Regional officers, EMS participate at NLHS
Officers train for school shooting Local law enforcement officers took over North Lincoln High School Thursday to train for a situation they hope they never have to respond to.
Officers from the Lincoln County Sheriffâ€™s Office, Lincolnton Police Department, Mount Holly Police Department, Cramerton Police Department and Lincoln County EMS gathered for a 10-hour class on dealing with a shooter in a public setting. The primary focus of the training was handling a shooter in a public school, said Lt. Kent Lukach, training and crime prevention officer with the Lincolnton Police Department.
Lukach and instructors from Gaston College taught officers with experience ranging from three weeks to 25 years.
â€œItâ€™s important for the rookie officer and the veteran officer to train together with this type of tactic, because they all can learn from it regardless of their time in the service,â€ Lukach said.
The training is referred to as rapid deployment because law enforcement has to act quickly when a shooting scenario unfolds in a school.
Statistics have shown that the majority of the killing takes place in the first 10 minutes of the incident, Lukach said.
The suspect knows beforehand that escape from a school after it has been contained by police is unlikely, so he wants to kill as many people as possible as quickly as possible, Lukach said.
Police are trained to respond, group up and enter the building and minimize the loss of innocent life.
The officers learn single and team tactics, how to deal with doorways, hallways, stairwells, large open areas and safe evacuation procedures. They also learn how to recognize and avoid improvised explosive devices.
Rescue teams that include a tactical EMS responder are also trained to enter the building and treat victims while the threat still exists.
â€œWhen someone starts to shoot and kill innocent children in our schools, our officers are going in to neutralize that shooter, because at that point the shooter is usually arrested, kills himself or is killed by police,â€ Lukach said.
â€œItâ€™s unfortunate that we have to train for such a tragedy as Columbine in Colorado, but the threat of this happening here is real and my officers need to be ready.â€by Alice Smith