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Pawnee County deputies attend traffic safety class following dangerous pursuit

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A photo of Pawnee County Sheriff Office deputies sitting in on a traffic safety meeting following a dangerous pursuit on Monday. Provided by PCSO on August 2, 2022.

Deputies from the Pawnee County Sheriff's office sat in on a traffic safety class following a dangerous pursuit on Monday.

Retired Oklahoma County Sheriff John Whetsel is trying to change the way officers conduct pursuits.

According to PCSO, Whetsel is a national advocate for traffic safety.

Whetesel lost his first wife and 2-year-old child in a car crash that happened after a law enforcement officer ran a stop sign during a police pursuit.

Pawnee County officials said this inspired Whetsel to enhance training for officers to help make roadways safer.

Sheriff Darrin Varnell said he feels the training is key to ensuring public safety.

Before making her way to Public Radio Tulsa, KWGS News Director Cassidy Mudd worked as an assignment editor and digital producer at a local news station. Her work has appeared on ABC, CBS, and NBC affiliates across the country.