Although the New York Police Department’s Emergency Services Squad had been arresting barricaded subjects and rescuing individuals from bridges and high rises since the 1930s, most consider the era immediately following the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre as the catalyst that gave birth to modern police, paramilitary and military Special Weapons And Tactics teams (SWAT) worldwide.
In the United States, this watershed law enforcement event was led by both the city and county teams of Los Angeles, California. The concept has grown and proliferated; today almost every jurisdiction has a specialized reaction force that conducts missions above and beyond what is expected of the patrol officer. In 1973, the FBI joined LAPD and LASO (Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office) in developing a nationwide federal SWAT capability in every field office, and this force eventually grew to 1,000 agents.
Although the New York Police Department’s Emergency Services Squad had been arresting barricaded subjects and…
by Tracy Liu / Aug 23, 2008