Mr. Berletich is a retired criminal defense attorney. He has over 25 years of experience in force management, lethal force instruction, force escalation, and firearms instruction development. Six years as an intelligence analyst with the United States Marine Corp Reserve, sixteen years as deputy sheriff with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, and a long history of martial arts training, has given him a breadth of experience in less lethal and lethal force encounters. His expertise includes firearms instruction development, surviving UOF incidents, officer survival, and citizen force training. Additionally, for over 20 years Mr. Berletich taught criminal justice and UOF classes to college students and law enforcement personnel.
In the same sense that Mount Sinai is a “teaching hospital,” Missouri River Shooters Association (MRSA), prides itself on the quality of its training and strives to be the “teaching shooting association.” Our goal is to instruct such outstanding classes that people will want to come from around the United States to learn with us.
Our philosophy is that our members deserve the most relevant, state of the art training, at a price they can afford. The problem is that such training typically comes with a high price tag. For example, one of the most important classes an armed citizen can take is a course in rules of engagement for armed law-abiding private citizens, emphasizing legal issues, tactical issues, and aftermath management. This class is commonly known as Armed Citizen’s Rules of Engagement. Topics taught in such a class include interacting with suspects, witnesses, responding police officers…threat recognition and mind-set…management of social and psychological aftermath after having had to use lethal force in defense of self or others…and preparing beforehand for legal repercussions and minimizing exposure to them. The best instructors typically charge $500 for class tuition alone. That doesn’t include the additional costs of transportation, lodging and other miscellaneous travel expenses, that can easy run another $1000. No matter how important such education is, many of our members would find this cost prohibitive.
So how do we address this problem, while still providing the best education available? MRSA pays to send its highly qualified instructors to classes where they learn to be subject matter experts. Once certified, we then can offer the same quality instruction at a greatly reduce price to our members. We only charge our members enough to reimburse MRSA for the cost of getting our instructors to be experts in their teaching areas, and for continuing education. How much do our members save? To use the example of the class discussed above, Armed Citizen’s Rules of Engagement, this education can cost $1500 per person or more. We are able to offer the same quality training to members for $100! We also offer the classes to the public, but at a greatly increased rate. It pays to be a member of MRSA.
The classes we are developing are based on the Use of Force (UOF) spectrum that an average person may experience in their lifetimes. The UOF spectrum begins with situational awareness and learning how not to be a victim. It progresses to the skills required to handle UOF encounters, which include less lethal and deadly force training. The cornerstone of our training is teaching what to do after these encounters, which includes interaction with law enforcement and handling both the civil and criminal aftermath. Also important is how to handle common medical issues that arise with less lethal and deadly force encounters.
Based on these requirements some of the classes we are developing and will offer are:
This is only a small list of what we hope to offer as our members become subject matter experts in the different disciplines. It will take some time to reach the level where we are considered one of the finest training facilities in the United States, but it can be done. It took me six years to make the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Academy into what was considered one of the top UOF training facilitates in the United States. With the support of our members, I promise that as MRSA’s Director of Education, we can have an education program that will be considered one of the finest in the nation.