CHANTILLY, Va. - Have you ever wondered what it was like to be a police officer?
FOX 5 got the opportunity to experience a day in the life of a recruit at the Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy.
Fairfax's finest took us inside Practical Plaza where recruits practice realistic scenarios for the field. No weapons are allowed inside since it's intended to be a safe place.
One instructor at the academy told FOX 5 that recruits often pose as store employees during active scenarios, but for practical tests, role players come in.
Officers showed us how scary and stressful traffic stops can be, and why they put their hand on the trunk when they're approaching a vehicle.
We sent commands on police radio, used a simulator, and practiced our aim with a loaded gun.
Recruits at the Fairfax Co. Criminal Justice Academy train for six months before they go to field training. The goal is to make them feel comfortable handling different situations and knowing when to use different types of force.