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police & fire

State Certifies Clarkstown Police's Critical Response Team

The Clarkstown Police Department's CIRT has received certification from the State Division of Criminal Justice Services.
The Clarkstown Police Department's CIRT has received certification from the State Division of Criminal Justice Services. Photo Credit: Clarkstown Police Department/Facebook

NEW CITY, N.Y. -- The Clarkstown Police Department's Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) has been certified by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS), according to Police Chief Michael Sullivan.

CIRT is one of only six teams in the state to receive this recognition. The standards were set by the New York State Municipal Police Training Council (MPTC) and the DCJS in 2010. The standards include command and control, physical fitness, firearm qualifications, team and individual equipment requirements and high-intensity training.

The training included four-week SWAT school for all new members, advanced sniper school, and U.S. Department of Homeland Security and incident command schools.

The certification recognizes the team for their 25 years of experience performing at a superior level of professionalism and training, Sullivan said.

"As a police chief, I know that in a time of need I have one of the highest trained tactical teams at my disposal.” said Sullivan. “This team is another integral service needed to provide safety and security to our 84,000 residents.”

The Clarkstown Police Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) was formed in January of 1991. The part-time team consists of members of the department who perform their regular duties and are called out on an as needed basis.

The department recognized a need for a highly trained tactical team to handle high risk warrants, barricaded felons, hostage situations, and executive protection of VIP's. Strict standards were set for physical fitness, shooting skills, tactical movement, mental conditioning, and their background with the department.

The team is made up of 36 members and is divided into three sections: Entry, sniper/observer and crisis negotiators. Training is conducted twice a month and one full week a year. To date, some of the senior members of the team have well over 3,000 hours of training.

Members of the Team serve as instructors for the in-service police academy and recruit academy and have trained departments and other tactical teams in the southern New York Region.

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