PRINEVILLE, OR -- The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office held a first-of-its-kind SWAT training last week in Crook County, unbeknownst to most residents. Captain Paul Garrison says it's important that officers learn the latest techniques in a controlled setting. "The Oregon State Sheriff’s Association identified that there were some needs for some additional training, wider spread. So, myself and Lt. Nick Hunter, from the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, were tasked to design this, come up with a plan and implement it."
He says the OSSA plans to offer training in various regions, "The intent, from this point forward, will be to move that regionally around the state so that not any one agency is burdened with having to send their officers, their deputies, all the time out of their home area." He tells KBND News previous trainings were held in only one area and participation was limited.
Last week's training brought 22 students and 24 instructors from 13 law enforcement agencies to the National Guard facility outside Prineville. Sessions included time in the classroom and real-world drills (pictured).
Capt. Garrison says he'd like to see trainings eventually expanded to include non-SWAT members who would benefit from tactical knowledge, "The agencies that are farther to the east, that have less resources, that don’t have teams at their disposal, need to be able to handle situations. So, there will be an ‘advanced patrol tactic’ class at some point, that will be built from this class, as well."
To hear our full conversation with Captain Paul Garrison, visit our Podcast Page.