The Madison County Sheriff’s Department is using more than bullet proof vests for protection and preparation from active shooters. Deputies are using the new active shooter simulator to think fast on their feet.

13,286 people were killed in the US by firearms in 2015, according to the Gun Violence Archive, and 26,819 people were injured. In response to these statistics, Chief Deputy Shawn Burns says, “These active shooters can happen any time. That’s why these [simulators] are becoming more commonplace.”

The sheriff’s department bought the active shooter simulator with SPLOST funds and uses it to teach about the “ability, opportunity, and jeopardy” test. This three-prong test says if the deputy has the ability to shoot, the opportunity to shoot, and if someone’s life is in jeopardy then they can use deadly force. The simulator puts the deputy in a scenario to decide these factors. The simulator also has a person controlling and changing the scenario based on how the deputy responds to the situation. The simulated active shooter could pull a gun on the deputy or give up. It’s up to the controller to determine the outcome of the scenario. 

Madison County Sheriff Kip Thomas says, “The more realistic you make it in here, the better it is for the guys out there.” Deputy Burns added, “We hope for the best and train for the worst.”

There is a civilian response to active shooters event tonight from 6:00-8:00 at 2535 Jefferson Rd.
Athens, GA 30607. The ACC government says this class will provide participants with instruction about how to prepare for and respond to being trapped inside a building during an active shooter event. It also explains what to expect upon police arrival. There is no fee; registration is recommended.

They also say, this presentation contains mature content and is not recommended for children.

By: Danielle Lewan



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