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Security Forces get physical with non-lethal ASP baton training

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jorge Intriago
  • 169th Fighter Wing/Public Affairs
The 169th Security Forces Squadron at McEntire Joint National Guard Base, South Carolina Air National Guard, became acquainted with the non-lethal Armament Systems and Procedures (ASP) baton training, during their unit training assembly, Jan. 11.

"We changed it [the training] up a little bit. We went over the classroom portion and ended the training by having the red man suit and were actually able to get physical," said Staff Sgt. Ismael Fierro, Security Forces trainer.

SCANG defenders conducted their yearly refresher training to certify with the ASP baton, and did so with a splash. During a steady rainfall, they observed each of their teammates negotiate the baton obstacle course. It started with a sprint before completing the obstacles, which consisted of fending off assailants with knee kicks and elbow throws. As the course continued, each defender was attacked by two assailants that required them to wield their ASP baton with aggressive precision. The course finale cumulated with hand-to-hand combat against Staff Sgt. Joshua Odom, a fellow Security Forces team member. Odom was fitted with a protective suit, called the red man suit, which allowed for full-contact fighting.

"I simulate being the assaulter trying to get close to you. I could have a knife and attack you in close quarters," said Odom.

The one-on-one battle between the red man and the officer was executed with many safety measures in place to ensure no one got hurt. However, it was obvious that the realism of having an aggressor invade their personal space and get hit, was a very real experience. During the training, Security Force defenders were required to engage the red man and use verbal commands while using the baton. However, the brute force of Odom and his protective red man suit proved to be a formidable force to be reckoned with.

"We have more contact with personnel and civilians on base and the chance of encountering someone who is more likely to put their hands on us is increased. The ASP baton allows us to use the amount of force necessary to have offenders comply with our commands. It allows Security Forces to control the situation without having to use only deadly force measures," said Tech. Sgt. David DeLille, assistant flight chief and ASP trainer.