Preventing and Responding to Mass Casualties Attacks

What steps can law enforcement take to prevent and respond to mass casualty attacks in the United States? Should law enforcement be proactive or reactive when it comes to such threats?

Law enforcement is challenged by mass casualty events due to the size, scope and intensity of such incidents. Responses and proactive strategies will depend on how the cause of the casualty is defined. Generally, major accidents are not a part of police preventative measures but that of other companion agencies. Certainly, as first responders law enforcement is prepared to assist and control the site of a mass casualty event and to investigate the cause. At times, intelligence-led policing will assist in preparing for potential criminal or terrorist attacks along with cooperative relationships with local, state and federal authorities and intelligence agencies.

In your discussion, respond to the following questions.

  1. What strategies and actions should law enforcement pursue in the prevention of criminal and terrorist mass casualty incidents?
  2. What actions should law enforcement pursue in the response to mass casualty events in the case of a criminal act and the case of a terrorist act?
  3. On balance, what is your opinion on which is more important: law enforcement being proactive or reactive as they relate to crime and terrorism?