New findings about the false active shooter incident on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base were released today.
Col. Thomas Sherman, 88th Air Base Wing and installation commander, is briefing the findings of the Incident Review Board he ordered to examine all aspects of the Aug. 2 active shooter incident that occurred at the Wright-Patt Medical Center.
» CONTINUED COVERAGE: 7 things to remember about Wright-Patt false active shooter scenario
New details include: the overall execution of the response to the incident, evaluating actions such as response time and coordination with outside agencies and command and control. Some key things to remember about the active shooter response:
• At, 12:27 p.m., Aug. 2 a Wright-Patt med employee called 911 to report that a jogger has been injured on base. At the same time, an active shooter exercise at Kittyhawk area of the base was occurring. This is what started “the bleed over from exercise to real-world events,” according to the report.
“It was the convergence of these activities which were taking place at the same time which brought a significant amount of confusion and doubt,” Sherman said.
• Key findings from the report:
1. The use of an M4 weapon to breach a locked door was inappropriate.
2. Poor communication between the base and law enforcement led to confusion.
3. Base exercises were not communicated effectively to employees.
• The review panel of the Aug. 2 incident took a look at how to improve communication and coordination with law enforcement. Sherman said the incident unveiled “a gap” in how the base communicates with outside law enforcement and the media.
• There were a number of situations “across the board” where law enforcement did not follow standard protocol, Sherman said. Sherman said those situations are being dealt with individually and he declined to provide more details.
• There was widespread confusion over what caused the active shooter scare at the base’s medical center. Planned installation exercises were planned that week, including an active shooter exercise. Around 12:40 p.m., emergency crews responded to reports of an active shooter incident at the Wright-Patt Medical Center, base officials said. “This reported incident occurred during a normal, scheduled installation exercise which included an active shooter scenario at a separate location in Area A,” officials said.
Wright-Patterson 911 Caller: ‘Help! Help!…active shooter’
• Shots were fired during the response. During their sweep of the medical center Thursday, a law enforcement or security member discharged a firearm in an attempt to breach a locked door, Col. Thomas Sherman said during a press conference. Officials have not confirmed how many shots were fired after initially saying just one. U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, called the use of a firearm to breach a door “highly unusual and highly questionable.”
That use of a firearm to breach a door has also been under investigation by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.
• One person was injured during the response. Photos circulating on social media that were obtained by this newspaper appear to show bullet-sized holes in a wall inside a medical center room. Base spokeswoman Marie Vanover said a “defender” suffered a minor laceration during the incident and returned to work the next day. Initially, base officials said no one was hurt during the incident. “I can confirm that one of our defenders was injured during the incident; however since the investigation is on-going, I cannot comment on any specifics,” a spokeswoman told this newspaper.
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