New York and New Jersey Bombings

NYCA Bombings 17-19 September

New York and New Jersey Bombings by:
Chris Butler, the Nations Leading IED and Explosive Detection / Awareness Expert

Both bombings that occurred over the weekend were “acts of terrorism” despite what Mayor de Blasio spins for the liberal, progressive agenda. Bombings by nature are either for the express purpose of destroying your perceived enemy or to push a political agenda by trying to terrorize and coerce the populace into accepting your agenda, through repeated attacks on their safety.

The Improvised Explosive Device (IED) that detonated at the Seapark race event in NJ was a technical and strategically sound act of terrorism by bombing. Fortunately due to the late start of the race there were few people in the target vicinity. This tells me that the pipe bomb, as it is currently being called, had a timer detonating device. The bomber had no direct control over the device’s detonation after they activated the countdown and couldn’t readjust the timer setting without exposing themselves and the location of the IED.

IED that detonated in Manhattan

IED that detonated in Manhattan

The IED that detonated in Manhattan, on 23rd Street, was a technically sound terrorism bombing but not strategically sound. Due to me not wanting to give aspiring terrorists pointers I’m leaving out why this is so. The second IED that was found by police doing a sweep, on 27th Street, was a pressure cooker style IED, utilizing a cell phone as the trigger for detonation. This device is found all over the Middle East and on various jihadist websites. It’s the same type of IED responsible for the carnage at the Boston Marathon in April of 2013. The two brothers who perpetrated that attack were Muslim and had obviously gained IED building knowledge through their Middle Eastern contacts.

IED Exploding

IED Exploding

The third IED was a backpack that contained 5 IEDs. Initially found by two civilians sitting on a garbage can, outside of a train station in Elizabeth, NJ. The two men noticed a couple of protruding wires coming out of the backpack and notified authorities. Police Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) technicians investigated the IEDs and during the course of their investigation one of the IEDs exploded. The other four IEDs were secured and rendered safe. The backpack full of IEDs near a busy travel hub, like the train station, is very tactically astute. Not having the IED build Intel yet I cannot say if the protruding wires were part of the trigger for the detonating system or a safe to arm feature. My educated guess, based on my current knowledge of the device; the backpack IED was set up with a timer trigger for the detonation system. A timed IED keeps the bomber physically safe and helps to provide safe separation to support a bomber’s alibi if confronted by authorities.

New York and New Jersey Bombings Timeline

Timeline of the NYCA Bombing Events

Saturday, Sept. 17

9:30 a.m.: A bomb hidden in a trash can explodes in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, near the location of the Semper Five Marine Corps Charity 5K race. 

8:31 p.m.: An explosion in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood sends 29 people to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

11 p.m.: New York Mayor Bill de Blasio calls the explosion “an intentional act” but stops short of calling it terrorism, saying “there is no specific and credible threat to New York City from any terror organization.” He also notes there is no evidence that the bomb in Chelsea was related to the explosion in Seaside Heights.

Shortly after the press conference: A pressure cooker with wires coming out of it and a cellphone connected to it with duct tape is discovered on 27th Street, about four blocks away from where the bomb exploded in Chelsea.

Sunday, Sept. 18

2:23 a.m.: The device that had been discovered on 27th Street is safely removed. 

8:30 p.m.: Two men coming out of a restaurant near a train station in Elizabeth, New Jersey, find a backpack sitting on top of a garbage can and take it. After walking with the extremely heavy bag for about 1,000 feet, the men put it down, and notice wires protruding from it. At around 8:45 p.m., they alerted the Elizabeth Police Department.

10:30 p.m.: Late Sunday night, two law enforcement officials said that investigators stopped a car on the Belt Parkway near the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and took five people to an FBI office in Manhattan for questioning in the bombing investigation. One of the officials said that all or most of them may have been from the same family and that they may have been on their way to the airport.

Monday, Sept. 19

12:30 a.m.: After the FBI takes over the scene in Elizabeth, two robots are used to determine the backpack contains five explosives. One of the explosives goes off accidentally—but luckily causes no injuries—before the other four are secured.

Approximately 7:30 a.m.: The FBI releases a photo of a 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Rahami from Elizabeth, New Jersey, saying he is “wanted for questioning” in connection with the Chelsea bombing. He is described as a United States citizen of Afghan descent. Officials later tell CNN that it is believed Rahami is the man seen in surveillance videos taken near the scene of the Chelsea bombing and the location of the pressure cooker device discovered on 27th Street.

New York New Jersey Bombing Locations

New York New Jersey Bombing Locations

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Expert Disputes Common Response to Active Shooter

The mantra for dealing with an active shooter has long been “run, hide and fight” — a response one expert says needs to change. Expert Disputes Common Response to Active Shooter.

15431003The approach of run if you can, hide if you can’t run, and fight if you must is a highly flawed process to follow in the midst of terror, said Chris Grollnek, one of the top nationally-recognized active shooter and domestic terrorism prevention experts for critical incident response.

