How to use this resource

There is a lot of information here!

In some cases you may want to use this as a presentation as it is, but in most cases you will probably want to use this file as a resource as you construct your own material for a specific audience.

Cut, paste and modify slides and the information on them as you wish.

part 1

Part 1

Active shooter as we know it

A review of basic principles and issues

what is an active shooter
What is an active shooter?

A situation where one or more people are in the process of causing death or injury or posing an immediate danger thereof

  • Not a hostage situation
  • Not a stand off
  • Not a barricaded perpetrator
  • But can transition to one of these
what s different about it
What’s different about it?
  • Danger is immediate
  • Cannot wait for SWAT
  • Must act now to save lives
  • A “come as you are” affair for responders
    • Weapons, equipment, skills, mindset, physical condition
  • You have less than a minute to act
  • You’re it! This is what they pay you for!
rapid deployment response
Rapid Deployment response
  • The Rapid Deployment (R/D) active shooter response came out of the Columbine tragedy
    • Pre Columbine, post SWAT: establish perimeter and call SWAT
    • Post Columbine: neutralize the threat
  • Theory originally out of LAPD/NTOA
    • Many variations on the theme exist today
active shooter priority change
Active Shooter priority change

Normal LE priorities

  • Officer safety
  • Hostage/public safety
  • Perpetrator apprehension
  • Perpetrator safety

Active shooter LE priorities

  • Neutralize perpetrator
  • Hostage/public safety
  • Officer safety
  • Perpetrator safety
rapid deployment concept
Rapid Deployment concept
  • Imperative:
    • Stop the violence NOW
  • Theory of operation:
    • Enter structure with minimally safe team
    • Move quickly to sounds/source of violence
    • Search only when source of violence unknown
    • Move past victims and threats (IEDs, etc.)
    • Engage and neutralize perpetrators
responding to scene
Responding to scene
  • Describe situation to dispatch
  • Position vehicle to take in information and communicate with facility authority- preplan who that is
  • Activate ICS
  • Wait for more officers?
ideal situation
Ideal situation
  • First officer on scene is initial commander
    • Has most information
    • Directs other responding units
    • Hands off command to supervisor
  • Entry team(s): 4 officers
    • Larger buildings have multiple teams enter different entrances (note comms issue)
  • Rescue team: 4 later-responding officers
  • Ad-hoc ICS-commander outside
    • Everyone can communicate with each other 
reality
Reality
  • It may be you or 2 of you
  • You can’t wait for ICS or supervisor
  • Your radio talks to whomever it does
  • No rescue team
  • Chaos will reign
    • Your Job 1 is to neutralize the perpetrator
moving to structure
Moving to structure
  • Do not be in tight formation
  • Spread out patrol-like
  • Utilize cover and leapfrogging
    • Do you know how?
  • Maintain areas of control with muzzle
  • No hard rules
  • Form up at breach point
movement formations
Movement formations
  • Most R/D instruction is based on officers moving through the structure in one or more teams of 4 officers
  • Most R/D instruction spends most of its time on teaching officers to move effectively as a team, either searching as they go or moving to the sound of gunfire
  • A lot of emotional energy is spent defending one movement formation vs. another
4 officer movement
4 officer movement
  • Diamond formation
    • Looks cool, military like
    • Front officer exposed going by doors
    • Often falls apart at corners
    • Most everyone moves into a T anyway
  • T formation – probably the best of a bad situation
  • Long gun ideally at front center and rear
  • Team leader
    • In center or at wing
    • Designates a comms officer
diamond formation
Diamond formation

