USE OF NON-DEADLY FORCe
All officers will adhere to Article 35 of the New York State Penal Law.
Prior to engaging in non-deadly force with a person, the officer should, if feasible in the initial stages of the confrontation, attempt to resolve the matter by use of verbal persuasion. If the situation escalates further, officers should limit their response to what is necessary to accomplish their lawful objectives. This would include verbalizing at a safe distance until reinforcements or specialists could arrive on the scene if at all possible. In any event, officers should use discretion when using non-deadly force.
- NON-DEADLY FORCE – necessary force which is NOT LIKELY to cause death or great bodily harm.
- RESTRAINING FORCE – use of physical force which is limited to holding and restraining a person.
- PHYSICAL FORCE – the necessary application of submission holds to overcome resistance.
- DEFENSIVE FORCE – the necessary infliction of physical battery to overcome violent resistance or to protect self or others from assault or injury.
- USE OF FORCE TABLE
- OFFICER PRESENCE/VERBALIZATION – Being on-scene and utilizing verbal persuasion in an attempt to defuse a situation.
- RESTRAINT TECHNIQUES – Those techniques an officer feels necessary to use to effect “take down and control holds” by using his hands, handcuffs or impact weapon.
- PEPPER-SPRAY (Oleoresin Capsicum)
- TASER ® (Electronic Control Device) in the “Drive-Stun”and/or direct contact mode - When both are used as a subservient.
- TASER ® - When probes are deployed from the electronic control device to incapacitate a subject.
E IMPACT WEAPONS – any instrument used as an impact weapon by the officer
(ASP and Monadnock Expandable Batons).
- FIREARMS – when the officer is compelled to use a firearm.
- Any officer using Physical Force or Defensive Force pursuant to his duties whether on or off duty, shall report or cause to be reported, all facts relative to the incident on a Use of Deadly Physical Force Report Form (APD140).
- Reporting Restraining Force will be left to the discretion of the arresting officer(s) and supervisor(s).
- Only issued or approved equipment will be carried on duty and used when applying any level of Non-Deadly Force, except in emergency situations when an officer must use any resources at his disposal.
- Use of restraining devices is mandatory on all prisoners, unless in the officer’s judgment or unusual circumstances exist which make the use of restraining devices impossible or unnecessary (e.g.; prisoner is very elderly or handicapped etc.). The mere placing of handcuffs on a prisoner will not be construed to be a use of Physical Force. However, when the handcuffs become an appliance to exert force necessary to further subdue a prisoner or where the suspect physically resists the application of handcuffs, a use of Physical Force has occurred, and the necessary reports must be completed.
- After any level of Non-Deadly Force is used, an officer shall immediately evaluate the need for medical attention or treatment for that person upon whom the force was used and arrange for such treatment when:
- That person has a visible injury;
- Person complains of injury or discomfort, or requests medical attention.
- A person having visible injuries, complaining of injury or discomfort and refusing medical treatment must still be transported to a hospital where the refusal will be witnessed by hospital personnel and noted in the incident report.
- The officer shall immediately notify his on-duty supervisor of the incident. If the incident happens off –duty the officer will notify his immediate supervisor as soon as possible, and the local authority, (if necessary) if the incident occurred in another jurisdiction.
- The on-duty supervisor shall respond to the scene of the incident immediately.
- The officer shall attempt to locate and identify any witnesses, documenting their statements.
- The officer shall prepare and submit the reports required by current directives. If more than one officer is involved in a Use of Force incident, each officer shall add narrative to the incident report outlining their actions and observations in the incident.
- The on-duty supervisor shall insure that officers receive any necessary assistance, including medical treatment. He shall also insure that any injuries to officers are properly documented.
- The on-duty supervisor shall insure the medical treatment for the defendant is evaluated per section 5, sub D, page 3.
- The on-duty supervisor shall determine if the Sergeant should respond to the scene and the level of ID services to be utilized (including photos, measurements, and diagrams). If an injury or complaint of pain exists, supervisors are encouraged to obtain photographs.
- A photograph showing no injury may be as important as one which shows injury.
- If determined that Restraining Force was used by subordinate personnel, the on-duty supervisor shall investigate the incident. When use of Restraining Force has been made necessary by resistance without violence, and when there are not significant injuries, reports of the use of restraining force shall not be made mandatory. The arrest incident and resisting arrest charges shall be left to the discretion of the arresting officer and Supervisor.
- Upon notification of the use of Physical or Defensive Force by subordinate personnel, the on-duty supervisor shall initiate an investigation into the incident.
- He shall review and sign the report(s) describing the use of force and all other relative reports.
- The on-duty supervisor shall notify the Chief of Police advising of the facts, by forwarding the Use of Force Form (APD 140) to his office. If warranted the on-duty supervisor may notify the Chief of Police immediately following the use of force incident.
- COMPLETION OF USE OF DEADLY/PHYSICAL FORCE REPORT (APD10)
# 1 – Enter the location of incident and check if incident was on duty or off duty.
# 2 – Defendant Info: Name, DOB, Address & Phone #
# 3 – Witness Info: Name, Address & Phone #
# 4 – Nature of injuries before force used: Describe any injuries, cuts, scratches, or bruises that the defendant had before force was applied. If none- indicate.
# 5 – Nature of injuries after force used: Describe all injuries received by the defendant during application of force (include complaints of injury or discomfort).
# 6 – Condition of defendant: Check the appropriate box which most accurately describes the condition of the defendant at the time of force being applied.
