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Does SWAT Need to Be Explained?
Tactical Response ^ | September 2011 | Ed Sanow

Posted on 09/13/2011 12:18:02 PM PDT by Immerito

Does SWAT Need to Be Explained?

Written by Ed Sanow

I get frustrated with the educational sessions at chief’s conferences on SWAT. The attendees are treated like kindergarten kids. “There are some vewy, vewy bad people out there. They won’t do what the nice police officers tell them. So, sometimes, those nice police officers need help from ‘special’ police officers.”

You got to be kidding me! Some 90% of agencies serving populations of more than 50,000 people, and 70% of agencies serving smaller populations have some kind of SWAT team. Yet, SWAT has to be explained like it is something new to policing?

When someone has risen to the rank of chief or sheriff, then SWAT has to be explained to them at a chief’s conference? Have we, as team leaders and team commanders, done that a bad job of explaining what SWAT is and does? As well as when a SWAT team could, or must, be used? Honestly? Yes.

When the local police beat reporter knows more about SWAT than the chief or sheriff, you have a problem. Combine that lack of operational knowledge with the slightest mistake during a SWAT operation and now you have a huge crisis as well as a disbanded tactical team.

SWAT teams, even the better ones, are going to make operations errors. The key, then, is getting everyone up the chain of command familiar with SWAT operations. That especially includes the PIO, who gets to talk to that crime reporter.

Team commanders must raise the profile of their teams. Stay active. Yes, I mean do warrant service and drug raids even if you have to poach the work. First, your team needs the training time under true callout conditions. If all your team does is train, but seldom deploy, you will end up training just to train. You need to train to fight. You already know that.

Second, make SWAT familiar to senior police staff. Everyone fears the unknown. Don’t let SWAT be that unknown. Make deploying SWAT something that is routine, not something only done after much hand-wringing. “Oh, no! You mean we have to call SWAT? Oh, I don’t know, I just don’t know. Really? Call SWAT? Really?”

Yes, you should have clear guidelines for activating the team. But how many times has the callout of a part-time team been delayed or denied when those callout criteria were met? We really do need to explain that SWAT is less of a threat than the people in the calls we are responding to—you know, those vewy, vewy bad people.

Part of the chief’s or sheriff’s fear of the unknown with SWAT is they truly may not know the capabilities—and the limitations—of their particular team. Sometimes we act as if we can do anything and everything. The chief might suspect differently.

In the immortal words of Inspector Harry Callahan, “A man’s got to know his limitations.” So must your SWAT team. Man-up now and draw the line. We can do barricaded gunman, but we can’t do hostage rescue. We can do bus assault, but we can’t rappel. We can do chemical agents, but we can’t do explosive entry. Whatever it may be, know what you can and can’t do.

Do only what you are excellent at doing. Don’t do what you have done once or twice in practice, fully-rested, fully-hydrated, in the middle of a nice sunny day with your full team on-hand. Know the difference. Know what you can do and then find a way to prove it to the administration.

So, do you request a meeting with senior staff and have a “show and tell” with all your cool gear? Perhaps have a few of them stop by the range on training day? The very best way to prove the capabilities of your team is to conduct an all-discipline, mock exercise. It needs to be realistic and relevant: active shooter, barricaded gunman—something that makes sense. Remember the goal is to convince the chief of your team’s capabilities. Inspire the chief’s confidence in the team. Educate the chief.

You don’t need to include Fire/EMS for the first few of these, but they eventually need to be included. However, you do need to include the entire chain of police command: dispatch, patrol, SWAT, negotiators, supervisors, the chief. Perhaps just a table-top exercise for the upper management, but they need to be somehow involved because that is the point. Also, the chief needs to be there during the after-action debrief.

You need to educate your chief. Don’t let the local press do it. Don’t force the chief to attend a class at a conference on it. You do it.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: banglist; commies; donutwatch; federal; funding; govtabuse; jbt; jbts; lping; policestate; socialism; swat; swatabuse; tyranny; waronliberty; waronus
Unbelievable. This is blatant disregard for the rights of American citizens.
1 posted on 09/13/2011 12:18:03 PM PDT by Immerito
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To: Immerito
"Listen, kids. Your government is evil. Your government has soldiers who wear black uniforms and masks. They have guns. Big guns and lots of 'em. The government will come to your house at night, kick in the door and shoot your dog. If your Dad acts surprised, they will shoot him too.
Yes, Tommy?"

"Teacher, why are you telling us this?"

"Well, Tommy, we want you to know that questioning authority is never a good idea. And by the way, tell your Dad not to act surprised tonight, okay?"

