Sniper training surprises Asheville residents

ASHEVILLE, NC (AP) -- A police exercise to practice how to
respond to a sniper incident caught some people by surprise in
Asheville.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that officials say there
should have been signs and uniformed officers to alert people about
the exercise Monday.

Lt. Wally Welch says there was miscommunication between the
training division and the rest of the department and there was no
warning for residents.

Larry Smith had just visited the courthouse and said he was
surprised when he found himself surrounded by officers, military
vehicles with machine guns and a group portraying snipers on the
grass of a park.

Smith said a series of explosions as the snipers fired made it
sound like a bomb had gone off.

He says several people pushing strollers hurried out of the
area.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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