PHOENIX - Many times local law enforcement officers are put in high-stress scenarios where they have to make split-second decisions.
To give civilians like us an idea of how tough and quickly those choices have to be made, they invited the media out for a mock training session.
The simulated session has you thinking that you can approach and assess the problems without issue, but when you combine stress, weapons and safety, your judgment isn't always on point.
The facility is set up so that officers in the academy can train in realistic scenarios to better prepare them once they have their badge. These are calls officers respond to all day, every day. Calls can include, trespassers, stranded motorists and even dumpster divers, to name a few.
Phoenix police gave suggestions on how to approach such circumstances, but even knowing what you’re getting into, it can still be tough to calculate the best reaction quickly. That’s why cadets go through an extensive physical, mental and educational training prior to getting a gun and badge.
“As officers we are restricted by laws, policies, guidelines, where the suspect isn't. They've already chosen if they're going to break the law or not and at that point they are choosing how they want to interact with us,” one officer said.
Even the simulated simulations were hard to master. Talking down a civilian is one thing, dealing with an armed suspect making threats, certainly another.
The brief glimpse into the mindset of an officer is really eye opening and quite challenging, to say the least.
If you're interested in such a challenge, learn more here: https://www.phoenix.gov/police/joinphxpd.