LORTON, Va. - "Stand in the middle of the room and face away from me!" shouted a Soldier to an uncooperative "detainee," during detainee operations training at the former Lorton Prison this week.

Soldiers from the 289th Military Police Company, of 4th Battalion conducted training for C Company, 1st Battalion, both of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), in order to have the infantrymen brush up on their detainee skills.

C Company will be deploying to Iraq in early September and a large part of their training involves detainee operations.

We're trying to take these (infantrymen), who have limited experience with detainee operations, and turn them into a functioning detainee ops unit," said 1st Lt. Kevin P. Fitzsimmons, a platoon leader in the 289th MP Co.

The MPs trained C Co., or "Charlie Rock," over the course of two days at the former prison and was a round-robin based training that consisted of everything from the in and out process of holding detainees to emergency operations in the event of a riot.

The second day of training allowed the deploying Soldiers to run through detainee operations from start to finish, allowing for more scenario based training.

"Before this, the (C Company) Soldiers had the instructional portion with limited hands-on. This is their first taste of some real, high-speed, hands-on, 100% full speed training," said Fitzimmons.

The infantrymen, who are more accustomed to weapons systems and tactical movement techniques, were trained to take the detainees from the start point, all the way until the time they are in-processed and given their cells.

Training also consisted of providing security for the area, in order to make the training as realistic as possible.

"We hope the training gets these Soldiers in the mindset of what its going to be like on their deployment," said Staff Sgt. Matthew Converse, a squad leader for 1st platoon of the 289th MP Company. "When they get to their station in Iraq, they are going to get a lot more training and they'll become familiar with the facility they are at and those standard operating procedures."

Despite the temperature ranging in the mid-90's, many of the Soldiers from C Company were in high spirits and are eager to deploy.

Pfc. Francis Frenette, a member of the escort platoon in C Co. said, "I am really excited to deploy. The training here has affected me greatly as far as what our mission will be over there. We're learning a lot about prisons right now and how they work and operate on a day to day basis."

"The most important thing I've learned so far is safety and attention to detail," said Frenette, who has been in The Old Guard for a little over a year.

"With all the training they have received here and all the training they will receive in Iraq, the unit will good to go. They're going to be solid," Fitzimmons said.

A deployment ceremony for C Company is scheduled for Aug. 25 at 1 p.m. on Fort Myer, Va., in Conmy Hall.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16