# 7 – Treatment: check the appropriate box
# 8 - Defendant transported to hospital: Check the appropriate box. If police
vehicle, give car number, or in other (private vehicle, etc.)
# 9 – Name of hospital: Enter the name of the hospital defendant was taken and the Doctor’s name that treated the defendant.
# 10 – Evidence work performed: Check the appropriate box and list the officer’s name.
# 11 – Names of other officers at the scene: List the names of all other officers who were present at the scene, participated, or witnessed the application of physical force. Indicate whether or not any officers were injured. (related injury reports will be made out for each employee injured on duty).
# 12 - Narrative: Briefly describe the reasons:
- Why force was necessary (justification);
- Who used force;
- What force was used;
- How force was applied;
- Type of equipment used (gun, handcuffs, baton, etc.);
- Narrative in Incident Report will contain same info only in more detail.
#14 – ECD and/or Taser Deployment: Answer all appropriate questions in this section pertaining to ECD deployment.
#15 – Defendant Current Medical Condition: Ask the defendant all of the questions in this section and mark the appropriate answers. It should be noted
when the defendant refuses to answer a question. Upon completion of this section the defendant needs to initial and date that they have been asked. If the defendant
refuses to initial and date the form, it should be noted by the officer by writing refused in the defendant’s initial box.
#16 – Reporting officer’s signature and date
#17 – On-duty supervisor’s signature and date.
#18 – Chief of Police’s signature and date.
7. All sworn personnel will be instructed in the policies governing Use of Physical Force annually.
Paul E. Griffith
Chief of Police
USE OF DEADLY PHYSICAL FORCE
All officers will adhere to Article 35 of the New York State Penal Law.
SERIOUS PHYSICAL INJURY – means physical injury which creates a substantial risk of death, or which causes death or serious and protracted disfigurement, protracted impairment of health or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ.
REASONABLE CAUSE TO BELIEVE – Reasonable cause to believe that a person has committed an offense exists when evidence or information which appears reliable, discloses facts or circumstances which are collectively of such weight and persuasiveness as to convince a person of ordinary intelligence, judgment and experience that it is reasonably likely that such offense was committed and that such person likely committed it. Except as otherwise provided in Chapter 70 of the Criminal Procedure Law, such, apparently reliable evidence may include or consist of hearsay.
The fact that a police officer is justified in using deadly physical force, does not allow reckless conduct by a police officer, if the use of deadly physical force may injure innocent persons whom he is not seeking to arrest or retain in custody.
- Confrontation Situations
- Apprehension and Pursuit Situations
- When an officer, acting on personally known information, has reasonable cause to believe that an armed and dangerous subject has committed a felony which involved the use or attempted use, or threatened immediate use of deadly physical force against a person; and
- There is substantial risk that the fleeing subject will cause death or serious physical injury if not immediately apprehended; and
- There is no other reasonable means to effect the arrest; and
- The discharge does not appear likely to injure innocent bystanders.
- Injured Animal
- Firearms Practice and Testing
- For target practice, other legitimate competition or purpose, or ballistic testing at approved sites.
5. PROCEDURES AND PROHIBITIONS
A. Juveniles: No distinction shall be made relative to the age in regards to the use of deadly physical force. Self defense and imminent threat shall be the only procedural guidelines for employing deadly physical force.
B. Moving Vehicles: Discharging a firearm at or from a moving vehicle is prohibited unless the occupants of same are using deadly physical force against the officer, or another and the officer reasonably believes that he will not endanger innocent persons.
C. Warning Shots: A police officer is not justified in using his firearm to fire a warning shot.
D. Firing Shots for Alarm: Firearms shall not be discharged to summon assistance except where the police officer’s safety or that of another is seriously endangered and he believes there is no reasonable alternative. Extreme care must be exercised in such situations to prevent injury to the officer or other persons.
E. Drawing or Displaying: An officer shall draw or display a firearm ONLY if there is reason to fear for the personal safety of the officer or others.
6. STEPS TO TAKE WITH INVOLVED OFFICERS
- In every instance in which an officer uses deadly physical force and where such use of force results in death, alleged bodily injury or bodily injury to another person, the following steps shall be taken:
- The Sergeant, and Chief of Police will be notified immediately.
- The officer shall report or cause to be reported, all facts relative to the incident on a Use of Deadly Physical Force Report (APD141)
- The officer’s weapon will be replaced with another weapon and the weapon used in the incident will be safeguarded and turned over to the investigating officer or investigating agency.
- The involved officer will be given the opportunity to call his family as soon as possible to avoid the possibility of their learning about the incident through other than official sources, e.g. press, radio, TV, etc.
- The officer shall not be allowed to talk to the press. All information regarding the incident will be given out through the office of the Chief of Police.
- Prior to the officer making a written statement, he shall be provided the opportunity to consult with an attorney.
- Supervisors and other department personnel must insure that the officer is treated in a dignified manner. He should be accompanied by a fellow officer during the initial phases of the inquiry. All personnel should be sensitive to the psychological trauma that is associated with these types of incidents. Behavior such as blaming, ridiculing, teasing, and isolating, the involved officer will only increase the potential trauma and therefore will not be tolerated.
- Assignment to Administrative Duty
- When a member is assigned to administrative duty, he will:
- Refrain from routine exercise of police arrest and intervention powers.
- Retain all rights, privileges and employee benefits.
- Shall assure their availability to the police department, county, state, and federal authorities to assist, when necessary, in the investigation of the incident until it is concluded.
- All sworn personnel will be issued copies of and be instructed in the policies governing Deadly Physical Force before being authorized to carry a firearm.
Paul E. Griffith
Chief of Police