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Broward Sheriff: There's growing demand to train public on active shooter situations

Posted at 11:27 PM, Jul 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-26 23:44:29-04

Law enforcement agencies are realizing there is a growing need to train or inform the public on what to do in an active shooter scenario. The Broward County Sheriff's Office is opening up a seminar it usually hosts for private companies to the public. 

When the gun shots start ringing out, deputies say you have seconds to react. 

"Remember these guys know that law enforcement is coming, they know that, so it's just a matter of time," said Deputy Arik Levy with the Broward County Sheriff's Office.

Deputy Levy says an active shooter's motive is to kill as many people as possible in as little time possible. As we see mass shootings get closer to home, there is a demand to train people on how to react. 

"Having citizens who can take care of themselves is huge. I don't think anybody should feel they need rescue or law enforcement to rescue them," added Deputy Levy. 

In a series of seminars, Deputy Levy is sharing the run, hide, and fight concept. If you can run, get as far away as you can to survive, then call for help. If you have to hide, find a safe room with multiple barriers. 

"If you lock it, turn off the lights, make it seem like no one is there, your chances of survival go up," said Levy. 

But there's a scary reality. 

"You can't run anymore, that time ran out, you can't lock the doors. He's coming in right now," said Deputy Levy as he informed the audience of the worst case scenario. 

"You don't have a choice, it's either you or him," said Milton Silber of Cooper City who attended the seminar with his wife Bobbie.

The Silbers realize fighting to survive may be the only option in an active shooter situation. Deputy Levy says this is the time to get creative, use what's around you, hinder the shooter's ability to see and breathe. 

"You have to get angry, you have to get that gumption from the inside to do what you need to do cause not doing something, you know what the outcome is going to be," said Deputy Levy. 

Kate Sullivan came to the training with an open mind, realizing that preparing for these scenarios is the new normal.

"Hope that it doesn't happen in our community," said Sullivan.

The Broward County Sheriff's Office plans to have more seminars. 

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