Article Published: May 15, 2003
SWAT competition puts law enforcement to testBy SUSAN ORR
Law enforcement teams from the Southeast and beyond will come to Spartanburg County this weekend to sharpen their skills.
The officers, representing 18 law enforcement and military agencies, will participate in the 10th annual Southeastern SWAT Competition, which includes everything from marksmanship contests to a water-based hostage rescue exercise.
"You've got to be mentally and physically in shape to do this event," said Capt. Allen Freeman, chairman of the competition's organizing committee. Freeman works at the Spartanburg County jail, which is hosting the event.
Teams from South Carolina, North Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee, Indiana, Illinois, Virginia, Alabama and Georgia hit town today for an opening ceremony before the competition begins.
Though some of the events are closed to spectators for safety reasons, others are open for viewing.
At 9:30 a.m. Friday, spectators can watch two events. One is a hostage rescue drill at Lake Cooley. The other is a rappel-and-rescue team obstacle course challenge in Duncan.
The regional event will receive national attention. A video crew will document the entire competition, and ESPN2 will air the footage this summer.
In addition to gaining tactical experience, the teams also will compete for prizes. The top four finishers will earn a total of $25,000 worth of equipment and services such as night vision equipment, handguns and training packages.
Susan Orr can be reached at 877-3225, 574-5980 or firstname.lastname@example.org.