Excessive Force? Officers Must Intercede and Report
Gordon Graham here with Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Today’s Tip is for law enforcement and custody officers and it deals with our obligations related to excessive force.
When we see another officer using force that we know is unreasonable, we are required to intercede.
As law enforcement and custody professionals, many times we protect people from others. But one day you might find yourself protecting someone from a member of our own agency. When we see another officer using force that we know is unreasonable, we are required to intercede. We must take action to prevent the unlawful force where we can.
Hopefully, the situation never gets out of hand. Hopefully, you stepped in and offered to take over when you saw a coworker getting really upset. Hopefully, everyone got a chance to cool down when you suggested your co-worker start taking statements or help with something else.
But when we see another officer use unlawful force, we have an obligation to report it right away. It doesn’t matter if it’s your friend, coworker, or even supervisor. I don’t care how difficult or uncomfortable it may be. No looking the other way and no leaving out details in your report.
Preventing excessive force and reporting excessive force is required by law. It is probably required by your agency’s policy. And it is just the right thing to do.
And that’s Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Gordon Graham, signing off.