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August 2017 - Vol. 3, No. 8
Registration continues for 2017 ALERRT Conference. The 2016 Conference was a complete sell out for participants, so plan ahead and register early to secure your spot! This year's conference will begin on Monday, Nov. 6 and run through Thursday, Nov. 9. Watch our conference website for updates and final daily schedule.www.alerrtconference.org
Regular Registration - July 1 thru October 14  |  $200
Late Registration - October 15 thru November 6  |  $225 (if available)
You may register online now and still pay with a check or purchase order upon arrival.
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE.
Note: Vendor spots are still available. Click here for details or contact Stephanie Brown, our Conference Vendor Coordinator. Vendor spots also sold out last year.
Our Keynote Speakers this year will include Deputy Chief Susan Manney, Orlando FL Police Department speaking about the Pulse Nightclub Massacre and Dr. Alex Eastman, Deputy Medical Director of the Dallas Police Department, discussing the Dallas Officer Ambush.
More details about our breakout sessions and panels will be released in June. We hope to see you in November. 

Research With Relevance

This edition of the Tactical Corner introduces our research department. Over the past few years our research department has continually grown. We started out with a single full-time employee; however, ALERRT now has a Director of Research, a full-time Research Specialist, and a doctoral student on staff. As many of you know, ALERRT’s mission is to provide the best research-based active shooter training in the nation. Part of what sets ALERRT apart from other training programs is our focus on research. We strive to train tactics that have been empirically found to be the most effective. This process ensures ALERRT stays at the forefront of tactical training. We will continue to stay at the forefront by constantly assessing our training methods and materials.
Our research department primarily conducts two types of research – descriptive data on active shooter events and experimental tests of policing tactics and practices. First, we continually collect data on active attacks as they occur in our nation. The goal of this process is to provide the public, first responders, and policy-makers with accurate data on active attacks. These data may be used to help make decisions regarding training, equipment, or response protocols.
Previous issues of the Tactical Corner have described a shift in our training philosophy. In addition to this, we are in the midst of shifting our data from including only active shooter events to a more inclusive dataset of all active attacks, such as vehicle attacks, attacks with a bladed weapon, etc. We believe these active attacks warrant the same type of response from first responders as an active shooter. We also believe valuable information can be learned from studying these events. For instance, we learn about civilian response techniques, timelines of the events, response effectiveness, medical interventions that were effective, and much more. The current data can be found on ALERRT’s active shooter data website (ActiveShooterData.org). All of the graphics and information on this website are for public use. Once we formally make the shift to active attacks we will forward the new link and information through our newsletter.
Beyond active shooter/attack data we also test various aspects of our training to ensure we are teaching the best tactics. A key example of this would be a previous study on room entry techniques. If you have been through an ALERRT course you have likely learned about different room entry techniques. A few years ago we designed and ran a series of experiments to determine what method of room entry was not only the safest for an officer but also provided them with the best chance to win a contentious encounter by being faster and more accurate with their shot placement. These studies were published in a small book, are referenced on our website, and are infused in our course catalogue.
Additionally, we test new tactics and ideas to assess if they are better than what we have been training or if we should include a new tactic in our training. For example, we recently published results from a series of studies testing the effectiveness of using distraction techniques in a room entry. We know deploying a flash-bang in every room during a building sweep isn’t logical. So, we tested throwing everyday items in the room instead. We lobbed the item in the room just prior to making entry in hopes of giving the officer an advantage over the suspect in the room’s hard corner. Utilizing vision-tracking technology we were able to determine that this process successfully pulled the hostile suspect’s gaze from the door during the room entry. This gave the entering officer a small window where the suspect was distracted to make the room entry. We will detail both of these studies in future editions of the Tactical Corner. You may also read both of these studies in their entirety. Email our Director of Research, Dr. Hunter Martaindale (Martaindale@ALERRT.org), for links and information about these studies.
In addition to the two published studies mentioned, we have several projects in the works that will be included in future editions of the Tactical Corner. These include:
  • 21-Foot Rule: ALERRT has been testing the long-taught “21-Foot Rule” over the past several months. We have systematically broken down an encounter where an officer is charged by an individual with an edged weapon. We are in the final phases of this research and will have a report out for publication and in the Tactical Corner soon.
  • Blue-on-Blue: With a couple of recent officer-on-officer shootings, we’ve started looking at way to reduce the misidentification of a plainclothes officer in a dynamic situation.
  • Vision-Training: ALERRT is also examining ways to improve the speed and accuracy of identifying the presence of a weapon during a dynamic situation. Our goal is to speed up the process of positively identifying the presence of a weapon to improve officer safety and decision-making.
  • Low-Light: ALERRT has long taught a course on operating in low-light conditions. Our research team has begun testing various aspects of these tactics to further validate and potentially improve what we know about operating in low-light conditions.
In addition to the reports generated, our research department has a session at the annual ALERRT conference. During this session we discuss several of the studies we conducted over the course of the year. We want attendees to fully understand what we are studying, why we are studying these topics, and how we develop the experiments. Attendees will see a lot of video and pictures of the research process as well as learn the results without being bogged down by a bunch of research language. Our goal is to disseminate findings that help keep first responders safe in their day-to-day job.
Lastly, we always welcome ideas for research projects. Please send us an email if you have any ideas or tactics that may warrant further research.
As always, thanks for what you do. Stay safe.
Dr. Hunter Martaindale, Director of Research
ALERRT at Texas State University

