During the course of the average day, millions of Americans attend classes, visit shopping malls, or travel to their places of employment. These daily activities are typically mundane experiences, until an act of violence shatters dreams, claims lives, and alters the perception of an institution for generations.

The Spingola Group (SG) is a team of seasoned law enforcement veterans, many of whom have looked evil directly in the eye while standing in harms way. All of our representatives have undergone hundreds of hours of training, and each has been tested in tough neighborhoods, where a failing grade may result in a folded flag being presented to a loved one. The professionals at SG bring a wealth of experience to the table, and work in partnership with our clients to improve responses to problematic situations.

Too Much to Lose

Worst U.S. Shooting Ever Kills 33 on Va. Campus

On April 17, 2007, the above headline appeared on MSNBC’s Web site after one person’s shooting rampage at Virginia Tech.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18134671/

With so much at stake in today’s economy, one can only imagine the psychological stigma associated with such a horrific attack.

In an effort to gain the attention of bright high school students each year, colleges and universities spend millions of dollars. The marketing firm Lipman Hearne reports that, since 2000, institutions of higher learning have increased their marketing budgets by 50 percent.

Unfortunately, one tragic event can significantly damage an institution’s image. After all, how many years and what type of resources will it take to regain the trust of incoming students, their parents, potential customers, or future employees?

In the immediate aftermath of the Virginia Tech shootings, armchair cops and members of the media demanded answers to the following questions:

The Spingola Group works in partnership with our clients to address these issues. Back to top>

Crisis Management

The Spingola Group’s seminar and consulting services focus on improving an organization’s response before, during, and after a critical incident. The carnage caused by gunmen at Columbine High School, Northern Illinois University, and Virginia Tech, illustrate the unpredictability and volatility of what the Regional Organized Crime Information Center calls the “active shooter.”

Active shooters are typically psychologically troubled individuals, who may act alone or in concert with others. The goal of an active shooter is to quickly and methodically take as many lives as possible. The perpetrators of these senseless acts have little to fear from law enforcement, as they often anticipate taking their own lives.

The Spingola Group’s four hour seminar walks an organization’s staff through the police response to active shooter critical incidents, and identifies some of the character traits associated with the perpetrators of these attacks. The failure to recognize ominous warning signs, a lack of adequate preparation, and the absence of a strategic reaction plan, may result in an organization-wide ‘deer-in-the-headlights response.’

Certainly, if such an event were to occur, members of law enforcement and the media would swarm the scene, concerned family members will overwhelm switchboards, and trial lawyers will carefully examine the statements provided by employees and administrators. Back to top>

Meet the Spingola Group’s Affiliated Staff

Steven Spingola is an investigator with a national reputation for excellence.

A 2001 graduate of the FBI National Academy, Spingola holds two master’s degrees. He is also a death investigations expert, a police related shooting reconstruction specialist, and has formal training in criminal investigative analysis (profiling).

Prior to his retirement as a lieutenant of detectives with the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD), Spingola supervised all major categories of criminal investigations, including stints in the Homicide Unit, Vice Control Division, Sensitive Crimes Unit, and Violent Crimes Division. He further served as the lead investigator for the Critical Incident Unit, a group that probes police related shootings, use-of-force incidents, and other significant events. As a detective, Spingola spent several years conducting death investigations for a homicide unit with one of the highest clearance rates in the country.

Spingola’s role in academia is that of an adjunct professor of criminal justice, human services management, and security administration classes at Cardinal Stritch University, Concordia University of Wisconsin, Marian College, and Springfield College.

“Teaching is my way of giving back,” Steve recently said. “If the experiences I share with others help save lives, and assist—down the road—with the clearances of serious crimes, then I’ve succeeded in my role as an instructor.” Back to top>

Michael Kuspa is a retired Milwaukee Police Department sergeant, with over 33 years of law enforcement experience. Kuspa served nearly half of his tenure as a member of the Tactical Enforcement Unit, the MPD’s version of a special weapons and tactics squad. He was also the supervisor in charge of both firearms instruction and the Counter Sniper Team.

As a Tactical Enforcement Unit supervisor, Kuspa was directly involved in managing the police response to several critical incidents, including the United States Post Office active shooter situation that occurred inside Milwaukee’s main postal facility in 1997. He is a law enforcement instructor from the State of Wisconsin and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Kuspa’s past experience includes instruction of police officers, school administrators, and business professionals in Rapid Response to School Violence and Active Shooter courses. He is currently an instructor and member of the Lakes Area Major Investigation Unit. Kuspa is a court recognized expert on police firearms training, and has testified in criminal matters, civil cases, and at several death inquests. Mike is also an instructor of Law Enforcement Training for Milwaukee Area Technical College, Waukesha Area Technical College, and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.

At the Spingola Group, Michael Kuspa uses his vast knowledge of tactical situations to provide a thoughtful analysis of active shooter situations.

“It’s important to mentally prepare the members of an organization to respond to a critical incident,” said Kuspa. “If an active shooter event occurs, a planned response could save lives, and may prevent undue harm to an institution's reputation and image.” Back to top>

SG’s Services

The Spingola Group:

Spingola Group training dates are now available. For more information, contact an SG representative.

The Spingola Group
110 James Street, #21
Wales, Wisconsin 53183
(262) 751-2057
info@badgerwordsmith.com