TONIGHT CITY COUNCIL MEETING — A Reduced Police Force?

Richmond City Council: June 30, 2020.

Make sure to tune-in to tonight’s city council meeting at 6:30 pm where they will review and accept final budget projections for the Fiscal Year 2020-21 Annual Operating Budget and consider an item by Council Members Jael Myrick and Demnlus Johnson III to direct staff to prepare a plan to transition from Richmond’s current “community policing” model to a plan conducive to the reduced police force. Online: http://www.ci.richmond.ca.us/3178/KCRT-Live TV: KCRT (Comcast Channel 28 or AT&T Uverse Channel 99) Agenda/Submit Public Comment: SIRE Public Access

AGENDA REVIEW / DISCUSSION: The City of Richmond continues to face a long-term structural deficit. While we’ve found ways to close the $29.9 million budget gap for the coming fiscal year, we know that more substantial decisions will need to be made to bring our budget into structural balance. In addition, a recent movement of people nationally and residents locally are calling on municipalities to reevaluate how we prioritize funding for public safety. This movement correctly asks municipalities like Richmond to consider how large police budgets take resources away from more preventative programs and how some percentage of the services police provide can be provided more efficiently and compassionately through community based programs.

In addition, our budget for the coming fiscal year reduces overtime by $1 million while not adding any additional officers. This is a recipe for failure unless our policing model is changed into one that can function with a much smaller police force. The current “community policing” model used in Richmond worked best when we had upwards of 196 officers. Today the Richmond Police Department has less than 150 officers and it is clear we will not be able to afford returning to a force that robust anytime in the near future. This means that to prevent ballooning overtime costs alone it will be necessary for the City of Richmond to change its policing model. Hence, it is recommended that the City Council receive a presentation regarding different policing models that can be successful with minimum staffing and to direct staff to prepare a plan to transition from Richmond’s current “community policing” model which requires a significant amount of officers to function, to a model that can function well with a substantially smaller force. Staff is directed to return to Council with a preferred policing model and a plan for the transition that can be implemented by the end of FY2020/2021.
/NOTE: unfortunately, no material was posted for review or comment regarding alternative plans./
The Richmond Progressive Alliance newsletter states — We need to work quickly in five areas:
  1. Begin now to make reparations and take other affirmative actions to rebuild the Black Community and allow Black people to be and feel safe in our society, particularly in relation to the police.
  2. Redefine public safety to be about providing adequate housing, recreation, education, and health.
  3. The police are called to perform many functions that are best accomplished without a gun. For example mental health crises, homelessness, loitering and traffic control should not be police jobs.
  4. Adopt restrictions to reduce the risk of escalation, bodily harm and use of force, including no rubber bullets, no guns at protests and other activities that do not require them; no military equipment
  5. Better and stronger community control and review of police activity.
Mayor Butt’s e-newsletter today brings up many concerns from the Richmond Police Department:
 

Less than a year ago, in a citywide survey, 92 percent of Richmond residents rated “reducing crime and disorder” as “essential” or “very important.” Another 6 percent added “somewhat important.” Only 2 percent responded with “not at all important.” Tonight, the City Council will consider an item placed on the agenda by Councilmembers Myrick and Johnson to “re-evaluate the police budget and to prepare a transition to a reduced police force by the end of the next fiscal year 2020-21.”

The clamor to “defund police,” whether it means literally abolishing police, or as many explain, to rethink policing, should not be done in haste with a predetermined outcome.

The Richmond Community Police Review Commission is already taking up consideration of the “8 can’t wait” policy recommendations to reduce undesirable outcomes of police interactions. See Community Police Review Commission to Take Up “8 Can’t Wait” on July 1, June 27, 2020.

I have appointed an ad hoc committee that includes Councilmember Johnson to start looking at potential changes to our current policing model. It will begin meeting next week. As a starting point, I have asked Interim Chief French to provide some foundational information about our current Police Department. Part of the challenge, I believe, is that the public does not have a clear idea what the police department does.

