Local police offer perspective on traffic stops in wake of Texas shooting

Mass shooting Saturday started with traffic stop

DANVILLE, Va. – Traffic stops are high-risk situations for law enforcement officers.

"We have to approach a vehicle where we have no idea who is in the vehicle and our reaction to us stopping them," Danville Police Department Lt. Casey Allen said.

Saturday's shooting in Texas emphasizes that point, but Allen said it doesn't necessarily make officers more vigilant the next time around.

"I think that in this profession we are always conscious of that sort of thing occurring and we're always running scenarios, mental scenarios, through our mind just to be better prepared to handle an incident or situation like that," Allen said.

He said officers may be more aware of their surroundings and potential dangers on anniversaries of major events, but incidents like what happened in Texas can still help officers be better prepared for such incidents.

"We do consistently, and on a regular basis, do conduct training to address issues that maybe have occurred or new regulations that may come out in state law that govern the way we handle certain situations. Then, also just officer tactics," Allen said.

Training that could be the difference between life and death the next time an officer has to flash the red and blue behind you.