By Ashley Roy
Atterbury-Muscatatuck Public Affairs
Visible through the tree line, a unit of armed men donned in Kevlar approaches an abandoned area with multiple structures. Keeping a low-profile and breaking into smaller units, they spread out, clearing each building systematically.
A suspect breaks the silence as he yells, “Come and get me!” giving away his position.
The target is located and the hunt is on.
This scenario is one of many training exercises the Noblesville Police Dept.’s Emergency Services Unit will conduct during their bi-annual training at Camp Atterbury Joint Manuever Training Center in Edinburgh, said ESU Commander Lt. Jon Williams.
The 20-member team arrived March 10 to begin a week of training. Consisting of officers from the Noblesville, Westfield and Tipton police dept.’s, and the Noblesville Fire Dept., the ESU began training on known-distance ranges, moving to mounted facilities and finally to the Urban Assault Center.
“All the guys on the team, including the management of the team, really look forward to getting down here because we are able to focus just on the things that we need to do for the tactical team,” Williams said.
With the resources available at Atterbury, the unit can take situations they have faced on the job and run similar scenarios, adapting training to improve their responses.
“Atterbury gives us an opportunity to utilize different training areas and ranges that we just can’t get anywhere else up in Noblesville or Hamilton County. The characteristic of the ranges and the shoot house and the urban assault center lend themselves to the type of training that our tactical team needs to perfect some of the skill sets we utilize in operations and in training back in Noblesville,” Williams said.
The training week culminates with exercises ran at the Atterbury live fire shoot house, a training venue that allows law enforcement and military to practice tactical operations and room clearing while firing live ammunition.
Christopher Macy, assistant team leader for the ESU and NPD night patrolman, says the live fire shoot house is by far his favorite part of training at the installation.
“We’re able to do what we do with live ammo, and that adds a little bit of realism to the training, amps it up just a small bit for us. We’re incapable of doing it anywhere else,” he said.
The team was activated in 2001 and has been using the Atterbury training facilities for six years.
Macy, a member of the ESU for eight years, has participated in multiple training exercises at Atterbury.
Williams is grateful that such state-of-the-art facilities exist so close to home and that the military has opened them up to civilians and law enforcement for training.
“There are no other training areas anywhere close to us, or anywhere in Central Indiana where we can come train for an entire week, put the rest of the job requirements for Noblesville aside and focus strictly on tactical team training,” Williams said.