Based on 2019 activities, I have requested:

  • Break down the percentage of total police time and the corresponding budget by activities and tasks. That way, people can be asked what tasks they want to eliminate, if any. Categories should include, at least, traffic violations, responding to and investigating violent crimes and shootings, responding to and investigating property crimes such as car break-ins and burglaries, community outreach such as neighborhood council meetings and community picnics, simply patrolling neighborhoods, Police Activity League, etc.
  • Break down the rate at which various crimes are solved and result in an arrest.
  • Break down the categories of calls for services and the actual incidents to which RPD responds. How much time, for example, (and how much budget) is devoted to people affected by homelessness and people with mental health problems?
  • Review the crime statistic trends over the last decade by category. Crime continues to drop, but is that due to effective policing, or is it simply part of a national trend? If there is less crime, do we need fewer police, or do we have less crime because we have more police?
  • Review the history of use of force complaints over the past decade heard by the CPRC and their outcomes. What are the trends?
  • Address why Richmond has such a relatively high cost per capita for police and why that is justified.
  • Address RPD overtime and what it would take to substantially reduce it.
  • Address the “8 can’t wait” policies and what it would take to adopt them

To put this in something I understand — architectural terms – If you want to build a better house, you don’t start by tearing down the one you have. You list your objectives and inventory your resources. You probably look around to see what other people are doing that might be worth replicating. You take some time to prepare a plan and a budget based on what your needs and desires are. At the end of the day, you may find that all you need and can afford is some remodeling. It may not be your dream house, but it meets most of your expectations.

What would a “reduced police force” look like, and what would it do and not do? Even without further reductions, we already have a reduced police force that will shrink even further if the proposed 2020-21 budget is adopted. It was only a few years ago that we embraced “community policing,” a practice that was intended to build better relationships between police and community and provide better outcomes. Now, some are saying that is an outdated model that we can no longer afford.

The impact of the proposed budget is described by Interim Chief Bisa French in an email sent this morning, as follows:

Mayor Butt and City Councilmen,

As we continue on this journey to balance the budget, I wanted you all to be aware of the impacts to the police department thus far.

Staffing

In terms of positions, through this budget process 33 positions have been “frozen” for the next fiscal year.  Twenty (20) of those 33 positions are sworn positions.  This brings our sworn staffing levels to 50 less officers than we had in recent years.  Due to staffing challenges that we had over the past two years, a department re-organization was implemented in January with the primary focus of fully staffing our patrol teams.  We implemented the 4/10-3/12 schedule with a total of five patrol teams.   In order to fully staff these teams we had to suspend several other units to include our foot/bike unit, public information team, and we reduced staffing in our special investigations unit.  The goal was to fully staff the five patrol teams with at least 12 officers each, and as positions were filled, we were going to add the sixth patrol team to the 3/12 schedule, and resurrect the other specialty units that were suspended.

We will now have to forgo our plans and make do with the limited staffing we have on hand.  This also means that we will not be able to resurrect our foot/bike team.  This team was responsible for addressing quality of life issues and neighborhood problems such as prostitution, drug houses, fireworks, etc.. These duties will now have to be absorbed by the beat officers when they are not answering calls for service.  This will have a significant impact to the services our community has come to expect.

 We currently field approximately 238 calls per day.  When officers aren’t on a call, they provide extra patrol, conduct car stops, and write reports.  There isn’t a lot of time for them to dedicate to long term problem solving.  We are working on strategies to meet the needs of our community with the reduced staffing levels.

 Additional service impacts will include our inability to attend neighborhood council meetings and other community events as many of these were attended on overtime.  Additionally, we are in the process of evaluating our calls for service to determine which calls we are no longer going to respond to in person and will require complainants to file on line reports or wait for a cadet to take a report when they are available.

 Essentially, we are being forced to move away from many of the community policing efforts we’ve worked on over the past 10 years because of our inability to sustain these efforts with our current staffing levels and reductions in overtime.

 Our CCTV program was in the process of being revamped but has now been cut from the budget.  The closed circuit televisions will not be monitored on a consistent basis although they will continue to record.  We are currently utilizing officers on light duty to monitor the cameras when they aren’t fielding telephone reports.

