How law enforcement train, respond to shootings

Laramie County law enforcement conducts training in active shooting scenarios and utilizes school facilities to authenticize situations.


According to Lieutenant Kevin James of the Laramie County sheriff’s department, officers go through annual training. The trainings are 10 hours at a minimum and entail active shooter scenarios, firearm training, and use of force.  Joint active shooting scenarios are also held with other agencies.


Active shooter scenarios happen on the Laramie County Community College campus in Cheyenne.


“There have been two large scale scenarios in the last five years that were at LCCC,” James  said.


For these scenarios the sheriff’s department works with Fire District 1, Swat and American Ambulance. The scenarios allow for the deputies learn how to respond to the situation.


During the scenarios there are actors dressed up and acting like they have been shot or injured in some degree. The last time that the sheriff’s department did a scenario, they used LCCC’s drama department.


The officers have to act accordingly because they must catch and maintain the suspect before going to help the wounded.


An officer’s response time is one to 15 minutes, depending on the location of the call. If the officers are going to LCCC, then the response time is one to two minutes.


According to Captain Linda Gesell of the sheriff’s department, the first deputy to respond will take action first with any call. If a shooting happens in city limits, then the sheriff’s department will act as a support system for the police department. In turn, the police department would do the same for the sheriff’s department.


Officers who have responded to a shooting receive mental care by going to the sheriff’s department’s or the CPD’s official recommended counselors to talk it through with them. The officer will then need to be cleared by the counselor.


James and Gesell are looking at evidence to see how they can better their officers and train them in case the situation will ever happen.


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