Direction of travel

= officer

t formation
T formation

Direction of travel

= officer

1 2 officer movement
1-2 officer movement
  • Fewer officers = more risk
  • You go with what you have
  • “Formation” is fluid and dependent on environment
  • All officers need to have basic searching/clearing/movement training…
  • Both alone and as part of a team
principles not specific tactics
Principles, not specific tactics
  • Use normal building clearing techniques when searching
    • Only faster
  • Structure movement principles
    • Muzzle orientated to general area of danger
    • All areas of responsibility (AOR) covered
    • Scan areas as you pass them
    • ALWAYS with a high or low ready—muzzle not pointed at innocents!
  • T intersections: wings pie both ways; lead pies in direction of travel
  • X intersections: make a choice!
  • Stairs: normal clears for type
  • Emphasis on flow and speed
room entry principles
Room entry principles
  • Stack if door open
    • Wings enter or wing/point entry
  • Door closed: get one PO to try door knob
    • Pie through door glass if you cross
  • Entry
    • Structured: criss-cross vs. button hook
    • Unstructured: whatever the other officer doesn’t do
    • Maintain AOR
    • Drive to corners (often advisable)
    • Triangulate on suspect
    • Speed: AVOID FATAL FUNNEL
as you move
As you move
  • Students/workers will be running past you
    • Detain them and gather intel
      • Where? How many? Race? Sex? Weapons? Clothing?
  • Pass by injured, dead and dying
    • Might be your friends, relatives, or even children
  • Pass by IEDs
  • Sprinklers will be spraying, noises will be loud, chaos will be everywhere
    • Focus on your goal
  • Communicate your progress
contact team
Contact team
  • If bad guys are shooting, you know where they are – move to them quickly
    • Bypass other rooms and areas
  • If they are not shooting

A. Use your intel (verbal, visual, radio) to move quickly to them, or

B. Slow down and do quick entries/searches as you move

  • Challenge or engage when you encounter them
  • If life not in imminent danger, transition to SWAT mode
rescue team
Rescue team
  • Follows entry team
    • Removes victims (including officers)
    • Must be capable of becoming contact team if perpetrators encountered
  • Fire/EMS personnel rescue team issues
    • Non-sworn
    • No tactical skills
    • No training
    • Armed?
    • Not likely to enter an un-secured area anyway
    • TEMS exceptions
typical movement mistakes
Typical movement mistakes
  • Not moving smoothly
  • Getting too tense
  • Moving too fast; moving too slow
  • Failing to communicate with each other
  • Every officer trying to command the team
  • Moving into each other’s line of fire
  • Not maintaining areas of responsibility
  • Breaking role
  • Training is the key!
non active shooter events
Non-active shooter events
  • Life NOT in imminent danger
  • Isolate and contain subject
  • Call in specialized resources
  • Use the 4Cs: Contain/Control/Communicate/Call SWAT
multiple jurisdictional response
Multiple jurisdictional response

Issues to be sorted out AHEAD of time:

  • Notification mechanism
  • Command structure
  • Communication capability
  • Legal agreements/MOUs
  • Tactics commonality
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Joint training exercises
  • And so on…
to ponder
To ponder…
  • “In SWAT, making entry is the last option. In R/D, we’re asking minimally trained officers to use SWAT’s last option as their first.”
  • These skills are perishable. Do you have a policy and schedule for regular training?
  • Do other responding agencies?
r d largely untested
R/D largely untested

R/D used but few times. Out of 80 active shooter events from 1966-2003, 44 had detailed info*:

  • Southfield, MI – R/D positive outcome
  • Williamsport, PA – moot outcome
  • Bethel, AK – R/D positive outcome
  • LA, CA – negative outcome – friendly casualties
  • Spokane, WA – R/D positive outcome (POSA source)

*Rapid Deployment as a Response to an Active Shooter Incident,

Illinois SP Academy, Richard Fairburn, 2003

isp study conclusions
ISP study* conclusions
  • Most incidents over by the time first officers on scene
  • Immediate action by on-scene officers most likely to have positive effect
    • But SROs not usually chosen for their “warrior” qualities
  • Israel had similar problems
    • They arm the population
    • They arm the teachers
    • Schools are no longer targets
  • R/D success chances heightened by rifle

*Rapid Deployment as a Response to an Active Shooter Incident,

Illinois SP Academy, Richard Fairburn, 2003

since 2003
Since 2003
  • Multiple active shooter incidents per year, including Virginia Tech (VT)
  • In most, all killing was done before the first officers got to the scene
implications of the data
Implications of the data
  • Training in Rapid Deployment/Active Shooter tactics, while necessary, is unlikely to minimize loss of life
  • The most important thing you can do to save lives is pre-event work with facilities, so that they take action immediately to execute their plan (details later in this resource)
slide33
Prepared school staffs the keycourtesy of School Violence Solutions www.schoolviolencesolutions.com
  • The truth is the educational staffs can do more to mitigate the loss of life than the police, due to being on scene when the shooting starts
  • The need for training the educational staff in every school in how to recognize, react to and prevent active shooter events is CRITICAL
  • Passing out a comprehensive school safety plan to school staffs is simply not enough preparation/training for an active shooter event!
  • Training EVERY member of the school community is paramount!
the rhode island model courtesy of school violence solutions www schoolviolencesolutions com
The Rhode Island modelcourtesy of School Violence Solutions www.schoolviolencesolutions.com
  • Governor’s Statewide Steering Committee formed
  • Curricula created to instruct educational staffs statewide
  • Multi-media learning modules are given to hundreds of educators throughout the state during six training sessions
  • Schools are now mandated to perform lockdown drills and training. Sanctions apply if not performed
  • Additional training for teachers and staff in schools continues
part 2