 I am very concerned about losing the lieutenant position.  Part of the department re-organization was a result of complaints made by the POA regarding oversight by lieutenants.  The issue of lieutenant oversight was also addressed in the MBD Innovations report; “ The current organizational structure fosters an operational disconnect from management (lieutenants and above) and first line staff. For functions such as police departments with 24-hour operations, the structure of management plays a substantive role on how vertically connected the organization is. In the case of the RPD, the current structure of management does not promote connectivity between the ranks of sergeant and lieutenant.”  The loss of the lieutenants position sets us back from the recommendations of the report as well as oversight of our officers and sergeants.  This is further complicated by the fact that we have a lieutenant on long term injury leave.  This leaves us with two critical lieutenant positions unable to be filled.

 During last weeks council meeting, the unions proposed freezing the remaining police department positions which includes two dispatch positions, a senior accountant and records specialist. The impacts to freezing these positions are as follows:

 Dispatch: 

We answer 911 calls for over 120,000 residents 24/7 with 2 or sometimes 3 people fielding calls while they also dispatch over the radio.  Our dispatch center fields between 23,000 to 25,000 calls per month with 7,000-9,000 of these calls on 911.  We are mandated by the state to answer 95% of 911 calls with 15 seconds.  Based on our call volume, the state recommendation during certain hours is 4 dispatchers solely answering calls (not working the radio as in our center). Due to the shortage in staffing, every week there is at least 150 hours of mandatory overtime to meet minimum staffing needs.  If a dispatcher is out on vacation (up to two are allowed off at any given time) additional mandatory overtime hours are created.  These overtime vacancies are currently being filled by officers and dispatchers.  Freezing these two dispatcher positions will result in mandatory overtime for the entire fiscal year making it impossible to stay within the reduced overtime budget.  Dispatchers will continue to leave our communications center (several left last year as a result of burnout from mandatory overtime) to work for other cities that do not mandate overtime.

 Records:

There is one vacant records specialist position.  Two positions in the records unit were lost in recent years due to previous budget challenges.  Without the remaining position, mandatory overtime will be forced on the remaining records specialists to maintain 24/7 staffing levels.

 Senior Accountant:

Another vital position in the police department is the accountant position.  The police department has historically had  a senior accountant as well as an accountant II assigned to oversee the largest budget in the city.  Currently, neither position is filled.  Due to the vacancies, we’ve already incurred financial losses.  Additionally, many of the grants we obtain require a chief financial officer to oversee the accounting functions of the grant.

 Vehicle Replacement:

 The vehicle replacement recommendation was initially to replace 28 vehicles.  These included Chevy Caprices and Ford Crown Victoria’s that range from 8-12 years old.  Some of these vehicles have over 185k miles on them.  The revised vehicle replacement recommendation was to replace 16 vehicles at a cost of 880,000.  Per your direction, I worked with public works to determine which vehicles would absolutely need to be replaced as soon as possible. We determined that we could keep the Ford Crown Victorias in service for an additional year but we need to replace 10 Chevy Caprices at a total coast of 600k.  These vehicles were made in Australia solely for a police vehicle purpose.  Chevy has since stopped making these vehicles and finding parts is extremely difficult.  When parts are found, they have to be ordered from Australia and take several months before they’re shipped.

 Other Budget Facts:

 In addition to the positions that have been frozen for the next fiscal year, the police department has also lost an additional $2.1 million in other services.  The reductions thus far for positions and services amount to over 8 million dollars, or over 10% of the total pd budget.

 83% of the budget is salary and benefits

 Over $500,000 Is dedicated to non-enforcement related services such as PAL, FJC & homelessness.

 Close to $3 million is dedicated to contracts that the pd has no control over (animals services & building rental & utilities)

 I fully understand the need for the council to pass a balanced budget during tomorrow nights council meeting.  The purpose of this email is to help you make an informed decision regarding additional police department cuts.  Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

 Bisa French

Interim Police Chief

Richmond Police Department

Mayor Butt e-newsletter regarding the Police Commission Recommendations:
 

On Wednesday, July 1, 2020, the Richmond Community Police Review Commission will “Consider the “8 Can’t Wait” recommendations, RPD’s adoption or non-adoption of same and discuss and vote on recommendations.”

