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Thread: Thoughts on LEO Rules of Engagement

  1. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnc36rcpd View Post
    GyroF-16, in my jurisdiction, that would likely be charged as a burglary unless circumstances indicated it was purely a malicious destruction of property. If bad guy were on security footage throwing rocks into various windows and made no attempt to enter, it would likely be an MDP. If he broke out a window with a crowbar and then fled when he became aware of police pursuit, we might well go for burglary. What the State's Attorney's Office would plea bargain it down to, who knows? I do not have any better information than what I get from the media.
    Got it, thanks.
    The media coverage made it sound like vandalism, but links to the helicopter video, bodycams, and more “complete” reporting made it much clearer what was really going on.
    I’m really disappointed in what seems like willful misrepresentation of the circumstances by the media. I’m not being sarcastic. I really don’t understand why the story in circumstances like this is “he was a poor innocent,” rather than “he was committing a crime and made some poor choices, and it turned out badly for him.”

    Feeling pretty disillusioned and cynical, and not enjoying it.

  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by cclaxton View Post
    It's not black and white. Its complicated when you consider the mentally ill, the homeless, drug addicts, sex workers, and misdemeanor violators. Many of these people have connections to the community. That is not to say there aren't criminal actors who are clearly not a part of our legitimate community.


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    I know you are well intentioned, and I will reply in that spirit. It is difficult, at times, though.

    Yes, I am well aware that often these things are not black and white. 26+ years of policing in the second largest municipal police department in the most populous state in the country has given a little bit of insight into the Dynamics of human behavior and interpersonal conflict. I have never lost sight of the humanity of the people I interact with, including the mentally I'll, the homeless, the drug addicts, the prostitutes, and the 'misdemeanor' criminals. I dare say I am far more aware of their humanity and the road that led them to where they are than most people outside of my profession (or even in it, at this point). I was aware of the humanity of the many murder victims I stood over, including the gang members killed in drug turf wars. Including the armed parolee at large on a drug fueled robbery spree who I shot after he pointed a gun at me. My faith, and my experience, have taught me to never lose sight of that.

    That said, none of the above matters in a use of force decision. All that matters is the perceived threat being presented by the subject, and the reasonableness of the force applied. That parolee who pointed the gun at me? I tried to pull him over for driving without headlights at night. Not even a misdemeanor. But five minutes earlier he had pistol whipped a 65 year old retired nurse and broken her orbital socket. You don't always know who you're dealing with in this job. We don't work on an appointment basis.

    I am a very vocal advocate of improved LE training in pretty much every area, especially use of force skills. Cops should have better marksmanship skills, better weapon manipulation skills, and better tactical skills. But even with all of the above, bad guys are gonna need to be shot, because their actions have dictated that outcome. And yes, occasionally mistakes will be made. We shouldn't accept them, we should always strive to be better. But they're still gonna happen, that's the nature of the Beast. And many of the case we've been discussing that are deemed 'controversial' really aren't. They're just politicized.

    All of this is a long winded way of saying that when you make statements such as "it's not black and white" about complex issues involved in interpersonal violence to people who have vastly more training and actual experience than you are ever likely to have, much of it dearly paid for, you lose your audience and a lot of good will. This is not a "stay in your lane" admonition, by the way. I think it's essential for citizens to participate and learn about these issues. But choose your words and presentation wisely, or you risk ending the conversation before it begins. I hope this is taken in the spirit of fraternal assistance in which it is offered.

  3. #73
    gulag bound blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMC View Post
    And many of the cases we've been discussing that are deemed 'controversial' really aren't. They're just politicized.
    Spot on. (And that's the true shame of it.)
    Every day I convince myself that I can't be more disgusted by what I see our country willingly turning itself into...
    ...and then wake up the next morning only to find just how wrong I was...day after day.

  4. #74
    Site Supporter Erick Gelhaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMC View Post
    That said, none of the above matters in a use of force decision. All that matters is the perceived threat being presented by the subject, and the reasonableness of the force applied. That parolee who pointed the gun at me? I tried to pull him over for driving without headlights at night. Not even a misdemeanor. But five minutes earlier he had pistol whipped a 65 year old retired nurse and broken her orbital socket. You don't always know who you're dealing with in this job. We don't work on an appointment basis.