2 posted on 09/13/2011 12:24:15 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (The USSR spent itself into bankruptcy and collapsed -- and aren't we on the same path now?)
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To: Immerito
1)Go to wrong house at 3am.

2)Handcuff homeowner/wife and kids.

3)Hunt down and shoot family dog.

4)Ransack house.

5)Find out at wrong house.

6)Uncuff family members, warn them not to say anything under penalty of law.

7)Leave

3 posted on 09/13/2011 12:24:15 PM PDT by SkyDancer (I'm With The FAA And I'm Here To Help You.)
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To: Immerito

There are a lot more of us, then there are of them. Plenty of us have specialized military training as well. They are starting to get out of line.


4 posted on 09/13/2011 12:24:57 PM PDT by Soothesayer9
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To: Immerito; All

Considering when Chief Daryl Gates of the LAPD came up with the concept of SWAT. Its original definition was Special Weapons Attack Team.

I’ll let you take it from there.

Jack.


5 posted on 09/13/2011 12:28:56 PM PDT by Jack Deth (Knight Errant and Resident FReeper Kitty Poem /Haiku Guy)
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To: Immerito

This could have been written in any Fascist or Communist country to rave reviews. Goebbels would have been proud. Who the hell reads this crap? The Tactical Responder? Give me a break.


6 posted on 09/13/2011 12:29:47 PM PDT by Graneros (The most fundamental purpose of government is defense, not empire. – Joseph Sobran)
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To: Immerito
Make deploying SWAT something that is routine, not something only done after much hand-wringing.

And they can do animal control, too!


7 posted on 09/13/2011 12:35:04 PM PDT by archy (I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous!)
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To: Immerito
Does SWAT Need to Be Explained?

No, but the widespread use of SWAT teams needs to be seriously re-examined.

8 posted on 09/13/2011 12:35:35 PM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: Immerito
Stay active. Yes, I mean do warrant service and drug raids even if you have to poach the work.

Disgusting.

9 posted on 09/13/2011 12:37:00 PM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: Immerito
SWAT, explained:

It's been this way for 25 years. You're just now catching on.

10 posted on 09/13/2011 12:38:15 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (...then they came for the guitars, and we kicked their sorry faggot asses into the dust)
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To: Immerito
Make deploying SWAT something that is routine...

Disgusting-er...

11 posted on 09/13/2011 12:38:26 PM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: Immerito
Does SWAT Need to Be Explained?

Not really.


12 posted on 09/13/2011 12:38:32 PM PDT by archy (I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous!)
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To: Jack Deth

It’s original designation was Special Weapons and Tactics.


13 posted on 09/13/2011 12:41:59 PM PDT by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: ClearCase_guy

Ouch / LOL — That’s a witty way to describe it.


14 posted on 09/13/2011 1:10:36 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: archy

Comparing SWAT to Nazis is WAAAY out of line.

Nazis were honest and up front about being Nazis.


15 posted on 09/13/2011 1:48:26 PM PDT by tarotsailor
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To: Immerito

—as I have oft posted— SWAT teams should generally be disbanded, issued a .38 Special with two speedloaders, get equipped with a set of brogans with soles about an inch thick and given a beat to cover twice a night -on foot- starting about 10pm-—


16 posted on 09/13/2011 2:52:32 PM PDT by rellimpank (--don't believe anything the media or government says about firearms or explosives--)
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To: Immerito

There are a few times a SWAT team is needed. A couple years ago some nut job here in Pittsburgh shot and killed three policemen who responded to a family fight. Killed the three ambush style.
Pittsburgh SWAT was call out and I think they did a damn good job. In the face of constant gunfire they drove their armored car on to the lawn to get the men shot{ They didnt know that they were dead}. they didnt shoot up the house{As I would have seeing three of my co-workers killed by a coward}. They talked to him, when One of the snipers shot the AK out of his hands.
The scumbag was captured alive{ A little scuffed up} and convicted on three counts of murder and hopefully will be seeing the needle,and the judge added 80 years onto his term so he will never get to see sunshine again.
All this cop hate is really disturbing. Yeah there are bad police. Sure they screw up. Some of the people here sound like they would have rooted for the man who killed the policemen who showed up that morning.


17 posted on 09/13/2011 2:58:30 PM PDT by Yorlik803 (better to die on your feet than live on your knees.)
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To: Immerito
First, your team needs the training time under true callout conditions.

Many so-called "SWAT" teams do the vast majority of their deployments against harmless victims. Good for them, since their tactics are so sloppy that they'd be mincemeat if they tried to attack someone with the skill and determination to fight back effectively. Not so good for their victims, though.

