ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- It could save a Police Officer's life and even though it cost $50,000 to get, Rockford Police Chief Chet Epperson says the RPD’s new use-of-force simulator is worth it.
After the Marc Barmoore shooting more than two years ago, Rockford police needed to make some changes and buying a video-game like deadly-force simulator was one of the things that came highly recommended. It teaches officers how to use weapons effectively and make split second decisions. From guns to tasers to batons, the system is so life like that officers who train on it actually feel pain when they get hurt. Officers will be trained on the program up to five times a year. It's not meant to replace in the field training but it will expose officers to hundreds of real-life scenarios that would be too expensive to implement otherwise.
"I can't control everything that happens to our officers all the time and we're going to focus on those things," said Mike Dalke, a Rockford Police Trainer.
Rockford police say they looked around for the best simulator for months before actually purchasing one. They picked this specific model because they are able to create their own scenarios based on what they see happening locally in real-life crimes.
An interesting feature of the simulator is that after a scenario has been played out, the video can be slowed down to see exactly where the bullets went and whether or not the response was effective.