1. All base exercises were not clearly communicated to employees. Two base exercises were occurring that day, one at Kittyhawk Chapel and another at the Wright-Patt Medical Treatment Facility. "While realism is important in training exercises, all personnel must be always be fully aware of exercise vs. real-world situations. Coordinating with all concerned organizations and then sticking with the agreed upon plan is essential to keeping everyone fully aware," the report found.
» STICKING WITH THE STORY: 7 things to remember about Wright-Patterson active situation
2. Air Force Security Member discharged rounds from M4 Carbine assault rifle
At 12:46 p.m., Wright-Patt fire dispatch was notified of three shots fired in the hospital’s Red Clinic. Six minutes later, fire dispatch reported the three to five shots appeared to have been fired by Wright-Patt 88th Security Forces member. When responding, that Security Forces member fired rounds from an M4 through the window of a locked door.
Air Force Security Forces can carry the M4 Carbine assault rifle. The semiautomatic weapon has a three-round burst firing option, according to the Air Force website. The weapon has a 30-round magazine and its attachment options include a lazer pointer and grenade launcher. It has the capability of firing 700 to 950 rounds per minute.
An employee with Wright-Patterson Air Force Base shared a photo of four bullet holes in a wall that were fired while her and three other employees were barricaded in the room during an active shooter alert on Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018.
3. Use of the M4 was not warranted
The use of an M4 weapon to breach a locked door was inappropriate. Military personnel must follow weapons safety training at all times, especially during high pressure situations, the report found.
4. Bystanders walked out while building was still being cleared by law enforcement
At 1:39 p.m., responders started to clear the building, and even more confusion occurred. After a team entered a room and determined it was safe, they announced “clear” to indicate to other responders that the room was sweeped. Hospital employees hiding in adjacent rooms thought it was safe to come out, but were instead met by responders with drawn weapons who were still sweeping the building.
» WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: What the US Air Force says to do during active shooter situations
5. Response by outside law enforcement agencies and military forces was disjointed
A breakdown of communication led to a completely uncoordinated and ineffective combined response that could have resulted in serious injury or property damage. A thorough understanding between federal, state and local agencies about command and control to include understanding jurisdiction and response procedures needs to be established.
Were you present during the active shooter false alarm at Wright Patterson? We want to hear your story. Contact reporter Kara Driscoll at 937-225-0551 or firstname.lastname@example.org.