• Syndicate content
  • Comment

Metro SWAT no longer CPD, FCSO joint-effort

Plans to rejoin in the future

Posted: December 6, 2013 - 2:47pm
LOG CABIN FILE PHOTO  In recent months, the Faulkner County Sheriff's Office and the Conway Police Department have separated into two separate SWAT teams. However, officials from both camps claim the separation is short-term, and a rejoining is expected at some point in the future.
LOG CABIN FILE PHOTO In recent months, the Faulkner County Sheriff's Office and the Conway Police Department have separated into two separate SWAT teams. However, officials from both camps claim the separation is short-term, and a rejoining is expected at some point in the future.

In recent months, the Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office and the Conway Police Department have separated into two separate Special Weapons and Tactics teams.

Officials from both camps claim the separation is short-term, and a rejoining is expected at some point in the future.

For several years, the Conway Police Department and Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office have combined to form the Faulkner County Metro SWAT team. At this point, the Metro SWAT is fielded solely by Conway police, according to Conway Chief of Police A.J. Gary.

Sheriff Andy Shock said his office’s withdrawal from the Metro SWAT team was to allow time to increase its numbers on the SWAT team.

“For years now, the sheriff’s office has had only one or two members, with the police department fielding the rest,” Shock said. “We were severely out-numbered. We’ve put a strong interest in beefing up the SWAT team from our standpoint, because we weren’t pulling our own weight.”

Shock said the recruitment of deputies to the SWAT team began shortly after he took office in January. Around April, members of the sheriff’s office began receiving training.

The majority of deputies receiving SWAT training are from the sheriff’s office patrol unit.

“Their main job duty is patrol,” Shock said. “SWAT is secondary.”

Therefore, the entire unit, of about eight members, has not been able to receive extensive training as a unit. However, each member receives monthly training, about eight hours a month, of SWAT training.

“With this level of training now, it makes these deputies more capable and well-trained,” Shock said. “It benefits everyone.”

Shock said the sheriff’s office SWAT team includes two negotiators, and is led by Maj. John Randall, who has previous experience on SWAT teams.

Since its formation, Shock said the sheriff’s office SWAT team has responded to two drug-related search warrants in the past month.

Conway Chief of Police A.J. Gary said the Faulkner County Metro SWAT team will still remain a full, 12-member squad in the absence of Sheriff’s deputies.

While the two teams are separate, Gary said there are still possibilities of the team’s responding together, if needed.

In the end, intentions from both sides indicate a rejoining under the umbrella of the Metro SWAT team.

“We have absolute, full intentions on rejoining (the Metro SWAT team), but we want to get on our feet to where we are comparable to Conway’s SWAT members,” Shock said. “A big part of that is for our citizens. Combining forces, assets and training in case of a tragic situation, so that we can all respond.”

(Staff writer Lee Hogan can be reached by email at lee.hogan@thecabin.net or by phone at 505-1246. Follow Lee Hogan on Twitter at twitter.com/LCD_LeeHogan. To comment on this and other stories, log on to thecabin.net.)

  • Comment

Comments (12)

Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Brady
44
Points
Brady 12/06/13 - 03:54 pm
5
0

Change of Plans?

Prior to the election I heard rumors that Mr. Shock intended on splitting the narcotics and swat teams. I asked him directly this question and he responded I'd be crazy to do that, there is absolutely no truth to that. Again after a debate I asked him due to the rumor persisting he reassured me that he would not split the teams. I then set about advising others that were concerned that Mr. Shock had no intentions of splitting the teams. I feel a bit stupid now. I'm not sure if this was Mr. Shock's intention all along and I was lied too or if there was a change of plans. I do know that I have been in Faulkner County for many years and due to my job I spend most of my time in and around various local law enforcement agencies. I have never witnessed the amount of discord under any other administration then the amount currently being experienced at the FCSO. I'm sure I'll get pegged an Andy hater, but that simply isn't true. I just see the FCSO going in a bad direction and that concerns me. I hope Mr. Shock or someone rights the ship.

rathjen
667
Points
rathjen 12/06/13 - 04:26 pm
3
1

.

There is more to the story than this. CPD became a level 3 SWAT team - which means the federal government can activate them and put them under someone else control. A very bad idea if you desire to have local control.

Shock doubled the manpower on patrol services division and it is noticeable.

I voted against Shock thinking that he was going to take Faulkner County in the wrong direction. He has pleasantly surprised me.

