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Human Factors

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The Einstellung Effect: Are Traditions Holding Us Back?

Internationally recognized experts in the study of violence have observed that our democratic society would cease to exist within a single generation without effective law enforcement. At Force Science, the researchers, trainers, and use of force experts continue to support law enforcement’s vital mission. We remain committed to the men and women who selflessly serve...
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Unintended: A Theory of Taser / Weapon Confusion

Editor’s Note: Studying performance errors in policing can be difficult for researchers who cannot ethically replicate the dangerous conditions present in lethal force encounters. To overcome this limitation, researchers routinely consider evidence derived from other professions and industries (e.g., aerospace (Airbus), aeronautics (NASA), pharmaceutical, occupational safety and health, medical, industrial engineering, and transportation). Recent events...
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Police Progress: Moving Beyond Ideas, Intuition, and Theories

Ideally, police reform will involve the careful translation of research (knowledge) into practice. The American Society of Evidence-Based Policing recently made this case in Process for Translating Research to Practice, citing the requirement for collaboration between researchers and police practitioners.1 It’s this process that ensures reform proposals are not the product of untested ideas, intuition,...
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Computer Simulations and Use of Force Investigations

Editor’s Note: When officers lawfully respond to deadly threats, their money, reputation, and freedom still hinge on whether society believes their version of events.  Dr. Geoffrey Desmoulin, a Certified Force Science Analyst and Principal of GTD Scientific Inc., developed an impressive testing and shooting reconstruction methodology to scientifically evaluate use of force narratives.  Attendees at...
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Unclearly Established Law: When Courts Ignore the Experts

Within hours of publishing The 21-foot “Rule” is Back in the News, readers started asking us to look at Wilson v. Prince George’s County, Maryland.1  Apparently, this 4th Circuit Court of Appeals case has inspired policy revisions, training updates, and questions as to the relevance of the 21-foot principle.  I read the case and immediately...
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The Story of Officer Daniel Pantaleo

NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo was fired.  And if you believed that Officer Pantaleo brutally choked Eric Garner to death for nothing more than selling cigarettes, then the firing came as welcome news—a small but hard-fought move toward justice.  Hard-fought because, even though cellphone videos show Officer Pantaleo’s arm around the neck of Mr. Garner, the...
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“No, No, No!”… The Anatomy Of A “Classic” Blue-On-Blue Shooting

Editor’s note: Out of respect and sympathy for the officers involved in this tragic incident and in admiration for the agency’s courage in pursuing learning points that will help keep other officers safe, we have chosen to remove the actual names of the agents and the department associated with this event. When Agt. DB arrived...
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Force Science Featured In Ground-Breaking Leadership Academy

For the first time, Force Science findings have been framed specifically in a leadership context so supervisors and command staff can better understand what officers experience during and after major use-of-force confrontations. A new, 4-week, cutting-edge Leadership and Career Development Academy launched this year by the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Dept. recently hosted a day-long presentation...
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The Science of Force Confrontations Now Available In 1 Neat Package

A one-stop source of information on what officers, trainers, investigators and administrators need to know about the effects of stress on performance and memory in critical incidents is now available for download by clicking here. The report, 24 pages and nearly 12,000 words long, is a comprehensive and thoroughly documented summary of the latest research...
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