Dangerous police encounters.

Rising police brutality claims are eroding trust in New York law enforcement personnel despite officer training exercises that support increased community safety.  The incidence of negative police encounters in communities, coupled with increases in related personal injuries and death are commonplace.  Departments must reach further to address more humane methods of dealing with an ever-growing population of individuals who have disabilities and mental health challenges that precipitate many police encounters that go sideways.

De-escalation training in New York.

De-escalation training has proven to be an effective measure in many states, but is not mandatory in all of them. A study by the National Institute of Mental Health found that crisis intervention team-trained officers made fewer arrests, used less force and connected more people with mental-health services than their non-trained peers. Second, police need to learn how to slow confrontations down, instead of ramping up the anxiety and fear.

Many police departments in the State of New York are not required to have de-escalation training, but are required to undergo annual instruction in deadly physical force and the use of firearms and other weapons.  Rockland County Sheriff Louis Falco said that de-escalation is taught in the Rockland Police Academy, and that the concept is reinforced every year during four days of required in-service training. Options for safe restraint measures should be highlighted in “de-escalation” tactics to slow down a police encounter that will allow officers more time, distance, space and tactical flexibility during dynamic situations on the street. Components of de-escalation include:

1) Listen respectfully.

2) Crowd control.

3) Courteous example.

4) Body language reducing intimidation.

5) Control offensive talking or action during encounter.

6) Don’t publicly humiliate anyone and be respectful.

7) Don’t waste time and energy trying to convince a citizen that he’s wrong and you’re right.

8) Remember that “broken record” is a useful way to achieve two goals—conveying the message that you’re in charge while keeping the lid on a potential conflict.

Protection from police brutality.

There are various federal and state laws including the First, Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments, Title 6 of the Civil Rights Act, Title 42 United States Code, and Americans with Disabilities Act, to name a few, that insure remedy to individuals who have suffered the negative effects of police brutality.  Compensated damages  may include hospital/medical expenses; past and future disability payments; emotional distress including depression and anxiety; physical pain and suffering; and loss of love and companionship due to a death, or serious injury caused by police brutality.

Legal counsel.

Personal injury legal experts can help police brutality victims in Rockland County by:

  • Filing a formal department complaint;
  • Researching and applying current laws;
  • Filing civil or criminal lawsuits in court;
  • Hiring a legal support team;
  • Preparing the court appearance;
  • Representing victims in court;
  • Effectively mediating for a fair settlement.

Call an experienced attorney for a free consultation at Buckheit & Whelan, a firm that has been effective in obtaining successful damage settlements for victims of police brutality.





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