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Archive for Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Emergency drill at KU tests responders’ preparedness for the worst

Crisis response team members gather in the parking lot east of Memorial Stadium for instructions before heading to a simulated hostage and active shooter scenario during a training exercise on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at Corbin Hall on the campus of Kansas University. The KU Public Safety Office organized the training exercise, which involved all Douglas County law enforcement agencies.

Crisis response team members gather in the parking lot east of Memorial Stadium for instructions before heading to a simulated hostage and active shooter scenario during a training exercise on Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at Corbin Hall on the campus of Kansas University. The KU Public Safety Office organized the training exercise, which involved all Douglas County law enforcement agencies.

May 23, 2012

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KU Police Train for Crisis Situation

KU Police Chief Ralph Oliver talks about a simulated training exercise in which local law enforcement responded to a live shooter and hostage situation at Corbin Hall. Enlarge video

Baldwin City police officer Caleb Lewis questions Meghan Smith, a volunteer with Specialized Emergency Response Training (SERT) who was playing the part of a witness, Wednesday in the parking lot outside Corbin Hall on the Kansas University campus. Smith’s character was handcuffed during the moments when her involvement with the simulated shooting at Corbin was unclear. The training exercise was meant to better prepare officers for a real-life crisis situation.

Baldwin City police officer Caleb Lewis questions Meghan Smith, a volunteer with Specialized Emergency Response Training (SERT) who was playing the part of a witness, Wednesday in the parking lot outside Corbin Hall on the Kansas University campus. Smith’s character was handcuffed during the moments when her involvement with the simulated shooting at Corbin was unclear. The training exercise was meant to better prepare officers for a real-life crisis situation.

Area police officers and medics took part in a nightmare scenario Wednesday on the Kansas University campus.

As part of the public safety exercise, two shooters had wounded people outside Corbin Hall, a residence hall for women. Three officers were wounded inside. One suspect took hostages inside a room.

More KU police and Douglas County Sheriff’s officers rushed inside armed with rifles.

“Obviously, we hope that nothing like this ever occurs at KU,” KU Police Chief Ralph Oliver said. “But it is my job to make sure that we are prepared and ready.”

It was an annual drill, although more involved than earlier ones, as Oliver said it required coordination among every law enforcement agency in the county, Douglas County Emergency Management and Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical.

KU spokesman Gavin Young said the exercise also allowed the university to test its alert system, which allows KU to send text and other messages to the campus in the event of a crisis or emergency.

“There’s value in practicing for any situation whether it includes an active shooter or whether it includes a hostage situation,” Young said.

Oliver said the scenario raised stress levels for the officers.

At one point a man in a green shirt fired blanks from a handgun at two officers just outside Corbin, 420 W. 11th St. Oliver said the “shooters” were officers from outside agencies.

“Even though they know it’s a simulation, they know that in a real situation they will be required to perform in a manner that they’ve been trained to do,” Oliver said. “It allows them to see how they perform. It allows us to see how they perform.”

The exercise lasted for several hours, and some circumstances did not match the real thing, he said. There wasn’t the noise of sirens and other commotion that would come. Also, the residence hall was empty so no students came running or screaming from the building.

Things also happened slower than they would in a real situation, he said. At least two people who were “shot” outside Corbin laid on the sidewalk for several minutes before it was determined the area was safe and secure for medics to arrive.

Oliver said the scenario is valuable for supervisors as they seek to smoothly coordinate with one another and review strengths and weaknesses of the response.

Other than KU public safety officers, agencies participating included sheriff’s officers, police officers with Lawrence, Eudora and Baldwin City and Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical.

As they prepare to respond to dangerous situations, university officials seek to learn lessons from past events, like the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre in which a gunman shot and killed 32 people on campus.

“With Virginia Tech there have been numerous reports and papers written on how they responded and how universities should be looking at what we should have in place should something like this occur,” Oliver said.

