Last week I had the opportunity to pay a visit to the Firearms Training Unit of the City of Milwaukee Police Department. I have had the privilege of working with Sgt. (newly promoted to Lieutenant) Jim "Mac" MacGillis and his instructor staff on a number of occasions over the past 4 years. All of the fulltime instructors have taken my Tactical Anatomy training, with four officers having completed my 2-day Advanced Instructor Development course last year.
Milwaukee PD’s officers have one of the best hit ratios of any large police department I am aware of. Moreover, their success rate in Officer-Involved Shootings (OIS) has been extremely positive (for the officers, anyway). Mac and his staff have used some innovative training methods to really ensure that MPD coppers can put their 180 gr Gold Dot Hollow Point bullets where they count. This training has involved the use of a great training/qualification target that encourages good shot placement in real life, effective use of the IES MILO computer simulator, shooter problem diagnostics programs, force on force training, and so on. This is one switched-on department when it comes to firearms training.
They’ve now developed a new inservice program for veteran officers that is strongly based on the 3D anatomic targeting skills contained in Tactical Anatomy Systems’ training. They’re using many of the Powerpoint slides from my Tactical Anatomy Instructor Manual, with some really good slides of their own making (that I intend to "borrow" for my upcoming talks at ILEETA and IALEFI!). Then they take to the firing range, where they’re using remote-controlled robotic movers with Tactical Ted-type 3D targets mounted on them. Mac and his staff run the trainees through progressively more difficult targeting problems, individually and as two-man "buddy teams" (see members-only section for more discussion of this).
"When they come in and see what we want them to do, most of our coppers are pretty nervous," Mac says. "But by the end of the training they know they can hit where it counts from any angle, on moving targets, and while moving themselves. They leave here with a huge boost of confidence in their ability with their handguns."
It’s a huge boost of confidence for me and for Tactical Anatomy Systems, too, because this marks the first time a metro police department has officially made Tactical Anatomy a major part of its firearms training program. I feel pretty good about this, as MPD’s adoption of my training means that by the end of the current training cycle every one of MPD’s patrol officers will have learned 3D target organ visualization and will be able to put their bullets where they are critically needed when the fecal matter hits the rotating cooling device. Milwaukee’s excellent OIS record can only get better with this extra training. In fact, there has been one OIS by a TAS-trained MPD officer already, and it was an unqualified success: one shot at 40 feet ended the fight instantly and permanently.
Next week I am going back for a second visit, and I’m going to actually take the 4-hour block of training from Mac and his staff alongside the class of MPD officers. I’ll be posting photos and (hopefully) video of the training in the Members Only section.