18 posted on 09/13/2011 3:54:28 PM PDT by supercat (Barry Soetoro == Bravo Sierra)
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To: Graneros

It is more than a bit disturbing that SWAT teams seem to have their own magazine.


19 posted on 09/13/2011 4:45:05 PM PDT by Immerito (Reading Through the Bible in 90 Days)
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To: archy

I don’t know; the way that arthritic lab is holding that tennis ball in its jaws, it is clearly a vicious killer.

:-)

( /sarc )


20 posted on 09/13/2011 4:46:56 PM PDT by Immerito (Reading Through the Bible in 90 Days)
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To: Yorlik803

Question: If military tactics are needed, why not call the militia/national guard?

I entirely distrust these SWAT units as they blur the line between civil and military powers in such a way that they may embody something that would terrify our founding fathers: standing armies, but with near complete and utter immunity from civil, criminal, or military law.


21 posted on 09/13/2011 5:22:59 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: OneWingedShark
I'm only half joking when I say the police should be militarized.

Start by a) abolishing their unions; b) making their pay and pension on par with the military; and c) putting them under the military justice system.

22 posted on 09/13/2011 5:32:21 PM PDT by Ken H
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To: archy

We have been given, in writing, a gift. The gift of the true goals of the Agents of the State: to increase SWAT activity, justified or no.

Now, we’ll know why the cop “felt threatened” by a lab or shot the homeowner in a wrong house raid-—he was just getting in more practice, comrade. You can’t blame him for just following orders, citizen.

< /sarc>


23 posted on 09/13/2011 5:36:03 PM PDT by Immerito (Reading Through the Bible in 90 Days)
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To: Ken H

C would only work if the military justice system were serious about upholding the Constitution (and military law).
See this: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-vetscor/2638933/posts


24 posted on 09/13/2011 5:37:09 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: Ken H
Start by a) abolishing their unions; b) making their pay and pension on par with the military; and c) putting them under the military justice system.

I would much rather have military soldiers break my door in by mistake, than any police officers. These days, the police are to be feared and avoided. I understand that there are some great ones still, but the trend is obviously not going that direction. Best to just shun them, till there is enough civil outcry from the mayhem to press for a reformation. They obviously have no interest in purging their own ranks.
25 posted on 09/13/2011 5:44:44 PM PDT by ZX12R (FUBO GTFO 2012 !)
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To: Ken H
"Start by a) abolishing their unions; b) making their pay and pension on par with the military; and c) putting them under the military justice system."

Enforcing some Height/Weight standards probably wouldn't be a bad idea, either...


26 posted on 09/13/2011 5:48:07 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: OneWingedShark

What military tactics? I agree there is abuse of SWAT teams by stupid and headline grabbing Chiefs trying to keep the government cash by having the teams and calling them out nilly-willy.
SWAT teams ,if used properly, are very good tools to have when confronting hardened criminals. Regular street cops dont have the tools to handle the case I described in my post.


27 posted on 09/13/2011 5:50:00 PM PDT by Yorlik803 (better to die on your feet than live on your knees.)
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To: Immerito
Does SWAT Need to Be Explained?

Yes. Why do we need 90% of these would-be heroes?

Don’t let SWAT be that unknown. Make deploying SWAT something that is routine,...

No, really, don't.

28 posted on 09/13/2011 6:06:40 PM PDT by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: Joe 6-pack
Good grief. I hope this thread can hold up under all that weight!
29 posted on 09/13/2011 6:27:14 PM PDT by Ken H
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To: Immerito
"Yes, I mean do warrant service and drug raids even if you have to poach the work."

I thought poaching was a crime. Good thing most State Fish & Wildlife Departments have their own SWAT teams, too!

30 posted on 09/13/2011 6:35:30 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Immerito

or as Radley Balko put it “Practice on the People” ...
for what? what’s the game plan.


31 posted on 09/13/2011 9:08:22 PM PDT by cycjec
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To: Immerito

SWAT teams, even the better ones, are going to make operations errors.


Is an “operational error” when they break your door down and plug you and your dog? Or is it when they break your door down, terrorize the kiddos, throw you and your wife and kids on the floor and then figure out they have the wrong address?

It looks like SWATS are getting SWATted by citizens and ole Ed is doing some urgent salvage work. He’s one of these homeland security educational experts who teaches local police officers to act as an invading army, occupying enemy territory, and surrounded by terrorists.


32 posted on 09/13/2011 9:55:02 PM PDT by SaraJohnson
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To: Joe 6-pack
What happens when they come to a house that's guarded by at least one of these?


