Montgomery Sheriff's Office Upgrades Active Shooter Training


By Alabama News Network

It's hard for officers to train for active shooter situations by shooting paper targets on a range. That's why they have a new tool to bring the situation to life. 

They say it's the closest you can get to an actual life or death situation. 
The screens wrapped around me as I stepped up to an ATM. 
A knife was drawn on an unsuspecting woman, so I took the shot. But I forgot about his friend in the car. 
I took him out, but not before being shot myself. 
Montgomery County Chief Deputy Derrick Cunningham says the ability to train like this and put officers in virtual schools is invaluable, especially with events like Sandy Hook and the recent school shooting in Nevada. 
"You're looking at nationwide and see what's taking place. But being able to have a facility such as this, being able to have a set up to bring in officers, to be able to train together is the way we're going to react," said Chief Cunningham.
And it's not only a concern for officers. 
"It's a major concern with all the schools out of town having problems with shootings, folks going up into schools shooting and stuff. I think it's a major concern," said Philandra Betts, who's concerned for her family. 
This new facility was funded by grant money and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency wants all 16,000 officers in the state to train in Montgomery. 
"So if you are an APOST certified officer, you wear a badge and carry a gun to protect the citizens of Alabama we want to train you. We will train you for free at no cost to your agency," said A. Mercado, a special agent with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.
The rest of the training involves practice on a firing range as well as a simulated indoor active shooter drill. 
There is only one other facility like this in the state, located up in Birmingham.

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