'Tac-30' Training: It's a SWAT strike from land, air, and sea

parellaKING COUNTY -- King County has one of the largest SWAT teams in the Pacific Northwest, and Washington's Most Wanted's Parella Lewis joined them for some incredible training -- as team 'Tac-30' strikes from land, air, and sea. "Today we’re practicing fast-roping onto a massive container ship,” explains King County Swat Sgt. Jesse Babauta. It’s all part of regular assortment of training “Tac 30” does every month. Although it looks like a scene out of the movie, “Mission Impossible”, having armed men drop out of helicopters onto a ship is just another day for this unit. “It’s one of our contingencies and part of our preparations in case there is some type of maritime threat in the Puget Sound”, Babauta says. “It could be skyscrapers, highrises ; any elevated platform  that we may need to insert from above.” The SWAT team also trained with Border Patrol and the Coast Guard for this exercise to ensure that in time of crisis-everyone is on the same page. Deputy John Pugh is a pilot with the King County Sheriff’s Office. He is an important part of the training today and explains, “Unfortunately, in light of what’s happened at Boston, we can never predict where the next incident is going to occur. So this capability is very important for the safety of the entire Puget Sound region.” Of course, skills like these can be used in all types of scenarios. Just last year, there was a search for a man who killed his wife and daughter then fled to an underground bunker in the woods. “On Rattlesnake Ridge when we were looking for Peter Keller , we used a hoist operation. Being able to have a helicopter standing by was very critical to that mission,” Babauta recalls. On land or water, that chopper is one of their best weapons. So this team stays sharp and trains with it constantly to be ready  for the real test of skills. Babauta says, “Citizens of King County and of America have responsibilities to be vigilant and watch out for each other, it’s our responsibility in law enforcement to be prepared for any type of attack that may be posed to our citizens.”