While it’s good to have someone designated to call 911, it may not work like you plan. Depending on how many congregants are at your event when violence breaks out, a 911 call from your designated caller probably won’t be in the first 50.
It’s also good to have a full transition plan, including posted people outside to inform arriving officers. Those moments when officers converge at an active attack scene can get hairy for the civilian defender(s) already there. Due to various dynamics of an active attack however, your transition plan might fail to develop.
At our attack, as the killer was dead on our floor and I was standing over his body, 911 was jammed; I could not get through. I knew exactly where the killer was and where other armed team members were but had no way of getting that information out.
We had nobody at any of our multiple entry doors to inform law-enforcement of where the action was, or that we had armed defenders inside.
As I stood over the killer’s body with my gun at his head, the first officers came through the door low, mean, fast and mad saying nothing as they came at me, A/R’s shouldered.
I slid my firearm across the tile floor and slowly stepped away from the body, with my arms out as far out as I could, proclaiming loudly that “the shooter is down right there!” I stayed focused on the killer, not even looking at the approaching officers. They went around me and converged on the bad guy.
Then I did something I rarely admit. As the officers were checking over the downed killer, I bent over and retrieved my gun. The officers never saw that.
I never claim we did everything right that day.
Think About it …
You’ve heard officers will be yelling at you to put down your weapon. They might not say a word.
You might be the designated 911er. You might not get through.
You should have a transition plan. It might not develop.
Train for all the right things but you are still responsible for each moment as it happens regardless of how good or bad your training and that of others really plays out.
Train like good lives depend on it, because they do.
Next week we will look at a case where it went bad for church security as officers arrived.
This is such an important topic.. Threat de-escalation/transition planning is just as important as “pre-incident” planning