“Why would you think hiding under a desk would be a good idea?” Grollneck said. “If I told you there was a bomb, you would run. It’s the same principle.”

In the face of an active shooter situation, Grollnek said people need to be trained instead to evade, evacuate and engage as a last resort.

Grollnek, who’s spent nearly a decade researching active shooter incidents since being involved in one himself at the McKinney Police Department in 2010, said evidence shows running works, while hiding doesn’t.

“If we don’t install the message of ‘get out’ into everybody,” Grollneck said, the next question has to be, “What are your chances of surviving if you’re hiding?

“If you’re on aisle six, hiding behind toilet paper and the (active shooter) sees your foot, well, bullets go through paper.”

The nightmare of coming face-to-face with an active shooter became real Tuesday morning when Mohammad Moghaddam, 54, walked into Walmart, 4215 Canyon Drive, and fired his gun once before taking the store manager and another employee hostage. Whether Moghaddam, also an employee, ever had the thought to open fire on the crowd is unknown.

City officials said his actions were not considered a terroristic threat and instead were summed up as workplace violence following a dispute over a promotion.

Grollnek said while it is important for businesses such as Walmart to have a comprehensive protocol for active shooters, it’s also crucial for the general public to be prepared.

In any situtation, Grollnek said people should know where the exits are, take an assessment of their chances for escape and, if traveling with others, discuss what to do in case of an emergency.

When escaping from a building, Grollnek suggests running, using a cover and throwing things in the air to distract the shooter.

He also said it’s important to understand that the person with the gun has a strategy.

“They have a plan,” he said. “You just have to be smarter than their plan.”

By national average, active shooter events tend to end in seven minutes. Typically it takes law enforcement 17 minutes to respond to the scene of a shooting and develop a course of action.

The exact timeline of Tuesday’s incident at Walmart is not yet fully known. The initial 911 call was received about 11:06 a.m. Fire marshals and police officers arrived in less than five minutes. After the SWAT team entered the building, the incident ended about an hour and 15 minutes after the initial call.

Among events Grollnek has studied, the average time responders reach a first victim, alive or dead, is 23 minutes.

“Given those statistics, we must reach further to provide common sense training to every employee and beyond,” he said.

Walmart did not respond to an email request Wednesday about its policies and procedures in the case of an active shooter inside a store.

An official spokesperson released the following statement Tuesday: “As soon as we heard about the situation at our store in Amarillo, Texas, we acted immediately. All customers and our two associates who were held hostage are safe.”

The bottom line, Grollnek said, is that people need to realize we live in a different world today.

According to federal statistics, there has been an uptick in violent workplace incidents.

From 2006 to 2010, the last year for which final data are available, the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries reported an average of 551 workers per year killed as a result of work-related homicides. Of the 518 in 2010, 77 were multiple-fatality incidents.

“We must ask ourselves, ‘What if another one happens tomorrow?’” Grollnek said.

Mohammad Moghaddam’s mugshot was taken from a 2003 driver’s license application.

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FOX 45 Baltimore Hoax Vest Bomb

bomber_fakeOn Thursday, April 28th at about 1 p.m., Alex Brizzi, 25, headed to the FOX 45 Baltimore TV station wearing what police called a “panda outfit onesie”, a red vest-like device, surgical mask, sunglasses, and what he claimed was a bomb.

Brizzi had set his car on fire in the parking lot before entering the TV station building. Brizzi entered the TV Station’s secure vestibule and demanded access to the TV station so he could air a story about a government conspiracy. The information he wanted to share was on a flash drive.

The security guard kept the Brizzi out of the TV station’s newsroom and called 911. The vestibule was secured and access to the rest of the TV Station required security to buzz personnel through a secure door. While keeping Brizzi talking the security guard implemented an evacuation of the rest of the FOX 45 building.

Swat_BomberFakeSWAT arrived on scene, and Brizzi hid inside a vestibule and threatened to blow up thebuilding. After an hour and a half, Brizzi went voluntarily outside with his hands in his pockets. He then began to approach SWAT forces. SWAT demanded Brizzi stop and remove his hands from his pockets.

Brizzi refused to take his hands out of his pockets as he continued to advance towards the police. SWAT then engaged Brizzi with small arms. Brizzi was shot by SWAT 3 times, one shot by three different officers. Brizzi sustained wounds in the neck, wrist, buttock, and right leg. Due to the shot to the neck, Brizzi collapsed to the ground. SWAT withdrew and the bomb squad sent their robot to perform a reconnaissance of the explosive vest Brizzi claimed he had strapped to his chest.
BombFake_inStreet

The bomb squad used their robot to communicate with Brizzi and try and get him to remove the suspected bomb from his person. Brizzi declined to comply with the bomb squad’s demands. The bomb squad utilized the robot to remove Brizzi’s clothing and investigated the suspected bomb strapped to Brizzi’s chest. Eventually, the bomb was removed by the robot and was moved to a safe area to be further investigated. The vest bomb turned out to be a hoax.

