BEULAVILLE, Duplin County - Nine law enforcement agencies are training together in Duplin County. They are hoping the information they receive will help them when they have to combine their forces for a real event.
Instructors say having multiple agencies train together strengthens their ability to work together when something bad happens. Those who are training together at James Sprunt Community College in Kenansville are honing in on scenario-based training and working to keep their communities safer together.
"You know, everybody has to work together because at some point all agencies will intertwine," said Isaac Batchelor, interim director head for public safety. "Basically what it does is -- in your normal yearly qualification you're shooting at a static target most of the time where this ... you've actually got moving targets. You also have scenario-based where it may not be safe to shoot due to innocent bystanders."
Batchelor said this scenario-based training is crucial for making quick decisions, ones with high stakes when these officers are out in the field. Throughout training, participants must consistently evaluate the legal aspects of their job in various scenarios.
"So it gives them the idea of when can I shoot," Batchelor said. "That quick decision-making where you look at the legal aspects of can I shoot? Can I not shoot? And if I do... what are the outcomes going to be?
"You have a fleeing felon situation from escapees in the prison system and things of that nature."
Aside from improving skills, a primary objective is seeing deeper relationships from between agencies.
"The goal for this week is actually to get the agencies working together closer since we've got probation, parole or what they call adult community corrections now and the police departments and sheriff's office coming in and they're working together since they work together in the community," Batchelor said.
The community college also held an open range day for officers gettign ready for their annual requalification next week.
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