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Officer Survival

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Fear, Stress, And The Survival Personality

You wouldn’t expect a spin-off of National Geographic magazine to have much content related to officer survival, but the August issue of National Geographic Adventure delivers just that in a surprising 1-2 punch. First is an article about how sudden fear and stress affect perception and performance, which draws largely from studies of street officers...
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New Study Ranks Risks Of Injury From 5 Major Force Options

How would you rank the relative risk for officers and suspects suffering injury from these 5 force options: Empty-hand control techniques Baton OC spray Conducted energy weapons (Tasers) Lateral vascular neck restraint. If you judged OC to be the “safest” and baton to be “most injurious” to both officers and offenders, you’re in agreement with...
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Ohio Trainer Makes The Case For Single-Officer Entry Against Active Killers

If you’re a patrol officer who’s first on the scene of an active-shooter call, should you make immediate entry in hunt for the suspect…or wait for other early responders and improvise a rapid deployment team? Since the Columbine massacre 9 years ago, few if any trainers any longer advocate delaying for a formal SWAT call-out,...
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One Officer’s Pain is Others’ Gain, as Her Shooting Becomes a Catalyst for Change

When a 52-year-old man-shirtless, coked up and bleeding from self-inflicted wounds-lunged at Shannon Brady and her partner with a “serious” folding knife in the cramped kitchen of a small adobe house in Santa Fe, she was prepared to react. She shot him dead. What she hadn’t anticipated or trained for was what happened after the...
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Is The “Triangle Of Death” Real?

The rumor bouncing around various law enforcement listservs piqued Cmdr. Michael Richards’ curiosity. Street gangs in California, the story went, were training members to shoot cops at night by aiming for the highly visible patch of white T-shirt exposed above the top of many officers’ vests. “The Triangle of Death,” posters to the listservs called...
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What The New Study Of Shootings Of Unarmed Suspects Means To You (Part 2)

2 of a 2-Part series Editor’s Note In Part 1 we reported on a ground-breaking new study by researcher Tom Aveni on why and under what circumstances officers shoot suspects who end up not to be armed. Here we offer some of the significant implications of Aveni’s findings. Aveni is founder of The Police Policy...
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Two Officer-Survival Studies Due to Kick Off in New FSRC Facilities

Pilot studies for 2 new research projects with significant officer-survival implications will get underway next month [12/07] at a new testing facility designed by the Force Science Research Center near the campus of Minnesota State University-Mankato. One study will seek to measure the time required for an “attentional shift” during a high-stress, potentially violent confrontation....
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Snooze You Lose? Actually, The Opposite May Be True

Does your agency encourage you to nap on duty? Probably not. But your department might get better performance and you might be safer if regulated snoozing was permitted, according to well-known trainer and consultant Tom Aveni, head of the Police Policy Studies Council and a Technical Advisory Board member of the Force Science Research Center...
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Why Shooting To Wound Doesn’t Make Sense Scientifically, Legally, Or Tactically

Do police officers really have to kill people when they shoot them? Couldn’t they be more humane and just aim for arms or legs? As we reported in a previous FSN [2/28/06], a New York state senator in pondering these questions decided there’s way too much needless death being inflicted by cops these days. So...
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“Bread & Butter” Tactics Work Best Against Spontaneous Knife Attacks

There are 2 types of knife attacks that an officer can encounter: a non-spontaneous attack where the officer is aware in advance that the subject has armed him/herself with a knife, and a sudden, spontaneous attack at close range, where there is a high probability that the officer will not even know that a knife...
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