Patrick deputies win in 2016 Sniper Challenge

Lieutenant Rob Coleman and auxiliary Deputy Dwayne Wright from the Patrick County Sheriff’s Office competed in the 2016 Law Enforcement Sniper Challenge on June 3 in Henry County, according to Sheriff’s Office Captain Ward Stone.
Coleman and Wright, who are certified law enforcement snipers, won overall first place sniper team; Coleman won second place overall individual shooter, and Wright won third place overall individual shooter, Stone said. The primary firearms used in this competition were rifles.
Coleman and Wright competed against teams and individuals from Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Henry County Sheriff’s Office, and Martinsville Police Department.
Stone said that teams and individual shooters were challenged to engage a wide variety of targets from known and unknown distances, perform difficult stress shots following strenuous physical exertion, test observation and memory retention abilities, approach targets while maintaining cover and concealment, and perform handgun transitions and engagements.
“Coleman’s and Wright’s superior performance is the result of their commitment to quality training, experience, skill, determination, mental focus and physical fitness,” said Stone.
“Coleman received his initial law enforcement sniper training in 2001 while he was a member of the Martinsville Police Department,” said Patrick County Sheriff Dan Smith. “He attended the White Feather Law Enforcement Marksmanship school in Virginia Beach, which consisted of an intensive two week training course. The White Feather school was founded by legendary Marine sniper Carlos Hathcock, who committed his entire retirement to training law enforcement professionals.”
Smith said that Wright’s initial training was in 2010 when he attended the Complete Tactical, LLC law enforcement marksmanship/observer course. Complete Tactical, LLC is owned and operated by retired U.S. Army Special Forces sniper Douglas Mitchum.
Both Coleman and Wright completed Complete Tactical, LLC’s Law Enforcement Marksman instructor course in 2014.
“The role of a law enforcement marksman is much different than that of a traditional military sniper,” Smith said. “Law enforcement marksmen/snipers exist for one main purpose, and that is to immediately save the lives of victims during highly agitated scenarios where a perpetrator is armed and the threat of death is imminent.
The sheriff’s office has five trained law enforcement marksmen, who are members of the office’s tactical response team. The response team trains regularly at the sheriff’s office range and deputies often attend various multi-agency tactical training courses throughout the region.
“It is my duty to our citizens to ensure that our deputies are trained to the highest level when dealing armed perpetrators, I am confident in assuring the public that we have some of the best, most highly trained deputies that can be offered,” Smith said.

Patrick County Sheriff’s Office marksmen Lt. Rob Coleman (right) and auxiliary Deputy Dwayne Wright (left) receive the first place trophy for best sniper team at the conclusion of the 2016 Law Enforcement Sniper Challenge held on June 3 in Henry County..
Patrick County Sheriff’s Office marksmen Lt. Rob Coleman (right) and auxiliary Deputy Dwayne Wright (left) receive the first place trophy for best sniper team at the conclusion of the 2016 Law Enforcement Sniper Challenge held on June 3 in Henry County..
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