SD SWAT Teams Train In Yankton
by Jeff Rusack, Reporter
October 10, 2013 5:08 PM
SWAT teams all across South Dakota train for dangerous hostage situations. And this week a handful of departments learn a few pointers from specialists working for the Los Angeles Police Department.
Since SWAT teams only called into duty a limited number of times during the year, especially in more rural parts of South Dakota, learning the most up to date techniques is vital. And Troy Thomas of the LAPD is just the guy to keep South Dakota SWAT teams in check.
“We're just doing run after run after run. Repetition is the key, here. The more repetition, the more runs the guys get, the more different looks they get, the better ability they're going to have in those critical thinking instances,” said Thomas.
Thomas is pretty tight lipped when discussing the exact methods he's teaching. But, when situations are stressful, he wants SWAT members to do one thing.
“Be better critical thinkers to resolve situations,” added Thomas.
The Yankton SWAT team isn't called in on a daily basis.
“SWAT is always our last option. Force is something we don't want to do,” said Lt. Mike Burgeson.
Lt. Burgeson says this extra training keeps the Yankton team sharp.
“They teach us some great things, something we never thought about. And they teach us life saving techniques and that's what it is all about,” added Burgeson.
And as a week of intensive training comes to an end in Yankton, SWAT teams hone their craft for the next dangerous situation.