(Guam) The Guam Department of Corrections (DOC) graduated 13 operators this past Friday. These 13 individuals are the first to ever be trained by an in-house instructor. 12 years ago, DOC partook in a Special Operations Response Team (SORT) training done by an off-island instructor. One individual who took that class, Cadre Corrections Officer II Joey Pocaigue, took it upon himself to get the relevant training and certifications, in order to finally allow DOC the ability to provide in house training.
According to Warden Allan Borja, Pocaigue found his calling in Special Operations. Pocaigue took the extra instructor classes, went off island to receive necessary training, and it was because of his dedication and determination, it was an easy sell to DOC’s top brass.
Having certified Special Operations personnel on standby, allows for an extra layer of protection for inmates, officers and civilian staffers at the over-crowded prison. In the event that an incident would occur, this would allow all those at the prison, to be at ease knowing that a team was on standby, and en route to respond.
Out of the 13 who graduated, 2 operators while not part of DOC, are a part of the extended corrections family at the Department of Youth Affairs (DYA). While DOC made history by graduating its first in-house trained operators, DYA also made history by having its first ever SORT certified officers. Until last week, DYA had no special operations team, this will allow the evolving department, to keep up with new trends.
According to Cadre Pocaigue, a SORT II training cycle is slated for early next year. He further stated that as long as he is with the Department, he will make it his mission to ensure that DOC continues to excel its operations tactics.