FakeBomb_VestThe hoax bomb turned out to be chocolate bars wrapped in aluminum foil and wires. The wires led to a computer motherboard attached to a red life preserver. No explosives or detonators were found. SWAT then approached Brizzi, secured him and took him to EMS personnel for treatment of his wounds.

SWAT ACTIONS
SWAT personnel got too close to the suspect. If that had been an actual explosive vest and it detonated SWAT personnel would have been wounded from primary and secondary fragmentation.

Shots to the head are the only shots that should be taken on a suspect with a bomb strapped to them. Loose fitting clothing could have hid more explosives around the suspect’s waist, groin and legs. Shooting the suspect in the wrist and leg could have potentially set an explosive device off. If the suspect was holding a potential trigger to the alleged bomb he had strapped to him it could have had a “Dead man” switch. That type of switch initiates a bomb if pressure from the hand is released. A shot to the wrist could have inadvertently released the grip of the suspect’s hand, setting the bomb off.

Bomb Squad ACTIONS
Bomb Squad personnel performed admirably. They utilized the full range of capabilities their robot was capable of. They made the correct decision to remotely interrogate the suspected bomb utilizing the robot. They were able to separate the suspected bomb from the suspect and remove it immediately to a safe area.

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Active Shooter Prevention more than a Mandate

Active Shooter Prevention more than a Mandate

Active Shooter Trainer Chris Grollnek

Active Shooter Prevention more than a Mandate by Chris Grollnek

Risk Management Specialists

PRIMA 2016 Annual Conference

Speaker: Active Shooter Prevention and Training Expert Chris Grollnek

Speaking Event and Topic:

Title: Active Shooter Prevention & Technology – More Than a Mandate

PRIMA 2016 Annual Conference

Hi Chris, your one-day speaker registration has been received and we’re grateful for your participation. You may use this page as your confirmation. If you need to add social event tickets (included for the day you are speaking), you may use this confirmation number and go back into the system and modify your registration.

We look forward to seeing you in Atlanta and to a successful conference!

Speaker Information

Company: Safe2Safest, LLC

  • Website: www.safe2safest.com
  • Title: Active Shooter Prevention Expert (Training and Policy)
  • Phone: 214-663-2849

Invitee Status:

Status: Invited & Accepted

Registration:

  • Registered: 04/18/2016 by Planner-Responded
  • Confirmation Number: NDNWLJC4PSC
  • Registration Type: PRIMA Key Note Speaker

One-Day [PRIMA SPKR 1]

  • Admission Item: Speaker – Day of Session
  • Registration Path: PRIMA Special Registrations

Active Shooter Prevention more than a Mandate

PRIMA PodCast April 6, 2016

Guest: Chris Grollnek, The Nations Leading Active Shooter Prevention Expert and Training Specialist | Policy Advisor

 

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Active Shooter Training Community Seminar

Active Shooter Training Community Seminar

Active shooter Prevention Expert and National Policy Advisor, Chris Grollnek

Active Shooter Prevention Expert and National Policy Advisor, Chris Grollnek, left, spoke with Sturgis Director of Public Safety Geoff Smith at a the Chamber of Commerce in Sturgis Michigan Wednesday with the Nations Most Sought IED’s and Explosive (EOD) Event Prevention Strategist Chris Butler

Open Note to Sturgis, Michigan, Chamber of Commerce for the Active Shooter Training Community Seminar: The forward thinking of the local chapter of the Sturgis, Michigan Chamber of Commerce went well beyond what we typically witness around the country when speaking about Active Shooter Prevention and reducing Acts of Aggression and Violence. This past Wednesday, Chris Grollnek and Chris Butler of Safe2Safest spent the day with 182 participants from the surrounding area and the neighboring state of Indiana.

The focus of the seminar was inclusive of a lecture of past incidents, the reality of who the actual first responders are and the need for personal accountability to gain an upper hand for active shooter incidents and understanding these are beginning to evolve. Active Shooter Prevention is a terrible condition we will have to manage as we go and not expect to be a problem we can solve. That said, Grollnek and Butler delivered best practices of survival and mindset hitting high on expectations and putting into perspective the reality of more guns don’t necessarily create a safer environment. Grollnek stated; “its not the gun that will save you, its a more powerful weapon and that is your mind“!

While this is and continues to be an opportunity for the entire community and surrounding areas to plan, by simple word of mouth 182 seats filled in short order. The entire endorsement of Active Shooter Training and Improvised Explosive Device recognition and prevention is a welcoming topic. The Chamber of Commerce was an exceptional demonstration that when the community partners with such organizations, complex messages and misinformed fear mongering can be reversed to a simple and understandable middle ground of understanding. This training is a palatable message for families, guests, visitors, schools and most importantly, the number one target of such events, businesses. Chris Grollnek went far out of his way to point out; “we send our teenagers to safe driving courses, knowing car accidents are more likely than these types of events, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t teach them how to survive just the same”. “Its a different world we live in Chris Butler went on to say regarding the United States as the fifth most active country in the world for explosive device mitigation incidents.  This followed Butler noting an average of 30 explosive device events a month take place year over year domestically. When participants understand we’re not out to make them experts, but instead provide that baseline of understanding, the survival goals of these situations is to remove being paralyzed by fear.