Part 2

Active shooter as a terrorist event

Where we’re headed

crime to 4 th gen warfare
Crime to 4th gen. warfare
  • Until now in the U.S., active shooter incidents have been crimes perpetrated by individuals for their own purposes
  • But future active shooter incidents will include persons perpetrating 4G and even 5G warfare
what is 4g warfare
What is 4G warfare?

One definition (there are many):

“The loss of the state's monopoly on war and on the first loyalty of its citizens, and the rise of non-state entities that command people’s primary loyalty and that wage war. These entities may be gangs, religions, races and ethnic groups within races, localities, tribes, business enterprises, ideologies—the variety is almost limitless”

William S. LindStrategic Defense Initiative

warfare generations
Warfare generations

There are several different schemes that divide history into generational periods of warfare, and these schemes often differ in the characteristics of warfare that they use to define its generations.

What follows is one popular scheme, provided for context.

1g to 3g warfare
1G to 3G Warfare
  • 1st Generation Warfare-up to WWI
    • Armies fought attrition-based battles at close range with individual and squad-level weapons (cannons)
  • 2nd Generation Warfare-WWI
    • Armies fought attrition-based battles at close range with large-scale weapons support (chemicals, bombs, etc.) and mechanized transport (e.g., railroads)
  • 3rd Generation Warfare-WWII
    • Large-scale maneuvers (e.g. the blitzkrieg)
    • Long range weapons targeting enemy infrastructure
4 th generation warfare
4th generation warfare
  • Carried out by small cells that blend with the population—not by armies
  • Fundamentally a political endeavor
  • Seeks to destroy the will of the enemies decision makers—not to defeat its military
  • Examples: Mao, al-Queda; I.R.A.; Sandinistas
  • Terrorism is a tactic of, not a synonym for, 4GW
  • Co-opting the media is a crucial element of 4GW
5 th generation warfare
5th generation warfare

There are many different definitions of 5th generation warfare, but they all agree that actions undertaken by individuals of their own initiative will be a salient characteristic of it.

That is the important attribute of 5GW for our purposes.

4 5gw and active shooters
4/5GW and active shooters
  • Active shooter tactics are essentially the same as terrorist tactics: kill a lot of innocent people indiscriminately
  • But a 4/5GW terrorist incident will be better planned and resourced than a lone (or a couple of) active shooter(s)
self deployment 5g warfare examples
Self-deployment (5G warfare) examples
  • MD / VA snipers
  • LAX / El Al incident on 7-4-02
  • Richard Reed (the “Shoe Bomber”)
  • Vehicle attack at UNC-Chapel Hill, 3-3-06
  • Seattle shootings, 7-28-06
  • Vehicle attacks in SF-Fremont area, 8-29-06
what to expect
What to expect?
  • Our enemies freely tell us what they are planning and want to accomplish!
  • We have merely to pay attention…
  • And come out of denial
    • Most public officials have taken a “downplay, deny and deflect” position
captured al queda tapes
Captured al-Queda tapes
  • Produced for internal use, not propaganda
  • Included:
    • Live-fire room entry
    • Live-fire/role-player scenarios
      • Any resistance was met with being shot
    • Assassination scenarios
    • Kidnapping training
    • No presumed compliance from victims
    • Explosives planting
    • Prisoner handling: search, control and execution
al queda tapes 2
al-Queda tapes (2)
  • Commands given in English
  • Prisoners begging for their lives in English
  • Distraction devices preceding entry
  • Multiple breach points
  • Targeting LE officers in ambushes using “disabled” vehicle as ploy, then sounding horn to initiate assault
  • Scenarios on 6-lane highways at clover-leafs (to facilitate exfiltration)
    • There are few such highways in the Middle East
al queda tapes 3
al-Queda tapes (3)
  • Security/overwatch elements to shoot responding LE
  • Residential and golf course assassinations
  • Use of storm drains and sewers for exfiltration
  • Much practice on assault of buildings with a large number of occupants, including inconspicuous movement to entry points (weapons hidden)
  • Anyone giving any trouble at all is shot
  • Executing hostages in front of the media
  • Often no exfiltration plans for buildings – they plan to kill everyone and die in place
take home lesson
Take-home lesson

