MDPD

‘We Will Take Action': Miami-Dade Police Demonstrate Training for Potential School Shootings

As kids get ready to head back to class, the issue at the top of parents' minds is school safety.

On Wednesday, July 27th, the Miami-Dade Police Department gave an inside look at their training for a potential school shooting at the County Community Relations Board meeting. It is a terrible reality that officers need to be prepared for, but the department says its team is ready.

Video from the Uvalde Texas shooting sparked outrage from the public as parents and police experts said the officers waited too long to confront the shooter. Miami-Dade police say their officers are trained to go in and stop the shooter. 

“Stop the killing. Stop the dying. We will take action,” said Miami-Dade Police Director, Alfredo Ramirez III.

The board says calls have been coming in with questions about how Miami-Dade police would respond to an active shooter and that parents want to know what makes the Miami-Dade response different from Uvalde. 

“As a fellow parent myself and a member of law enforcement, I know that all the law enforcement here in Miami-Dade are focusing on ensuring that our children are safe and that our school year is safe,” Ramirez said. “We are also asking our parents and our community if you see something suspicious or any suspicious activity please report it.”

The department says it created the active shooter program four years ago, but began implementing it three years ago.

MDPD tells NBC 6 the training has evolved as new situations arise during responses to mass shootings, but Ramirez said training has not changed since Uvalde because he is confident in the training that was already in place. 

The specialized unit has bi-weekly training - repeating the training over and over again until it becomes second nature. The director says the team trains in different locations, like local churches, to practice it's skills in different environments. 

In addition to the mass casualties unit, the other officers receive yearly training.

“God forbid that we ever have to get into that situation, but if we do we’ll be ready,” Ramirez said. 

Other departments in the county say they stand behind the Miami-Dade Police Department's training and are using it as a model. 

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