(April 12, 2019) Avoid. Deny. Defend.
It’s a mantra Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Corporals Josh Moore and Mike Sand explained as part of Tuesday night’s active assailant situation training session at the Worcester County Recreation Center.
The course’s strategy was developed in 2004 by the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training center at Texas State University.
“We want them to have the tools that they’re gonna need how to handle these situations under stress,” said Sheriff Matt Crisafulli.
Because of the rise in school shootings and threats across the county, Moore said the sheriff’s office is striving to have school resource officers placed in every Worcester County Public School.
“We’re working that problem,” he said.
The Capital Gazette, a newspaper in Annapolis, however, saw five people killed in a June 2018 mass shooting, and hundreds of active shooter incidents have occurred in the country over the last two decades.
Sand also applauded Anne Arundel law enforcement last year during the shooting in Annapolis and said “their response time was impressive.”
The CRASE training session covered topics ranging from historical context to risk factors to what to do in the event of an active threat.
“You have to mentally prepare yourselves,” Sand said. “It involves thinking about the worst case scenario.”
Moore stressed the importance of quickly leaving the scene if a situation were to arise.
“If you can get out, get out,” he said.
However, if the time came to defend oneself, Sand said not to hold back.
“When it comes to defending yourself, be the meanest, nastiest person you can be,” he said.
Following the presentation, Moore and Sand invited participants to ask questions, and many expressed their unease with the possible safety concerns in Ocean City.
Moore assured people that local law enforcement is prepared.
“It’s a really good thing that we’ve got vehicle barriers,” Moore said.
About 65 people attended the first public workshop.
“I like to be … aware of my surroundings,” said Snow Hill resident Linda Shockley.
Charlie Herbert, of West Fenwick, Delaware, is a member of the Fire Police division within the Roxana Volunteer Fire Department. He said he had an “interest in the program” and hoped to get a “personal education” from sitting in on the course.
“[I’m] happy this will work to advance our … decision making,” Herbert said.
Several sheriff’s office deputy’s present at Tuesday’s class were pleased with the outcome and public attendance.
“I was grateful for the turnout,” Moore said. “I was grateful for the interaction because again, to come here is one thing, but to actually participate is a whole other thing.”
Moore added preparation is crucial as these types of incidents become more and more commonplace.
“Regrettably, this is where we are as a country, as a society,” he said. “So if we at least inform people, then we’ll be all the better off for it.”
Contact Chief Deputy Mark Titanski firstname.lastname@example.org or 410-632-1111 for more information.