Menu

New Colonie police range gives officers moving target

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 1of/6

Caption

Close

Image 1 of 6

Lead firearms instructor for Zone 5 Police Academy Jerry Shaw of the Colonie Police shows one of the types of targets used at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union) less
Lead firearms instructor for Zone 5 Police Academy Jerry Shaw of the Colonie Police shows one of the types of targets used at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times … more
Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 2 of 6

Lead firearms instructor for Zone 5 Police Academy Jerry Shaw of the Colonie Police runs the automated targets at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Lead firearms instructor for Zone 5 Police Academy Jerry Shaw of the Colonie Police runs the automated targets at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 3 of 6

The view from the automated control tower at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

The view from the automated control tower at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 4 of 6

Colonie police recruits, from left Austin Blais, Jordan Rando and Alvin Guerrero fire on the automated targets at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Colonie police recruits, from left Austin Blais, Jordan Rando and Alvin Guerrero fire on the automated targets at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 5 of 6

One of the types of automated targets in use at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

One of the types of automated targets in use at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

Image 6 of 6

Zone 5 Police Academy recruits prepare for handgun training at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Zone 5 Police Academy recruits prepare for handgun training at the new firing range Friday May 13, 2016 In Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein/Times Union)

Photo: SKIP DICKSTEIN

New Colonie police range gives officers moving target

Back to Gallery

Colonie

Suspects who are firing on police don’t typically stand still.

So Colonie police set out to alter their shooting range to better prepare officers to aim at moving targets and to differentiate between threats and innocent parties.

With a $300,000 grant from the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, paid for through criminal forfeitures, the town now has a range where targets can swing around, “walk, jog or run” and move back and forth.

“Prior to the upgrade, it was a static range,” said Lt. Robert Donnelly. “The target was simply hung from a static wire. If you’re in a shooting, the target isn’t going to stand still. We train officers ‘the second you pull your weapon out, be in motion yourself so you’re not a static target.’”

The new range comes with targets attached by a wire, but they can be moved sideways and then swung around to face the training officer. The system can also be set up to give trainees a set number of seconds to fire before the target turns away again.

A hydraulic track also enables targets to be moved back and forth. There are three speed settings: walk, jog or run.

“I can stop it and make it go left,” said Officer Jerry Shaw, lead instructor. “I can mess with the shooter and make it go right, left, right.”

Twenty-one different law enforcement agencies now use Colonie’s range, which is the only one in the Capital Region with moving targets. Some 450 to 500 officers a year are using the new system.

The funds were used not only to install the 15 targets and hydraulic track but a tower where instructors can watch the training and use a new PA system to instruct recruits. An instructor can also move the targets using a handheld remote on the ground.

The hydraulics have a heating system to keep it functional in cold-weather months so officers can train year-round.

The targets also can be changed: Some show a person pointing a firearm, others a person with a flashlight or cellphone, as well as an off-duty officer holding up a badge. During “shoot, don’t shoot” training, officers do not know which one will swing around and have to decide quickly whether to fire.

“It’s particularly pertinent in terms of what’s going on in the world with police shootings and the scrutiny they are facing,” said Lt. Robert Winn. “We have the ability to train officers and prevent some of the backlash.”

tobrien@timesunion.com 518-454-5092 @timobrientu

This entry passed through the Full-Text RSS service – if this is your content and you’re reading it on someone else’s site, please read the FAQ at fivefilters.org/content-only/faq.php#publishers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Curated By Logo