CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WAVY) — In the tense hours while mass shooting suspect Christopher Darnell Jones, Jr. was still at large, UVA issued an alert for students known as Run-Hide-Fight. It’s a program taught by the FBI, and similar to one offered by the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office to empower people who are thrust into active shooter situations.

VBSO teaches a program known as CRASE, for Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events. It replaces run-hide-fight with avoid-deny-defend, but is otherwise similar, according to instructor Sgt. Demetrius Taylor.

He and several colleagues have brought the techniques to area churches in recent months, including Asbury Christian Fellowship and New Jerusalem Church of God in Christ.

“A lot of what we offer is new information for them,” Taylor said. “You’d be surprised how many people think that just hiding and hoping will give them the best chance of survival, which it actually does not.”

The programs put a priority on running or avoiding the shooter. If that’s not an option, then hiding and barricading. And then as a last resort, fighting back, especially with surprise, teamwork and coordination.

“(Participants) have come to us after the trainings and told us they’ve learned a great deal, and that they feel more empowered,” Taylor said.

Both programs also include a basic first aid course known as “Stop the Bleed.”

“If anybody is ever wounded by a gunshot or has any type of fatal wound, we do go over basic CPR, the use of a tourniquet and things of that nature,” he said.

If your group is interested in active shooter training, contact your local law enforcement. For those based in Virginia Beach, contact VBSO at or go to