By Noriko Kudo, U.S. Army Garrison Japan Public AffairsApril 4, 2016
Camp Zama, JAPAN (April 4) - The Camp Zama Directorate of Emergency Services' Provost Marshal Office, conducted an active shooter and evacuation exercise March 31 at Arnn Elementary School.
Spc. Holden Lebron, assigned to the 88th Military Police Detachment, who participated in the exercise as a patrol team member, explained how the exercise built on a recently exercise that was conducted last September.
Lebron said, the intent enacted scenario was to neutralize the active-shooter then evacuate the school from the scene of the incident, and ensure the student and faculty were consolidated in one place.
"The kids actually did really well," said Lebron, "they listen to their teachers and were really quite.
"Going throughout the halls you couldn't hear any of the students or teachers unless you knocked on the door, and they responded."
Lebron said having a good plan, laying down the foundation and a good standard operating procedure can really affect people's responses in certain situations.
"If we had not had a SOP laid out... and we tried to do something to the same effect, it wouldn't go anywhere near to plans," said Lebron.
"The biggest thing to remember is to stay calm- we're only going to know if it is an active shooter, if we hear gunfire," said Capt. Brittany Bradey, chief of police, assigned to DES.
The students did "excellent," by listening to the teachers and following the military police's instructions, said Bradey. This type of exercise will help the students in the future.
"The students remembering what we taught them here today, and what they've done will help them... same as with military, we rely on our training," said Bradey, "this is something they have done now."
Perri Funai, sixth grader, said the students practiced for the lockdown because if an intruder comes to the school, they would now know what to do. She said in a real-life situation, it is very important to follow the instructions of the teacher.
Ethan Mirabal, sixth grader, said it's important to "stay quiet" so that the intruder doesn't hear you.
Arnn's Principal, Gwendolyn Baxter-Oakley, said the students were very serious and focused and did exactly what they were supposed to do- listening and following the directions was key.
"We were very pleased with what they did during the drill," said Baxter-Oakley, and the students had a chance to practice all the things that they normally learn during school. The faculty and Soldiers that participated in the exercise conducted an after action report at the end of the exercise.
"It was a very informative session, and both teams walked away with good material to help improve the process," said Baxter-Oakley.