We are exceptionally proud of the community effort and saddened by several recent accounts of active shooter incidents in nearby communities and violent acts in other surrounding area(s). We are truly grateful for the opportunity to assist in limiting the exposure to such dangers within this tight knit community. Thank you for everything, the warm hospitality, hosting opportunity and gracious coverage. Sincerely Chris Grollnek.

National Active Shooter Expert, Training, Education, Public Speaking, Seminar Led Exercise and Topics – Active Shooter Training Community Seminar – Domestic Terrorism – Political Policy Advisor

Article Follows:

Active Shooter Training Seminar Sturgis, Michigan

By Michelle Patrick
Twitter: @SJMichelleP

Posted Mar. 3, 2016 at 7:15 AM

Sturgis

About 200 people attended a community seminar about active shooter prevention and response Wednesday at Sturges-Young Auditorium.

The seminar, hosted by Sturgis Area Chamber of Commerce and made possible by an anonymous donor, featured active shooter prevention expert Chris Grollnek, who has been featured on Fox News, CNN, NBC, ABC and CBS.

Grollnek opened by telling the audience what bad luck he has had. He is one of only three people known in the country to have been involved in and survived two active shooter incidents.

“I’ve learned more through experience than any textbook,” he told those in attendance.

Grollnek, a former police corporal and U.S. Marine Corps veteran, has since studied such events in an attempt to save the lives of others.

“These incidents take so much out of me,” he said. “You go there and you see these things and they never leave you.”

Grollnek went on to say that the more he speaks at seminars like the one held Wednesday, the more he hears people say “my cousin” was there (at an active shooter incident), for example.

And while active-shooter incidents may seem relatively new, Grollnek said they have been occurring since the 1780s.

According to Grollnek, the average active shooter incident takes up to about seven minutes to unfold. It requires about 17 minutes for police to respond, he said.

“I want my daughter to know what to do zero to 17 (minutes) and everything in between,” he said.

Grollnek encouraged people in attendance to begin having conversations with their loved ones about how to survive an active shooter incident. He advised that eighth grade is an appropriate time to begin talking to children.

For Grollnek, hiding is not the best option when faced with an active shooter.

“Get out!” he said.

It takes police officials an average of 23 minutes to respond to hostages and victims, he added.

“These numbers are scary,” Grollnek said.

And the profile of an active shooter? According to Grollnek, there isn’t one. The youngest ever was a 5-year-old girl, he said. The oldest was a 96-year-old man.

The number of active shooter incidents has increased dramatically since 2012, Grollnek said.

“It won’t happen here” is no longer a valid argument, he said.

Chris Butler, IED/EOD expert, also spoke at the seminar. Butler said there are 30 improvised explosive device incidents per month in the U.S., which ranks the nation 5th in the world.

A question and answer session followed.

Active Shooter Training Community Seminar

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Frequency of Active Shooter Events Reporting

Frequency of Active Shooter Events Reporting

Summary of United States Active Shooter Events 2013-2015

Executive Director of Research and Development, Domestic Terrorism Research

January 6, 2016

Frequency of Active Shooter Events Reporting and Analysis

Chris Grollnek Bio and Information from Research and Analysis

Report date and time: 2016-01-06 21:44:36

1 Introduction

With a goal of reducing both morbidity and mortality, we estimated the frequency and severity of active shooter events in the U.S. from 2013-2015, based on data from http://www.shootingtracker.com who track both injured and killed, and who dene an event as when at least 4 people are shot.

Using data downloaded 2015-12-05 we used R version 3.2.1 (2015-06-18) [1] to estimate the frequency and severity of events reported in the media (links to news stories available from http://www.shootingtracker.com).

2 Tables

Table 1 shows by year the number of events, the average number of events per week in each year, and (assuming a threshold to dene “high-prole”of ve or more killed for possible newsworthiness; this assumption can be easily changed) the average number of high-prole events per month in each year. Tables 2 through 4 show year-specic data per event.

Table 1: Overview of events by year

Year Events Events/wk High-prole events/mo*

2013 363 6.85 1.67

2014 336 6.34 1.38

2015 353 7.20 1.45

*A high-prole event is dened as 5 or more killed in an event.

Table 2: 2013 High-prole Events

Date Killed Injured Location Shooter

01/07/2013 5 0 Tulsa, OK Cedric and James Poore

01/19/2013 5 0 Albuquerque, NM Nehemiah Griego

02/03/2013 5 4 Began in Riverside, CA Christopher Dorner

03/13/2013 5 2 Herkimer, NY Kurt Myers

04/21/2013 5 2 Federal Way, WA Dennis Clark III

04/24/2013 6 1 Manchester, IL Rick Odell Smith

05/15/2013 5 0 Fernley, NV Jeremiah Bean

05/28/2013 5 0 Sells, AZ Unknown

06/07/2013 5 5 Santa Monica, CA John Zawahri

07/26/2013 7 0 Hialea, FL Pedro Alberto Vargas

09/16/2013 13 8 Washington, DC Aaron Alexis

REFERENCES

Date Killed Injured Location Shooter

09/20/2013 5 0 Rice, TX Guadalupe Ronquillo-Ovalle

10/26/2013 5 0 Phonix, AZ Michael Guzzo

10/28/2013 5 0 Terrell, TX Charles Everett Brownlow Jr.

