The Hyattsville Police Department (Maryland) formed its own tactical team in December, 1997, for the purpose of having a unit that can aid in the apprehension of violent criminals and narcotics traffickers in the City. The tactical team was named H.E.A.T., and the acronym stands for Hard Entry And Tactics. The mission of the City of Hyattsville Police Department Hard Entry And Tactics (HEAT) Team is;
- to protect life and property,
- improve the quality of life for all people,
- apprehend felons, and violent criminal offenders,
- operate in a fashion that demonstrates the best qualities of a police unit,
- protect the interests of the City.
The original team consisted of ten (10) members of the department, and all team members attended a three (3) day course of training given by the Prince George's County Police Department, Special Operations Division, Emergency Services Team. This original training consisted of the disciplines of raid planning, forcible entry and raid tactics.
Today, the Team has six (6) positions, with two (2) additional positions to be added in the near future. Each member of the Team must attend at least a three day course of training in basic entry tactics. All members are encouraged to attend an extremely physically demanding three (3) week Basic SWAT School. Three current Team members are currently Basic SWAT trained, having attended courses offered by the Anne Arundel and Howard County Police Departments. The rigors of this traininig include a minimum physical agility standard and successful completion of training, including testing, in the areas such as: team positions and responsibilities, building approach and reconnaisance, defensive tactics, hard and soft entry techniques, dynamic and slow building searches, barricade resolution, vehicle take-down, arrest techniques, close quarters confrontation techniques, rappelling, diversionary tactics and equipment, and physical fitness.
The HEAT Team conducts training at least eight (8) hours monthly in various areas of exercises and tactics to hone the skills of the Team so that it may function smoothly in real-world incidents. The HEAT Team members must maintain a minimum physical fitness level throughout the year and members are tested annually. All HEAT Team members must maintain a high level of proficiency in the use of firearms and less lethal weapons systems, including handgun, shotgun, carbine rifle, sub-machine gun and less-lethal impact weapons. Each Team member must qualify at this high level no less than four (4) times a year.
Since its inception, the Team has been activated for more than forty-seven (47) raid operations. The majority of these operations have involved suspects wanted for violent criminal offenses ranging from Homicide and serious felonious assaults to drug crimes and unlawful weapons possession. More than fifty (50%) percent of these raids have resulted in the seizure of weapons including handguns, rifles, shotguns, machetes, and knives of various sorts.
With the current state of affairs in the world today, and the impact the events of September 11, 2001 have had on law enforcment's approach to the threat of terrorism, the HEAT Team remains a stable force within the City of Hyattsville Police Deparrtment in preserving a safe and comforable way of life for the citizens of the City of Hyattsville.
4310 Gallatin Street
Phone: (301) 985-5050