State Troopers practice riot control procedures in Anniston - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Dozens of State Troopers practice riot control procedures in Anniston

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ANNISTON, Ala. -

Alabama State Troopers practiced dealing with mobs Friday afternoon.

Nearly 50 Troopers from south Alabama trained all week at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston.

Loud speakers blasted crowd noise as the Troopers practiced mass arrest procedures on two-dozen role players.

Scenarios included peaceful protests with the role players sitting in the middle of a street, refusing to move.

"Even though it's a mock scenario, it's a very realistic scenario," trooper Chad Bright said.

"In this situation what we did was remove them from the roadway.  Of course, blocking the roadway in and of itself would be a violation," he said.

"We did it in a peaceful manner, a manner in which no one would be hurt and basically we could still provide the same level of courtesy and public service."

Another scenario involved the role players running at the troopers as canisters released smoke into the air.  The Troopers put on gas masks as part of that simulation.

Bright said the Troopers oversee public safety and provide security at two major events each year: Talladega races and Mardi Gras in Mobile.

"This is all in preparation for anything that we might run into," Bright said.

The 49 officers in this week's class are from posts in Montgomery, Mobile, Dothan, and Opelika.  It is the second class to receive the training this year.  By the end of February, two other classes will complete the program, involving more than 200 of about 350 Alabama State Troopers.

Bright said the training bridges gaps between his fellow officers and those in other agencies.

"Seeing as how Homeland Security has allowed us to come and receive this training and they're also giving it to other law enforcement agencies across the United States, it keeps us on the same page," he said.

"So if we do have to come together as a unified front, we'll all act in the same way."

For more information about the Field Force Operations training, click here.

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