Safety The Top Priority For Iowa City Special Response Team

By Mark Carlson, Reporter

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Iowa City police say deploying canisters of tear gas is a final resort during standoff negotiations.

Early Wednesday morning members of the department's Special Response Team (SRT) used gas to apprehend a suspect after a six hour standoff near the Iowa City Municipal Airport. Brandon Thompson, who was recently placed on escape status from a Coralville work release facility, was arrested for drug and weapons warrants, police said.

"There are multiple opportunities for an individual to come out peacefully," said Lt. Bill Campbell, SRT team commander.

Campbell said the SRT team maintains ongoing contact with patrol officers and detectives before assisting in taking fugitives into custody.

"It's very calculated, we don't go out for every warrant," said Campbell.

Typically officials only call on the SRT team in cases where high risk suspects refuse to surrender, which was the case Wednesday morning.

No one was injured during the standoff. Campbell said the team of roughly 20 members goes through extensive training to ensure safety for everyone involved. He declined to say how often the team is mobilized.
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