KIRKUK, Iraq - When a Brigade Combat Team Military Police platoon deploys, it normally has one mission. This was not the case for the Ready First MP platoon with 1st Advise and Assist Task Force, 1st Armored Division out of Fort Bliss, Texas.
During its deployment to Kirkuk, Iraq, the platoon’s flexibility was highlighted after its mission changed several times, covering all functions of the MP Corps.
Throughout the platoon’s year-long deployment, the soldiers provided area security to Contingency Operating Site Warrior, conducted detainee operations, provided personal security during dismounted patrols, enforced law and order and conducted police intelligence operations.
“It is phenomenal what the platoon has accomplished during this deployment. The soldiers demonstrated their ability to excel and proved their capabilities to the command,” said Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Tolbert, the Ready First MP platoon sergeant and a native of Ardmore, Ala.
He also explained the platoon’s current mission is the most significant because they are the only BCT MP platoon in Iraq that runs a fully operational MP station.
“We are currently the only brigade combat team MP platoon who has stood-up a MP station that conducts full-spectrum operations in Iraq,” said Sgt. 1st Class Tolbert.
Because of this MP station, they now have the capability to investigate, conduct patrols, and collect and preserve evidence, explained 1st Lt. Eric Threadgill, MP platoon leader and a native of Utica, N.Y.
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Threadgill said he is most impressed by his platoon; since standing-up the station the platoon has not stopped improving the way the station operates.
“We stood the station up in less than 24 hours and have not stopped improving it,” he said.
Sgt. 1st Class Tolbert said because of the constant improvements the leadership on COS Warrior can focus on other missions.
“Our leadership is able to focus on their mission and not be distracted by events on the base because they know a competent MP Soldier is handling the situation in the proper way,” said Sgt. 1st Class Tolbert.
The leadership on COS Warrior agreed with him and added that they have also seen base security improve since the MP platoon took on this added responsibility.
The Commander of 1-1 STB, Col. Patricia Sellers, said because of the MP platoon she feels the security on COS Warrior has improved.
Col. Sellers also said the MPs received many different missions and excelled at each of them. Because of this performance, the base and the Soldiers on it are much safer, she said.