Newport Beach police given active shooter training on local high school campus
Wearing protective gear and armed with weapons loaded with paintball-looking bullet-shaped nonlethal rounds, members of the Newport Beach Police Department took part in a two-day active-shooter training exercise earlier this month on the Corona del Mar High School campus.
Although the officers’ practice followed shortly on the heels of the massacre of 19 children and two adults at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, the NPBD had long planned for the exercise, according to Sgt. Joshua Vincelet.
“The original date was supposed to be around the first of the year, but due to logistics and timing, it had to be moved to summer break,” explained Vincelet. “The training is done yearly in some form.”
The sessions in Corona del Mar, held June 14 and 15, included various active shooter scenarios involving role players and simulated weapons, said Lt. Pete Carpentieri, the facilitator and developer of the training, in a prepared statement.
“The main objective of the training is to increase the effectiveness and coordination of a police response to such an event by putting officers through practical exercises in a realistic environment,” Carpentieri said in the statement. “This training, which was planned and scheduled many months in advance to coincide at a time when there will be limited activity on the campus, represents just one part of NBPD’s ongoing efforts to prepare our officers for any emergency situation they may encounter.
“As our nation mourns the tragic loss of life at a recent school shooting in Texas, NBPD recognizes the concerns of events like this happening locally and the ability of law enforcement to respond effectively,” he continued. “Students, parents, teachers, school staff and other members of the public should know that NBPD stands ready to protect our community.”
Vincelet explained the paintball-like Simunitionbrand rounds used during the exercises have higher velocity and are more accurate than a recreational paintball marker. In addition, he said the participating officers used blank guns that required personal protective gear.
Corona del Mar High School Principal Joshua Hill said, “We appreciate the close relationship we have with Newport Beach PD and their interest in understanding the dynamics of our school so that if something were to happen, they know where we are, what we do, and how to navigate our campus to protect us.”
Hill’s campus received a safety upgrade about two years ago when a protective fence was erected around the school.
“The fully enclosed environment helps with training,” said Vincelet. “It keeps contained with the ability to lock it.”
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