Pistol training renews memories of fallen officer - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Pistol training renews memories of fallen officer

Lt. Anthony Rogers Lt. Anthony Rogers
Lt. Eric Hermann Lt. Eric Hermann

Dougherty County Police officers say gun training brings back memories of a colleague shot and killed on the job more than three years ago. The memory of Lt. Cliff Rouse is still special to all the Dougherty County Police officers, and they use his lessons as they train.  

"Police! Don't move!" shouts Lt. Anthony Rogers, before he fires four shots.  

Dougherty County Police this week are doing their annual state re-qualifications.  Officers have to prove proficiency with their guns to be licensed law enforcement professionals.   

Rogers says he takes this training very seriously. "I think about getting myself mentally ready, in case this event does happen.  Where I have to protect someone or protect my own life."  

The officers train to shoot quickly and accurately, but part of their training was knowing when not to shoot.  

"So we're not shooting randomly, and having round go off that might strike an innocent person. That's something as a police officer we've got to think about.  The bad guys don't, but we do," Lt. Eric Hermann said.  

DCP officers admit the memory of Lt. Cliff Rouse still is strong when they train.  Rouse was shot while chasing a suspected armed robber in December 2010.

"He always stays with us.  And every time we come out here we think about a situation like that.  Where we may be in," Rogers said.

"He was one of the best trained officers I think we had in our department.  And so that just goes to show what happened with Lt. Rouse we could happen to anybody.  That's why we do train more than the state requires," Hermann said.

Rogers re-qualified easily with a very good shooting score.  In 16 years on the force Lt. Rogers has never fired his gun on duty, and he hopes that continues, but he says training like this makes him more confident in case he has to.  

Dougherty County Police do re-qualification firearm training two times a year, twice the state requirement, to make sure their officers are prepared.



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