    I am a very vocal advocate of improved LE training in pretty much every area, especially use of force skills. Cops should have better marksmanship skills, better weapon manipulation skills, and better tactical skills. But even with all of the above, bad guys are gonna need to be shot, because their actions have dictated that outcome. And yes, occasionally mistakes will be made. We shouldn't accept them, we should always strive to be better. But they're still gonna happen, that's the nature of the Beast. And many of the case we've been discussing that are deemed 'controversial' really aren't. They're just politicized.
    .
    Very nicely done! I can't LIKE what you wrote enough. Absent you're specific experiences in them, I'm saving these two paragraphs for later use.

  5. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheNewbie View Post
    In Northern Ireland cops are armed and they can carry off duty.

    I would like to get the opinion of at @Luger on this.
    German police officers are required to be armed on duty and may carry off duty (but most don't).
    I don't know about every european city (not even about every german city) but I can surely say, that the bavarian state police will respond to calls from every neighbourhood.
    Crime (especially violent crime) is verry low over here and there is not a sigle place in my city where I would not dare going. On and off duty.

    I'm absolutely convinced, that police officers should be willing to confront violent people. We have to take this risk. That's part of our duty to protect our citizens. And this means, that we have to be able to protect ourselfs. If necessary with firearms.
    If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.

  6. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luger View Post
    German police officers are required to be armed on duty and may carry off duty (but most don't).
    I don't know about every european city (not even about every german city) but I can surely say, that the bavarian state police will respond to calls from every neighbourhood.
    Crime (especially violent crime) is verry low over here and there is not a sigle place in my city where I would not dare going. On and off duty.

    I'm absolutely convinced, that police officers should be willing to confront violent people. We have to take this risk. That's part of our duty to protect our citizens. And this means, that we have to be able to protect ourselfs. If necessary with firearms.
    Thank you.

    If an officer is involved in a shooting , is there the massive media reaction that we have here?

  7. #77
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    Some more thoughts:
    If the rules for the use of firearms are to lax, this will clearly lead to unnecessary shootings. Unnecessary shootings are dangerous. Not only for the suspects who are shot at, but also for bystanders and even the officers themselfs. Every life is highly valuable, including the life of a suspect attacking police. So police should only shoot, if it is really necessary.

    On the other side:
    If rules for the use of force (including firearms) are to strict ( especially if police is unarmed ), officers will face a greater risk in dangerous situations. Society owes the officers who protect them the ability to protect themselfs, too.
    If officers can't protect themselfs in a reasonable way, they will try to avoid dangerous encounters.

    Ironically this might decrease the risk for officers. And it surely will decrease the risk for suspects. But it leaves the victims of this suspects on their own. And I think this is clearly not acceptable.
    Last edited by Luger; 04-07-2018 at 04:12 AM.
    If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheNewbie View Post
    If an officer is involved in a shooting , is there the massive media reaction that we have here?
    Depends. Some years ago we had a shooting in Regensburg, which was highly controversial.
    On the other hand we got great support from the public, when members of the SEK had to shoot a terrorist in Würzburg and a green politician dared critize them.

    As a rule over the thump: If the person is mentally ill, armed "only" with a knife and a high number of shots is fired, the officers actions will be questioned verry critically by the public.
    If the attacker has a firearm, or harmed a member of the public before being shot, the officers will verry likely be supported by the public.
    If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.

  9. #79
    Member cclaxton's Avatar
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    AMC, We have been having a friendly exchange and I would hope that can continue. I certainly didn't mean to imply you don't have great experience in human behavior. However, you made a generalization when you suggested "outlaws" are not part of the community, and you didn't qualify that generalization. But let's not get bent out of shape over how we expressed ourselves or make this personal and get back to the point that you made about criminals not being members of the community.

