MONTROSE, Colo. – The Colorado Army National Guard's 193rd Military Police Battalion conducted annual training on the western slope in Montrose last month.For the first time, the training included special coordination and joint operations between the battalion’s engineer and military police companies.Soldiers from the 947th Engineer Company, headquartered in Montrose, began the two-week training by building a mock detention facility on the training site.They built the small complex in a little over a week near the sandy buttes of the Montrose Training Facility. The facility included guard towers, holding areas, and all perimeter security, which the military police use for wartime readiness training.Coordination with their sister company, the 220th Military Police Company, started months ago and provided a great opportunity for the engineers, said U.S. Army Capt. Benjamin Hogan, company commander 947th Engineers.“It’s rare for all of us to work together as a battalion,” he said. “We have the 32-acre training land that we acquired a couple of years ago, and that’s a massive help for ensuring that the quality of our training is higher than what we would have attained.”Throughout the exercise July 11-24, Soldiers from the 220th trained on detainee operations using the mock detention facility while the 947th Soldiers role-played as detainees.The engineers also served in a facility support role, responding to supply and maintenance requests from the MPs.This partnership is very similar to how the two companies would interact during an overseas deployment, Hogan said.“We maintained the facility just as we would in the real world if we were in this situation,” Hogan said. “We had to ensure that any defensive structures or anything else needed to ensure the security of the site were in place.”The military police received minimal information during the exercise –only that they had to process and guard detainees using the new facility.U.S. Army 1st Lt. James Hoyt, platoon leader, 220th MPCO, said the training and the facility provided his unit a realistic experience.“It’s a little bit hasty, which is good for us,” Hoyt said of the facility. “We can see how we can improve it and think ahead. What do we do if we take indirect fire or if someone goes up on a hill and we take direct fire? How would we protect detainees and ourselves?”During the exercise, the “detainee” engineers had to smuggle items into the facility, resist the MPs, and occasionally riot.While this hands-on detainee exercise had its stressful moments, Hoyt said it was still enjoyable for both companies.“It’s … good training for them,” he said. “Just learning how to react to different situations or thinking on the fly. We were able to react accordingly.”Hogan said that this marked the first time that the entire battalion trained in Montrose.“A lot of my Soldiers are used to working almost 100 percent independently. We are so far away from the flagpole,” Hogan said, referring to battalion headquarters. “To have the flagpole come to us is definitely an unusual and a good experience.”For more National Guard newsNational Guard FacebookNational Guard Twitter