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Hostage Rescue Tactics.

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Presentation on theme: "Hostage Rescue Tactics."— Presentation transcript:

1 Hostage Rescue Tactics

2 Mission Statement An SWAT Members of a Law Enforcement Special Weapons and Tactics Unit must be able to operate in hostile conditions under extreme pressures with surgical skill for the safety of all law enforcement personnel, hostages, the general public, and the suspect(s). Entry is always used as a last resort when all other means have been exhausted for a peaceful end to a critical incident.

3 Learning Objective

4 What Is A Hostage ? A person kept as a pledge pending the fulfillment of an agreement A person held by another person as a security for the fulfillment of a certain demand A hostage is a victim held against his or her will by threat or the actual use of force

5 Historical Perspective
Munich Olympics in 1972 focused the world’s attention on hostage incidents. Holland -- may 1976 hostages held on train by Mollocan terrorists. Entebbe, Uganda -- July 1976. Mogadishu, Somalia -- Oct rescue of passengers from airliner.

6 Historical Perspective continued …
Iran -- April 1980 American Hostages held at embassy London, England -- May 1980 Hostages rescued from Iranian Embassy Lima, Peru Hostages rescued from Japanese Embassy

7 Hostage Situation Types
Terrorists Criminals Targeted Individuals

8 What Is A Hostage ? A person kept as a pledge pending the fulfillment of an agreement A person held by another person as a security for the fulfillment of a certain demand A hostage is a victim held against his or her will by threat or the actual use of force

9 Historical Perspective
Munich Olympics in 1972 focused the world’s attention on hostage incidents. Holland -- may 1976 hostages held on train by Mollocan terrorists. Entebbe, Uganda -- July 1976. Mogadishu, Somalia -- Oct rescue of passengers from airliner.

10 Historical Perspective continued …
Iran -- April 1980 American Hostages held at embassy London, England -- May 1980 Hostages rescued from Iranian Embassy Lima, Peru Hostages rescued from Japanese Embassy

11 Hostage Situation Types
Terrorists Criminals Targeted Individuals

12 Terrorist Hostage Taker
Political motivations Committed to cause In for the long haul, often able to endure extended periods of time barricaded

13 Criminal Hostage Taker
Caught in the commission of a crime. Important not to create feelings of hopelessness during negotiations. Hostages used to slow police response

14 Target Individuals Mentally disturbed persons Prisoners
May be irrational and/or suicidal Prisoners Historically, immediate and forceful action has proven most effective

15 Hostage Taking Response
Most incidents are local authority responsibility Most incidents are not terrorism Most incidents are criminals and/or mentally disturbed persons The vast majority of incidents are resolved using the “negotiation” process

16 Patrol Supervisor Responsibilities
Evacuate citizens from target site area Contain target site Establish field command post Summon emergency medical personnel Establish outer perimeter for traffic and pedestrian control Locate persons that can provide intelligence Notify PIO and establish media area

17 TPD Simplified Command Structure For Typical Critical Incident

18 Command Structure Barricade / Hostage Situation

19 SWAT Commander’s Responsibilities
Delegate Supervisory Missions Emergency Rescue Plan Deliberate Rescue Plan Negotiations with CNT Tactical Operations Center

20 First SWAT Supervisor on Scene
Use rapid deployment tactics Deploy marksmen/observer teams Deploy emergency rescue team Deploy containment personnel as needed Insure the negotiation process has been initiated

21 Hostage Taker’s Actions
Release hostages / surrender Release hostages / suicide Kill hostages / suicide Kill hostages / surrender Continue to hold hostages Kill one hostage / continue

22 Hostage Taker’s Actions
Flee after killing hostages Exit with gun to his/her head Exit and confront police with or without hostages Exit surrounded by hostages

Peril to the Hostages should be considered extreme if : - The Hostage taker is unnecessarily cruel to the Hostage(s) - When there is no human interaction between the Hostage taker and Hostage *Physical separation * Hostages blindfolded

24 The Tactical Operations Center

25 Crisis Negotiations

26 Hostage Rescue Tactics

27 Command Priorities Hostages Innocent civilians Police personnel
Hostage taker

28 Hostage Rescue Tactics
The command decision to shoot the hostage taker The Truth About Incident Command (Article by R.McCarthy)

29 Hostage Rescue Components
Command and control Responsible for all ancillary operations Special weapons team Entry component Containment component Negotiations team Should include tactical liaison and coordination with SWAT

30 Phases of a Hostage Rescue Operation
Planning Rehearsal Movement Intervention Withdrawal

31 Planning Situation Mission
Provides a brief summary of all that has transpired and any mitigating or aggravating circumstances that can affect the operation Mission Precisely defines the objective

32 Planning Execution Administration & logistics Command & signal
How the objective is expected to be achieved Administration & logistics “Beans, bandages and bullets” Command & signal Who is in charge of what and how we will communicate

