Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Sandy Hook Week 2!!

Hey everybody,
Our second week consisted of the Park Ranger’s Law Enforcement Refresher. The refresher contained a total of 40 hours of training. During the training, the Rangers were updated on policies and techniques to help them adequately perform their duties. It also helped the new Seasonal Rangers earn their qualifications for a commission.
On the first day, it was more of a classroom setting where we had the only Victims Assistance Coordinator in the National Park Service talking about how to deal with crime victims. She explained to everyone what the rules and responsibilities are for Law Enforcement when dealing with victims. In the next training session we watched the Rangers participate in Taser recertification and we learned the anatomy of the Taser. Afterwards, two New Jersey Conservation Officers gave a session on NJ Fish and Wildlife Policy. It was interesting to learn about the different species and how to differentiate between them. One of the Officers brought in actual specimens of fish to show us the different features. It is important to be able to identify the different species of fish because there are many regulations. For instance, some species need to be a certain length in order to keep and some species are illegal to fish. 
On the second day, there was a lot more interaction and hands-on material. The rangers learned all about control tactics both verbal and physical. What made the day even more exciting was the fact that we had fellow ProRanger Fallen Roby-Roberson, visit from Morristown, NJ. We all had the opportunity to be suspects and get handcuffed to help the rangers train. We observed ground fighting techniques, simulation OC spraying, ASP (expandable baton) training, Taser simulations, and fighting techniques. One of the things that was stressed the most was verbalizing what you want the suspect to do, give them commands... “stay back, get on the ground, etc”.

The third day was by far the most interesting and exciting day of them all. The rangers participated in role playing scenarios using simunitions, which are paintball rounds that are fired through police service weapons to help simulate realistic scenarios. Although we were not allowed to participate we helped load the rounds in the magazines and watched from a close but safe distance. There were four different scenarios that forced the rangers to initiate different tactics to control a scene. The most interesting part was watching how the Rangers all had used different methods and tactics to get the same end result...suspect in custody. It was also funny to observe the rangers in their suspect roles; they really got into it..some maybe Oscar worthy?
Day four, was once again another classroom setting. This time we had the detectives from Monmouth County Prosecutors Office talk about Juvenile victims and their investigations. The detectives were very reassuring that they would assist the Park Service if needed and allow them to utilize their resources. Later on a member of MOCERT, Monmouth County Emergency Response Team came and spoke about their tactical SWAT unit and all of their capabilities. In the afternoon, our Program Manager Kim Coast came to talk about NPS policy updates, and heavily stressed ethics.
On the last day, we had a visit from the FBI, where two agents came in and spoke about what they do and how they could help the Park Service in time of need. Next the Park Rangers spoke about court procedure, and court updates. The last session we had the Deputy Chief and Chief of the Sandy Hook Fire Department talk about the possibility of coming across unexploded ordinance and also discussed FEMAS’ unified command. Coming across unexploded ordinance is still a possibility since Sandy Hook was a proving Ground to test weapons from 1874-1919.
Overall the week was informative and intriguing! We look forward to work with law enforcement again.  
-Vinny Lemba and Christina Cintron

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