While terrorist plans for large-scale events including WMD are certainly in place…

They are preparing smaller-scale attacks by small groups with various small arms and planted explosives in populated buildings, particularly schools

why schools
Why schools?
  • Our Values
    • The most sacred thing to us are our children
    • Killing hundreds of children will boost the terrorist’s morale and lower ours, leaving us stunned
  • Our Lack of Preparation
    • Police deal with crime, but school attacks are war acts
    • Police are generally not prepared
    • Society hasn’t come to grips with terrorism on U.S. soil
why schools 2
Why schools? (2)
  • al-Qaeda has said they have the right to kill millions of American children
  • al-Qaeda terrorists have been video-taped practicing school takeovers and issuing commands in English
  • Some Islamic religious literature condones killing children if it is done for the “general good”
  • Target scouting and infiltration efforts have already reportedly occurred
school assault model beslan
School assault model-Beslan
  • A dress rehearsal has already taken place in 2004 in Beslan, Russia where 172 children were killed
  • Large buildings with complicated floor plans are preferred—they are harder to counter assault
  • In Beslan, over 1,000 people were held hostage by 100 terrorists for three days without food or water
beslan 2
Beslan (2)
  • Started as at least 4 vehicle, 36 person “active shooter” attack
  • Additional 40+ terrorists in crowd
  • One police officer, one security officer present, both armed only with handguns, both killed immediately
  • Secured building in 15 minutes with over 1000 hostages
beslan 3
Beslan (3)
  • Terrorist snipers and RPGs were immediately positioned in strategic locations once the school was taken
  • Terrorists’ weapons included AK-47s, sniper rifles, rocket propelled grenades and explosives
  • Hostages’ cell phones were taken
  • Adults and teachers were separated from children to keep complete control
  • Intel spotters were in crowd
beslan 4
Beslan (4)
  • Attempts at negotiation by responders were used by the terrorists to buy time to fortify the school
  • All entrances and many stairwells were booby trapped with explosives
  • Children were used as shields by snipers
  • The terrorists used amphetamines to stay awake
beslan 5
Beslan (5)
  • 11 hours of fighting, 8 hours of heavy fighting
  • Women and older children were repeatedly raped
  • Adult males and large boys were made to help fortify the school, then they were shot
  • Over 330 persons killed and over 660 persons injured
beslan 6
Beslan (6)
  • When troops stormed the school, troops and children were gunned down
  • Explosions started many fires
  • Trip wires connected to explosives slowed the assault
  • Terrorists broke into three groups
    • One group attempted to escape by dressing in hostage’s clothing
    • One group attempted to fight off the rescue teams
    • One group focused on killing the hostages by shooting them and detonating explosives
beslan lessons
Beslan lessons
  • Terrorists were well prepared
  • Reconnaissance started months in advance
  • Gained tactical superiority quickly
  • Excellent tactics were employed
  • Terrorists were well trained
beslan lessons 2
Beslan lessons (2)
  • Terrorists had effective communication equipment
  • Terrorists were well funded; reports indicate al-Qaeda funding
  • Had learned from prior incidents
    • Had gas masks
    • Broke out windows to negate gas effects
schools are real targets
Schools are real targets
  • bin Laden has promised that Beslan will happen to the U.S. many times over
  • First 6 months of 2006 alone: 204 schools attacked in Afghanistan
  • 1984-1994: more than 300 schools attacked in Turkey
  • Floor plans for schools in VA, TX and NJ have been recovered from terrorists in Iraq
what s likely here
What’s likely here?
  • Terrorists striking simultaneously at multiple schools, or:
  • a Beslan-type attack with fewer terrorists but better bombs
  • Middle schools without a police presence are preferred
    • The girls are big enough to rape; the students are not big enough to fight back; staffed largely by females
  • Preferred targets are states that do not allow concealed carry of firearms, have no hunting culture, and where the police do not carry rifles
  • Rural areas are favored because of the delayed response time for police to arrive in force
  • Schools with external surveillance cameras are preferred so terrorists can observe the LE response
what s likely here 2
What’s likely here? (2)
  • As they seize the school, the attackers will initially kill every teacher and many of the students they see
  • They will rape, murder and toss the bodies outside, as was done in Beslan
  • They will plant bombs throughout the school, and on students
  • Emergency responders and fleeing children will be blown up by car bombs in the parking lot
  • 100 to 300 children could be killed on the first strike
  • The terrorists are likely already here, many having crossed over the border with Mexico
what s likely here 3
What’s likely here? (3)
  • Fully automatic weapons placed in over-watch positions
  • Faux “negotiations” to buy time for fortification and PR value
  • They expect to fight and die there, not negotiate their way out
  • They know that Americans will not assault if “negotiations” are going well
  • Logical SWAT entry points heavily fortified with bombs
  • Will force SWAT entry by starting to kill children
skewed priorities
Skewed priorities
  • U.S. schools extensively guard against fire
    • Fire drills
    • Sprinkler systems
    • Building codes, etc.
  • Yet not one child had died from fire in any U.S. school in over 25 years (excluding dorm fires)
  • Well over 200 deaths have occurred by active shooters in the same period here
    • But training and preparation for these events meets with stiff resistance and denial
overall response plan
Overall response plan