33 Planning The focus is on the hostages not the suspect
Planning is usually conducted in reverse From the hostages to safety, not from the entry to the suspect The focus is on the hostages not the suspect May mean the suspect temporally remains free from authority’s custody

34 Planning Opportunity, not Time, is the key factor
Time may provide opportunities, but passing opportunities may mean they are lost forever Never commit to just One plan of Action Alternate contingency plans should be developed and ready. No operation is static and planning should be continuous

35 Rehearsal Hostage rescue interventions are too complex and too important to leave anything to chance. Rehearsals should be “full dress” whenever possible

36 Rehearsal The rehearsal should include radio traffic and signals, as well as the planned movement The last rehearsal should be done in “real” time utilizing the anticipated floor plan and any equipment likely to be needed.

37 Movement The movement phase begins when it has determined that a tactical intervention is likely but not yet imminent During this phase the team is deployed and staged in a position to intervene Planning and preparation continue Major plan changes now become more difficult

38 Movement This is the phase in which secrecy is most crucial
The survival of the Hostages and Team members require that the Hostage Taker(s) do not suspect the intervention The Media can not suspect your intentions

39 Intervention Intervention phase begins when a tactical intervention is imminent Command moves from incident commander to SWAT commander Most visible phase Most often the only part of the operation reported by the media

40 Intervention Except under the most exigent circumstances, a tactical intervention to rescue the hostages should not be recommended without four things being present:

41 Intervention 1. The floor plan of the Target Site must be known.
2. The Entry Team must be in a position to intervene within ten seconds of the signal from the SWAT Commander A window of opportunity or necessity may be lost if not

42 Intervention 3. Sufficient personnel must be available to dominate all areas of threat It is most often the complexity of the floor plan and not the size of the building which dictates the size of the entry team 4. The entry team must be able to protect the hostages within a maximum of 30 seconds

43 Intervention Ideally a hostage rescue entry is comprised of two preparatory actions The team is staged at the point(s) of breach/entry A diversion precedes the actual entry to confuse and disorient the hostage taker

44 Intervention Breach and Entry Methods Covert Hooligan & Ram Bar Pull
Shotgun Breach Explosives

45 Intervention Breach and entry methods
Entry should be made at the closest point possible to the hostages When feasible use multiple breach/entry points and/or breach/gun ports

46 Intervention Two types of Diversions
Physiological (explosive breach,noise flash devices, etc) Psychological (ruse) The ideal diversion is a “Coordinated Marksmen Initiated Intervention” Diversions are always used in a supporting role

47 Intervention Because of the high degree of coordination required coupled with the speed of the intervention; assignments must be understood and HRT principles rigidly adhered to.

48 Intervention The first requirement is to assign individual team member responsibilities

49 Intervention The next requirement is the determination of how to accomplish the entry How do we get through the door? What’s the best entry technique?

50 Basic Two Man Room Entry
1 2 2 1

51 Two Man, Multiple Rooms 2 1 1 2 2 1

52 Four Man Room Entry 1 2 3 4 2 1 4 3

53 Two Man, Multiple Rooms 4 3 2 1 1 3 4 2 2 1 4 3

54 Intervention The next requirement is entry team responsibility
The rescue element’s responsibility is to insure the hostage taker does not harm the hostages The security element’s responsibility is handling of hostages, breaching and protection of the rescue element.” Trailers”

55 Intervention The last requirement for beginning the intervention is the signal to begin Whenever possible, this signal should be a casualty producing signal The best casualty producing signal for Hostage rescue is a “Coordinated Marksmen Initiated Intervention”



58 Intervention Four objectives of a hostage rescue intervention
To quickly take control of an area and dominate it To deliver rapid and accurate fire when necessary Positive target identification To complete your assignment without hindering the efforts of your fellow Team Members in completing theirs

59 Intervention OPEN AIR OPTION
Most desirable due to high probability of success Requires highly skilled marksmen with sophisticated and accurate weapons Two marksmen for each hostage taker deployed as close to right angles as possible (L-shape)

60 Intervention OPEN AIR OPTION
All Marksmen should be certain of assigned targets All shots should be coordinated by command of Sniper Controller (multiple hostage takers) Rescue team must be deployed Head shots are desirable

61 Intervention OPEN AIR OPTION
Deployed to dominate predictable target area Field of view vs. Field of fire Obtain total coverage of target site with overlapping sectors of fire Consider background (choose proper weapon) Relay all information to marksmen TOC

62 Intervention OPEN AIR OPTION Confirm or deny information on hand
Neutralize a vehicle Neutralize a hostage taker Identify routes in and out of target site Identify special problems at target site Discuss compromise authority

