Things you didn’t know about the S.W.A.T Team

Things you didn’t know about the S.W.A.T Team

TV Drama S.W.A.T follows an LAPD officer who finds balance in his city. Here are interesting facts about the real-life S.W.A.T team that the show is based on.

Based on the 1975 television series of the same name, S.W.A.T is an American crime drama that was developed by Aaron Rahsaan Thomas and Shawn Ryan.

The show which is available on FOX+ follows Sergeant II Daniel “Hondo” Harrelson, a born and bred Los Angeles native and member of the LAPD. In an effort to improve the relationship between the community (who is loyal to Hondo) and the police, he was promoted to team leader of a highly trained unit set out to stop crimes in Los Angeles. A trusted friend and ally of almost everyone in his neighborhood, Hondo is well respected by the community and receives help from this regarding relevant information related to his cases.

Throughout the series, we also see the other officers of the LAPD that surround Hondo and are part of his team, as well as other members of the community. As the show goes on, viewers witness as Hondo struggles to balance his loyalty to his friends and family and his duty as an officer.

S.W.A.T takes twists and turns true to form to the real life S.W.A.T team. With all inspiration the show draws from them, we explore facts about the S.W.A.T team that not many people might know.

1. A lot of S.W.A.T raids happen every day
Over 100 American families get their house raided by a S.W.A.T team every day. However, the team only finds a weapon in the home 35% of the time (in situations where weapons are suspected, and only find contraband 36% of the time.

2. Bank robberies are the reason for S.W.A.T
The world’s first S.W.A.T team was created in 1964 in Philadelphia as a response to a growing rate of bank robberies, because the robbers were usually highly armed and well equipped with firearm that regular police might not have been able to handle.

3. The S.W.A.T team responds to non-crime related emergencies as well
While they commonly handle hostage situations or the like, the S.W.A.T team is also trained to deal with potential suicide cases, civil unrest, or high-risk home searches.

4. One of the most prestigious S.W.A.T teams is the LAPD
John Nelson, a Vietnam war veteran and ex-Marine, founded it in 1965. It was initially created as a crowd-control unit and then eventually branched out into dignitary protection and hostage and barricade situations.

5. There are over 1000 S.W.A.T teams in the USA
90% of cities with a population of over 50,000 have police departments with active S.W.A.T teams. This is a significant rise from the 1980s where roughly only 60% of these cities had this special unit.

Stream the full season of  S.W.A.T and watch something new on FOX+.

www.foxplus.com

References:
- https://boingboing.net/2014/08/14/10-facts-about-the-swatificati.html
- https://www.tactical-life.com/lifestyle/military-and-police/philly-swat/
- http://www.ndsn.org/july97/swat.html

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Jason Ho Head of Marketing Communications & PR, FOX+, FOX Networks Group
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