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Montague County Officials Engage in Active Shooter Training

<br><span style="font-size: x-small;">&nbsp;</span> <p>Gun violence makes headlines every day.</p> <p>So today, Montague County law enforcement officials took steps to protect the public.</p> <p>Mechell Dixon headed to Ringgold and joins us with more on this story.</p>

Law enforcement officials know how dangerous and potentially deadly an armed gunman can be.

So, in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting two months ago, officials in Montague County took steps to protect the public in case danger strikes.

More than two dozen law enforcement officials turned the old Ringgold Elementary School into the site for their active shooter training.

Officials were instructed on how to safely search a school or building for an armed gunman.

It's training officials say is crucial in an unpopulated area or an area where the population is small.

"Out in a rural environment where we are, we never know how many people we're gonna have at a call at one time. We may have one person who has to handle it by themselves or we may have 5 or 6. So, we go through the training exercises using 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 man teams," explains Montague County Sheriff Paul Cunningham.

Officers also set up a mock hostage situation in this room and had officers outside in this trailer practice negotiation tactics.

No one wants to encounter either situation in their town but if and when it happens in Montague County, these officers will be ready.

"We want it to be that it's reactions that they're doing and it's the trained reactions. It's not having to stop and think about what you're doing or say what did I learn in this training exercise. It's just memory. It's instinct that you're reacting on instead of having to stop and think," Sheriff Cunningham says.

Sheriff Cunningham says the last time different agencies worked together in a crisis situation was on February 20th, 2011.

That's when a Nocona police officer was shot in the foot while trying to arrest a pedestrian who then ran away.

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