The highly trained SWAT team hailed for capturing the Boston Marathon bomber in 2013 is set to be disbanded, and the city’s former police commissioner expressed concern Tuesday about how it will affect counterterrorism.
“The thing I worry about is the special expertise that these officers have in the SWAT team,” Ed Davis told “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday. “They got set up a special training facility while I was the commissioner to do entries into subway cars, the ‘T’ as we call it here.”
“So they did have the ability and the knowledge of the underground systems that the other SWAT teams now are going to have to get up on to do the job properly so it does affect operations,” he continued.
He acknowledged that “these are difficult times” and “difficult decisions” have to be made
The decision to disband the SWAT team comes after careful consideration of the use of Transit Police Department’s (TPD) resources, Boston 25 News reported, citing Transit Police’s Superintendent Richard Sullivan.
Sullivan reported said that the SWAT team has not been used in several years and has been reduced to five or six officers.
The Transit Police’s SWAT team was integral in locating and arresting Dzhokhar Tsarnaev following the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013.
“This is a difficult time and there’s a lot of hard decisions that are going to be made so I support the chief’s decision because he has to make the call,” Davis said on Tuesday. “But, this is a very well-respected team, a team that has specialized skills.”
He explained that “the hostage rescue team had them go in and make the arrest of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and that was because Dic Donohue, one of their officers, had been shot and almost killed by the suspect.
No, it has not,” Davis responded. “If anything the information I’m getting from sources in high levels of law enforcement is that the domestic terror threat is worse now than it’s ever been.”
“We certainly have problems on the international front. Domestic terrorism is going up. There’s a lot of unrest in the country. It’s a very difficult time,” he continued.
Sullivan did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
However, Boston 25 News reported he said, “The leadership of the TPD made the wise decision to use our precious and scarce resources where they will have the most beneficial impact for our riding public and the communities we serve
video from 2013 the original scene