    I recently became acquainted with a black man living in the hoods of Baltimore. He is a good man, but lives in a "community" that has a lot of ex-cons, criminals, and gangs. But he says there are more good people there than criminals, and he carries a gun to protect himself from the bad. But his view is that there is a "community" that tolerates the bad because they are family/friends, and they don't trust the cops. And there's a lot of the good who want the criminals to "see the light" and turn in their guns and their bad ways, which he thinks is naive and impractical and will never happen.

    My point is that "community" is very local and diverse, and the extent to which that community is accepting of criminal actors and those that are intolerant of them is one thing that makes our communities different. My own view is that laws are too broad and punitive an instrument to use to affect social and cultural changes or to accommodate the differences of each community. Change takes time, one step at a time.
    Last edited by cclaxton; 04-07-2018 at 11:53 AM.

  10. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by cclaxton View Post
    AMC, We have been having a friendly exchange and I would hope that can continue. I certainly didn't mean to imply you don't have great experience in human behavior. However, you made a generalization when you suggested "outlaws" are not part of the community, and you didn't qualify that generalization. But let's not get bent out of shape over how we expressed ourselves or make this personal and get back to the point that you made about criminals not being members of the community.

    I recently became acquainted with a black man living in the hoods of Baltimore. He is a good man, but lives in a "community" that has a lot of ex-cons, criminals, and gangs. But he says there are more good people there than criminals, and he carries a gun to protect himself from the bad. But his view is that there is a "community" that tolerates the bad because they are family/friends, and they don't trust the cops. And there's a lot of the good who want the criminals to "see the light" and turn in their guns and their bad ways, which he thinks is naive and impractical and will never happen.

    My point is that "community" is very local and diverse, and the extent to which that community is accepting of criminal actors and those that are intolerant of them is one thing that makes our communities different. My own view is that laws are too broad and punitive an instrument to use to affect social and cultural changes or to accommodate the differences of each community. Change takes time, one step at a time.
    I am happy to continue the discussion, and you have hit upon the Crux of the issue we are discussing in this thread, though I believe inadvertently.

    The point you made leaves the areas of use of force training, law, and policy behind, and moves into complex sociological issues. I fully agree that there is no strictly "law enforcement" method to resolve those issues. I am intimately aware of the diverse makeup of those impacted neighborhoods, having worked in them for over two and a half decades. I know that the good people there outnumber the bad. Hell, even the bad guys aren't all 100% bad sometimes. I've seen a few do some selfless things on occasion. It is behavior that LE is concerned with.... specifically the antisocial behavior our society has deemed criminal. The current rend towards gross mission creep in civilian LE isn't helping anyone, and in fact is going in a very disturbing direction. Specifically I'm talking about the trend of some agencies, like mine, to begin focusing more on social justice than criminal justice. You do not...I repeat DO NOT....want armed government agencies enforcing those attitudes and issues. It not only dilutes the core mission, it turns our focus away from the criminal who harms others, to the citizen guilty of wrongthink. Can we all agree that's a road we don't want to go down? By the way, we've already started.

    The core of the problem is that we ARE now attempting to legislatively change how LE interacts with crime infested neighborhoods, in order to make being a criminal safer for members of favored demographic groups and subcultures. This is the inevitable outgrowth of intersectional identity politics. Changing the law regarding use of force, in order to avoid injuring criminals, because social policies are resulting in too many criminals, is not a recipe for success. In fact, it will worsen the very problem you seek to fix.

    The crime subculture in some minority neighborhoods is toxic, and negatively affects everyone there. The various reasons and justifications used to explain why it doesn't change, don't change that fact. Asking the rest of society to change it's laws and rules to accommodate that? Again, not a recipe for any kind of success...and again, shifts responsibility for the criminal behavior away from perpetrators onto society at large. Perhaps you subscribe to that viewpoint. I don't, and neither does the history of Western law and philosophy.

    In summary, if you think that changing use of force law to restrict LE in order to make it safer for people to resist arrest because some communities have developed a subculture that rejects abiding by the law is a good idea, good luck. Maybe I'm wrong, and unicorns will save us.

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