With the recent shooting at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, lots of law enforcement and legislative issues resurfaced, one of which is the use of force. With such a dreadful event, one can assess that this is a situation when the use of force is justified, if not necessary. With 59 killed and hundreds injured, one would wonder what could have been done to prevent the gunman from opening fire, and to safeguard civilians.
Police officers are often scrutinized by the public with how they handle critical situations and use force in such incidents. The Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) is determined to make sense and create structure out of this debatable topic.
Tom Wilson, the director of PERF’s Center for Applied Research and Management and with 24 years of experience in law enforcement is the esteemed resource speaker for this webinar. He will deep-dive on policies, and training methodologies our police officers undergo, as well as deeply-rooted principles and the US law enforcement’s culture in relation to the use of force.
He also discussed and touched on these specific areas:
o Background information, history, membership and organizational structure of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF).
o The scope of the work and function of PERF.
o Sample publications from PERF that reshaped law enforcement as a career path
o A study that PERF conducted illustrating the number of hours allocated for basic recruit training on different aspects of the use of force in law enforcement.
o The traditional training model that is often done in silos.
o Quick poll questions throughout the webinar to gauge attendees’ understanding on the use of force concepts.
o How an immersive trip to the UK, specifically Scotland provided insights on the use of force.
o The mantra that Police Scotland lived by which is quite different to what US law enforcement is used to.
o A football game incident that provided a snapshot of how Police Scotland deals with their critical incidents.
o The first publication that became the result of that immersive training in Scotland, and the subsequent trips taken by the US police chiefs to the UK to understand their culture and policies in use of force.
o Training with the NYPD’s Emergency Service unit which shared similar policies and practices to Police Scotland, and the significance of the principles of slowing down and diffusing the situation
o The final 2015 tallies provided by Washington post that provided insights on the use of force, shootings, and other critical incidents where law enforcement was involved.
o The guiding principles on policy as mandated by PERF which stresses the sanctity of life, duty to intervene, the importance of accountability, proportionality, de-escalation, documentation, and investigation.
o The significance of police officers being educated about mental health, illnesses and disorders.
o How traditionally established concepts like the culture of speed, 21-feet rule, and line in the sand is re-evaluated, and a more customized, scenario-based approach be considered instead.
o De-escalation efforts through non-lethal means and equipment instead of weapons.
o Training call-taker and dispatchers to respond to critical incidents.
o The creation of the Integrating Communications, Assessment, and Tactics (ICAT) training, the pilot series initially launched, and the publications tied to the training.
o ICAT’s decision-making model as a critical component in the training as police officers are making decisions everyday.
o Crisis recognition and response concepts.
o Skills needed for tactical communications as a way to diffuse a situation and handle critical situations
o Operational safety tactics concepts to remember before, during and after responding to an incident.