NORTH CAROLINA, USA — The instinct to run the opposite way when shots are fired is a human reaction to run for cover. Those moments matter in an active shooter situation.
It's a reality that police departments across the country prepare and train for rigorously.
There is no doubt that training has changed dramatically since the Columbine High School shooting on April 20, 1999. Training for law enforcement has never been more critical.
Detective Eddie Lovingood with the Gastonia Police Department told WCNC Charlotte it's situations like the deadly school shooting in Nashville that local agencies stay prepared and vigilant for.
"We want to train our officers," Lovingood explained. "It is scenario based and as close as we can make it to the real thing."
He said he's seen these scenes change over the years, but with it, the approach from local law enforcement
Sergeant Josh Harb with the Pineville Police Department said their agency and many others around the area look at each shooting and scenario to learn and evolve tactics.
"We try to learn from all of the incidents that happen," Harb said. "We take what we can apply there and learn new methods, each and every time."
But each officer remarked you can't forget the community.
Eddie Caldwell, executive vice president and general counsel for the North Carolina Sheriffs' Association, said training for schools, churches and even businesses will help when life or death situations arise.
"[The] community needs to understand the challenge that officers face, and it goes a long way in a community when they understand why officers took certain actions," Caldwell said.
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