IACP 2014 Conference Plenary Session: Preparing for and Responding to Active Shooter and Other Complex Attacks

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Executive Assistant Director Robert Anderson Jr.  joins Miami Beach Police Chief Daniel Oates (formerly Chief of the Aurora (CO) Police Department) as he guides a discussion among small and large law enforcement agency officials who detail the lessons learned of preparing for and responding to active shooters and other attacks. This session will include information on managing multiple victims and witnesses, casualty care in high threat environments, crime scene management, the increased use of IEDs in the domestic environment, and how to successfully leverage FBI and other federal law enforcement resources to enhance response efforts.

The FBI recently released a study of 160 active shooter incidents that occurred between 2000 and 2013 throughout the U.S. The primary purpose of the study? To provide law enforcement partners—normally the first responders on the scene of often dangerous and fast-moving events—with data that will help them to better prepare for and respond to these incidents, save more lives, and keep themselves safer in the process.

Because many of these incidents unfold rapidly, Special Agent Katherine Schweit—who heads the FBI’s Active Shooter Initiative—says she hopes the study “demonstrates the need not only for enhanced preparation on the part of law enforcement and other first responders, but also for civilians to be engaged in discussions and training on decisions they’d have to make in an active shooter situation.”

A Study of Active Shooter Incidents in the United States Between 2000 and 2013 contains a full list of the 160 incidents used in study, including those that occurred at Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook Elementary School, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Fort Hood, the Aurora (Colorado) Cinemark Century 16 movie theater, the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin, and the Washington Navy Yard, as well as numerous other tragic shootings. Here are some of the study’s findings:

  • Active shooter incidents are becoming more frequent—the first seven years of the study show an average of 6.4 incidents annually, while the last seven years show 16.4 incidents annually.
  • These incidents resulted in a total of 1,043 casualties (486 killed, 557 wounded—excluding the shooters).
  • All but six of the 160 incidents involved male shooters (and only two involved more than one shooter).
  • More than half of the incidents—90 shootings—ended on the shooter’s initiative (i.e., suicide, fleeing), while 21 incidents ended after unarmed citizens successfully restrained the shooter.
  • In 21 of the 45 incidents where law enforcement had to engage the shooter to end the threat, nine officers were killed and 28 were wounded.
  • The largest percentage of incidents—45.6 percent—took place in a commercial environment (73 incidents), followed by 24.3 percent that took place in an educational environment (39 incidents). The remaining incidents occurred at the other location types specified in the study—open spaces, military and other government properties, residential properties, houses of worship, and health care facilities.

This plenary session will take place today in room  W209ABC, from 1:00 PM-3:00 PM

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