It’s taser time! LOL! This week in my citizen police academy class we talked about Use of Force / Liability / Defensive Tactics
The first part on use of force and liability was a lot of information and a long Powerpoint presentation. It wasn’t boring, by any means. Two hours went by in the blink of an eye! But it was mainly focused on the different levels of force, the statues by which officers are held to and the legal ramifications/civil rights/liability issues in the aftermath. A lot of…definitions.
Here are a couple things of interest, though:
I liked this quote from our instructor: “Police work is not very pretty” And it’s true. They see people on their worst days.
Some felons will paint the tips of their REAL guns bright orange to try and fool the officers that they’re carrying a toy gun to lower the officer’s guard so that they can then shoot them. That just makes me sick and so angry.
We all hear the terms “battery” and “assault”. Do you know the difference? “Battery” is doing actual physical harm to a person, usually with a weapon, but it can be your fists, feet, etc. “Assault” is an intent to harm, usually a verbal threat.
Illinois is a mandatory arrest state for domestic abuse. The victim does not have to press charges. The state does it for them and takes away the abuser if there is probable cause.
Then we moved on to Defensive Tactics. This was pretty cool. The instructor started off with showing us the proper procedure for handcuffing a suspect so that he can’t try and either pull away or use his arms or hands to assault the officer. Now I have tiny little wrists. So I asked if they use those zip-tie plastic cuffs in instances like that. He said that usually no, the regular cuffs will actually close down very small. Or they could possibly put both of my wrists in one cuff. At this point he then held the cuffs out to me and with a smile said, “Here, want to try?” Damn, I really wanted to take him up on it! LOL!
Then we had two officers demonstrate nearly a dozen different take-down moves. Some simple, some complicated. Now I know this was totally inappropriate, but being a slasher is hard-wired into my brain so I couldn’t stop the thoughts that popped into it. I SO wished I could’ve been taking pictures, because these two good looking guys were basically enacting every possible gay sex position you could come up with as they wrestled around on the ground and sat on top of one another, etc. The one officer even said, as he lay on his back with his legs wrapped around the other officer’s waist – “This is my favorite position”. I swear to God! LOL! Yeah, I got more out of that section of class than anyone else, I guarantee it!
We ended the night with an impromptu demonstration of how a taser works. Class went late (we were already past 9:30 pm) but I didn’t care because this was pretty freaking cool. I mean, I’ve never been up close and personal when a taser gets fired. And it’s LOUD! It’s like this really big firecracker going off as the darts eject. And all this…stuff shoots out, too, like confetti. Everything took everyone in class by surprise and we all jumped.
Turns out the “confetti” is actually very small paper dots that have a number on it – the number of the taser. These little tiny pieces of paper are collected as evidence to show which taser was fired. Which I thought was kind of odd, since it’s completely obvious when one is fired since you can’t put the darts back in and you’ve got 25 feet of wire hanging out. So I didn’t understand the point of the confetti. The taser itself also has a mini computer that registers and records the date and time the taser was fired. Again, for evidence purposes.
The darts (which are larger and longer than you think) don’t actually have to penetrate your skin to work. They can snag in your clothes, too. It’s all about the “arc”. When the darts are fired they shoot out in different directions. Because they need distance from each other to work properly. If one hits you in the shoulder and the other in your leg, that’s perfect because the electricity now has a very large arc to run through your body. If the darts are too close together it’s not as effective. Oh, and if they do penetrate your skin? It hurts a LOT worse pulling them out than when they went in! And even though you can only fire the the darts out once, as long as they’re still attached to the person, the officer can pull the trigger as many times as needed to deliver the electric charge.
So yeah, another interesting, informative class! Next week is Firearms. Sweet!