Comments

guppypunkhead 2 years, 2 months ago

I don't think they tested the text message system, because I didn't get one. :)

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Jack Martin 2 years, 2 months ago

We went through the process of sending out alerts up to the point of actually hitting the button to send them.

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MarcoPogo 2 years, 2 months ago

I'll bet you're a lot of fun to watch "Point Break" with.

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Bill_Slu 2 years, 2 months ago

Let this be a lesson for you bicycling scoff laws not wearing bike helmets! You will be met with superior fire power!

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Phoghorn 2 years, 2 months ago

I am willing to bet most Police Academy grads were not HS dropouts. If this drill improves response in a real emergency, I am all for it.

Rambos? Okay, so occasionally, you might encounter the occasional "bad cop", but if someone wants to enter public service as a LEO, then so be it. Good for them.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

In First Blood, John Rambo fought against a bunch of corrupt good-ol-boy cops. I think its safe to say a law enforcement officer is the last thing he wanted to be.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

Another angry police man rears its ugly mind to expose its true feelings of the citizenry at large... Can't have the citizenry questioning your actions, eh? You're the police man! And a hateful one at that. Have a great day, Officer Friendly! http://www.policemisconduct.net/

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

The cops need training on how to think critically and employ the principles of logic. Less violence from the cops and more critical thinking, please.

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Bigdog66046 2 years, 2 months ago

ok please tell us all how to logicly and with critical thinking to stop a guy that just shot several people and is shooting at you. Now don't use violance, becuase YOU are better. GO and i did i mention you have 1.5 seconds to do this!

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

A critical thinker would realize that the chances of that scenario happening are infinitely small. You're spending too much time and money training to make a decision in 1.3 seconds that will most likely never, ever, happen.

However, there is a very high probability that you will encounter citizens on a daily basis that will require you to think critically and use logic to determine a satisfactory outcome. You don't have to kill every dog that looks your way, Officer Friendly. If you'd take 1.3 seconds to think critically about the situation.

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Bigdog66046 2 years, 2 months ago

so what your saying is that they should only train officers on situations that have 40% chance of happening? or what is your percentage. If an officer could encounter something, isn't good that they have some training or atleast have trained is something simular? Most officers should have already been trained on thinking and logic during the academy. But also they are trained to enforce the law, which i guess is what you realy must have a problem with. Sometimes "logical" thinking doesnt fit in with some of the laws how thet are written, but it isnt up to the officer to decide what law's to enforce!

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

"But also they are trained to enforce the law, which i guess is what you realy must have a problem with."

WTF? I'm not sure why or where you got that idea. Oh, it's because I have the audacity to question authority and speak my mind. Tell me something, you're a cop, aren't you? You don't think too well, bud.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

Spelling wasn't your strong point at the academy was it, bud? You can't spell and your fellow citizens can, which, I guess, is what you realy (sic) must have a problem with, eh?

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

Don't get mad at me and take it out on an innocent dog, Officer Friendly--spelling bee champ.

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Bigdog66046 2 years, 2 months ago

first no i am not a police officer, or have i ever been. Just someone who is not "crazy" and thinks that everything should be done the way i think it should. And i dont know what your problem is with a dog? I just think it's funny how people say what is being done isn't right. But when asked how they would do it they have no idea. They just want to complain about how it is being done. So why don't you do something.. like figure out a way to have them trained in what you think they should be and present it the the chief or city commission. Sense you are obvisouly better schooled and smarter than everyone here. Or is it easier to just be "crazy" and complain?

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Bigdog66046 2 years, 2 months ago

oh and thanks for using Logic and critical thinking in your reply and insult.

"Don't get mad at me and take it out on an innocent dog, Officer Friendly--spelling bee champ."

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

First of all, it's my opinion.

Second, everybody has one.

Third, it's worth exactly what you paid for it.

Don't shoot any dogs while you're patrolling our streets being paid with my tax dollar, communist, Officer Friendly.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

The police who responded to Columbine High School could have used some training, eh? They sat outside for an hour while the killers roamed the halls freely. When they finally did enter the school they started in an area the farthest away from where the gun shots where occurring. We'll still call them all heroes, of course. What about the police response at Virginia Tech? They don't need training, they need to grow a pair.

