Franklin Police Host Training For Mounted Patrol Officers - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Franklin Police Host Training For Mounted Patrol Officers

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by Aundrea Cline-Thomas

FRANKLIN, Tenn. - This week the Franklin Police Department has been hosting a week long training for mounted patrols officers from across the country.

"Usually one horse can control 10 people in a crowd," Franklin Police Lt. Richard Verbosky said. "So they're usually beneficial."

At the Williamson County AgEXPO Park, officers have been putting the horses through the paces and increasing the intensity with each pass.

In one exercise, volunteers shouted and tried to distract the horses while officers practiced pushing the crowd back.

"De-spooking…we do that…also trying to get them over things such as smoke or bridges or things that blow in their face," Lt. Verbosky said.

The patrols are used for crowd control, escorting dignitaries among other things and can perform many of the same functions as officers on the street.

"We make arrests from the saddle all the time," he said. "And with 1,200 pounds of pressure against you, you're not going anywhere. We have the ability to pretty well tell you what to do."

It takes repetition to reinforce the proper behavior.

"If you train all the time it takes about three years to get a horse to the point you want to get them to for them to peak and stay at that."

At the AgEXPO Park, the scenarios lasted just a few minutes and when it was over each horse is shown a lot of love.

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