Police simulation shows what it takes to be an officer

Updated: Sep. 15, 2020 at 7:24 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Putting the public in the shoes of law enforcement to see how they would react in dangerous situations became a reality on Tuesday.

Huntsville Police Department leaders put together a class on September 15 to give the public a glimpse of what they go through, and the training they use in scary situations.

WAFF’s Tiffany Thompson went through some of these very simulations. In each simulation the suspect had a gun or a knife. The simulations are based on real interactions from across the country.

Class participant Jason Garstka said this class opened his eyes to how quick something can change.

“From today’s training you have to act fast and think fast as well," Gartska said. "The perpetrator is one step ahead of you, so there’s no telling what’s going through their minds. You have to act pretty quickly.”

These simulations left our reporter virtually shot or stabbed four separate times.

Captain Mike Izzo said Tuesday’s training brought perspective to the participants.

“You realize that when you are put under pressure in certain circumstances your life depends on a matter of seconds, not even minutes," Captain Izzo said.

Captain Izzo also said the end goal is for every party to go home safely.

“If you are compliant the officer gets to go home at the end of the day, and the person they are interacting with usually gets to go home during the end of their day because there’s usually no threat.”

For participant Gartska, he just thinks more people should go through the class.

Leaders with the police department talked about bringing the simulations to the public, but no date has been picked yet.

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