As law enforcement, we represent the executive branch of government at all the levels and we are most accessible to the public. Therefore, we are huge targets. Is your agency forward thinking (proactive) when considering the safety concerns of your agency? Think about it this way; your police agency is centrally located, heavily advertised; open to anyone off the street and operating 24/7. Does your agency have a:
- Counter-surveillance procedure or processes?
- CCTV that observes the peripheral of the agency physical boundaries?
- Methods for defeating VBIED, to handle incidents such as the OK City Bombing?
- Procedures to address threats received by officers or their family members?
- Means to actively seek intelligence for threats against officers and/or facility?
- Training plan where officers are taught how to respond if they think they are being followed or targeted?
Is the targeting of cops really that great of a concern? Ask the officers of the City of Hemet, CA., Police Department who have been under siege for weeks now. Those officers are engaged in 4th Generation Warfare having their gang unit headquarters set up for a natural gas bombing, officers faced ballistic round booby-traps and their training office burned to the ground.
How about the confluence of those who hate us? Within intelligence circles it is common knowledge that various organized gangs, domestic and international, are sharing information, and resources to be more lethal. Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, the notorious ethnic Central America gang has been linked to helping Al-Qaeda gain entry across U.S. border. This is a perfect instance exemplifying the old saying of, ...the enemy of my enemy is my friend.
If your agency has not taken steps to train you or your family with how to protect themselves I would suggest getting a copy of a video called Living Safely in Dangerous Times by Kelly McCann (a.k.a. Jim Grover). Those of us in police, security or military training circles know of him well. The video has been out for over a decade, but what he offers is just as relevant today as it was then. His strategies and tactics are well validated; he teaches what he did. He was a USMC tactical operator. I do not often recommend a publication or video production, but without hesitation I suggest getting a copy of this video. For cops it serves as either a good refresher or foundational training for car bombs and searches. For our families it will probably scare them, but potentially keep them alive. Those closest to us can suffer for what we do.