10/29/2013 6 0 Callison, SC Bryan Sweatt

Table 3: 2014 High-prole Events

Date Killed Injured Location Shooter

01/16/2014 5 0 Spanish Fork, UT Joshua Boren

06/08/2014 5 0 Las Vegas, NV Jerad Miller & Amanda Miller

06/08/2014 5 0 San Carlos Park, FL Sonny Enrique\Quique”Medina

07/09/2014 6 1 Houston, TX Ronald Lee Haskell

07/27/2014 5 0 Saco, ME Joel Smith

08/03/2014 5 0 Culpeper, VA Clarence Washington

09/18/2014 8 0 Bell, FL Don Charles Spirit

10/24/2014 5 1 Marysville, WA Jaylen Fryberg

11/23/2014 5 0 Cleveland, OH Unknown

12/01/2014 5 0 Westover, WV Jody Lee Hunt

12/15/2014 6 3 Montgomery County, PA Bradley William Stone

Table 4: 2015 High-prole Events

Date Killed Injured Location Shooter

01/29/2015 5 0 Troup County, GA Thomas Jessee Lee

02/07/2015 5 2 Douglasville, GA Cedric G. Prather

02/27/2015 8 1 Tyrone, MO Joseph Jesse Aldridge

04/16/2015 5 0 Phoenix, AZ Unknown

05/12/2015 5 0 Tucson, AZ Christopher Carrillo

05/17/2015 9 18 Waco, TX Unknown

06/07/2015 5 0 Deer Lodge, MT Michael Augustine Bournes

06/17/2015 9 0 Charleston, SC Dylan Roof

07/16/2015 5 3 Chattanooga, TN Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez

08/08/2015 8 0 Houston, TX David Conley

09/08/2015 5 0 Minneapolis, MN Brian Short

09/17/2015 6 0 Platte, SD Scott Westerhuis

10/01/2015 10 7 Roseburg, OR Chris Harper-Mercer

11/15/2015 6 0 Anderson County, TX William Hudson

11/18/2015 5 0 Fresno, CA Unknown

12/02/2015 14 17 San Bernardino, CA Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik

References

[1] R Core Team. R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria, 2015.

Filed under Frequency of Active Shooter Events Reporting #98756

Chris Grollnek Bio #7989

Frequency of Active Shooter Events Reporting and Analysis

Active Shooter Training and Domestic Terrorism Policy Initiative Review Council

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Case on Jessie Daniel Green

Case on Jessie Daniel Green

Jessie Daniel Green was booked in Madison County, AL on 9/25/2015 at 07:36 for DOMESTIC VIOLENCE THIRD DEGREE–CRIMINAL MISCHIEF, THIRD DEGREE

September 25, 2015, Jessie Daniel Green was arrested and booked for domestic assault and criminal mischief. Later that day, Heather Nicole Green filed a protective order against her estranged husband that was immediately granted by the Madison County District Court without a hearing. Judge Claude E. Hundley III later issued a final hearing to be set for Friday, October 9, 2015. Whether it was known to heather or not, Jessie attended the hearing that day, and when she did not attend, the protective order was dismissed. It remains to be seen whether or not she even knew about the hearing, or that the order was dismissed that day or not. Three days later, on October 12, 2015, heather Nicole Green was murdered in front of her three children parked in her vehicle in a parking lot adjacent to the Huntsville Medical Utilities Building.

“That was two weeks ago, so much has happened since then, this is old news.” That is absolutely right, and the exact reason why I waited two weeks to write this. Because the sad reality is that so much “has” happened since then, specifically, situations very similar to this incident happen every day in this country, and are quickly forgotten by the masses because they are so desensitized by now, if they don’t know the individuals involved, they don’t care. The other side is that we rarely hear about it because it “is” too similar to everything else relating to domestic violence and doesn’t’ hold enough differentiating factors to warrant a thirty second spot in the news. I bet you know every detail about that drug addict “fighting for his life” because he overdosed at a brothel though. That, is unfortunate, and perfectly annotates the sad state that we live in now. When a mother of three, recently separated and living in fear from her own husband, files for some form of “help and awareness” with the court, and all they can do is give her a piece of paper that says they told him to go away, we are in trouble as a country.

