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Public Perception

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Unarmed But Dangerous

Unarmed but Still Dangerous: The Facts Behind Some OIS Headlines

When police shoot an “unarmed” individual, the implication or outright accusation by media and activists is often that the deadly force was unjustified because the subject, without a weapon, was “defenseless” and thus could not have posed a threat. Now a newly published study by two criminal justice researchers paints a far different picture. Their...
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New Report: One City’s Experience With Less Proactive Policing

What happens when LEOs—frustrated, angry, discouraged, vengeful, or apprehensive about anti-police outbursts from communities they serve—turn a blind eye to self-initiated, pro-active law enforcement? The city of Baltimore is one place to look for an answer—and the newspaper USA Today has done just that in a recent investigative report with sobering implications. Back in 2015,...
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New On Facebook: “Civil Discourse” Site For Cops & Civilians

What if there was a social media page where police agencies could post video from body cams, along with detailed explanations of what’s happening in the footage? What if police trainers and other law enforcement experts could engage with curious civilians in a rational and reasonable dialogue about videos posted to social media? Imagine the...
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New Study: Impact Of Social Media On Cynicism About Police

Watching cell phone footage of a use-of-force incident on social media is more likely to generate negative feelings toward the police than watching the same encounter on a conventional TV broadcast, according to a new study from researchers at Kentucky State U. Plus, social media viewers tend to be more likely to believe that officers...
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How One Trainer Put The Media In Officers’ Boots Regarding Resistance

Civilians who’ve never had to physically restrain an “ain’t-gonna-be-controlled” suspect usually have no idea how much force and how many officers may be required to gain compliance. So when they see video of cops trying to subdue an unyielding subject, it’s easy for their naïve eyes to interpret knee strikes, baton strikes, CEW hits, and...
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Use Of Force Perceptions & Skills Retention Studies Are Conference Topics

Preview reports on Force Science research findings regarding the public’s perceptions of police use of force, the retention rates of physical skills training, and the nature of unintentional discharges were showcased recently at major professional conferences in California and Minnesota. Thumbnail summaries: Civilian beliefs about use of force by police are often shockingly far from...
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FS Researchers Inform Academics On Realities Of Policing

Researchers with the Force Science Institute continue to bring a realistic perspective on law enforcement issues to the largely civilian academic community. Dr. John O’Neill and Dr. Dawn O’Neill of the Force Science staff made separate presentations in Denver recently at the annual convention of the prestigious Assn. of Behavior Analysis International. The convention attracted...
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One Columnist’s Approach To Getting Civilians To Walk In Cops’ Shoes

A newspaper columnist’s perspective on a shooting in Florida may be helpful to officers conducting citizen police academies, town hall meetings, and other events where they try to get civilians to empathize with LEOs’ use-of-force decisions. In Charlotte County, FL, sheriff’s deputies responded to a 911 call of a residential domestic disturbance in which a...
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Top Award To FSI Researcher For New Vest Study Presentation

Three researchers with Force Science credentials presented new study results at the recent annual conference of the Society for Police and Criminal Psychology in Austin, TX. One, Dr. John O’Neill, a behavioral scientist on the staff of the Force Science Institute, was cited with special recognition. After reviewing all the conference’s presentations, 64 in total,...
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