Area SWAT team trains for hostage crisis

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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 11/14/2013 10:19 am Published: 11/13/2013 10:01 pm

Local officers involved with the Southwest Area Tactical Team are training for something they hope never happens: an act of violence against children at a school or on a bus.

An armored vehicle can be used for different situations. It not only provides law enforcement with protection from flying bullets, it also acts as a shield.

It starts with a well-thought out plan and then that plan is carefully executed.

In this case, an armed man has taken over a school bus.

It's the job of the SWAT team to safely get him out and keep children on board from getting hurt.

This team is made up of three different cities police departments including Bixby, Sand Springs and Sapulpa forming the Southwest Area Tactical Team.

One of the first options in a crisis situation is to utilize the team negotiators.

"As negotiators we try to make contact with whomever's inside or whatever the case may be and speak to the person and try to get a peaceful resolution without having tactical get involved," Sapulpa police Lt. Glenn Coffey said.

To do that, they must be able to make contact with the suspect first.

When trying to talk to a suspect, negotiators will often throw in a phone like this to open up the lines of communication. The team is financed through a contribution from each area.

"Each town also contributes towards the team budget and the three chiefs get together and they decide what they're going to fund," Sand Springs Deputy Police Chief Mike Carter said.

This includes the sharing of gear and equipment and other resources.

Wednesday's scenario is just one of many the team does throughout the year to prepare for a crisis situation.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Unwashed Mass - 11/14/2013 5:20 PM
1 Vote
In the era of the "Warrior Cop" every police officer is a SWAT team, and the public is viewed as the enemy.
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