Now granted, a protective order for individuals hell-bent on a violent mission is the equivalent to a “gun free zone” sign at a school; but this situation not only plays out perpetually in this country, but could also have been prevented. Diverting from the obvious hindsight being 20/20 comments, a rational response to the prevention of such horrific incidents is critical to ensure this doesn’t continue to occur in this country any longer. Unless they are locked up, a known violent individual has wide open access to his/her target without any deterrence. A slightly unfair statement given that authorities can’t follow every criminal and protect everyone, but domestic violence cases, especially when children are involved, and separation has occurred between spouses or significant others, is a special circumstance that warrants more attention. The amount of lives affected increases dramatically when children are involved in these violent incidents and the individual occurrences they’re subjected to at a young age carry a higher potential of negatively impacting who they become as adults. Prevention is the key, but it can only be accomplished through ambition, self-reliance, and training. We cannot rely on the system to fix everything, and the authorities or help to “get there” in time, much like knowing CPR, or what to do if your friend is choking, if you have a volatile situation brewing, recognizing and mitigating that issue before it escalates is crucial to survival. There are very few words you can say to someone in the middle of a “rage’ that will de-escalate a situation, but it is very difficult to assault someone who isn’t there or one that can defend themselves. Whether you are confident with your hands, or not, there are always pre-incident indicators that will reveal that the “honeymoon” is over and it is time to move on, physically and emotionally.

 

Written for Chris Grollnek by Chris W. Martin
Active Shooter Training
Active Shooter Expert
Active Shooter Prevention Expert 
Active Shooter Mitigation and Police Training
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Threat assessment, preparation can help prevent college shooting deaths

Threat assessment, preparation can help prevent college shooting deaths, experts say

Reporters copy photographs of three of the victims of the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College that were displayed at a news conference, Friday, Oct. 2, 2015, in Roseburg, Ore. In the photos, from left, are Quinn Cooper, 18, Lucas Eibel,18, center, and Jason Johnson, 33. They were among those killed when Chris Harper Mercer walked into a class at the community college the day before and opened fire. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

As politicians and pundits debate whether stricter gun control or fewer gun-free zones can prevent incidents like the shooting that killed nine on the campus of Umpqua Community College in Oregon Thursday, campus safety experts agree that simply having more guns or less guns is not the answer.

Security professionals and campus safety advocates emphasize threat assessment, emergency preparedness training, and increased awareness as measures that can save lives.

There have been over 40 shooting incidents at schools across the country so far in 2015, and almost 20 of those occurred on college campuses. Shooters may specifically choose to attack colleges for a number of reasons.

The people who commit these acts are often looking for a “target-rich environment,” said Chief William Taylor of the San Jacinto College Police Department, president of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators. This, he said, is why they are drawn to targets like schools, movie theaters, churches, and shopping malls.

“They want the notoriety,” Taylor said, and mass shootings in crowded places demand the public and the media’s attention.

“By their nature, these are all places that are open,” said S. Daniel Carter, director of the VTV Family Outreach Foundation 32 National Campus Safety Initiative. These are high-profile institutions in their communities and, particularly in small towns like Roseburg, Oregon, they are hubs of activity.

Steven Healy, co-founder and managing partner of campus safety firm Margolis Healy, said the openness of environments like schools, theaters, and malls make them vulnerable, but it is also “something that we value as part of our way of life.”

The idea of being open, free-flowing centers for ideas that are not isolated from their communities is one of the core concepts of American college campuses, according to Healy.

“I can’t see any move, at least in my lifetime, fundamentally moving away from that construct,” he said.

According to Allison Kiss, executive director of the Clery Center for Security on Campus, young adult shooters may target colleges because they are looking for victims of their own age group, but ultimately they are sometimes just trying to inflict harm on the largest number of people possible and colleges provide that opportunity.

“You have somebody with a firearm trying to exact revenge or promote an idea or ideal” in many of these cases, said Chris Grollnek, an expert in active shooter situations, former police officer, and executive director of the Safe2Safest Strategic Alliance. The motive in Thursday’s shooting remains unknown and local authorities have released few details about the 26-year-old gunman.

If someone is just bent on wreaking havoc, Grollnek observed that elementary schools and middle schools are softer targets with fewer strong adults who might stand up to a shooter, so there is often more to the motivation.

Colleges may be impossible to secure fully–“There’s only so much you can do to prevent crime,” Kiss said– but experts say they definitely can be made safer.

“There are some basic target-hardening steps that you can take,” Carter said. He suggested ensuring that classroom doors can be secured from the inside and that building exits cannot be locked or blocked by improvised devices.

These campuses present unique challenges, though. Unlike elementary schools or high schools where checkpoints can be set up at the limited number of entrances, even a small community college like Umpqua is spread out across multiple buildings that may have dozens of entrances and exits.

“It would completely overwhelm and change the nature of the institution” to try to put magnetometers and metal detectors at every entrance, according to Carter.

Also, college shooters are often members of the community who would normally have a reason to be on campus or at least would not immediately appear suspicious.

As a result, experts say effective threat assessment and training are vital. Too often, according to Grollnek, school administrators fall back on the belief that “it’ll never happen here and the odds of it happening are so remote that we’re going to hide behind that.”

Grollnek said active shooter incidents are often over in minutes and police can take an average of up to 17 minutes to respond, so schools cannot count on local law enforcement to prevent casualties. He noted that the response from police in Roseburg was very quick, but nine victims still died.