63 Intervention MOBILE OPTION Second most desirable option
Places Hostages/Takers in position to be observed Sedan type vehicles with large windows are best and require six team members Large vehicles and buses require special ladders and additional team members This contingency should be planned for early on

64 Intervention MOBILE OPTION
Consider number of hostage takers hostages are involved Have CNT talk vehicle size down (bus to sedan) deliver what is best for a rescue Duplicate vehicle to be used and rehearse all options

65 Intervention MOBILE OPTION
Vehicle should be altered to compliment the intervention Mirrors Windows down Trunk lid raised Electronic neutralization device (END)

66 Intervention MOBILE OPTION
Rescue team should be armed with large caliber pistols Marksmen initiated rescue is preferred

67 Mobile Option

68 Mobile Option-L-Shape

69 Mobile Option-Buses

70 Intervention STRONGHOLD OPTION Least desirable option
Requires rehearsal and precision team work Can require large number of team members Close confrontation and potential for multiple shots

71 Intervention EXECUTION OPTIONS Covert Entry Dynamic (controlled speed)
Move to contact Dynamic (controlled speed) Hostage location known Hostage location unknown

72 Intervention STRONGHOLD OPTION SURPRISE Stealth probe to Breach Point
Stealth probe to Contact Stealth protection of Hostages At time least expected Fatigue factor

73 Intervention STRONGHOLD OPTION DIVERSION Explosive Breach
Noise Flash Device Ruse Dialogue with Negotiator

Multiple entry points when feasible Appropriate number of entry personnel to accomplish the mission

75 Intervention STRONGHOLD OPTION There should be three distinct plans
Emergency Deliberate Contingency

76 Intervention EMERGENCY RESCUE
Timeliness and quick response is paramount Provides an organized response for an unplanned event Should be implemented within 30 minutes of SWAT arrival All available intelligence is evaluated for tactical consideration

77 Intervention EMERGENCY RESCUE Considerations
Number of hostages/hostage takers Size/complexity of target site Point(s) of entry Breach requirements Bypassing doors

Used for conduct of all Operations that are anticipated and allow for preplanning Serves as a base for all related operations Considered the “Master” plan

Obtain all available intelligence from the TOC Use photos and interior diagrams of the target site to layout floor plan and rehearse Rehearsals should include every possible option to the last detail

80 Intervention DELIBERATE RESCUE Stealth Probe
Determine hostage/hostage taker location Determine ingress route for rescue team Locate devices/technical problems Place listening devices Probe coordinated with TOC and OIC Emergency rescue team in place in case of compromise

81 Intervention CONTINGENCY
Focuses thought on anticipated problems that may arise during the conduct of the operation Allows for operational deviation while maintaining continuity with the deliberate plan

82 Intervention CONTINGENCY
Guards against the operation stopping due to confusion or sudden change in the situation Usually applies primarily to the concept or execution portions of the Deliberate Rescue Plan

Intervention WHAT CONSTITUTES SUFFICIENT PERSONNEL? To attempt a Hostage Rescue without sufficient personnel places too great of a burden on the Entry Team and means they must unduly jeopardize their own safety The size of the Entry Team is dictated by the complexity of the floor plan and not necessarily the size of the building

The single exception is when the location of the Hostage and/or the Hostage taker can be determined with absolute certainty

85 Intervention WHEN TO INTERVENE ?
When it appears that the hostage taker may kill or seriously injure hostages When a window of opportunity exist The hostage taker has placed himself at a tactical disadvantage An element of surprise exist

86 Intervention WHEN TO INTERVENE ? Required components are ready
Supported by diversions Negotiations Breaching/porting Noise flash devices Access into stronghold position can be gained quickly

Intervention What if we encounter the hostages but the hostage taker is still outstanding? Safeguard the hostages Abort HRT and initiate barricade procedures “THE OBJECTIVE IS TO WIN -- NOT TO FIGHT !”

88 What if you have to pass an area of threat ?
Intervention What if you have to pass an area of threat ? The momentum of the rescue can not be delayed to search every potential hiding place or area of threat This is the security element’s responsibility The focus of effort remains on the hostages !

89 Withdrawal The evacuation of the hostage must be planned
If it is not part of the plan it becomes part of the problem ! Hostages may not be willing participants to the rescue Hostage takers may take refuge with the hostages in an attempt to not be identified and escape Once the hostages safety is assured the tone of the operation changes

90 What Constitutes a Successful Hostage Rescue Operation ?
When the hostages are “rescued” When the hostage taker is neutralized When the hostages can be safeguarded/ separated from the hostage taker




94 Responsibilities Point 180 degree security on approach from LCC
Identify Objective Pace I.E.D. Detection Controls final breach command Guides team to Intervention Staging Area