Four elements:

  • Deter
  • Detect
  • Delay
  • Destroy
deter
Deter
  • An armed police presence in a school is a strong deterrence against attack
  • The terrorists are willing to die, but they don’t want to die without completing their tactical objective. They want a high body count
  • Unarmed security in a school is pointless
detect
Detect
  • They have to live among us, plan the event and recon the facility. Alert police officers are essential.
  • Follow good patrol procedures on traffic stops:
    • Ask probing questions, be alert for contradictions, inconsistencies, unduly nervous behavior. Be aware of the inside of the vehicle and the people in it
  • Watch for signs of surveillance on potential targets. Terrorists always conduct recon and may use cameras and camcorders
  • Some terrorists are blue-eyed blonds who may not fit the usual profile
  • Have the school report any inquiries about security practices. It could be a recon event.
detect 2
Detect (2)
  • In order to avoid failure or embarrassment, they will plan extensively
    • Info gathering (libraries, public records, etc.), recon, dry runs
    • For example, in Miami, two Saudi “students” who spoke English well, climbed onto a school bus and refused to get off. When the police arrived, they said they thought is was a public transit bus. They were probably seeing how long it took police to respond.
    • Report all suspicious activities to your fusion center
  • Beware of groups renting halls/schools, and people videotaping the interior during the event.
  • Most non-police incident intell will come in the form of gossip and stories
    • Make friends with mail carriers, landlords, store clerks, and so on to receive these intell nuggets
delay
Delay
  • One police officer firing from behind effective cover inside a school may hold off a group of attackers for several minutes and save lives by buying time for help to arrive and to let students evacuate
  • At the first hint of trouble, the school should engage in a three step lock-down model
    • Lockdown is to violence what fire drills are to fire
    • Move away from the violence. Don’t be paralyzed by the event.
    • Move to a pre-selected secure location(s) to wait for police
    • Move again when in danger. “Lock-down” does not mean hunker down and die.
destroy
Destroy
  • Police officers must be fully prepared, mentally and physically, to aggressively use deadly force to stop the threat
  • Act immediately. Every minute the Russians waited, the target got harder.
  • If you hesitate, people will die
infrastructure personal issues
Infrastructure/personal issues
  • Officers need to be trained to essentially go to war—many are not physically, mentally or emotionally prepared
  • Your ICS capabilities incorporating other agencies will be critical—are you prepared?
  • Your comms capability is critical—is it capable?
  • Inter-agency plans and roles/responsibilities are crucial—are they in place?
getting started pick ten
Getting started - pick ten
  • Concentrate on the ten most likely structures/locations in your jurisdiction or precinct
    • Schools
    • Businesses
    • Municipal offices
    • Shopping districts, malls, theatres
    • Visitor attractions
    • Outdoor venues: fairs, sporting events, etc
  • Assign an officer to be responsible for each
getting started 2
Getting started (2)
  • Initiate a relationship with the facilities manager and top business manager there: CEO, Principal, etc.
  • Develop an active shooter and/or 4/5 Gen takeover plan with them
  • There are many good active shooter plans out there
    • IACP, ASIS, NEA, US Dept. of Education, NASRO, Etc.
    • Even Google will return many good plans
  • Pick one for a starting point with each of your 10 facilities
    • Develop a custom plan for each with the facilities personnel
stakeholders involved
Stakeholders involved

