W.Va. Mock Prison Riot again draws
national, global interest
MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. – More than 1,100 representatives from 30 states
and 18 countries converged on the former West Virginia Penitentiary for the
22nd Annual Mock Prison Riot correctional training and technology trade expo.
The successful four-day event
strengthened the Mountain State’s status as a global showcase for the latest
correctional tactics, techniques and tech. The W.Va. Division of Corrections
organizes the annual event in conjunction with the non-profit W.Va. Corrections
As it did last year, the Michigan
Department of Corrections took 1st Place in the Tactical Skills Team
Competition. Senegal’s contingent won the Super Special Weapons and Tactics
(SWAT) event. The Pennsylvania Department of Corrections secured top honors in
the sniper competition.
All told, 31 teams participated
in the two-day skills competition while 35 teams executed 75
tactical training scenarios before the event concluded May 2. Other highlights
include the multi-day technology trade show and the certification classes in
less-lethal munitions, which saved the participating officers’ agencies
thousands of dollars.
“The Division of Corrections is pleased and proud to host
this one-of-a-kind tactical and training opportunity for our correctional, law
enforcement, and public safety partners from across the country and around the
world,” said Corrections Commissioner Betsy Jividen. ”Our staff, along with the
West Virginia Corrections Training Foundation, is committed to providing
participants with the opportunity to use the latest
technology, take part in the most relevant and realistic training scenarios,
and compete in the most challenging tactical courses and contests.”
This year’s Mock Prison Riot drew teams from Canada as well
as countries in the Caribbean, Central and South America, Asia and Africa. A
number of these teams were sponsored by the U.S.
State Department’s Bureau of
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. INL acting Deputy
Assistant Director Heather Merritt toured the 142-year-old
prison-turned-training compound while observing the various workshops and
The annual Mock Prison Riot will
continue under the Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation and its Bureau of
Prisons and Jails, following the enactment of this year’s correctional
consolidation legislation on July 1.
“As a training experience, it is
unparalleled, and we are honored to be part of this historic, important, and
continuing tradition,” Commissioner Jividen said.
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