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Joplin Police Department Basic S.W.A.T. Team School

Six agencies participate in the Joplin Police Department's Basic S.W.A.T. Team School. This practice is a way for all the agencies to pick up the same tactics and learn to work together.
JOPLIN, MO.----  "We're trying to work as a team, learn as a team, so we're all going through it. So whenever we get out of here, we can apply that on the road and all this other activity that's been increasing in our county," said Tysher Blakely, Vernon County S.W.A.T. Team.

The S.W.A.T. team school allows Joplin's team and surrounding communities, like Vernon County ,to lean on one another for additional resources. 

"I learned a little bit more better about leadership and stuff like that. I'll be able to talk to these guys a little bit better, have a little bit more confidence and stuff of that issue," said Blakely. 

The training consist of handling high risk search warrants and other dangerous situations. 

"If we have a school shooting or something in the area, or something that one agencies can't handle itself, so we'll be calling all of these agencies that we're working with this week. We'll be calling them in to assist us and now they're going to know how we're going to be working and we'll be able to work together," said Cpl. Brian Henderson, Joplin Police Department.

They also practiced how to approach hostage situations.

"Now we'll know where everybody goes so when we go to try and apprehend somebody, we'll know how to fall into place and know what exactly to do as oppose to thinking about it. We'll be able to do it a little bit more dynamically," said Blakely.

In high risk situations, there's a possibility someone could get shot, which is why each individual under goes emergency medical training. Joplin's S.W.A.T. trainers say this is a way area agencies can learn to accomplish more in multiple communities.

"It's all of us working together to try and make this not only Joplin, but the whole area a safer place to live. And that's really what, as police departments, one of the things we want is a better quality of life for citizens," said Cpl. Henderson.

S.W.A.T. teams also learned how to strategically move through the woods and identify military explosives as well as, civilian made bombs. Members of Joplin's S.W.A.T. Team have participated in several training sessions in different states. They've now built their own program, which they hope expand next year. 

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