MCSO deputies purchase a new virtual shooting training simulator
MARION COUNTY. Fla.-- The Marion County Sheriff Office has installed a new virtual shooting system that will help better train deputies for real life encounters.
The deputies who teach the new training class and say the system should be installed into every police agency around the U.S.
Marion County Sheriff's deputies are working with a new virtual training program. It's called F.A.T.S., which stands for "fire arms training simulator".
The system allows each deputy to see different real life scenarios that they could face while on the job.
LT. David Redmond said, " This is where we want to make our mistakes is in here. That's why this scenario system is an excellent training tool for all of our law enforcement deputies and detention deputies. They get to make the mistakes here in the room where they can be corrected before something bad happens on patrol or in the streets."
The system is loaded with 400 different style programs and each deputy is required to go through the training at least once a year.
Director Paul Bloom, who has been with the agency for 6 years, says he learns something new every time he's uses the simulator.
Paul Bloom said, “As you can see it's very unpredictable and it was still a surprise to me. I had not played that type of scenario before so I was surprised. And to me, it was all based off of reaction. When the lady came outside with a weapon firing at us, all I can remember was just firing."
Deputies wanted to see if I had what it takes to handle a scenario. At first I thought it was going to be easy, but in the end I found out I had a lot to learn.
"Show me your hands, (I got a gun), put your hands up, (I'm going to use it), put your hands up, (I got a permit for it), sir put your hands up, (It’s coming out), sir, (bang, bang, bang, bang, ha ha ha ha.)”
LT. David Redmond said, "Now you see we're going to be prepared for any situation. If he came out with his hands like he did and went pow, pow, pow the correct thing was not to shoot him which you did successfully. A lot of people would have shot him because they're already at that heightened sense. So we work on correcting that behavior because if you would have shot him the agency would have been facing a wrongful death lawsuit and you could be facing criminal penalties and wind up in jail or prison."
The training program cost MCSO 63-thousand dollars and deputies say its money well spent.
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