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Rise in officer-involved shootings prompt policy changes | Crime

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Rise in officer-involved shootings prompt policy changes
Crime

On Friday, the City of Albuquerque unveiled its plan to reduce officer involved shootings. It comes after an independent study suggested 39 new policies and APD came up with 19 of its own.

The 90-page report is in response to the 37 officer-involved shootings since 2006. The new policy will require a supervisor be present at all hostile situations and anytime a warrant is executed.

Chief Ray Schultz said, "When you have a supervisor at calls where you have the potential for force to be utilized, when an officer is.. when is a supervisor is there the officer will very often slow down."

APD will also improve communication so all officers have access to an individuals history and background. "This will give us the opportunity to identify repeat customers, people that we find our officers having to go out and deal with and utilize our cit time and time again," said Schultz.

About 25 percent of the force is trained in crisis intervention. Chief Schultz says he wants that number to increase. Additionally, 911 operators will be trained in crisis intervention. The goal is to de-escalate the situation before law enforcement arrives. Chief Public Safety Officer Daren White said Friday, "The cumulative effect may be to reduce the prevalence of officer involved shootings. Let me assure our community, that is what we are committing to do."

The report also recommends a change in the hiring practices at APD, that candidates should have good interpersonal skills and be good problem solvers. Schultz said, "People who just have that natural, calming demeanor about them. So, obviously quite a challenge for us."

APD will also now be accepting anonymous complaints. "If one officer is receiving numerous anonymous complaints from different incidences, that where there's smoke there may be fire, that it should be included in part of the early intervention system."

APD will be upgrading its training techniques including using "real life" scenarios for the Use-Of-Force Simulator.

> Complete report from Police Executive Research Forum (PDF)

Crime

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