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Bigdog66046 2 years, 2 months ago

Maybe they were trying to think and come up with a non violate solution that would make you happy?? So which is it, you don't think they should train for things that "might" happen, and want non violate solutions, or for them to run in guns blazing? seems to me you have said both ways! How the police responded to these incidents in the past is what most law enforcement departments are trying to learn from. Training never does and should never stop for anyone in Law Enforcement/ Fire Departments/Medical Departments.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

I never said training should stop. I simply suggested that they spend more time training on critical thinking versus violent reaction. That is all I said. You, being a LEO, are more prone to non-thinking and violent reaction, and construed my comment as a threat. Had I been a dog trotting down the driveway towards you wagging my tail I'd have been quickly shot and killed because that's how scared-punk wanna-be heroes do.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 2 months ago

Gotta be ready for when the "dude, I'm really angry" mopes start emulating that famed terrorist, Bill Ayers.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

The War on Drugs and the War on Terror have militarized our police forces. Here's why we should be alarmed. The most serious consequence of the rapid militarization of American police forces is the subtle evolution in the mentality of the "men in blue" from "peace officer" to soldier. This development is absolutely critical and represents a fundamental change in the nature of law enforcement.

The primary mission of a police officer traditionally has been to "keep the peace." Those whom an officer suspects to have committed a crime are treated as just that - suspects. Police officers are expected, under the rule of law, to protect the civil liberties of all citizens, even the "bad guys." For domestic law enforcement, a suspect in custody remains innocent until proven guilty. Moreover, police officers operate among a largely friendly population and have traditionally been trained to solve problems using a complex legal system; the deployment of lethal violence is an absolute last resort.

Soldiers, by contrast, are trained to identify people they encounter as belonging to one of two groups -- the enemy and the non-enemy -- and they often reach this decision while surrounded by a population that considers the soldier an occupying force. Once this identification is made, a soldier's mission is stark and simple: kill the enemy, "try" not to kill the non-enemy. Indeed, the Soldier's Creed declares, "I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat." This is a far cry from the peace officer's creed that expects its adherents "to protect and serve."

Bringing military-style training to domestic law enforcement has real consequences. When police officers are dressed like soldiers, armed like soldiers, and trained like soldiers, it's not surprising that they are beginning to act like soldiers. And remember: a soldier's main objective is to kill the enemy.

(Plagiarized from a source)

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begin60 2 years, 2 months ago

Police power abuse is the the worst emergency much KU students will ever face--especially given the dishonest HR has these yahoos in their pockets. Backwoods conflict--of-interest and might -is- right rules. The KU cops I dealt with were despicable liars. The only thing that protects their jobs is their rock-solid code of silence. Can you say citizen review board?

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 2 months ago

Relax and get yourself a popsicle, be. It's a cool and fruity treat on a Spring day.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 2 months ago

Citizen's Review Board, please!

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BlackVelvet 2 years, 2 months ago

how many different usernames do you have on here? We all know you have a bone to pick with KU HR, whether real or imagined. Give it a rest already.

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rockchalker52 2 years, 2 months ago

Citizen review Board? Yah, I can say it. It took me three tries to type it, though. Backspace is my friend.

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foggydew 2 years, 2 months ago

"At least two people who were “shot” outside Corbin lied on the sidewalk..." It's lay, you idiots, unless the people were bearing false testimony. Get an editor.

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rockchalker52 2 years, 2 months ago

Ok, I get confused with the insults & idioms. Is a 'flea' really a 'tea?' And what's a 'bagger' a 'flea' or a 'tea?' 'cause the only 'teabag' somebody lays on me better have 'Lipton' or 'Tetley' printed on it.

This comment indirectly "endorsed" by FHNC & "TheMovement for 'Excessive' Quotation Marks."

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