Columbia Police SWAT Team conducts training exercise

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COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team and the Crisis Negotiations Team (CNT) conducted a training exercise Monday night. 

The exercise started at 6 p.m. and concluded at 10 p.m. at the Family Pawn Store off Paris Road, which was closed to the public during the exercise. 

According to one officer, the exercise involved practicing a hostage situation. The exercise also involved multiple police vehicles, officers and volunteers.  

When both the SWAT Team and the CNT team combine they make up to 50 members.  Both of these teams meet for this kind of training at least once a year. 

According to CNT's website, "These exercises are designed to put stress on both teams, and the problems encountered are very real even though it is a practice scenario."

Police put two large signs on either side of the Family Pawn Store to warn drivers of the demonstration. 

The officer said the signs were to keep traffic minimal during the exercise.