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Wright-Patterson Air Force Base creates group to investigate active shooter scare

By MAX FILBY | Dayton Daily News, Ohio | Published: August 13, 2018

DAYTON, Ohio (Tribune News Service) — Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is creating a formal board to review the Aug. 2 active shooter scare that occurred at the base’s hospital.

Col. Tom Sherman, 88th Air Base Wing and installation commander, has ordered the board to conduct a “holistic review” of the scare, the response to it and lessons that can be learned from it, base spokeswoman Marie Vanover said.

William Neitzke, the 88th Air Base Wing’s chief of safety will lead the board which does not have a set completion date. An executive summary of the board’s findings will be released at the conclusion of the investigation, according to the base.

“I am directing this review board to examine all facets of this incident,” Sherman said in a prepared statement. “Standing up the Incident Review Board to review the action taken from the moment of the initial 911 call until the confirmation of an all clear will help enhance Wright-Patterson’s emergency response procedures and strategies.”

The board will not look into the discharge of a weapon during the incident as that investigation is being conducted by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, according to a press release from the base. A spokeswoman for the office declined to comment while the investigation is ongoing and said no updates were available as of today.

Base officials also announced today that Sherman will brief U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, on the Aug. 2 incident.

The briefing will take place at 9 a.m. Wednesday on the base and along with Turner will include representatives from local law enforcement that responded to the incident, said Vanover. Local, state and federal law enforcement including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives also responded to the Aug. 2 shooter scare.

In a letter on Aug. 3, Turner asked asked Sherman for a briefing to learn what led to the scare, an assessment of the response and what lessons can be learned from the incident, according to a release.

“As a community we had a presumed actual incident. We are now in a position to accurately evaluate our community’s and Wright-Patt’s response to determine lessons learned and ways to enhance our overall security response,” Turner wrote in the letter.

Someone from inside Wright-Patterson Medical Center called 911 around 12:40 p.m. on Aug. 2.

It’s unclear what the initial 911 caller reported but the call went to the base’s operation center and prompted Wright-Patt’s security forces and fire department to respond. In response to the call, Wright-Patt security forces began a systematic sweep and clear of the entire hospital facility, Sherman said during a press conference.

During the sweep, security forces discharged a weapon in an attempt to breach a locked door, Sherman has said. Turner called the use of a firearm during the sweep “highly unusual and highly questionable” and said it would “absolutely” be part of ongoing discussions about the incident.

©2018 the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio)
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