Involve in planning:

  • Primary LE agency
  • Assisting LE agencies
  • Fire/EMS
  • Facility management
  • Professional societies/organizations
  • EMS
  • Hospitals
  • Crisis resources: Red Cross, etc.
  • Media—don’t forget them!
facility planning issues
Facility planning issues

Once you’ve selected a plan template from an appropriate source and identified representatives from each stakeholder group, you’ll need to develop a specific plan for each of your “top 10” facilities.

The following slides are examples of issues that you’ll have to address; this is not an exhaustive list, but simply examples.

facility planning issues 2
Facility planning issues (2)
  • Distribute to appropriate personnel:
    • Floor plans
    • Keys
    • Facility personnel lists and telephone numbers
  • Understand which suspects are there
    • People with records
    • Suspicious people you know
    • Probation involvement
    • Intel from regional intel task forces
    • Info shared by other agencies
    • Info sharing with facility personal department
facility planning issues 3
Facility planning issues (3)
  • People don’t just “snap”
  • Typical active shooter has longstanding histories of involvement with legal, mental health, and/or substance abuse services
  • Most of these people will not be murderers, but they form a pre-event suspect pool
facility planning issues 4
Facility planning issues (4)
  • Facility personnel rules and regulations
  • Visitor sign-in and out procedure
  • How will you know who’s in the building at any time?
  • Physical security and monitoring
  • Suspicious activity reporting mechanism
  • Monitoring of suspended/fired persons
  • Employee screening: criminal, substance abuse, etc.
  • Counseling services involvement
  • Threat identifications and assessments
facility planning issues 5
Facility planning issues (5)
  • Establish crisis team at each facility
  • Establish chain of command
  • Establish communication chains and mechanisms
  • Who has control over what? Keys, controls, entrances…
  • Involve maintenance staff: sprinklers, plumbing, electrical…
  • Determine evacuation or lockdown decision process and procedures (address disabled persons, too)
  • Establish evacuation holding sites – use safe room?
  • Determine how to take student/employee/visitor inventory
  • Make up crisis kits: radios, floor plans, student/employee lists, etc
facility planning issues 6
Facility planning issues (6)
  • How will first observers communicate the threat? To who?
  • How will the threat be communicated to everyone in the facility? Code words?
  • Lockdown or evacuate? When? How?
  • Consider a kit in each room including color-coded signs with room numbers on them to post under hallway door and outside windows (e.g., red sign means help needed, green sign means no one hurt)
  • Each room should have 2 exits, even if a window
facility planning issues 7
Facility planning issues (7)
  • How/when will the facility communicate to family members of people involved? When?
  • Should all doors have locks on them?
  • Have busses respond to evacuate students/building occupants to a reunification/debriefing/counseling area
  • Plan to shut down streets for emergency vehicle access
lockdown vs escape
Lockdown vs. Escape
  • Currently, a lockdown is often advocated in an active shooter situation. That is, secure the potential victims in a locked room(s). But if it was you or your child, wouldn’t you want (them) to break a window and get out of the potential kill zone?
  • Consider evacuation and escape as alternatives to lockdown
le recommendations officers
LE recommendations-officers
  • Obtain patrol rifles, ballistic shields, ballistic helmets and other tactical gear
  • Get every officer comfortable with a rifle
  • Learn how to use AK-47 type weapons
  • Train to shoot while moving
  • Train officers in
    • Bomb awareness
    • Basic crowd management
    • Basic riot control
    • Ballistic shield tactics
    • Team firing drills,
    • And other response skills needed for a mass school takedown
le recommendations officers 2
LE recommendations-officers (2)
  • Make sure every officer is familiar with all of the likely target structure’s interiors in their jurisdiction/precinct
  • If you are a police parent, consider changing your personal data at the school to something more generic (city employee versus police officer) so that your child won’t be as valuable a hostage
  • Encourage all police officers to always carry a weapon off duty. What if you were off duty visiting your child’s school and you were the only one there to save them?
individual officer response bag
Individual officer response bag
  • Police officers should have a response bag for these events
    • Multiple spare rifle and pistol magazines
    • Floor plans for every structure in their AOR
    • Locations of utility shut-offs, HVAC vents, etc.
    • Facility contact numbers, including cell phones
    • Keys
    • Self-rescue medical supplies
    • Chemlites to mark IEDs
    • Glass punch (to breach building)
    • Door wedges
    • Breaching rounds if shotgun carried in cruiser
  • Can be incorporated into a vest with extra ballistic protection
le recommendations agency
LE recommendations-agency
  • Expand active shooter training to include large, complicated, multi-adversary scenarios and exercises with multiple responding agencies
  • Train for open-air encounters, not just within a structure. The incident may transition to or include the outdoors.
  • Practice against a booby trapped environment
  • Practice counter-assault on school buses. Terrorists may hijack several buses and drive them to a school
  • School Resource Officers will be specifically targeted by terrorists. They will probably be the first casualties. SROs need training in surveillance awareness and the real-life testing tactics of terrorists.
le recommendations agency 2
LE recommendations-agency (2)
  • Incorporate suicide-bomber shooting drills into firearms training for every police officer
  • Teach effective CQB skills that integrate empty-hands techniques with the firearm
  • Make sure that who makes the “enter” decision and when has been addressed, simulated and trained
le recommendations agency 3
LE recommendations-agency (3)
  • Get the name and phone number of every private helicopter in your area and coordinate with them ahead of time to deploy in an emergency. News helicopters can be great allies when transporting troops into a siege site in exchange for news footage. Practice landing personnel on flat roofs.
  • Practice frequent incident command training and exercises using multiple jurisdictions and multiple disciplines (EMS, Fire, Police, Public Works, etc)
le recommendations agency 4
LE recommendations-agency (4)
  • Integrate the fire service into your tactical training. A fire hose can be a “crew-served weapon” at the scene of a terrorist attack. They not only put out fires but they can knock a combatant out of a window 50 yards away.
  • Have a policy for officer parents of hostage children/spouse/etc.
  • Have a plan for a “parent siege” of an attacked school
  • Have a plan for handling the media
le recommendations agency 5
LE recommendations-agency (5)
  • Develop breaching capability
    • Barricading/securing facility prior to starting to kill people is a trend with recent shootings
    • VT shooter chained doors shut
  • White lights for weapons are necessary; facility may be dark
  • Shotgun breaching rounds in each cruiser
    • Frangible buckshot or slugs
    • Other breaching capability for specific structures
  • Develop sniper capability, and ability to get several on scene fast
  • Plan for a siege: ammo, water, first aid, etc.
le recommendations aftermath
LE recommendations-aftermath

