HARTSVILLE, SC (WMBF) - Hartsville police offices spent the day on Tuesday going through their yearly Taser Academy class that included simulating real-life scenarios to decide whether or not the weapon should be used.
In addition, all current officers sat in on a video presentation led by Hartsville Police Lt. Mark Blair and took a written test prior to receiving their certification.
"If somebody is violently resisting you or charging you with fists raised like they want to fight you, those are definitely cases where you can use the taser against somebody," Blair said.
The class, which was held at the TB Thomas Sport Center in Hartsville, saw officers split up into groups. Blair, who has taught the class the past 10 years, stressed the importance of his officers going through training to make a split-second decision.
"There are skills that you forget when you don't use them and officers don't use the taser very much," he said. "So it's easy to forget those skills."
A large portion of training saw officers face a potential suspect during a chase scenario. It was the transition simulation part of the class where they decided to pull their firearm or taser.
"People say you will arise to the occasion, but that's not really what happens," Blair said. "You default to your lowest level of training, so we like to give them a level of training that will enable them to make that split-second decision and decide whether or not to use a certain piece of equipment, that be a taser or pepper spray or a firearm."