Behind the scenes look at police training - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Behind the scenes look at police training

By Crystal Britt - bio | email

PADUCAH, KY (KFVS) - Police conducted a rare exercise at Kentucky Oaks Mall.

An Iraq war veteran suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder reaches a breaking point.  He goes on a shooting spree, and ends up at Kentucky Oaks Mall where he holds two people hostage.

It sounds like a wild news story, but it's all part of police training.

Thursday night Heartland News got a rare behind the scenes look at the Paducah Swat Team and Bomb Squad in action.

"A subject in Wickliffe shot two people and threw one in the trunk of his car," said Wes Orazine, Swat Team Commander. "He headed east toward Kentucky Oaks Mall."

The Swat team arrives, knowing a dangerous murder suspect is on the scene.

"Officers stopped a vehicle on the lot, and a shoot-out ensued," said Assistant Police Chief Stacey Grimes.

Police say the suspect went inside holding two hostages.

One escaped, but the Swat team had to move inside knowing there's at least another victim.

They learn a security guard is shot right outside the Sports Connection store.

Inside the store is the suspect, and another hostage.  She's released.

Officers go inside the store, and the suspect surrenders.

With the suspect in custody, there's still one more task at hand for the Bomb Squad.

"Once we arrived we determined there were explosives in the vehicle," said Orazine. 

"They're trying to get in the device and figure out how to disarm it," said Grimes. 

The Bomb Squad first brings out a robot.  It's equipped with a camera, so they can watch it's every move from a safe distance.  Then, they approach the device, examining in it and later disarming it.

The mission's considered a success.

This is the first training exercise of this magnitude at the mall.

"Unfortunately this being one of the biggest retail places in the area, if anything like this did happen there's a good chance it could happen here," said Chuck Hall, Kentucky Oaks Mall property manager.  "So anything we can do to make them better at what they do, we're always on board."

Hall hopes this begins a new tradition.  He'd like to see this training at Kentucky Oaks Mall annually.

©2009 KFVS. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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