Training Unit


About the Training Unit

Specialist Marian Olivas

Specialist Marian Olivas

The Training Unit is led by Specialist Marian Olivas from Butler Tech‘s Public Safety Education Complex, the official training site of the Butler County Sheriff’s Office. Staff development, training and education are the tools used to enable BCSO staff to meet the challenges that our society presents.

The art of policing is changing at an accelerated rate! The technological era has created crimes and methods of committing crimes that didn’t exist a decade ago. In addition to this, law enforcement officers (LEOs) are expected to keep up with the swinging pendulum of our legal system.

Society’s tolerance of violence and depravity have placed LEOs at a heightened risk of death or serious injury in the line of duty, yet the deputy is expected to perform professionally, and with a candor of political correctness. He/she must maintain a demeanor of calm in the face of danger, and make life or death decisions in a fraction of a second. After which his/her every move is scrutinized under a microscope.

A range instructor leading firearms training

Firearms Training Facility

The Firearms Training Facility is a joint venture between the Butler County Sheriff’s Office and the West Chester Township Police Department. The facility has a classroom and 14 shooting lanes with computerized targets on each lane, as well as a live fire shoot house for training officers on conducting building searches using live ammunition. The range is capable of allowing the firing of any weapon within our inventory, from semi-automatic handguns, shotguns, rifles and submachine guns.

Each agency provides their own instructors to perform training for their department. Several agencies use the range to train their officers, Outside agencies pays per day for the use of the facility and provide their own ammunition, instructors and targets for the training.

A deputy conducts firearm training

With several agencies using the range, approximately 200,000 rounds a year are fired at the facility.

The training of law enforcement officers in firearms and tactical training in these trying times is paramount to ensure that they are able to meet the challenges that may arise. Sheriff Richard Jones and Chief Deputy Anthony Dwyer are committed to ensuring that their deputies and all law enforcement officers are trained in the latest firearms and tactical techniques to protect the citizens of Butler County.

Online Training with Moodle

A learning management system called MOODLE (an acronym for Modular Object- Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment) was installed in 2010, and began its BCSO training career in April 2011. The objectives for MOODLE include:

  • Moving lecture-based training from the classroom to the internet, where the student can take the class at a time that is convenient for the individual;
  • Providing more time for skill development and performance in a classroom setting by having students take the lecture portion of the training on line prior to the class; and
  • Afford a convenient way to review policies and procedures, general orders, and post orders, as well as test and record the students’ understanding of these important documents.

Lecture-based classes can be created in MOODLE and will allow the student to take the class at a time that is convenient for the individual. MOODLE will be used to prepare staff for performance based training, by providing the lecture content prior to the training. Participants may be required to pass the written test on-line prior to the skill demonstration performance. When the student and instructor come face-to-face, more time can be spent on skill development and performance.

Sheriff’s Citizen Academy

In 2011, BCSO hosted the 5th Sheriff’s Citizens Academy. Twenty-four residents of Butler County spent eight weeks becoming familiar with the workings of the Sheriff’s Office. Representatives from each division shared their expertise. Students visited Judge Hedric’s Courtroom to learn about the criminal justice system. Chief Dwyer walked them through the investigation of the “Torso Case.” The highlight of this year’s training was the CCW component that prepared interested students for their CCW license. Seven graduates of the SCA were selected for the Citizens On Patrol.