LPD: No routine call

                                                                                                                          Photo by Christy Porter
Cpl. Daniel Mobley concentrates on a hostile situation as Kelly Beets observes.
By Christy Porter

Managing Editor

Periodically the Licking Police Department participates in a MILO range reality based training session. Last month Chief of Police Pat Burton and his department completed a session with Kelly Beets, Senior Loss Control Consultant with MIRMA (Missouri Intergovernmental Risk Management Association).

Law enforcement can no longer assume that any type of interaction with the public, while on duty or otherwise, will be routine. Unlawful activities take place everywhere and anytime, including in small town and rural areas. This makes it crucial that law enforcement be equipped to handle any situation. Burton says, “There is no routine call, we have to be prepared.”

These training sessions allow the police officers to participate in video clip scenarios where they may have to make instant decisions and follow through judgements on everything, from a traffic stop to a school shooting incident. Using a weapon that interacts with the video clips, they can instantly see the results of their actions in a non-threatening environment. This also allows all participating officers to discuss the scenario. These discussions include assessments of the situation, the danger present to others and self, signs of aggression and/or suicide tendency and responsibility. Talking through any situation while on duty is the ultimate goal, but being alert to all details is imperative. The individual experiences that each officer has undergone is brought into the discussions as well. This enhances all of the other officers’ knowledge which they bring with them on a regular basis, both on and off the job. 
                                                                                                                         Photo by Christy Porter
A training scenario is discussed by Chief Burton, LPD officers and Kelly Beets, consultant, after officer participation.
The training also includes ongoing interaction with Beets, the MIRMA consultant, who provides the MILO services for all member cities. MIRMA is the city insurance program for the LPD. Beets also reviews the scenarios with the officers and helps with judgmental training. He says, “It’s good training for them both tactical and legal.” The MILO training in no way affects the insurance rate structure, only allowing every opportunity to support law enforcement agencies. This includes officers being prepared to articulate their assessment and actions of the situation in court.

Eliminating the threat and saving lives is the basis of the routine protocol. This is applicable in all situations from a traffic violation to major crime responses. The LPD has years of experience in law enforcement, a sincere desire to ‘Protect and Serve' and a genuine caring for their community and each other.

My Story

By Christy Porter

Managing Editor

It was no routine call when Chief Burton called and asked if I would like to attend the LPD Milo training session. Not even being aware that the police department routinely participated in these training sessions, my interest was piqued and I agreed to attend.

Now realizing that I am a writer and not a police officer, I was surprised when late in the session I was asked to participate. I, with some apprehension, agreed. Having not shot a firearm for 20-some-years and having no training in law enforcement, my nervousness was warranted. After seeing our local officers access situations I hoped I would never be involved in, follow protocol, and then take control and responsibility for resolution of the conflict, I knew I was totally inept.

My hope lay in the fact that I had been paying attention and listening to the discussions which followed each real life scenario. Believe me when I say real life; being an observer did not diminish my cringing in the situations being played out before me.

We have some incredibly well trained officers protecting our community; they also displayed very good judgement in these scenarios. After each scene was completed, they were articulate in explaining the situation and their actions. They were attentive and active in discussion about what-ifs and experiences shared in like scenarios.

When the officers initiated conversation with the “suspects“, their voices were controlled and commanding, clear and concise. My voice was shaky and soft, this being unusual for me, but then I had been watching the videos.

The officers made decisions as to using a Taser or a firearm; when they used the simulated firearm there was no red laser dot; you only saw precision shooting on the screen. It was decided I would use the laser dot; perhaps that would help my aim. What the participants and I saw was a shaky hand that surprisingly did manage to zero in on some of the “targets”. This also in spite of my shaking knees.

The importance to get the facts accurately when I’m writing a story, along with my creative imagination, allowed me to place myself in these scenarios, if only for the moment. While getting the facts may have helped me in assessing some of the situations, my imagination allowing me to place myself there was very scary indeed. I was also critiqued and saw the error of my judgement calls.

After attending the officer training and not diminishing the respect I already had for law enforcement, I can honestly say participating only increased my respect and admiration for our law officers.

Oh, I got shot and it was explained why I got shot. I have no intentions of going into law enforcement.



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