“911, what is your emergency?”
“I just heard my neighbor yelling at someone. He said he was going to shoot someone in the face!”
Imagine getting dispatched to that detail. Tactical decisions begin hurtling through one’s head. Do we need air support? We need to get Fire to stage for casualties. Where’s the best spots for perimeters? Where should the Command Post be? How many long guns are deployed right now? Should we prep SWAT? Does this fall into the Active Shooter scenario? Do we wait or do we grab as many warm bodies as we can and make entry?
It’s enough to make one’s head swim. Here’s one possible way it could play out:
You and two of your partners arrive on scene. The neighbor next door to the house in question is standing on the porch frantically waving and pointing to the aforementioned house. You can see the unbridled fear practically oozing from her pores. Amongst you and your compatriots you have three handguns, three tasers, one shotgun, one AR-15, and one 40mm sponge round rifle.
Not exactly anything to shake a stick at, but will it be enough?
The three of you stack up by the garage and listen intently. You hear some cursing. Angry cursing. Someone is worked up into quite the lather. You’re pretty sure you hear some muffled gunfire and explosions. You’re amped up and so are your partners. You slowly and quietly make your way around the garage to the front door. You hear a little more clearly now.
“You son-of-a-bitch! I’m gonna kill you!”
Adrenaline surges into you as you key your mic and advise dispatch of what you hear. It sounds like someone is going to get hurt. Exigent circumstances allow you to make entry. You take one last deep breath, mutter a silent prayer, and prepare to kick the door.
Thankfully, your partner tells you to wait a second.
Wait a second?!?, you think. You look at your partner and start to worry. He’s now standing more upright and wears the hint of a grin. You watch in disbelief as his grin grows into a full-blown smile. What the hell is wrong with him? And why in the world is he just walking up to the door completely nonchalant?
Holy hell, he just knocked on the door! He’s just standing right in the line of fire, the fatal funnel! You are totally nonplussed, but he turns to you and says everything is just fine. He even advises dispatch that you’re code 4.
You see a shadow approach the door from inside the house. You take cover behind a column and subconsciously begin to write your partner’s eulogy. The door opens and you are momentarily baffled.
There stands a 20’s male wearing some kind of contraption on his head with a boom mic. The contraption is connected to some kind of controller in his hand. “Woah! What’s going on, officers?” says the surprised young man.
Your partner says, “You make Brigadier General, yet?”
The young man says, “Nah, but I’ll get there before the night is out.”
Your partner is a gamer. So is the young man. They both play Modern Warfare 3, a popular First Person Shooter in which players the world over can gather and “shoot each other in the face”.
Any of my fellow LEOs ever been dispatched to something along these lines?
Oh…and my XBox handle is, shockingly enough, Motorcop. Come find me so we can “shoot each other in the face”…virtually, of course.