ANAHEIM, Calif. (KABC) -- The Anaheim Police Department held a small piece of its use-of-force training for a group of journalists. The simulated training puts officers through real-life scenarios using actors and simunition guns.
"Get into that situation, even though it's a training exercise, I wanted you to feel the stress of it have the heart rate rise, have your breathing increase, all the stuff we do on a regular basis," said Sgt. Daron Wyatt from Anaheim PD.
After time in the classroom with instructors going over policies and procedures, officers suited up reporters with a vest, body-worn camera and a weapon. APD says they train frequently with different scenarios. "If you're constantly evaluating and asking yourself what you're seeing and what it means to you, you'll be much better prepared for an unexpected event," said Sgt. Wyatt.
Detectives also went through a mock interview of an officer who used deadly force, including a comparison of body-cam video to the officer's account.
Late last year, the ACLU released a study, ranking Anaheim amongst the worst large cities in the country when it comes to the numbers of officer-involved deaths, questioning the department's handling of officer-involved-shootings. APD has disputed the report and given numbers collected from last year.
"Two hundred and five thousand police contacts in Anaheim, less than one percent ended up in a use of force, and just a fraction of a percentage that ended up with a deadly use of force," said Sgt. Wyatt.
Anaheim PD acknowledges they're human and mistakes can be made, but they want the public to know they train constantly for these split-second decisions. "We're putting you in real life scenarios so that you can see and understand, we're not trying to change people's minds here, we're trying to educate," said Sgt. Wyatt.
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