97 Responsibilities Scout COVER POINT! Relay Intel
Deploy D.D. or Munitions


99 Responsibilities Team Leader Provide Cover for Scout and Point
Exercise Control over team Movement and Actions Make Tactical Decisions that effect operational integrity Supervision of interior aftermath (I.e. trailers, medical personnel, and Crime Scene) Overall Supervision of RESCUE/REACT team Intervention



102 Responsibilities Mechanical Breacher Cover aforementioned team members
Manipulate Gates and Screen Doors/Windows Deploy D.D.’s and Munitions Carry and deploy mechanical breaching devices Hooligan Pry Break and Rake Tool Master Keys Shotgun Breaching Munitions Tow Straps Lock Pick Tools Probing devices (I.e Under door Camera)


104 Responsibilities Breacher/Rear Guard Breach Primary Entry Point
Carry and Deploy Heavy Equipment (I.e. Cutting Torch) Cover the rear of the Entry Element as they progress through a structure. Provide Arrest Control for Combative suspects



107 SPEED Deliberate action Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast Flooding Effect

108 SURPRISE Tactics allow stealthy approach Psychological Effect Clothing
Equipment Overwhelming Senses

109 VIOLENCE OF ACTION Overwhelm Senses Immediate Incapacitation
Tools and Techniques CS GAS Diversionary Devices Diversionary Actions Pain Compliance Munitions Ruses Deadly Force

110 PREPARATION Mental Physical Rehearsals

111 Assault Initiation Techniques



114 EXPLOSIVE BREACHING Specialized Position Technical Training Cost

115 Mechanical Breach Ram Break and Rake Pry
Modified Shotgun with specifically designed frangible breaching rounds


Primary and Secondary Marksman may initiate assault by using deadly force. During the course of this initiation it may Breach the Assault element’s primary entry point. (i,.e. firing through a window)


119 Air Assault Deployment from an airborne facilitator.


121 Rope Descent Rappelling Aussie Inverted Traditional

122 DYNAMIC ENTRY Dynamic-
Most Common Approach used for Hostage Rescue and the Service of High Risk Warrants. Speed Surprise Confusion


124 Justification for Dynamic Entry
Provides safety by speed of action Confusion Overwhelming Senses of Suspect(s) Preservation of Life and Evidence Proven Procedure

125 Dynamic Entry often utilizes Diversionary and Sensory Deprivation Tactics to give the Entry element an advantage over suspects. Dynamic entries are often swift in completion and can be best visualized by releasing a bucket of water at the entry point. Members begin to flow in as water would flow into a room. During this action certain procedure should be followed for optimal performance of this tactic.

126 There are many techniques for dynamic entries
There are many techniques for dynamic entries. The principles remain the same. Penetrate Structure Clear Corners and Transition Areas Observe One Meter Rule React on Suspect Actions Overwhelm the suspects Dominate Structure

127 THE ONE METER RULE The one meter rule refers to the area of responsibility each operator sweeps upon entering the objective. Each operator will scan with his or her weapon left to right. Upon seeing another operative within his field of view the operator must stop their sweep one meter short of another operative. This assures interlocking security sweeps as well as safety.

128 Diversionary Tactics Diversionary Devices (Flashbangs) Smoke Sound
Break and Rake Lighting CS Gas Pain Compliance Munitions

129 HRT VS. WARRANT SERVICE HRT Objective- Prevent loss of life and arrest violator(s). Warrant Service Objective- Detain or arrest suspects and or secure a crime scene.

130 HRT Entry HRT Entry is used as a last resort to end a critical incident. The suspect dictates the use of this tool.

131 Stealth Entry Tactics Stealth tactics are a common occurrence in the service of warrants and during HRT operations. Stealth is almost always used upon approach to the objective and can be used inside the structure. This Tactic is usually very methodic and deliberate in nature. Stealth has the advantage of a slow pace for the gathering of crucial intelligence as the team progresses to and in the objective structure. Stealth Entry Tactics may be used due to the size of a structure.

132 Combination Entry Tactics
Stealth and Dynamic Entry can be used in combination. The use of stealth up to a designated point within an objective is a common occurrence. Typically Stealth is not used after Dynamic Tactics are initiated. The combination of these tactics is often used in large structures such as grocery stores or warehouses.

133 BASIC ENTRY S.O.P Danger Areas Fatal Funnel Corners Hallways Stairways
Small Rooms (i.e. Closets, Utility Rooms)

134 FORMATIONS Stack Cover, Contact Shield Wedge



137 SUSPECT CONTROL Demand Immediate Compliance Physical Control
Standardized Voice Commands Physical Control CCP/Penal Code/Use of Force Policy Deadly Force

138 Entry Operations are extremely hazardous for law enforcement
Entry Operations are extremely hazardous for law enforcement. Each officer must prepare and maintain their mental, physical, and skill levels for the best outcome for all operations where entries are required. S.O.P for each agency and team must be constantly reviewed and strictly adhered.


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