Post Borderline, Gilroy, and Pre Malibu Chili Cook Off: Malibu Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department Prepares Deputies For Active Shooter Scenarios
By Cece Woods
The Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department engaged in Active Shooter drills just two days after the devastating Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting that took the lives of 3 young people killed and injured 12.
According to the L.A. Times, authorities said the shooter, Santino Legan, bought the semiautomatic rifle used in the shooting legally in Nevada on July 9, less than three weeks before the shooting. The weapon, similar to a military-style AK-47, with its standard clip and stocks, is considered an assault rifle that is banned under California law. It’s unclear if the shooter targeted specific people.
The Nevada gun shop, Big Mikes Guns and Ammo, that sold the rile used in the shooting, said in a Facebook post Monday that the buyer ordered the gun online.
Three of the attendees who survived the shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival were also survivors of the 2017 Las Vegas Route 91 music festival that left 58 dead.
Just two days before the Woolsey Fire on November 7th, 2018, was the Borderline Bar shooting that left 13 people dead and at least a dozen injured. Among the dead was Alaina Housley, a Pepperdine student, and Ron Helus, 54, a Sergeant from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department.
Three people who were at the Borderline shooting survived the Vegas shooting the year before.
Active Shooter scenarios are becoming more of a very real potential daily threat when shopping at local malls, department stores, concerts, event arenas and fairgrounds as the victims of the incidents mentioned above have learned surviving multiple active shooter events in short periods of time.
Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department Acting Captain Chuck Becerra and Malibu Public Safety Liaison Jennifer Seetoo are part of the proactive team producing public safety training such as Active Shooter Response and First Responder medical training to handle casualties, both themselves and others.
Lt. Seetoo is actively involved in having all deputies at the station trained in tactical response first aid. The goal is to have Lost Hills deputies trained within the year.
Tactical first aid training trains the first responder police officers to render aid to both citizens and or other emergency personnel who may have been shot during an event such as the Gilmore Garlic festival or should an event like that occur at the Malibu Chili Cook-off coming up on Labor Day Weekend. With limited supplies, deputies are able to apply medical aid to bullet wounds to try to quickly triage and save lives.
The new uniforms recently approved and announced by Sheriff Alex Villanueva have outside pockets on the uniform pants allowing deputies to carry limited medical supplies.
Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department received a grant to pay for small medical packages that the deputies can carry on duty. You will note that most deputies are now carrying a small case on their waist along with their gun that has a medical cross on it. While the kit can vary, it normally contains things like blood clotting gauze tourniquet, patches for sucking wounds.
Active shooter scenarios have resulted in event spaces and fairgrounds requiring security searches to check for weapons. Unfortunately, Santino cut through the fence to enter the Garlic Festival bypassing security measures already in place.
Lost Hills Acting Captain Becerra had this to say regarding the recent drills performed by the Lost Hills station in light of the potential for a catastrophic event in Malibu and with the Malibu Chili Cook-off over Labor Day Weekend which attracts tens of thousands of visitors to Malibu each year:
“In an effort to keep this community as prepared as possible for the next potential threat, Malibu/Lost Hills station has begun a series of training exercises to keep the first responders up to date and ready. To this end, July 3oth marked the first “Active Shooter” training exercise in which the majority of the station personnel, school security personnel (at Calabasas High School), and various other partners, took part in an all-day active shooter training exercise.
LASD personnel were put into teams, given a high threat scenario, and sent into the school to train. It was a huge success. Personnel on all levels were able to access their strengths and weakness and adjust accordingly. This training will occur randomly and quarterly. The scenarios and venues will change to keep the training exercises diverse and relevant.
It is the goal of this station that every member of the station is ready to address anything they face.”