First responders prepare for violent protests

MANHEIM, Pa. (WHTM) – Sparks flew and concrete was shattered at the Lancaster County Public Safety Training Center on Wednesday.

First responders from the Midstate participated in a training that is expected to prepare them for violent protests.

“It’s a shame to see it’s come to this in central Pennsylvania and across the United States,” Captain Adam Kosheba, with the Pennsylvania State Police, said.

Kosheba was one of the participants in Wednesday’s class.

Pennsylvania Senator Scott Martin (R- Lancaster County) helped to organize the training. He believes now is the time to prepare since protests in other states have turned violent.

“We have a right in this wonderful, and it’s a wonderful thing about this country, to have different viewpoints and disagreements,” Martin said. “But to take it to the next levels with billy clubs, setting fires, and blowing up things that takes it to another level.”

Martin has pushed for legislation that would give first responders more resources after a riot.

Members of the Department of Homeland watched as firefighters and police officers used power tools to demolish a tool used by protestors in other states.

Kosheba said he believes it’s only a matter of time until he has to use his new training.

“As these protests become more common and it gathers attention to their cause I think we are going to run into these things,” he told ABC 27 News.

About 50 first responders are expected to take part in the training.

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