HARRISBURG, Pa. – Security officers from HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College, and members of the Dauphin County Sheriff’s Department, Harrisburg Bureau of Police, Susquehanna Police Department and York City Police Department joined forces Saturday, June 29, 2013, for an active shooter exercise at HACC’s Harrisburg Campus.
York City Police Capt. Ron Camacho and his team conducted the exercise that brought together approximately three dozen officers from the five departments for classroom and active tactical training from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Camacho also is the commander of York County Quick Response Team and a senior police training associate for International Police Training and Consulting Services, based in Tempe, Ariz.
“We are partners in ensuring the safety of the campus,” said Edwin Dominguez, HACC’s interim director of security. “In the event of a crisis, local law enforcement will be the first responders to join our officers. Establishing guidelines for protocol during emergency situations allows the teams to work together as a seamless operation,” Dominguez said.
“We are grateful for this opportunity to train together to ensure the safety of HACC and the community,” said Dauphin County Sheriff Jack Lotwick. “I am looking forward having to my officers participate in future active shooter exercises hosted by HACC.”
“The Harrisburg Police Bureau welcomes the invitation to participate in this training scenario with the local community college,” said Chief Pierre Ritter. “We see this as a ‘building block’ toward our continued partnership with HACC, working together to enhance and maintain public safety for all students and faculty at the College.”
“This is a good step,” said PFC Tim Rogers of the Susquehanna Township Police Department. “We would like to see more such training in the future.”
HACC President John J. “Ski” Sygielski, Ed.D., said, “Active shooter exercises enhance our department’s knowledge of how to address and better prepare us to effectively work with the responding law enforcement agencies and each other. Even though we cannot prevent active shooter events, trainings such as these allow us to better safeguard those who we are entrusted to protect – our students, employees and visitors to the College.”
Dominguez said, “Not only is it an important step in providing solid guidelines for protocol during a crisis, it is promoting good will and cooperation between HACC security officers and local police.”
In addition to HACC security, police officers and sheriff’s department officers, HACC criminal justice graduates Dana Danner and Steven Rivera, a May 2013 criminal justice graduate of Millersville University, participated in the exercise. Both Danner and Rivera are actively pursing policing careers. Current HACC criminal justice students Angel Solorio and Jose Mendez also participated in the exercise.
Dominguez said similar exercises have been held with other local police departments with jurisdiction at HACC’s campuses. Additional active shooter exercises are being planned at each of HACC’s campuses, Dominguez said.