Include immediate aftermath planning and training:

  • Treating injured
  • Consolidating victims
  • Managing the scene
  • Training facility personnel to maintain crime scene
  • Managing any prisoners
  • Protecting/moving all from additional IEDs and other threats
  • Notifying victim’s families
ems issues
EMS issues
  • EMS won’t enter an area until it’s secure
  • After you neutralize the shooter, it will still take a long time to secure the facility
  • Designate a causality collection point to bring casualties out to
  • Use uninjured subjects (victims, bystanders, etc.) to hold pressure on bleeding victims
if you are captured
If you are captured
  • Aggressively escape if you can
  • You will be killed immediately if you don’t
  • You will be killed eventually anyway
  • The intelligence you provide will be invaluable
final thought
Final thought

“If not me, who?”

That’s the motto of the Russian Special Forces, but it applies to every police officer, and by extension to every public safety official and government executive.

required reading
Required Reading
  • Terror at Beslan, John Giduck
    • www.terroratbeslan.com
  • The Sling and The Stone, Col Thomas X. Hammes
resources
Resources
  • Prevention and Response To Suicide Bombing Incidents, New Mexico Tech, Energetic Materials Research and Testing Center, www.emrtc.nmt.edu/
  • Many incident critical event/active shooter simulation software packages available
  • Rural Law Enforcement Technology Center—several training DVDs/discs, www.nlectc.org/ruletc/
  • Terrorist Screening Center—information on using the nationwide database of terrorist watch subjects—(866) 872-5678
  • School Violence Solutions, www.schoolviolencesolutions.com
  • National Terrorism Center, http://www.nctc.gov/site/index.html