Jones County S.W.A.T. team trains for the worst

Jones County S.W.A.T. team trains for the worst
Members of the Jones County S.W.A.T. team train on Thursday. Source: WDAM

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - Members of the Jones County Sheriff's Department SWAT descended on North Jones Elementary School early Thursday morning, but it was only for training.

The department SWAT team trains on a regular basis, and the scenarios always change.

"This is just something to see where we're at as a team, with our SWAT team and our negotiations," said Jones County Sheriff's Department Major Jamie Tedford.

The scenario the team had to resolve was multiple armed suspects, hostages, and a wounded deputy inside the school.

"It makes them think, and the more they think the more they're aware of everything going on," said Sgt. Scott Sims. "It doesn't matter what environment we're in, they can adapt to that environment and adapt to the situation."

Tedford said active shooter scenarios are a common thing in today's society, and the department aims to be ahead of the curb.

"As we've seen across the country, school shootings, active shooter situations in different places, these are the type of places that is actively, probably going to happen," said Tedford. "You've got to have things in place and plans in place for situations like this, cause it's not if it happens anymore, it's when it happens."

Tedford said some people say training is excessive, but he said they practice to save lives.

"To keep my guys safe…to let them do it and go home at the of the shift, end of the scenario, end of the callout, where they will have the skills to save people's lives, and keep their selves safe," said Sims.

When it comes to questions from the community about the type of equipment the department has or uses, Tedford said everything they have is a useful tool.

"This equipment is just to have on hand in case that we have to go in and get your baby, or my baby, or someone else's child," said Tedford, in reference to SWAT vehicles.

The team along with supervisors holds a debriefing after all scenarios to go over what can be done and what can change to be more efficient.

"We just want the citizens of Jones County to know that we are working doing everything that we can do to have something in place in case that something does happen," said Tedford.