There’s a shift of focus for the Jacksonville Police Department when it comes to fighting terror attacks.
Instructors for active shooter training scenarios say the best way to battle instances of individuals acting solo- known as “lone wolf terrorism”- is for people to alert police if someone appears to be acting out of the ordinary.
Deputy Chief Chad Moore tells our reporting partners at WICS ABC Newschannel 20 that officers are told a “lone wolf” is the biggest active shooter threat, and has been for years, but there are a limited number of officers who can’t do their job without the public’s help.
“If all they’re doing is going to work, coming back from work, and they’re not really out there saying what their ideologies are, that’s where we need a neighbor or a coworker to step in and let us know about the things that are being said,” he says.
Moore says police are also looking for reports on suspicious behavior, more so than suspicious appearance.
Moore, who teaches an active shooter training class for the JPD, says stress is added to the training to punish mistakes made by police officers required to make split-second decisions.
“High tech version of paint ball in essence. They’re shot out of firearms that are converted to be able to shoot ‘simunitions’ so they don’t shoot live ammunition, but they’re real firearms,” says Moore.
Trainers also throw fake victims and fake explosives into the mix.
Moore says he hasn’t seen any large-scale active shooter situations in his time at the Jacksonville Police Department, but the training has been helpful in situations like riots involving 50 to 60 people.