Picayune police hold annual active shooter training

Published 7:00 am Friday, June 29, 2018

On June 14 and June 21 the Picayune Police Department held its annual active shooter training.

Police Chief Bryan Dawsey said the Department participates in active shooter training annually, typically holding the training at one of the campuses in the Picayune School District. This year the training was conducted at Roseland Park Elementary, he said. Officers train during the District’s summer vacation to avoid interruption of classes.

Within the Picayune Police Department, Major Chad Dorn is certified to provide instruction to other officers in relation to active shooter situations, Dawsey said. During the training, officers are split into two groups to conduct training on separate dates, to ensure every officer participates. He said they spent each day during the training to go over various in-depth scenarios. For instance, one scenario included a single officer approaching the school so the officers could learn how to respond to an active shooter situation if they were the first to arrive on scene. Dawsey said they also conduct group training to simulate several officers entering the school at once. In all cases, Dawsey said the training included arriving on scene, going through the school, locating the suspect and eliminating the threat.

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“We feel very confident in the officers and their training,” Dawsey said.

For the first time starting this upcoming school year, there will be a school resource officer stationed at every campus in the District, rather than a few who travel from school to school as in the past. This way if a situation does arise, there will always be at least one officer on-site, he said. If an emergency call is received in regard to an active shooter situation, the SRO will have backup within minutes, Dawsey said.

“It is our responsibility as police to not only protect all citizens, but to also ensure all children and school staff are safe every day. We place a high priority on training. I hope and pray we never have a situation like that here, but we’re doing our best to train and make sure we are well prepared,” Dawsey said.