As a part of their international officer exchange, the Altoona Police Department is hosting six police officers from Germany.
On Sunday, the German officers and their families were welcomed to Wisconsin at a potluck supper at the River Prairie Event Center in Altoona. The officers will be here for three weeks. During their visit they will train with eleven different law enforcement agencies in the Chippewa Valley.
There are some similarities between policing in the United States and in Germany, however there is a glaring differences when you look at the statistics related to police involved shootings. News 18 spoke with some of the German officers regarding the rash of police shootings in the United States.
"In Germany we have less of these police shootings, that's because of, the main thing is that less people have weapons with them, so it's necessary to react. The other case is German police officer were trained to react in the situation correctly. They train all year on how to use their weapon. It's from the law," German officer Jens Edert told News 18.
The Washington Post reported that in United States 492 people have been shot and killed by police thus far this year. At that pace, they predict there will be 1000 deaths by years end.
Another troubling stat is that African Americans, who make up only 13 percent of the population, are being shot at a higher rate than whites. The German officers said Germany, and Europe in general, is not having the same issues.