Last week, law enforcement officers in Logan County got some high tech training in handling high-risk situations, thanks to a computer and video based training system made available by the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy in East Camden.

Two ALETA instructors spent two days in Paris and conducted training sessions for the Logan County Sheriff’s Department and the Paris Police Department. Sessions took place at the Office of Emergency Management. This was the first time this type of training had been made available to local officers.

The training was done using a system called MILO. It doesn’t stand for anything, that’s just the name. MILO is a computer and video based, real-time incident training system manufactured by IES Interactive Training of Ann Arbor, Mich. Officers are led through various scenarios taken from real life situations. Situations encountered included various school shooting scenarios, hostage situations, or normal policing situations that could turn violent. The training officers can alter outcomes of the scenarios based on decisions made by officers. Afterward, instructors discuss the scenario and the officer’s decisions with the officer. Training sessions last about one hour.

One of the officers who went through the training was Investigator Michael Keatts of the Logan County Sheriff’s Department.

“It’s very realistic training,” he said afterward. “It’s good to get in here and see these scenarios when it’s not a life or death situation.”

Instructors Tony Madlock and Scott Rosson said the scenarios are as real as they can get.

“This is a close as you can get to being in a shooting incident without actually being there,” Madlock said.

“The trainig program is designed to help officers enhance their decision making skills,” Rosson said.

The training is offered to local law enforcement agencies free of charge. Madlock and Rosson said the number of training sessions conducted each year varies. It’s available to all law enforcement agencies in the state.

“You can almost count on doing one a month,” Madlock said. “It’s based on demand. An agency can call and request it.”

Between 30 and 32 officers can be trained while the instructors are on site.

So, how did local officers do?

“It’s not really a pass or fail training,” Medlock said. “But, local officers did very well.”