Local driving school bridging gap between youth, police in Maple Heights: Romona's Kids

MAPLE HEIGHTS, OH (WOIO) - A local driving school has something unexpected in the curriculum: teaching teens what to do if they're pulled over by police.

The Public Safety Driving School teamed up with police officers to come up with scenarios that teach students how to deescalate the situation in a traffic stop with law enforcement.

"We teach our students to always understand when you're stopped by the police, do what ever you're told to do, and comply," said Highland Hills Police Chief Antonio Stitt. "When you start questioning officer and making a lot of comments that don't need to be said, you're making the situation worse than it needs to be."

"Just be respectful and don't be disrespectful because it can go the wrong way, somebody could lose their life," said high school sophomore Kearbara Knight.

Young drivers are taught to put their hands on the steering wheel where an officer can see them, and passengers are told to put their hands on the dashboard or the seat in front of them, Teens also learn to keep their passengers in control.

"If the passenger starts acting up you just need to tell them to calm down and control themselves so nothing bad will happen," said high school junior David Claybrooks.

Students also go through a scenario where they feel threatened by an officer.

"We also teach our students that if the officer is wrong, you don't win by fighting with the officer or being disrespectful, there are other things you can do the next day such as speaking with that officer's supervisor," said Public Safety Driving School owner, Shalana Satterwhite.

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