Larry

Free agent
186
Points
Free agent 12/07/13 - 03:49 pm
4
0

The king of discord

You've got the part about the discord right, that's for sure. When he won the election last November, he assembled all of his subordinates as his first act as their leader. He said something to the effect of, I'm in charge now and if you don't like it put your name on the ballot, but remember how much I won by. Not exactly the way to build unity is it? Then he proceeded to systematically run off everyone who didn't actively support him in his campaign. Some he fired, others he and his staff alienated and mistreated until they left of their own accord. Keep in mind that many of these were good officers who just happened to support someone else. It wasn't suppose to be taken personally, but that's not how Andy saw it. Then, after being given a stern faced "thanks but no thanks" from all of the wise and experienced school superintendents in the county regarding his plan to deputize administrators, he goes out to Enola, finds a power hungry useful idiot in Superintendent Larry Walters and uses the press to force it down the throats of all his kin folks and friends. I guess if you can't bully and exploit your friends and family for your own selfish political gain, then who can you bully and exploit, right? Now, Andy has spread his seeds of discord throughout his formerly peaceful alma mater as well as everywhere else he sticks his nose. I haven't even got to the jail yet. I could write a book on the discord this guy has sowed.

Free agent
186
Points
Free agent 12/07/13 - 03:14 pm
2
0

8 hours a month

Is 8 hours a month suppose to be adequate training? Wow! So I guess now Faulkner County can have a SWAT team that's on par with our county jail! When are the debates between Andy Shock and Joe Taylor going to be and where? Joe Taylor is a war veteran with a masters degree and over a decade in law enforcement. If anybody deserves a debate against Shock, it's him. I can assure everyone that if it doesn't happen, it's because is Andy is scared.

fdsjfsdjfsda543543543
2357
Points
fdsjfsdjfsda543543543 12/07/13 - 04:17 pm
2
1

More reason why sheriffs

More reason why sheriffs should be hired and fired like city police and fire chiefs. A relic of a bygone era, kinda like the constables who are also elected. (Which should be done away with completely.)

Perhaps some day state law will change to allow the county judge and quorum court to hire REAL professionals from a qualified applicant pool. Then we could say goodbye to this good ole boy "whose yer daddy now" crap.

But until that day, this story will continue to repeat itself with the next yahoo elected to office.

Free agent
186
Points
Free agent 12/07/13 - 04:38 pm
2
0

Not always true

That's not always the case. If decent people would seek office it would be best to have the sheriff as an elected position, but after taking a close look at Andy Shock, I'd say you have an argument. I think Joe Taylor will make ten times the sheriff Andy has.

fdsjfsdjfsda543543543
2357
Points
fdsjfsdjfsda543543543 12/09/13 - 05:06 am
1
1

But decent people don't

But decent people don't always seek office, you get egomaniac types. And being sheriff is like running your own little fiefdom. I view the county sheriff position as a bit like being a military dictator over a small area.

Sure, you can have good ones. But the bad ones really shine like a $130K X-mas tree don't they!

rathjen
667
Points
rathjen 12/08/13 - 12:22 am
2
1

.

The Sheriff is the highest constitutional officer of the land. And for that reason alone, he should have the sovereignty to run their department as they see fit. If you don't like it, vote them out. That is our democratic process.

The question I have for those speaking against the Sheriff, is have you actually taken the time to talk to the man?

I have worked with Joe Taylor and have nothing to say against him. My only opinion of these posts is that it is way to early to get this stuff started. If it was after Labor day, I would say go at it.

The last thing I want to propose is the idea of Citizens Review board. It is similar to civil service but it is at the county level. The Las Vegas Metro Department utilizes this commission.

www.citizensreviewboard.com

We need an external mechanism to review ALL law enforcement agencies as well as the fire departments that fall under the SO.

But again, I want to ask - have you taken the time to personally talk to him or one of his command staff before repeating something second hand? I have. And have found them to be very professional.

That is my opinion.

Larry Rathjen

Free agent
186
Points
Free agent 12/08/13 - 09:51 am
0
1

You're not as smart as you think you are

After Labor Day! Well that would be several months after the republican primary election wouldn't it? Think before you type next time. It IS time to go at it!

faulknerwatchdog
580
Points
faulknerwatchdog 12/08/13 - 06:25 pm
1
0

I agreed...

...with your previous post (I know, it surprised me too), but I guess you never claimed to be professional either, unlike the sheriff you support. Calling names again, just like that same sheriff.

Back to Top