LAPD well-prepared for an active-shooter event, review says

A watchdog review found that the LAPD met or exceeded the relevant standards

By Emily Rasmussen
Los Angeles Daily News

LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles police officers are well-prepared if an active shooter event breaks out, a watchdog review and officials say.

With the number of such crimes continues to rise nationally, the city’s Police Commission had requested a review of the Los Angeles Police Department’s training and tactics for such chaos compared to six other large agencies in the country.

The review, by the Office of the Inspector General, found that the LAPD had similar training standards compared to the other departments and exceeded them in some areas.

“I think the department is well-equipped and well-trained to respond to any type of tactical situation,” Deputy Chief Marc Reina said during the commission’s Tuesday, April 5, meeting.

Reina, who is part of the department’s Training Bureau, said that the department has continued to improve its active-shooter training regularly and introduced a new course in October.

Approximately 865 officers have gone through that course so far, which includes six hours of outdoor time and focuses not only on stopping a threat, but providing medical care, Sgt. Robert Quiroz said. The department has more than 9,400 sworn officers; it is unclear how many will undergo the new training.

Assistant Inspector General Django Sibley said that the department’s training covers a suspect armed with any weapon who has threaten to use deadly force or to seriously hurt someone and continues to be a threat, according to the review.

LAPD’s use-of-force policy concerning active-shooter events says officers shall not fire under conditions that would subject bystanders or hostages to death or possible injury, except to preserve life or prevent serious bodily injury, according to the review.

[RELATED: 7 common active shooter training mistakes]

In late December, concerns about tactics were raised after an LAPD officer shot a rifle at an assualt suspect who had been hitting people with a bike lock inside a Burlington store in North Hollywood. A 14-year-old girl, hiding in a dressing room with her mother, was accidently shot and killed by one of the shots.

The policy also includes de-escalation tactics, which LAPD had more materials and details than any other large department included in the review, Sibley said.

The Office of the Inspector General is to provide independent, civilian oversight of the LAPD. Departments used for comparison in the review included the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the San Diego Police Department and the New York Police Department.

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McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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