SAN DIEGO POLICE PROVIDE BLUEPRINT FOR DE-ESCALATION
We’ve lost count of how many videos we’ve seen in which police have been caught in the deplorable act of acting badly. Stories abound in which, depending upon a citizen’s race or other defining characteristics, one individual will be treated entirely differently than another in a similar situation, often with gut-wrenching outcomes. We’ve heard the arguments for and against “militarization” of police forces throughout the country and the government-administered programs that make it possible for them to amass such materiel.
This article is not about race relations or the militarization of policing entities. Instead, we want to direct attention to the training of those who have and use high-tech and sometimes sophisticated equipment in the course of their duties.
Recently, in San Diego (where Poligags was first founded), a troubled man was seen in a park, randomly aiming a gun here and there. A Boys & Girls Club group of 100 children was reportedly near by. The police, naturally, were called to the scene. A videographer was also there, and captured the events as they transpired (watch video here).
What we find noteworthy, is that SDPD, like many departments, responded, some with riot gear. But they used it defensively.
The “cop cluster” seen in the video could have sprayed countless projectiles going for the kill shot. They shot once, disabling the gunman, later identified as Lance Tamayo. Then they talked him into moving a safe distance from the weapon so that he was no longer a threat. That, alone, took a half hour.
The San Diego Police demonstrated restraint. They used judgment. They exercised patience and the standard of necessary force. They employed their training. That is where our focus should lie.
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