The following is a release from Sgt. Deja Borden:
Approximately 40 Soldiers from the 42nd Military Police Brigade participated in the law enforcement advanced marksmanship range at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., June 14, 2016.
The stress live fire training scenario took place as part of the Protector Professional Police Academy or P3A. Attending the academy is mandatory in order for military police officers to work the roads on JBLM.
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1st Sgt. Jeremy Hopfe, first sergeant of the 67th Military Police Detention Company, said the stress fire trainings have been newly implemented as part of the academy and are necessary for Soldiers to better prepare for hostile situations.
“[This training is] to build confidence in both their fellow MPs as well as their marksmanship abilities, responding to a threat here on the installation,” said Capt. James Morris, commander of the 67th MP Co.
The MPs spent the day running fast-paced stress fire lanes in the pouring rain. The inclement weather only added to the chaos of moving and maneuvering all while transitioning weapons and having lane instructors shouting in their ears. The training went on into night-fire later in the evening
“I’ve never really got to do this before,” said Pfc. Zackery Velez, military policeman with 67th MP Co.
Velez said he enjoyed learning the different maneuver techniques most. Being a young Soldier with less than a year in service, he was excited to prepare for patrols on the road.
For junior Soldiers like Velez, it was an opportunity for them to hone their skills and mentally prepare for intense situations that may occur.
Hopfe said he believes basic training and advanced individual training for MP’s teaches the basics of the job, but the P3A will aid the Soldiers in gaining readiness and proficiency should an active shooter threat or emergency situation occur.
Aside from quick responses and maneuvering, confidence was the main goal of the training. Morris stressed how important it was for Soldiers to feel comfortable and ready to react.
“The biggest piece [of the training] is that it builds confidence in the Soldiers to trust their equipment and their marksmanship,” Morris said. “It’s no longer sit back and wait for the SWAT Team to respond to a threat. [These Soldiers] will be the first ones on the scene, and these will be the ones responsible for eliminating that threat.”
Morris said these types of training exercises will not only build the MPs confidence but also with fellow JBLM service members and civilians, allowing the community sleep better at night.