By Lt. Jose Martinez, AA/Public Information Officer
North Kern State Prison
North Kern State Prison recently hosted a Law Enforcement Active Shooter Emergency Response (LASER) training-for-trainers course. The course was presented by The National Center for Biomedical Research and Training of Louisiana State University (LSU) and administered by the US Department of Homeland Security.
LSU had two cancellations in their training schedule and reached out to Mike Day from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Emergency Management and Planning Unit. In November, North Kern State Prison (NKSP) Associate Warden (AW) Jackie Jeter requested NKSP be considered for the class and the prison was selected to host the event. This was the first course of this nature to be accommodated by CDCR.
Efforts to accommodate the training were coordinated by the Delano City Council, Delano Police Chief Mark DeRosia, NKSP, Warden (A) Kelly Santoro, and AW Jackie Jeter.
In less than a month, with the help of Danny Espitia, NKSP Community Resource Manager, a venue to hold the practical application portion of the class was secured with Delano Police Department allowing NKSP to utilize their newly built police station.
Personnel from NKSP, Kern Valley SP, Wasco SP, CSP-Corcorn, Correctional Health Care Facility, California Correctional Institution, Calipatria SP and Substance Abuse Treatment Facility, as well as the Delano Police Department and Kern County Sheriff’s Department, participated in the training.
The course mixed classroom presentation, hands-on field training and practical exercises to enhance the response capabilities to effectively respond to and stop an active shooter incident. The training included door breaching, dynamic room entries and room clearing, including hostage scenarios.
During the second day of training, The City of San Bernardino had an active shooter incident which brought reality to the training. Every participant fully understood the purpose of the training.
On the last day of training, each participant was required to teach a portion of the class to demonstrate their teaching abilities. All participants can now apply to LSU for certification as an instructor to teach this course.
Mark DeRosia, Chief of Police for Delano, said in today’s world, law enforcement needs to be ready.
“In this day and age, we need to be prepared for anything,” he said. “My staff really enjoyed the course and if offered again, I would be honored to send other staff.”
Commander Lynn Venables, with Delano PD, appreciated the invitation to train.
“The course was a great refresher. It provided me with updated procedures. The teach-back was great because it taught me how to teach the course to other officers. If the course was offered again, I would love to attend,” Venables said.
Lt. Erik Smith,with Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison at Corcoran, said the training was necessary.
“This was much needed, and the training was outstanding and useful,” he said. “All who attended were motivated and active participants with the training.”