UK & World News
Steven Seagal Trains US School Guard 'Posse'
Action movie star Steven Seagal has been drafted in to train a volunteer armed posse to defend Phoenix-area schools against gunmen.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio - who calls himself "America's Toughest Sheriff" - called on the Under Siege actor in the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut, which left 26 children and staff dead.
Sheriff's SWAT members acted as shooters, while teenagers played the part of students during mock scenarios involving up to three gunmen.
Seagal was there to lead training in hand-to-hand defence tactics, among other techniques, drawing on his expertise in martial arts.
The exercise took place on Saturday at a closed school site in suburban Fountain Hills.
Arizona Democratic politician Chad Campbell said getting Seagal in as an instructor was "ludicrous".
"Steve Seagal is an actor. That's it. Why don't we also have Clint Eastwood and Chuck Norris and Bruce Willis come out and train them too while we're at it," he complained.
The Maricopa County volunteers dress in uniforms and drive marked vehicles, with some trained deputies authorised to carry guns.
They only go onto school grounds if they spot danger.
But even without the Hollywood association, the scheme had already attracted criticism.
Local town councillor Andrew Sanchez said he wants nothing to do with the posse patrols.
"We are paying him to have certified deputies here, not to bring a circus and not to use our town as a political platform," he said.
"Why would people complain about my posse being in front of schools to act as prevention?" Sheriff Arpaio snapped back.
"I want everyone to know about it for the deterrence effect," he added.
Seagal was already a volunteer posse member in Maricopa County.
He has also been deputised with sheriff's offices in New Mexico, Texas and Louisiana - where he filmed a reality TV show, Steven Seagal: Lawman.
Among other notable people also in the Maricopa 3,000-strong volunteer armed posse is Incredible Hulk star Lou Ferrigno and actor Peter Lupus from TV's Mission: Impossible.
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what do you think?
chad campbell aint got a clue what hes on about. yes steven segal is an actor but its not his only job. If he had done his research he will also have known steven segal also works in law enforcement in maricopa for the past 20 odd years.
Spot on donna yet a lot of other people seem to be in The same boat as chad campbell
"I want everyone to know about it for the deterrence effect," he added. Sorry, but if someone is unhinged enough to go shooting up a school, then these people aren't a deterrent, they're a challenge. And how long before one of these poorly trained people start hitting the wrong people in a shootout?
mr seagal was and quite possibly still is one of the highest graded aikido practioners in western civilization. despite his wooden acting. the man knows how to fight. it also helps being very tall and quite heavy
Reach of an aikido fighter - 1m or so. Reach of a nutter with an assault rifle - 100m or more. I know who my money would be on.
I don't know. Is he? I've never watched any of his films. What are his films about? Mountain climbing? I won't be watching them, then.
....Christ. Americans all over that is "Let's get in a action movie star to stop these bad guys" ....Jesus wept
They should've hired the A-Team instead!
I don't know what everybody else thinks but I think it's stupid. That would mean a virtual army guarding every school in America. An army of amateur gun-carrying IDIOTS in order to protect children from random gun events caused by psychologically affected people. Does that really say 3,000 people? All that because ONE CHILD went berserk and shot SOME of his school friends and teachers? It was a one time event, which is very unlikely to be repeated there ever again. Why would anyone want a Hollywood actor to organise defending a school against a virtually non-existent threat? Totally and utterly unnecessary in the extreme. Just another beard story, isn't it, really?
Adrian - you're correct. It's just stoopid.
It's difficult to know whether to laugh or to just stand and stare mouth agape. The best bit is the photo of Steve looking all mean and manly with ;"America's Toughest Sheriff" TM - in the background. The Land of the Free. God bless 'em. (That looks suspiciously like a Palestinian scarf Mr Segal is wearing. The Israeli facists won't like that. There will be complaints)
I thought he was just a cook...?
Clint Eastwood faster on the draw yeh
Charles Bronson anyday.
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Easy solution.....ban guns in america.
I can see it now.in a few years 1 of these 'protectors' will find out their wifes having an affair, flip, then turn the gun on a bunch of school children before killing themselves. Oh well what can you do....oh yeah,ban guns
Some comments here make me laugh, ban guns- good idea...ha yeah, like banning drugs, that works!! Jokes about seagal, he is local, he know his stuff, he offered free training...hand to hand it says, some plonks comment about the reach of a gun compared to a fist,he isnt teaching people how to fight a gun.
That's the whole point. Not many of these massacres happen from people attacking places with harsh words and a potato. When someone else decides to run amok with an assault rifle, all the martial arts in the world aren't going to do much good from 50 metres away. You say he isn't teaching people how to fight a gun. Well, considering that's the weapon of choice in these attacks, what use is his training?