“Common sense prevention and detecting these threats prior to them happening” is the key, he said. Schools need to understand the warning signs and the behaviors exhibited by many shooting suspects before they act.

Following the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting that left 32 students and teachers dead, school administrators and lawmakers across the country recognized a similar need. According to Kiss, schools must now follow certain requirements regarding emergency notifications and security procedures.

Threat assessment teams are also very common at colleges, she said, and they meet regularly to discuss security concerns, students who may pose a danger to themselves or others, and how to mitigate those risks.

“I think everyone in a school, in a college, and quite frankly in any industry should take necessary precautions when it comes to emergency preparedness,” Kiss said.

She pointed to the “I Love U Guys” Foundation as a resource for helping schools develop evacuation plans and be proactive about security.

Healy listed five lessons learned from previous school shootings that schools are embracing:

  1. A capacity to engage in threat assessment and management: be able to recognize threats and take action to mitigate them in various ways
  2. Engage in all-hazards emergency planning: take actions to prevent and respond to a wide range of critical incidents, from power outages to terrorist attacks
  3. Training the campus community members: ensure that students receive emergency notifications and know what to do when they get them
  4. Cooperation and coordination with local first responders: develop and enhance relationships to operate seamlessly
  5. Obligation to pay attention to what’s being said on social media: pay attention to disturbing messages online and use social media threat alerting services

“A college campus is not an island unto itself,” he said.

The experts also advised students and teachers to train and prepare themselves to survive these incidents because they can happen anywhere.

Every situation is different, Carter said, so there is not necessarily universal advice to follow, but students and teachers need to learn to assess their circumstances. Barricading doors, hiding under desks, and playing dead may save lives in some instances, but there are also times when taking an opportunity to escape is the right move.

Taylor recommended viewing the “Run. Hide. Fight.” video produced by the city of Houston years ago (warning: the initial sequence in the video may be disturbing.) It advises people in active shooter incidents to evacuate if possible, hide if necessary, and fight back against the shooter as a last resort.

“It’s not a perfect world, and a lot of it depends on where you are when [the shooting] starts,” Taylor said.

Healy urged people on campuses to participate in any prevention activities that are available. He suggested paying attention to what is going on around you, not just physically but also digitally on social media.

“If you see something, hear something, or read something, say something,” he said.

Grollnek agreed that vigilance and a willingness to speak out are important, but not enough people have gotten that message.

“See something, say something is such a great concept…The problem is we can’t get people to say something,” he said.

Much of the public conversation surrounding the shooting in the first 24 hours has focused on gun control, with some calling for tighter restrictions on firearm access and others lamenting the fact that students on campus could not be armed. Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin, who has vocally opposed gun control in the past–even sending a letter to Vice President Joe Biden about it–acknowledged to CNN that it needs to be part of the discussion after the shooting, but he said he has not changed his position.

Experts downplayed the significance of that issue, though.

“It’s not about guns,” Grollnek said. Restrictive gun laws only work if people follow them, and criminals by definition do not follow laws. He pointed to the high level of gun violence in Chicago despite strict gun control measures there.

“If laws worked, you don’t need police.”

He recommended a more holistic approach that addresses prevention, mental health, guns, police response, and community engagement.

“Our position is that concealed carry isn’t the solution to this,” Kiss said. Something needs to be done about mental health treatment and access to guns for people who have mental health problems, according to her, but institutions should focus on training and preparation.

“I’m not in favor of putting more guns on our campuses,” Healy said. He feels it is best for only properly-trained professionals have firearms.

He said many colleges are dealing with issues like sexual violence and high-risk drinking, and a lot of problems on campuses are fueled by alcohol. Adding guns into that environment may not be helpful.

“I don’t know in what universe that actually makes sense,” he said.

“It’s an untried factor,” Taylor said. His school is currently developing rules for people carrying concealed weapons on campus because it will soon be allowed in Texas. He hopes that it will at least allow a person who is trapped by a shooter to save themselves, but students do not have the training or equipment to respond the way police can.

Carter said his organization is focused on institutional response rather than relying on individuals within the community to make the campus safer.

He observed that officials at Umpqua Community College appear to have learned from what went wrong in previous shootings. They had lockdown procedures, emergency notifications, and rapid law enforcement response.

“Those lessons learned most likely saved lives,” he said.

Healy said college shooting incidents often do provide valuable examples of what students and administrators should and should not do, but it is tragically too late to help those who are involved.

“Fortunately, we do learn from these events,” he said. “Unfortunately, the price is far too high.”

Threat assessment, preparation can help prevent college shooting deaths

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Mall Shootings

Mall Shootings

Mall Shootings Could Be Next

Mall Shootings – Active Shooter Expert Chris Grollnek

When Chris Grollnek was chosen to made this video earlier in the year, no one was focusing on the possibility or even the threat of a mall shooting or worse. Since then, the conversation is rapidly focusing on what to do if type of attach comes full circle.  There are many  different  philosophies to “being prepared” but few focus on the the person that could find themselves “inside the event.” It is important to understand the need for prevention and not creating an environment of fear, instead  preparedness. The Strategic Partners of safe2safest.com offer that common sense approach and beyond. Teaching others from the basics to the extreme (depending on the training solution) to remain vigilant, implement a specific series of techniques and by starting those uncomfortable conversations that could save lives. That is why Chris continues to donate a lot of time to the media, continuing to discuss safety on many fronts. If we could save just one person, this whole endeavor will all be worth it!

