Wyoming Police Citizen’s Academy – Week 7

Week 7 covered gangs and crisis negotiation, and was the last class in the academy (the 8th week was a graduation ceremony). It was also 2 weeks ago, so this is a bit overdue. Unfortunately, no slides were handed out for either one of these topics, so I am running off memory.

Gangs are an issue in the Wyoming area. There are over 30 gangs currently active in the Wyoming area, ranging from east coast & west coast gangs, to local, independent gangs. Gangs are not tied to any one race or ethnicity, and in fact, some gangs will include members from another race in the local ‘branch’ of the gang, and then run into problems when members from larger cities arrive and aren’t used to a racially¬†homogeneous¬†group.

Wyoming has a crisis negotiation team, which was formed in 1992 (I think) after an incident involving a hostage situation, in which the police had to rely on a news reporter who could act as a translator (Bulgarian of all languages) to defuse the situation. The majority of the CNT’s calls however, are not hostage situations, but domestic issues or suicide threats. Contrary to what you see in movies, you will not get a chopper in 20 minutes if you demand it, and they will not trade another person for the release of a hostage. CNT works closely with TACT during an incident, and both provide input to the site commander, who eventually decides to keep negotiating, or to send in TACT.

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