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Old December 29, 2002, 11:42 AM   #1
Staff Alumnus
Join Date: October 12, 1998
Location: Missouri
Posts: 1,986
photo question

Finished reading the new SWAT the other day. The article on San Fransisco's Tac Unit was rather good but the pictures were showing another story. Were the photos staged demonstrations for the magazine or were they taken during actual training? I realize that there may be a time difference between the time the article is written and photos are taken, where anything may change. Ormost likely that the photos are provided from the department.
I noticed that not once were they wearing their goggles (or baclavas ), even in the stariwell.
The article also states that they carry HKs except for the EOD team, who carries ARs.
The ARs also have optics on them when the article states that the teams don't have optics due to possible malfunctions.

Also in Rob's article on Executive Security Intl.
Have you finished the full course and could you give a brief synopsis of the distance study part of the course?
I also noticed in the photos that you were in very casual attire. Did the school advocate dressing in appropriate attire (business or casual business)? I ask as the restrictiveness of business attire could make a difference in many of the skills available, time-wise?
Did the instructors who carried duty-style gear state their preferences for that over concealable gear? I noticed you made mention of it in the article but didn't see any followup to the initial mention.
You mentioned that you did the shooting portion not for quaqlification, so I assume that you will(did) have to go back for qualification shooting?

Keep up the good work!
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Old December 30, 2002, 12:11 PM   #2
Denny Hansen
Join Date: June 29, 2001
Location: Prescott Valley, AZ
Posts: 2,406
Can't get anything past this bunch

Yes, the photos were posed and provided to us, and were dated by the time the article was printed.

Rob's article on ESI will be a continuing series of over the next year as he takes the entire course. He'll keep readers up to date his progress.

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Old December 30, 2002, 12:30 PM   #3
Rob Pincus
Join Date: October 9, 1998
Location: Hotels
Posts: 3,666

Thanks for reading the magazine... it's obvious that you're not just skimming through and I appreciate that a great deal.

When the original arrangements were made for the me to attend the shooting module of the ESI residency course it was not clear whether or not I would go through the entire program. I'm not sure that anyone has ever taken the shooting portion alone, so my impression is/was that they weren't sure exactly what to do with me. I slipped in with the class and participated as a student while talking to many of the instructors (usually after the training day) as an interested outsider/writer. When push came to shove, the decision was made that my scores were not going to "count." The only real effect that decision had was that I was not acknowledged as the "top gun" for the class. No big deal. The team that I shot the qualifications with ended up coming in first overall even without my scores factored in and the guy who did get the top gun award, Daryl Nelson, was on my team and a very competent shooter, so all was well in my mind. It remains to be seen if I will need to "re-shoot" later this spring in order to qualify as a Level I graduate. At this point, I lean towards thinking that I will shoot again.
As for the attire, the truth is that the job dictates clothing requirements and all jobs are different. Some graduates might end up on a beach in the Bahamas with a client, but ESI can't justify holding a training session on a beach giving everyone J-frames to put in their bathing suits! The attire requirements for the training sessions were the green polo shirt that ESI provides students, the ESI hat with a name tape on the back and "appropriate clothing for the weather." My only concern as pertains to clothing, as noted in the article, was that there was not enough stress placed on shooting/drawing/carrying from concealment.
The issue of the weapons and mode of carry for several of the instructors comes with a lot of insider-political-experience baggage. The article said about all that I have to offer on the subject: While several of the AI's were wearing big guns in open holsters, many of the senior instructors carried in a way that I feel was more "appropriate" for the subject matter. I never heard a justification for the choice of long slide Glocks. I believe that several of these were LE duty weapons. Understand also that the individuals in question are not EP guys, they are in fact cops. Also, the head instuctor's background is as a competitive shooter.
As for the distance ed stuff.. Keep Reading SWAT. You'll see several articles coverig ESI's full programs over the next year or so. I can tell you that the material is no joke. I was caught a little off guard by the level of the course. The subjects I've engaged in so far are every bit on par with 300 & 400 level courses I took in college. I'm taking both the Protective Intelligence Course and the Close Protection Course (over 900 hours distance ed and 35 days residency total.

Thanks again for reading.
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Old December 31, 2002, 09:57 AM   #4
Staff Alumnus
Join Date: October 12, 1998
Location: Missouri
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Thanks for the followups guys.
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