This epidemic is global and not just at here in the United States. Below is a quick story from earlier today in Africa at a mall in Johannesburg. We must prepare and be involved in prevention, detection and helping others by recognizing stressors, micro expressions and be open to speaking to everyone about anything.

#activeshooterexpert Chris Grollnek did a story on this recently about malls in the United States. Thankfully, as it turns out, he has been wrong to date, but how much longer will wrong be ok?

Twelve people, including a 4-year-old child, were wounded in a shooting at a shopping mall in Alexandra, Johannesburg on Friday, paramedics said on the Continent of Africa.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Chris Botha said the shooting happened at the Pan African Mall.

“[Paramedics]… arrived at the scene and found that twelve people, consisting of adults and children, had sustained moderate injuries by gunfire with a will to do worse” spokesperson Chris Botha said.

They were treated on the scene and then taken to several surrounding hospitals.

Further details are not immediately available.

Source: South Africa News 24Wire and personal contacts on the ground.

Our politicians are focusing on gun laws instead of the realization that prevention works. We’ve raised funds and released a 26-minute free PSA video that can help many, but must be augmented by subject matter exerts (SME’s). If www.safe2safest.com doesn’t have those experts, NO ONE DOES!!! Here is a link to Strategic Partners

Filed by Chris Grollnek = prevention is key article #US to Malls 5798s2

active shooter expert

Mall Shootings Could Be Next
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Strategic Partners Executive Meeting Press Release

Strategic Partners Executive Meeting Press Release

Partners Executive Meeting

Strategic Partners Executive Meeting – Chris Grollnek, Executive Director

Here is the “basic outline” of what you asked regarding the “private meeting” in Baltimore on September 3, 2015 from 0900 through 1800 hours. I have gathered a group of “Strategic Partners” who are the actual “who’s who” in the industry of security and emergency response. These are the individuals who are called in to augment governmental responses during horrific events that require the special abilities of each (depending on the type of tragedy and media coverage). It’s not a “black outfit,” rather 17 true mission driven patriots who help in every way possible to return the communities to themselves, using and training government, corporate, and academic departments in best practices from each of their disciplines…without becoming mired in any of the politics involved.  Each one of these amazing people has their own company and provides services ranging from prevention and mitigation to recovery and essentially every other aspect of the security needs of public and private sector America.

Each expert has the desire to evolve the meaning of security and change the message of personal responsibility from relying on police to understanding self-preservation from an empowerment, rather than fear-based, perspective. By no means are we saying being armed and fighting are the solutions or even privatizing police. What we are suggesting (and meeting in person at our own expense to discuss) is a campaign to change the meaning of the word of security from the “Mall Cop” vision to a professional ready to help in any setting without the belittling moniker of “wannabe cops” and by changing the culture back to where it was when this great country was formed…one of personal responsibility and pulling together to survive the difficult times.

There have been attempts to achieve these ends deriving from similar philosophical leanings in the past. For example, in an effort to assist one another, communities implemented the Watch and Ward method in the 1950’s. Then politics, money and government got involved and eventually we saw a detrimental shift to police mistrust escalating in the 1970’s to where it now is today–over the top. Public trust in law enforcement continues to be sullied, and we have suggestions and training methods to help, in addition to our self-empowerment message. It is crucial to re-establish community trust and train departments to go forward with the prevention model instead of relying almost solely on enforcement standards. This has shown itself true one too many times causing issues that the world watched unfold in Ferguson, Missouri. We believe we can help train the departments that are inundated with so many responsibilities and downsizing due to budget constraints by offering our joint services at a cost plus basis. We ae also raising private non-profit funds and capital to “fund local cities” in an initiative to return to the partnership of community, citizenry, and local government.

This is a 50k foot view as we will be discussing these issues in much more detail throughout the day on September 3, but even this basic info I am providing to you exceeds what will be released to media outlets via a press release until days after the meeting. It is our hope for your network to “break” this revolutionary story and vision in line with our goals and principals: empower individuals for self-protection through awareness of surroundings and adequate training, support local law enforcement, and re-inspire the community/law enforcement partnership to one of trust and cooperation. Short of a vision the size of the “I have a Dream” message, we’re committed to making this relationship whole again and bringing situational solutions no one else can offer in a package anywhere close to what we, as the group of experts, with interlocking skills and experience can provide as a strategic alliance. We are herein offering you unfettered access to the meeting (with a media team), to cover any part of the meeting you wish, in order to demonstrate what one group of professionals have set out to accomplish.

Very Respectfully,

Chris Grollnek, Executive Director

Strategic Partners Executive Meeting Press Release

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