Detailed Response to Indiana Law Journal Article
In an article in the Winter 2022 Indiana Law Journal, the authors claim that Lexipol has actively fought against police reform. The authors made no attempt to contact Lexipol about this article. Several examples used to support this incorrect point are inaccurate and/or misleading; many others are outdated.
Lexipol has not only supported recent police reform efforts but has long addressed in policy many common reform positions. For the hundreds of professionals Lexipol employs—many of whom are public safety professionals who have served their communities honorably for decades—police reform is not a new development; it’s part of a philosophy of continuous quality improvement followed since the company’s founding. We welcome diversity of opinion because we know that all voices are important in this conversation—those of community members and academics as well as law enforcement professionals.
Lexipol will continue to listen to differing viewpoints, assist law enforcement leaders in continuous quality improvement and advocate for policies that protect the rights of all community members. We remain committed to supporting law enforcement agencies and the residents they serve in the shared goal of creating safer communities for all.
Given the seriousness of these inaccuracies, we feel it’s important to address them by providing verifiable points.
|Page Number||Authors’ Statement||Evaluation||Lexipol Points|
|1||Lexipol has refused to incorporate common reform proposals into the policies it writes for its subscribers, including a use-of-force matrix, policies requiring de-escalation, or bright-line rules prohibiting certain types of behavior—like chokeholds and shooting into cars.||Incorrect||
|5||Lexipol has been actively engaged in efforts to oppose and undermine use-of-force police reforms.||Incorrect||
Holding a webinar on Duty to Intercede in July 2020, which has since been used to train more than 23,000 officers—without charge—on the importance of the duty to intercede to stop the kind of action that led to George Floyd’s death.
Presenting a three-part free webinar series in 2021 on police reform (March 4, March 30 and April 20) specifically urging law enforcement leaders to engage in reform efforts.
Holding state-specific webinars for New York (July 30, 2020, and June 24, 2022), Michigan (November 11, 2020) and Pennsylvania (March 23, 2021) to help officers and leaders in those states better understand and comply with recently passed police reform legislation.
Publishing a guide (June 12, 2021) to help agencies involve community members in review and development of law enforcement policy
Presenting a webinar (Feb. 16, 2022) on how law enforcement agencies can develop a culture of accountability, incorporating the tenets of outward mindset and active bystandership
|5 & 53||Lexipol continues to advertise itself as a company that provides “legally defensible, continuously updated policies and training.”||Incorrect||
|30||Although Lexipol has made some modest adjustments to their policies and trainings in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, Lexipol’s formal policies and trainings are crafted in ways that go against many of the reforms currently being pressed by advocates and increasingly adopted by local governments.||Incorrect||
Modified our policy treatment of carotid restraint so it is limited only to situations where deadly force is authorized.
Lexipol also provides agencies that want to prohibit the use of the technique (even in states where it is not prohibited) with language to help them customize their policy.
Lexipol policy has never authorized a chokehold or respiratory restraint.
Enhanced the already existing policy language around de-escalation, such that officers are now required to consider and use non-violent strategies and techniques to decrease the intensity of a situation when time and circumstances permit. We also added a requirement to train on de-escalation.
Expanded the already existing policy language around duty to intercede, such that officers are now required to intervene in situations where a law enforcement officer observes unreasonable force by any other law enforcement officer, within or outside the agency, as well as by members of the agency. Lexipol policy also requires any member who witnesses an unreasonable use of force, regardless of whether an intercession occurred, “to promptly report these observations to a supervisor.”
Developed a publicly accessible Use of Force website that explains in detail Lexipol’s positions and reasoning on 13 use of force policy tactics.
|31||“As a law enforcement leader,” Lexipol writes on its web page, “you face many challenges: keeping up with legislative changes and training mandates, maintaining positive community relations, and ensuring officer and citizen safety—all with reduced funding and evolving threats.”152 Lexipol warns agencies that they make themselves “vulnerable” by relying on “outdated, inadequate policies and training for guidance on these complex issues.”153 By subscribing to Lexipol, customers “gain peace of mind,” and “the confidence that your officers are following best practice guidelines.”154||Incorrect||
|32||To promote its policies in the wake of protests over George Floyd’s murder and police use of force, in July 2020 Lexipol publicly released its national use-of-force policy on a “use of force” page on its website.||Incorrect||
|32||Although departments can in theory customize the Lexipol policies, doing so would make them miss out on the “best” part of subscribing: “we keep your policies updated for you, saving you time and money.”||Incorrect||
|34||We analyze three DTB [Daily Training Bulletins] training modules that Lexipol features on its website.||Incorrect||
|35||One of Lexipol’s most popular DTBs, called “Factors to Determine Reasonableness,” is based a [sic] scenario involving a woman named Mary Craig who is pulled over for a “minor but arrestable” traffic violation (Figure 1).||Incorrect||
|40||Through their actions, Lexipol reveals itself to be not just a policymaker, but also an active and influential voice in the use-of-force debate.||Incorrect||
Policy Adoption. Agency hereby acknowledges and agrees that any and all policies and Daily Training Bulletins (DTBs) included in the Subscription Material provided by Lexipol have been individually reviewed, customized and adopted by Agency for use by Agency. Agency further acknowledges and agrees that neither Lexipol nor any of its agents, employees or representatives shall be considered “policy makers” in any legal or other sense and that the chief executive of Agency will, for all purposes, be considered the “policy maker” with regard to each and every such policy and DTB.
|43||In a widely circulated Lexipol white paper on use of force, the company claims it is a “myth” that “use of force policies should require the use of de-escalation tactics.”||Misleading||
|61||Lexipol does not give its subscribers complete information about alternatives to its policy and training choices in contested areas, and makes it difficult for subscribers to modify Lexipol’s standard policies.||Incorrect||