FBI, Hoover police and Homeland Security to simulate terrorist attack at Riverchase Galleria
By Ben Culpepper
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The Federal Bureau of Investigation in Birmingham announced Monday that it will join Hoover police and the Department of Homeland Security in simulating a terrorist attack at the Riverchase Galleria as part of a training exercise for local law enforcement and first responders.The exercise, which is the final phase of the "Complex Mall Attack" initiative that was developed to promote preparedness, will be conducted at the Hoover mall Thursday at around 10 p.m., according to a news release.The FBI said every effort has been made to ensure the training exercise doesn't affect normal operations at the Galleria and asks the public to avoid the property during the event, if possible."While this exercise is not in direct response to any incident, it is important for the FBI and our state, local, and federal partners to be prepared and to constantly maintain that preparedness," FBI Birmingham Special Agent in Charge Richard D. Schwein Jr. said. "In a terrorism or active shooter incident, or any other similar situation, we work side by side with our law enforcement partners, and it's important to exercise our joint capabilities." "We appreciate the opportunity to train with our law enforcement partners," Hoover Police Chief Nick Derzis said. "We know training is the key to saving lives when an event occurs."Complete list of participating agencies:FBI Birmingham Division, Hoover Police Department; U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS); United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Alabama; Center for Domestic Preparedness; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF); Hoover Emergency Medical Services; Hoover Fire Department; Riverchase Galleria Mall Security; Riverchase Mall Management; Shelby County Sheriff's Office; Jefferson County Sheriff's Office; Birmingham Police Department; Homewood Police Department.
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