APD Officers Train Schools, Hospitals and Businesses to Survive Active Shooter Attacks
By Officer Tasia Martinez
Albuquerque Police Officers have been hard at work providing Active Shooter training to local schools. Officers Andrew Lehocky and Larry Smyth have been dedicating their efforts to educating students, parents and teachers on active shooters and preparing schools for lockdown situations. Letters of appreciation from recent participants in the program and phone calls from schools requesting the training are pouring in.
The training has been conducted at numerous private and charter schools in the area including Hope Christian Schools, The Albuquerque Academy, St. Pius High School, and Sandia Preparatory School to name a few. The officers who provide the training say that they are pleased to see such a high demand for the training and that they hope that more Albuquerque Public Schools will invite them to conduct their training. Most of the schools interested thus far have been private and charter schools. They say that regardless of who requests the training, they are more than willing to provide schools with any resources and services that APD can offer.
"Word of this training is spreading quickly and the demand for more of it is certainly there." Albuquerque Police Department Sergeant of School Resource Officers, James Geha said. "The efforts of Officers Lehocky and Smyth have gone a long way in opening the lines of communication between the schools and the APD. Relationships are being formed and maintained daily. "
The Criminal Investigative Bureau of APD developed the program approximately a year ago. Several members of that Bureau have taken part in creating curriculum for local businesses, schools and hospitals to prepare them for violent attacks. That curriculum is still being updated, developed and specialized to better suit the unique needs of Albuquerque's local schools and entities. Dozens of local businesses and hospitals have also received the training including Presbyterian and Lovelace Hospitals.
The training is conducted over three days and includes three phases, lecture, site assessment done by APD officers and an actual lockdown drill. Participants learn vital survival skills and techniques to prevent and prepare for any possible attacks.
In light of recent violent attacks in other states and the tragedies experience here in Albuquerque at the Emcore Corporation, the Albuquerque Police Department is working to stay on the forefront of this issue and continue to work proactively against violent attacks on businesses and schools in the Albuquerque Community.