The Academy is actively engaged in providing professional
training on response to school violence and active shooter
incidents. A 24 hour DCJS certified basic active shooter course
is offered, as well as reality based active shooter drills, held
in area schools. Officers attending these drills can put into
practical use, their active shooter training. Role players from
the schools fill the roles as principal, teachers and other
staff. Role players are also used to act as victims, yelling,
screaming and creating the chaos and confusion that would be
included in any active shooter incident, putting emotions, and
stress into the responding officers. With the use of FX training
guns and non-lethal training ammunition (NLTA), the drills are
as realistic as possible, keeping safety in mind at all times.
EMS crews are also included in these training drills.
Drills have been held in
Sidney, Walton and Delhi schools, with planning under way to
involve Downsville, Margaretville and BOCES, as future sites. If
you are interested in hosting an active shooter drill at your
school, or business site, please contact the academy. The news
write up from the Delhi school drill is included in this section
of the web site.
By Terry Hannum
The situation at Delaware Academy looked to be very
grave on the morning of August 26. Several police units from
the region, the Sheriff's department, and State Troopers had
gathered with ambulances and paramedics ready for service.
There was the sound of guns being shot, shouts begging for help, and
screams echoing throughout the main hall of the high school.
This may sound terrifying and a horrific scene, but this was a
drill, a simulation of what could potentially happen in a worse case
scenario of someone armed and dangerous in the school.
The Delaware County Law Enforcement Academy, lead by Captain James
Small and Sheriff Thomas Mills, have been organizing these
disturbing dramas at schools throughout the county. The
purpose is to create a realistic setting and situation for law
enforcement officials, emergency responders, and ambulance services
to react to and work together in crisis situations. The
training is made possible with the cooperation of the participating
school and an ample supply of volunteer actors who play the parts of
students, teachers, and 'shooters'.
Why act out such graphic and dramatic violence? Captain Small
explained that the more training these professionals get, the safer
our communities will be. A person that is shooting or
threatening to shoot in a school building is perhaps the most
stressful situation that a law enforcement official could imagine
having to address. The presence of frightened and possibly
injured students is impossible to comprehend in the midst of a
violent person that must be subdues.
In this rural and typically quiet County, the thought of a situation
like this happening here seems completely unbelievable, but training
for the 'what-ifs' is a benefit to everyone. A nationwide
prompting of this training has taken place following the tragic
incident that took place at Columbine High School in Colorado.
This school was a rural, remote school a well and it too was an
unlikely place for the level of violence that took place. In a
determined mission to bring some small bits of good out of that
horrible incident, law enforcement officials have carefully reviewed
what took place and ways that might help prevent or limit damage in
Multiple drills took place with brief reviews and corrections after
each trial with a summary luncheon provided by the Academy at the
Delaware County Sheriffs Office in the Public Safety Building.
The participating agencies in this valuable drill were the Delhi
Village Police, Delaware County Sheriff's Office, New York State
Troopers, University Police - Delhi, Norwich City Police, Delaware
County Probation Office, Delaware County Social Services, Ambulance
Services, and Cooperstown Medical Responders. The power of
cooperating services and departments was the most impressive display
of ideal teamwork possible and a reassuring fact for the entire
The Active Shooter Training program information can be obtained by
contacting Sheriff Mills at the Sheriff's Office at 607-832-5555.