DENVILLE, N.J. - The chances of being involved in a dangerous situation, such as one involving an active shooter, are slim. Nevertheless, people would be wise to adopt a "warrior mindset," a cautious, prepared "view of the world that is the default view of police officers," according to Denville police.
That's part of the lesson they will teach Oct. 19 when they present a "town hall meeting" that will include a lecture on surviving violent encounters. The free meeting, open to all Denville residents, will take place from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the community room of town hall.
"The presentation was created, in part, due to the recent active-shooter events in San Bernardino and Orlando, the stabbing at a Minnesota mall and the bombings in New York and New Jersey," said Denville police in announcing the meeting. "It will cover topics such as creating the right mind-set, increasing awareness and steps anyone can take to keep themselves and their families from becoming victims."
During the 90-minute session, Denville police officers Kris Sandman and Rick Duda will explain that "default view" of the world police embrace at all times. This entails "being aware of their surroundings, constantly identifying potential threats and creating plans of action for any violent encounter," police said.
Denville students, teachers and school staff, and those in many other towns, are now being taught these concepts, known as Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter and Evacuate (A.L.I.C.E.). "A.L.I.C.E. reinforces the idea that citizens should be responsible for their own safety and is in tune with the guidelines set forth by the FBI and Department of Homeland Security known as "Run, Hide and Flight," according to the police.
They stressed that the odds of anyone being confronted with the situations being described are "extremely slim." But they noted that "the consequences of not being prepared are high."
Those with questions can write to Sanderson at firstname.lastname@example.org or Duda at email@example.com.