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SWAT team conducts training exercises at abandoned homes in Bayou Corne

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ASSUMPTION PARISH - SWAT team members broke down doors Saturday at abandoned homes in Bayou Corne that have been declared too dangerous to live in - and it's all part of a training exercise.

Members of the Assumption Parish Sheriff's Office SWAT team examined strategy before their next breach entry exercise.

"When we have to make entry in the middle of the night for a wanted suspect or search warrant, we want to get in and get out as quick as possible," Sheriff Leland Falcon said.

Some empty, abandoned homes in Bayou Corne are too dangerous to live in, but they're perfect for SWAT team training.

"This allows us to have valuable training in different scenarios and different types of layouts," Falcon said.

Members trained in one of the dozens of homes that were part of a buyout that occurred when a sinkhole opened several years ago and threatened the properties. Instead of demolishing the home, the company in charge of the Bayou Corne buyout, Texas Brine, decided to donate it to the SWAT team, so they could use it for practice.

"First responders are such a valuable part of any community," Bruce Martin of Texas Brine said.

Martin is a project manager for Texas Brine, he says some of the homes were moved and given to needy families. The others are being torn down.

"Before we do that, we wanted to given them the last opportunity, and it's been a great exercise," he added.

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