Watkins to leave ALERRT for new opportuities

 
Director of Logistics Randall Watkins will end his eleven year  tenure with ALERRT on August 18th
to join the Vista Outdoor team, which owns over 50 different outdoor, law enforcement equipment and ammunition companies.  He will be the law enforcement representative for TX, OK, AR, MO, KS and NE for everything from Bushnell Optics to Blackhawk Suppressors.
 
Watkins reflects: "Words cannot describe how amazing the ride has been these last 11 years. I have countless memories that I will forever cherish.
 
During his tenure as logistics lead and then director of logistics, ALERRT equipment operations went from the basement of a  late-1800s historic house on the Texas State University campus to the current construction of our second 5,000 SF warehouse. Today, we have 79 different training kits and have completed over 1,021 classes last year. Watkins' position with ALERRT  has included ordering and maintaining all of the equipment,  shipping and receiving all of the training kits, as well as maintthe range training facilty and directing a staff of full-time employees and student workers.

Watkins adds, "The sky is the limit to what ALERRT can achieve. I am forever proud to be have been a part of the team of true professionals that make up the ALERRT staff and instructor cadre. This move has been one of the hardest decisions of my life but I know I am passing the torch to a very competent/ hard working team out here at the range. Semper Fidelis."  
Share your Good News with us
     Bad news generally makes the news - but we like to hear the stories that don't make the news cycle. If you have some good news to share, please let us know. Our funders appreciate hearing stories about how our training was put to use on the first responders' front line.
      Tell us how your ALERRT training was put to use in the field, especially if it prevented a headline-making event. Level I, Level II, ERASE, CRASE -  any of our courses: We would like to tell your story. Please send your info to hendricks@alerrt.org

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Pete Blair, Ph.D.
Executive Director

John Curnutt
Director of Training 

Diana Hendricks
Director of Communications 

Hunter Martaindale, Ph.D.
Director of Research
 
Kelly Nichols
Director of Finance
Dwayne Sander
Director of Information Technology

Randall Watkins
Director of Logistics
Major Funding Partners

Texas Office of the Governor,
Criminal Justice Division

VALOR
FBI, Department of Justice

National Training
and Education 
Division, Department of
Homeland Security

Local Working Partners

City of San Marcos
Hays County Sheriff’s Office
Texas School Safety Center
Texas Tactical Police 
Officers Association
Gary Job Corps Center, 
San Marcos - Department
of Labor

Professional Partners

C3 Pathways 
KDL Solutions
Committee for Tactical Emergency
Casualty Care (C-TECC)
Request A Class
Upcoming Classes
Course Catalog

Check Out Our ALERRT Websites

Have you visited our ALERRT websites?  Our main site,  ALERRT.org,  provides a full description of our training, our history and recent media hits, as well as information about how to register for a class or how to request a class in your community. 
AvoidDenyDefend.org is our Civilian Response to Active Shooter website - which provides additional information and a resource for your community.
ActiveShooterData.org is our research-based home, The goal of this website is to provide up-to-date information and data regarding active shooter events in the United States. 
DontNameThem.org is an ALERRT campaign encouraging media, law enforcement and public information officers to move their focus from the shooters to the victims and heroes, to limit the sensationalism and glorification of the murderer and redirect the focus to the recovery and healing process within the community. 
Another excellent resource, from our VALOR partners is VALORForBlue.org which provides all levels of law enforcement with tools to help prevent violence against law enforcement officers and enhance officer safety, wellness, and resiliency.
Your certificates and other details may be found in your profile on the ALERRT Website. 
If you need to reset your password, please follow the following steps:
1.Go to alerrt.org/login
2.  At the bottom of the login screen select RESET PASSWORD.
3. It will ask you for your email address.  (Use the email you normally login with, or where you receive ALERRT notifications.)
4. An email will be sent to you (usually within an hour) that has a link which will allow you to create a new password.
5.From there you should be able to login with your new password.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at help@alerrt.org
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