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A look into one of the Pocatello Police Department’s newest tools

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We got some hands on time with the Pocatello Police Department’s FAAC Milo Range Use of Force Simulator. A tool which can teach officers important decision making skills that are impossible to learn at a gun range.

Using cameras a projector and speakers Pocatello Police Officers have the ability to simulate over 300 scenarios, and when it comes to the equipment, it’s the exact models they bring into the field, with clips that simulate recoil using green gas.

Officer Jordan Johnson, from Pocatello Police Department, said “The tools we use in the simulator system are actually retrofitted tools that we use daily anyway… So some of these are out of service weapons that have been retrofitted to use the laser system… So it as the same weight same feel as something we’d be carrying on a day to day basis…”

Scenarios in the simulator range from simple traffic stops and domestic disturbances to bomb threats and active shooter scenarios.

It doesn’t just track how well you can shoot, but also judgment calls of when you should shoot, as most scenarios have different outcomes of where you can talk your way through a scenario and not have to use force. A skill that doesn’t translate well in a gun range.

Officer Johnson also said “When we go to the range a lot of what we focus on is marksmanship and being able to shoot where you want to and when you want to… But it’s hard to simulate decision making… Especially in environments that are constantly changing… And where knowing when to do something is equally as important as being able to get it accurately”

The system shows officer movement, shot accuracy, and whether or not they responded to the situation accordingly, and in the long run will save the department money.

They’ve had the system for a year now, and it’s been cheaper than firing real rounds for every training exercise.

Bill Collins, Lieutenant Investigation Division, said “if we had to put these scenarios together… It would be very manpower intensive… Locations… Money… Time… It’s just not practical for what we can do with a small department… So it helps us tremendously that way…”

The simulator cost the department about $60 thousand dollars.

Milo range simulators are also used for government and armed forces around the country.

 

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