Fred Leland, the director and principal trainer for Law Enforcement & Security Consulting and an active Lieutenant with the Walpole Police Department in New Hampshire, warned about the shortcomings in police training for active shooter response in 2010.
“The training is not up to par when it comes to dealing with these unconventional threats,” Leland told Homeland Security Television in 2010 during the filming of Active Shooter 2.1: And The Need for Full-Spectrum Police Officers. “Dealing with a guy one-on-one is one thing. But dealing with a guy who is actively shooting random people is another set of circumstances. Yet, the expectations are that they deal with it and that they go handle it.”
However, the recent news that an armed police officer waited outside the building at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High for four minutes as a killer shot students and teachers, has raised new questions about the training police officers receive and the protocols they are supposed to follow.
Although much progress has been made in learning how to organize and deal with these incidents, the Stoneman Douglas High School example shows us that more training is needed and not all officers may be up to the challenge.
Homeland Security Magazine brings you an edited version of our original 2010 video program, revisiting the issues and challenges facing police officers in the new threat environment.