Virginia Beach Shooting: Active Shooter Training Helps Save Lives

Jul 10, 2019 9:30:00 AM / by Active Threat Solutions by Defense in Depth

Think of what you can accomplish in less than 15 minutes. You could reduce the clutter on your desk, go for a brisk walk, prepare food and the list goes on. The time frame can go by quickly, depending on what fills your schedule on a daily basis. However, unforeseen life-threatening situations happen in the blink of an eye. When faced with a lethal situation, the vital choices you make can determine your fate. 

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security states that active shooter situations are often over within 10 to 15 minutes. Participating in active shooter training provides the necessary knowledge that distinguishes your options of either living another day or becoming a victim. 

Continue reading to learn about the Virginia Beach shooting and how active shooter training can help save lives.


virginia beach shooting

A gunman opened fire on three floors at the municipal building in Virginia Beach, resulting in 12 victims to perish on May 31, 2019. The suspect was killed on-site following a police shoot-out. Four other individuals were wounded, including a police officer. Authorities continue to explain that the shooter’s motives are unknown. Employees did not recognize any warning signs leading up to the event. 

DeWayne Craddock, the gunman, worked as a civil engineer for 15 years at the city Municipal Center. Several hours before the shooting took place, Craddock quit his job with the City of Virginia Beach. In his resignation letter, the assailant stated he was leaving the company “due to personal reasons” and how “it has been a pleasure to serve the city.” He was not asked to resign prior to the letter of resignation being submitted. 

It was “the most devastating day in the history of Virginia Beach,” said Bobby Dyer, Mayor of Virginia Beach, Virginia.  

The city employees participated in an active shooter training course. John Dudley, an employee who works in the building said, "They train you on these situations," and mentioned how training  “helped a lot with this."  

One victim, Keith Cox, died saving his co-workers. Cox directed seven colleagues to hide inside an office. He instructed them to “barricade” themselves in the room, according to Christi Dewar, friend and coworker of Cox. 

After hearing gunshots, an administrative assistant who works in the building, Megan Banton, called 911. Banton then created a barricaded inside an office by pushing a desk against a door for herself and around 20 other colleagues. 


One topic covered in our active shooter training seminar is understanding the mindset and preparedness of an attacker. 

It is important to recognize warning signs before an active shooter takes action. Several examples may include:

  • Consistent complaining of unfair treatment
  • Blaming others for problems
  • Change in behavior and a decline in job performance
  • Threats against a supervisor or co-worker
  • Decrease in attendance 
  • Inability to accept criticism about work performance
  • Inability to manage feelings, resulting in outbursts of swearing or slamming doors

The FBI reports that only 25 percent of active shooters are diagnosed with mental illness and 27 percent had significant online interaction.

Craddock was described as being quiet and normal, and his .45 caliber handgun was purchased legally. 

In some situations, for instance, the shooting at Virginia Beach, warning signs are not as conspicuous. The next best step you can take is to be prepared with an action plan. 

All active shooters study, plan and prepare for an attack. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, roughly 77 percent of active shooters spend a week or longer planning their attack, while 46 percent spend a week or longer preparing for the attack. If the shooter has a plan, so should you

Our expert team develops active threat plans for you to ensure your safety when life-threatening situations happen. When a well-thought-out plan is developed by professionals, it allows everyone to know what to do during an event to decrease fear and increase the number of survivors. 

There is a need for active threat training. In 2018, the FBI documented the following:

  • 27 incidents in 16 states
  • 213 casualties, excluding the shooters
  • 128 wounded
  • 9 incidents ended with the exchange of gunfire between the shooters and law enforcement 

With an increase in public shootings, law enforcement, paramedics and firefighters are working together and getting trained in preparation for active shooter events. 

We want you to be prepared too. Our progressive training program is designed for participants of all ages, backgrounds and levels. 

Our 90-minute active shooter training seminar can be applied in and out of the workplace to protect yourself and those around you throughout your daily routine. We will equip your organization with the confidence needed to address active threats.

One of our trained experts will discuss and demonstrate a customized course for the client. Topics covered in our course include:

  • Important statistics of active threat events
  • Why situational awareness is important
  • The different categories of active threats
  • The mindset and preparedness of an active shooter
  • The differences of cover vs conceal and how it can be applied
  • Extra security measures
  • The Houston Model: Run, Hide and Fight
  • The Attacker’s response to disruptions you cause
  • Having a plan when the attack starts, while it’s happening and after it has happened

After the presentation, our instructor will analyze your building and talk through any concerns you may have about the space and what the best measures are to be taken during an attack. 

Learn more about our active shooter training program.


Active Threat Solutions equips organizations and businesses with the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed for a safe environment. We provide simple solutions to complex problems that increase your chances of survival in life-threatening circumstances. 

We present material as if we were teaching our “loved ones” how to identify a dangerous situation and appropriately react through our classes. We aspire to help you feel empowered to “know what to do” when faced with personal safety, security threats and active shooter situations. 

At Active Threat Solutions, our elite team is comprised of current and former law enforcement officers, federal agents, military and Department of Defense instructors. 

Let our team evaluate and develop a strategy to protect you and those you keep close to your heart. We offer services in risk management, active threat training, emergency response, post-incident communication, security services, executive protection services and more. 

Become educated on the best practices in defense. If you are ready to take action today, contact us at (724) 597-2115

To learn more about active threat training, download our Active Threat Training Guidebook below.



Topics: active threat training, virginia beach shooting

Active Threat Solutions by Defense in Depth

Written by Active Threat Solutions by Defense in Depth

Active Threat Solutions by Defense in Depth was developed to equip individuals with the knowledge and confidence they need that will inspire them to implement crisis solutions in the workplace making them feel safer and more empowered.