Lauderdale County, Miss. In the wake of tragedies like Columbine and the Lockheed Martin shootings, law enforcement officers are learning the newest techniques in dealing with those types of incidents. A program originally developed in Texas, is being taught in Mississippi, and this week officers from several different agencies are learning how to work together in these events. One of the instructors, Investigator Mike McClantoc, with the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community Colleges, says communication is key.
"The biggest thing we're trying to do is establish a standardized response by law enforcement officers to where if you have multiple jurisdictions responding to a single event, that all the officers are trained together."
The class, hosted by the Lauderdale County Sheriff's Department and funded by the Mississippi Department of Homeland Security covers everything from basics like lingo to tactical strategies, and Lauderdale County Shift Sergeant Kris Cokel, says along with classroom instruction, the participants will be able to get some hands-on experience as well.
"They do practical exercises as well as force on force using simulated ammunition, which is a type of paintball."
In depth studies are done after each shooting event, and with the number of those on the rise all across the country, new techniques are being developed, and this course serves as way for officers to get the latest information.
"We learn something from each one of those events, and this program develops based upon the lessons learned from those events."
The class is currently taught to new officers during their time at the Academy, and is being expanded to cover several other states.