UD hosts hostage exercises for 400 law enforcement officers
3:11 p.m., July 12, 2012--About 400 individuals -- including Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team members, evaluators, observers and civilian support staff from 11 police departments across the First State -- took part in Operation Mixed Bag, an active-shooter situation exercise held at two University of Delaware locations on Wednesday, July 11.
The operation kicked off 7:05 a.m., when several participating "protesters" scuffled with police on the front steps of Penny Hall on UD’s East Campus.
A taste of psychology
While several "arrests" were made, some of the arrested individuals broke free of police custody and ran into Penny Hall, where they took civilian hostages, thus beginning a series of negotiations between the perpetrators and police representatives.
Hostages also were taken in the Harrington D/E residence halls, nearby on UD’s East Campus.
The operation ended around 12:15 p.m., with the release of the final hostages at the Harrington location.
Joining the UD Police in Operation Mixed Bag were officers from the Delaware State Police and the Newark, New Castle County, Wilmington, Middletown, Dover, Seaford, Georgetown, Smyrna and Milford police departments.
“We were honored to be able to host this operation on campus and have police officers from across the state,” said Marcia Nickle, emergency preparedness manager in the UD Office of Campus and Public Safety. “This is the first time for this event, and we welcome the opportunity to be proactive in an active-shooter scenario exercise.”
Article by Jerry Rhodes
Photos by Evan Krape