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News Release

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Media Relations

Crowd Control Strategies and Changes to SWAT selection criteria

Los Angeles: Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton announced the Department’s strategy for crowd management at the upcoming immigration rights demonstration on May 1, 2008, and changes to selection process for Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT).

Training Group Commanding Officer Sandy Jo MacArthur provided a comprehensive review of the Department’s ongoing efforts to improve crowd management/control policies and procedures. Since the previous May Day event on May 1, 2007, the LAPD has:
  • Made a thorough examination of the 2007 May Day event, including pre-event planning and training;
  • Created an Incident Management and Training Bureau (IMTB) under the leadership of Deputy Chief Michael Hillman, who is a nationally recognized expert on crowd management and control techniques;
  • Developed, through the IMTB, refined critical incident management strategies, tactics and training for immediate and future use. The training, known as the 21st Century Mobile Field Force Doctrine Training, was implemented on July 10, 2007 and will cover all sworn officers in the Department by April 30 of this year;
  • Offered the IMTB training to 300 additional participants outside the Department, including the Department of General Services, Los Angeles Unified School District and some members of the media;
  • Formed incident management teams to select and develop choice individuals as incident managers. Selected participants with have specific skills, ranks and interests to deliver consistent results for all occasions. Events already facilitated by the management teams include the annual Academy Awards ceremony, the Pre-Tuesday Democratic Party Debate at the Kodak Theatre and various First-Amendment rallies throughout the City; and
  • Embarked on the next IMTB phase, a plan to unify planning methods among all LAPD areas and bureaus to ensure strict, Department-wide standards that are consistent.
The Department has also been examining its media protocols, searching for ways to improve quality service methods by protecting First-Amendment rights of the media and opening lines of communication on issues such as access at crime scenes, credentialing and the prospects of media inclusion in the event planning process.

A state-of-the-art crowd management vehicle known as the Critical Incident Utility Vehicle (CIUV) will also be introduced. This vehicle is capable of travelling over virtually any terrain and can attain a top speed of 45 mph. Outfitted with emergency equipment the CIUV features an electronic signboard that can be continuously programmed to provide visual commands to a crowd. The CIUV comes equipped with a speaker system that can be heard up to a quarter-mile distance and linked with other CIUVs for greater amplification/range. A “Phraselator” may be interfaced with the audio system to translate messages into different languages, including Spanish, Korean and Mandarin Chinese.

Any questions may be directed to Media Relations Section, at 213-485-3586.