Security Forces Airmen participate in training with Columbus Division of Police

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Wendy Kuhn
  • 121st Air Refueling Wing
Airmen of the 121st Security Forces Squadron participated in domestic disorder response training on May 14, 2016, Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base, Ohio.

The Columbus Division of Police facilitated the training and covered topics such as crowd control management and domestic response.

"This training is very important since the Security Forces career field has been tasked with domestic operations support," said Tech. Sgt. Greg Oberfield, a unit training manager with the 121st SFS. "It will help us get more familiar with this aspect of the home station mission."

Much of the focus of the training was on moving in small squad formations and performing those movements together to ensure they happened smoothly and effectively.

"By showing a good game and being squared away and disciplined, it can keep us from having to use physical force," said police Sgt. Duane Mabry, a patrol supervisor with Columbus Division of Police. "Our goal is to manage these crowds safely and effectively using the minimum amount of force necessary."

The CPD instructors were also joined by 10 horses and officers from the Columbus Police Department, the Cleveland Police Department and the Licking County Sheriff's Office's mounted patrols. Mounted patrols are often used as a crowd management tactic. By training in close proximity to the horses, it helps both law enforcement and 121st SFS personnel become more familiar with them and how they are used. This helps them to be more comfortable working together in a real world situation.

The Airmen also received familiarization training with other types of domestic disorder tactics, such as the use of MK-9 OC/CS pepper spray, 37mm launchers with wood baton or bean bag rounds, riot batons and the use of the CPD bike patrol.

"The training we provided today is the same training we gave to over 2,500 police officers here in Central Ohio," said Mabry. "We also did two hours of classroom instruction and talked about rules of engagement, commander's intent and how we want them to perform when they're on the line."

By learning the same techniques and tactics as Columbus police officers, Security Forces Airmen will be better prepared to work with other law enforcement agencies outside the military and perform as one unit, said Staff Sgt. Rory Menard, a Security Forces Airman and Columbus Division of Police patrol officer.

"We could be called up at any time to help local law enforcement with riots or any other civil disturbances, but we can also get deployed overseas and could have to use this training with an enemy, as opposed to demonstrators or protestors," said Menard.

The training also better prepares Airmen to meet mission requirements in accordance with the motto of the 121st Air Refueling Wing, "All things at all times."

"If we're all on the same page, we're going to fulfill that mission as one cohesive unit with all law enforcement, including the 121st, here in Central Ohio," said Mabry. "The key is for us to have the same message, the same mission and the same focus. It's crucial to our overall mission."