33 posted on 09/13/2011 11:09:06 PM PDT by Immerito (Reading Through the Bible in 90 Days)
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To: Yorlik803

In most other professions, the bad apples are found out and removed.

Government employees, including police, are often protected and shielded from the natural consequences of their actions. Which is why the bad apples not only largely remain, but increase in number, as other cops see less of a reason to follow Robert Peel’s principles.

What we need are fewer law enforcement officers who say “Yeah, they exist, but——” and more peace officers who say, “what this man/these men did was unPeelian and morally wrong, and I refuse to support them.”


34 posted on 09/14/2011 5:37:55 AM PDT by Immerito (Reading Through the Bible in 90 Days)
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To: Immerito
We really do need to explain that SWAT is less of a threat than the people in the calls we are responding to—you know, those vewy, vewy bad people.

Yep, people that have a bench warrent out for them for traffic tickets. Such a horror!

Don't forget to go to the wrong house and shoot the family pets.

Enough with the SWAT nonsence. I am sure it seemed like a good idea but really when they are having to go along to serve warrents, which used to be served by a cop who knocked on your door rather then breaking it down, just to have something to do there is no need for them.

35 posted on 09/14/2011 5:55:04 AM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Can we ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Easily. All nonsense questions are unanswerable.)
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To: Yorlik803
SWAT teams ,if used properly, are very good tools to have when confronting hardened criminals. Regular street cops dont have the tools to handle the case I described in my post.

There's a difference between a "real" SWAT team and a pseudo-SWAT team that's been given lots of cool toys and a bad-a&& attitude, but doesn't have the training or mindset to deal with actual opposition. Pseudo-SWAT teams serve no purpose except to terrorize the citizenry, since their sloppy tactics would get them killed if they actually confronted real dangerous criminals. Personally, I wish the pseudo-SWAT teams would confront dangerous criminals, so at least they then wouldn't be able to terrorize citizens, but unfortunately the pseudo-SWAT teams have too strong a sense of self-preservation.

36 posted on 09/18/2011 8:39:27 AM PDT by supercat (Barry Soetoro == Bravo Sierra)
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To: Immerito

Mr. Sanow is obviously an enemy of freedom, the Constitution, and the American people. He should be treated accordingly.


37 posted on 09/18/2011 8:44:35 AM PDT by Lurker (The avalanche has begun. The pebbles no longer have a vote.)
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To: Yorlik803

i don’t know if you are a cop, don’t really care because this isn’t addressed to you personally.

Because FR has the news from all the states I think that FReepers see too many instances of poor police training where it results in dead dogs, wounded or dead citizens and the only punishment the cop gets is three days paid vacation so that he can gather his thoughts before he writes a report about what actually happened.

What actually happens is that he gets to confer with his attorney and the city’s legal staff, the watch commander and senior officers about how to best limit the liabilities of the police department and the political officials. Then any evidence that cannot be explained or places the department in a bad light is destroyed, damaged or lost.

Now this isn’t the case in every instance. Once in a while the cop actually gets about one tenth the sentence that a civilian would for wounding or killing someone. He is generally given the chance to resign, so that it will be easier for him to get rehired in the adjoining county. Rarely is the officer fired or is his Law Enforcement Officer certification revoked or voluntarily surrendered. Being given a three week unpaid suspension is not what the average citizen considers as a just penalty for an unjust shooting.

I don’t know of anyone who would jump in to assist an officer making an arrest these days when five years ago almost all of my friends would have.

SWAT Teams that can’t locate the correct address are my favorite gripe. Highly trained in making unnecessary arrests and defending poor judgement yet cannot read a GPS or a map.

Now we need a helicopter, a military vehicle and 12 officers in black full-body armor and combat gear with full face ski masks & gloves from head to toe to bust someone for growing weed. When I was a kid two men in suits with one uniformed officer took care of those arrests.

Forty years ago civil servants were underpaid but had better benefits than the majority of workers. The pay has increased to the point where they are overpaid but none of the benefits were taken away. Cops making $200 grand (with benefits) a year are not uncommon.

Would you care to discuss the hazards of your job? Do they in anyway compare to the GI’s in Iraq or Afghanistan who would love to see 25K a year. Your medical is taken care of and it’s much better than the average GI’s. So, in my opinion you are well paid for the risks you take.

The Protect and Serve emblems on so many cars these days do not apply to the citizens.

Anyone who wishes, can pass this up the ranks to their Chief or their Sheriff. They’re the one who needs to read it and take action to correct the faults in their departments.


38 posted on 09/19/2011 3:17:03 PM PDT by B4Ranch (Allowing Islam into America is akin to injecting yourself with AIDS to prove how tolerant you are..)
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