Staying Safe “In The Line of Fire”

Special report looks at policing and new technology

This week's news of gun violence on the streets and the recent gunning down of a 27-year-old Chicago police officer demonstrates the dangers faced by police everyday.  Now, a new program to prepare officers for increasing threats is in place.

Police say it's hard to recall a time when they've faced greater peril than right now, and this new program aims to help officers stay safe while "in the line of fire."

"We'll never have enough officers to cover every square mile of Chicago," Police Superintendent Jody Weis said. "But by using technology, leveraging with our officers, we can have a much more efficient police force."

They make life-or-death choices at a second's notice, walking face-first into danger and often moving in on active shooters.  So, training days are especially important to cops, and new tools they have at their disposal are key to keeping officers alive. 

Joining Chicago police for a special training session, NBC5 was given a closer look at just how the department is adjusting to and dealing with escalating violence.

Police say no amount of additional training could have saved Officer Alejandro Valdez earlier this week, but they're doing something very few departments anywhere in the nation do: bringing back officers already on the job for more training throughout their careers.

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