By Lt. Edward Sanchez, AA/PIO
California State Prison, Corcoran
Workplace shootings make headlines, lives are lost and communities are shattered. They can happen anywhere and at any time, usually without warning. That’s why CDCR’s staff diligently train to bring such situations to a quick resolution.
California State Prison, Corcoran, (CSP-Corcoran) and California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison, Corcoran, (SATF) recently participated in a reality based active shooter exercise in the Administration Building at CSP-Corcoran.
This is the first exercise of this type for CSP-Corcoran and SATF. The exercise was complete with life-like wounds, stressful auditory reduction, and added participants from CSP-Corcoran’s administrative staff as role players. The first responders were personnel from the CSP-Corcoran and SATF Crisis Response (CRT) Team, Investigative Services Unit (ISU), Assistant Security Threat Group Investigators (ASTGI), as well as medical and mental health responders to include local Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
On April 1, Investigative Services Unit/Crisis Response Team Squad Leader Sgt. C. Morelock initiated training with all Administration Staff in the Run-Hide-Fight survival techniques of an Active Shooter.
Run-Hide-Fight is a nationally recognized training given by law enforcement agencies nationwide to schools, offices and non-law enforcement personnel. Run-Hide-Fight is a technique taught in an effort to save lives and limit mass casualties in the most effective manner for the non-law enforcement trained personnel.
On April 19, on-duty CRT and ISU personnel from CSP-Corcoran and SATF were summoned via institutional radio as well as notified by way of state issued cellular phone that an active shooter situation was occurring in the Administration Building at CSP-Corcoran. CRT personnel were issued weapons and simulated ammunition.
As soon as the first responders from CRT and ISU responded, they were given a safety briefing of the exercise, paired together, and instructed to respond to the Administration Building.
The first responders entered the Administration Building using their training and tactic to quickly locate, identify and neutralize the Active Shooter. Additional teams made entry to clear the remainder of the site. As the site was cleared, responding medical staff coordinated with EMS in treating the wounded victims in the designated medical triage area.
The ISU and ASTGI from both CSP-Corcoran and SATF proceeded to process the crime scene until the exercise was concluded approximately one hour after the initial radio traffic.
“It is exciting to see both Institutions coming together for this type of exercise. I am very thankful to have the trust and support of Warden D. Davey (retired, CSP-Corcoran), M. Sexton (Warden (A), CSP-Corcoran), J. Perez (CDW (A), CSP-Corcoran), C. Bell, (CEO, CSP-Corcoran), S. Sherman, (Warden, SATF), and T. Cisneros (CDW, SATF), in allowing us to put together this Active Shooter exercise. With so many tragic events occurring in the nation and in our own communities, it is imperative we continue our training and proactive approach in order to protect our staff and families,” said Sgt. Morelock.
Acting CSP-Corcoran Warden Sexton appreciated everyone’s dedication and hard work.
“I would like to thank all who assisted, participated, or responded to the Active Shooter Response Exercise. All played a key role during the planning and execution phases of the exercise. The extent of the exercise could not have been to the magnitude or success without the staff’s dedication and hard work. Everyone went above and beyond my expectations and it is truly appreciated,” Warden Sexton said.