Hostage Training Exercise - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

12.5.03

Hostage Training Exercise

Three armed prison escapees took over Legion Stadium on Thursday and held three people hostage.

But this time, the crime scene tape was just a prop for a training exercise.

If you drove by the stadium on Carolina Beach Road, you may have have heard and seen bombs exploding and hostages yelling for help. As dramatic as this scenario may seem, it mirrors reality.

Some of these same officers were involved in a hostage situation at a Wilmington apartment complex last year.

The exercise demanded negotiators, the K-9 unit, the emergency response team and the bomb squad, all of whom treat this hostage scenario as if it were the real thing.

A command post was set up where negotiators tried to "talk down" the escapees. The exercise lets rookies feel the intensity of a life-threatening situation, and gives commanders practice for the next time, when the hostages aren't acting.

Reported By Nicole Konkal: Nkonkal@wect.com

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