St. Louis County, Missouri has implemented a VirTra V-300™ judgmental use-of-force police simulator to help county law enforcement and trainees from the St. Louis County and Municipal Police Academy and dozens of other local agencies prepare for the stress of making split-second decisions in potentially life-threatening situations.
St. Louis Installs The V-300 Police Simulator
The V-300 is installed at the academy and was funded through a generous donation from the Berges Family Foundation to the St. Louis Police Foundation, with the aim of providing a state-of-the-art training resource that would offer the greatest good for local law enforcement. Regular training for local law enforcement on the V-300 has begun in earnest. More than 56 police departments and municipalities in the greater St. Louis area are members of the academy and can take advantage of its unique interactive training scenarios.
In a recent TV interview with Fox 2 News in St. Louis, Jim Berges of the Berges Family Foundation applauded the VirTra system, saying that it will help law enforcement “protect our citizens and our community while also keeping themselves safe.”
How the V-300 Trains Police Officers
Trainers operating the V-300 police simulator can alter scenarios to change body language and other non-verbal threat cues based on how a trainee responds in any given situation, and the feedback that trainees get as part of the de-briefings following a training session can help participants enhance their verbal skills and de-escalation tactics which can be used to talk suspects down. Sgt. John Wall of The St. Louis County and Municipal Police Academy also praised the V-300 and the learning opportunities it provides officers in de-escalating potential hostile situations, saying, “it’s not just all about firearms. It’s more about tactics and talking.”
The journey to acquire the V-300 police simulator began over a year ago at the 2016 FBI National Academy Associates annual conference, which was held in St. Louis County. VirTra was at the event, and the realistic video simulations on the V-300 that attendees were trying out intrigued Deputy Chief Kenneth Cox of the St. Louis County Police Department. He believed that the incredible life-like intensity that the V-300 offers would be a tremendous advantage in helping officers and trainees be better prepared to deal with high-stress situations.
Previously, St. Louis County trained on an obsolete use of force simulator with a single screen that only offered low-resolution animations. Now Cox and his officers now feel that they have an advanced training system that will leave them equipped with tools and tactics to handle any situation they might encounter in the field.
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