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Kate Flemming narrates these one hour specials that interview members of SWAT teams in major cities where they remember their most infamous cases. There is some real footage, but most of it is reenactments. Could've been the inspiration for Dallas SWAT.
Ep# Description
1 Detroit S.W.A.T. - Observing the exhaustive mental and physical training for SWAT commandos, and a look at some encounters involving the Special Response Team. 2000
2 Los Angeles - LA S.W.A.T. - they have been there 30 years and cover an area the size of Indiana and go head to head with the most violent criminals. They are the last resort. 3am - Sgt. Phil Hansen says two Crip members thought a woman snitched on them and beat her on the head with a pipe. Captain Cathy Taylor says they get 2 calls and 5 warrants a week. High risk warrants are the most common call. They plan it out days in advance and take pictures from the ground and air. Deputy Ralph Garay says then they pick they team and plan what will work best. They like to hit them before dawn. Deputy Paul Pietrantoni says it's for surprise and shock, catch them while they are asleep. There are 50 members in the department. In the 1990s 16,000 were murdered in their area. They use a hook on the metal door and window, shoot in flash bangs and the door comes off its hinges, gets stuck and takes out a light. People are right there, come out and the murder suspect is caught. It's three strikes and you are out, so they'll fight to the death. Bank of America Shootout - Mark Dunn was a KCBS reporter in a helicopter over the scene. They knew something was wrong when they saw a man firing a machine gun. They saw the car, his partner and them trying to leave until the cops arrived and the gun battle ensued. 11 cops and 7 people were injured. The cops were outgunned. The bad guys are getting badder, weapons are more powerful. Critics are against the big guns and the shootings. Deputy Roy Burns says they aren't out there killing people, they don't want to kill anyone. They are not militaristic. SWAT means Sit, Wait And Talk is the joke. The easiest way is if they give up, but they train to pull them out of the house. The team scout plans and is the first one in. Deputy Phillip Martinez says everyone wants to be the first guy in the door. Paul says it's a judgement call and everyone looks at you. They get a call of an armed barricaded suspect. Neighbors are trapped, they can't get to them without going by the suspect's door. They'll have to pull them out a window including a three month old baby. Then they can be right next door to the suspect. Four people are pulled out, then they set up. After 2 hours they are ready to go, then they hear there are babies and a woman in the house, so no tear gas or flash bangs are used. They get the hostages released, then the man gives up without a fight. Only 50 out of 9000 can make it to SWAT. They have to train hard and pass a fitness exam every 3 months. For every 2 open spots they get 100 applicants. It's more pay and prestige. They are the best of the best with weapons no one else gets to use. They have an obstacle course designed to wear you out. Deputy Sue Burakowski explains what it is and it has to be done in under 7:45. She's new there and it's a dream come true to her. She's the first ever female on the team. Nothing is ever the same twice, so they are always training. At the shooting range - they spend 400 hours a year there. It's about accuracy, not speed. They practice clearing a house. You train like you fight, so they make it as realistic as possible. Helicopter rescue training is in response to the riots of 1992 after the Rodney King verdict. They decided to use a helicopter to pluck people out of trouble and avoid traffic. An 8 man team comes out of one, another helicopter has a man strapped to the side with a rifle to cover them. They can do it in under 10 seconds. They have a desert training facility where they have setups with cops playing the bad guys. A hostage on a moving bus is their Speed scenario. He's holding the driver hostage as well. The bus goes by and they drive up behind it in an armored car, then have a truck block the front. They disable the doors and toss a flash and go in and shoot the suspect. Everyone is treated as a possible suspect. Deputy Jeff Riggin says they have every possible scenario in LA. Units from across the country train there including Navy Seals. The advance SWAT School is taught shooting with 9mm MP5 submachine guns. It's accurate and lethal, but won't go through walls of houses. Deputy Bob Smith says they rarely use deadly force, it's .005% for their unit. They have an anti-riot shotgun that fires plastic rounds with hard rubber bullets. They prefer to use that instead of killing people. They don't force a shooting, the suspect chooses it. 6/12/97 was the most violent shootout. Sgt. Bill Marsh led the team at an industrial complex in Pico Rivera. Daniel Collins was being evicted from the warehouse he lived for 19 years. They don't do evictions, so he greeted the police with an AK-47 when they arrived, then SWAT was called in. Phillip Martinez was asked to scout the area. They were hiding behind a wall with rifles. They find it's a huge building and it's surrounded by chemical barrels full of chlorine. It could blow up the building and poison the air. Daniel has caches of ammo set up all around. He would run and fire from every window. They tried to gas him out, but have to go in after 15 hours. They go in, but can't find him. They call the dogs and find a small bathroom and gas it, but hear nothing. Julio Reya shoots the door, then Dan fires on him. They fire back. Deputy Roy Burns says the walls were coming apart, metal was flying around. Phil was hit. Deputy Tony Baudino pulled them out and it and was horrible. Bill goes back, more fire is exchanged, more gas is used, then more firing. He jumps out and starts firing and they take him out. It took 19 hours. Phil & Julio were out for 6 months. They had to change tactics and use explosives to breech a door instead of a gun. They can be safely away. They don't like to talk about Pico. Robert Martinez is Phil's dad, he knows there's always a chance he might not come back. Detective Harry Smith says it could always happen to them even though they have the best equipment. His brother Larrell K. Smith was the first SWAT member killed on duty. 4/16/83 - SWAT was called to serve a warrant on a violent drug dealer. Larrell was saying he hated these early warrants. They went through a window, he was third, Gibbs was 4th, Marsh was 5th. A shot rang out, then they fired back. Larrell was hit in the back of the head and they pulled him out, but he was dead weight. He was on life support for 5 days. They pulled the plug and he died. Two brothers were on the team and one was killed, it was a unique situation. They got a new member and life went on. It's not worth it that Larrell didn't make it to be retired, but they can't quit. They don't want he press and public to make it like it's us against them.
3 San Francisco S.W.A.T. 2000
4 Las Vegas S.W.A.T. - team members recall infamous tragedies - Sheriff Jerry Keller, Sgt. Jim Dixon, Kirk Primus, Lt. Bill Conger, Tom Monahan, Pat Neville, Kathy O’Connor, Rod Jett, Dr. John Alexander, Officer Gavin Vesp, Chris Matthews, Paul Darpa, Darrel Hixson, John Sheahan, Steven Angelo, Kevin McCord – Training/Suicide Capitol/Rodney King Riots/Jim McClintock fires a shotgun at cops, is killed and there is a trial/Hostage Training/Super Pawn 3/4/99 – a robbery turns into a hostage situation/Rappel Training/Warrant serving training/Meth Raids/Desert Obstacle Course/SWAT Night/Columbine Training/Bank of America 12/98 – Timothy Blackburn kills his family/Sheahan Family. 12/26/00

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