Trinity Co. official: 'We pray we never have to use it'
By Caleb Beames| July 17, 2014 at 9:48 PM CDT - Updated July 20 at 10:55 PM
GROVETON, TX (KTRE)
The statistics are alarming; according to stoptheshootings.org, 387 school shootings have occurred in us schools since 1992.
Those statistics are the reason why many agencies are making sure their officers have all the training they need to handle crisis situations. Over the last two days, law enforcement officers from all over Deep East Texas has been participating in a training program put on by the Alert Center.
"We pray we never have to use it, but this training does need to be in place in case it does,” said Trinity County Lead Investigator Travis Haygood.
"No police officer ever wants to go into a place where there are shots being fired, or people being inured,” said Newton County game warden Bradley Smith.
The Alter Center offers the training program across the nation with the hopes of bringing different groups together with one goal.
"The reality is police, sheriffs offices, and different agencies can be working together efficiently to solve problems,” said John Dombro, an instructor.
The training is taken from real-life scenarios that have happened at schools across the country with each run through serving a purpose that can be used outside of the campuses.
“There is a mission to each exercise,” Dombro said. “We are not just going in and shooting everywhere.”
The training has allowed for officers to learn skills they can use in any situation.
"We’ve learned tactical formations and things that we have never been trained on before or had to use,” said Groveton Police Chief John Rayford.
"It's not just isolated to schools,” Haygood said. “It's in other buildings, churches and things like that. It's a situational awareness training that our local guys need in case something happens."
After each run, the students are given a critique by certified instructors and take-away lessons, such as speed is not always your ally.
"I learned to take time to look at the situation that you are entering into, to make good steps and good judgment calls and protect the citizens,” Smith said.
It's training they hope brings security to the area.