The agenda can be found online at: https://ca-richmond3.civicplus.com/Archive.aspx?AMID=36&Type=Recent.

Although Richmond is already substantially “8 Can’t Wait” compliant (see Richmond Already “8 Can’t Wait” Compliant, June 4, 2020), there is more that can be done. See the following analysis:

(1) Objective goal: Require de-escalation

RPD Response:

  1. Failing to require officers to de-escalate situations, where possible, through communication, maintaining distance, slowing things down, and otherwise eliminating the need to use force.

This specific language isn’t currently in our policy manual however, management and the Richmond Police Officers Association are in the meet and confer process regarding language that includes de-escalation in our use of force policy.

Current language in our Policy Manual:

300.3.2 FACTORS USED TO DETERMINE THE REASONABLENESS OF FORCE

When determining whether to apply force and evaluating whether an officer has used reasonable force, a number of factors should be taken into consideration, as time and circumstances permit.  This can be a related to “slowing things down.”

(a) Immediacy and severity of the threat to officers or others. This can be related to the question of distance.

(h) The availability of other options and their possible effectiveness. This addresses the consideration of other means
of resolution.

(k) Potential for injury to officers, suspects and others. This addresses the potential minimization of the actual use of force.

HOWEVER, it is specifically addressed in the section dealing with mental illness.

418.3 OFFICER CONSIDERATIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Any officer responding to or handling a call involving a suspected mentally disabled individual or an involuntary mental illness commitment should consider utilizing the following as time and circumstances reasonably permit:

(a) Any available information that might assist in determining the cause and nature of the mental illness or developmental disability.

(b) Conflict resolution and de-escalation techniques.

(c) Language that is appropriate for interacting with a mentally disabled person.

(d) If circumstances permit, alternatives to deadly force.

(e) Any available community resources that can assist in dealing with a mentally disabled individual.

Does Richmond Meet the criterium: No, RPD acknowledges the specific language is not in the policy manual, but nevertheless insists it is compliant.

Examples of written policies that meets this objective criterium:

San Francisco

“Officers shall, when feasible, employ de-escalation techniques to decrease the likelihood of the need to use force during an incident and to increase the likelihood of voluntary compliance. Officers shall when feasible, attempt to understand and consider the possible reasons why a subject may be noncompliant or resisting arrest. A subject may not be capable of understanding the situation because of a medical condition; mental, physical, or hearing impairment; language barrier; drug interaction; or emotional crisis and have no criminal intent. These situations may not make the subject any less dangerous but understanding a subject’s situation may enable officers to calm the subject and allow officers to use de-escalation techniques while maintaining public and officer safety. Officers who act to deescalate an incident, which can delay taking a subject into custody, while keeping the public and officers safe, will not be found to have neglected their duty. They will be found to have fulfilled it.”

Albuquerque

“When circumstances allow, in their interaction with subjects, officers should use advisements, warning, verbal persuasion, and other tactics in an atempt to resolve the incident.” O.5. And “Officers are expected to recognize their approach to citizen interactions may influence whether a situation escalates to the need to use force.”

Oakland

“Members are required to de-escalate the force when the member reasonably believes a lesser level or no further force is appropriate.”

“To the extent possible and without ever compromising safety, members are required to use verbal commands to accomplish the police objective before resorting to physical force. Members shall consider the possibility of any language barriers, noise, other distractions, or disabilities which may impair or frustrate the members effort to courteously and clearly communicate with the person.”

(2) Objective goal: Ban Chokeholds and Strangleholds

RPD Response:

2. Prohibiting officers from using maneuvers that cut off oxygen or blood flow, including chokeholds or carotid restraints, which often result in unnecessary death or serious injury.

We do not use any language with the word “choke” in our policy.
300.3.4 CAROTID CONTROL HOLD
Richmond officers shall not use the carotid control hold.

Does Richmond Meet the criterium: No, Richmond does not explicitly ban all chokeholds.

Examples of written policies that meets this objective criterium:

San Antonio

“D. A lateral vascular neck restraint (LVNR) shall not be used unless deadly force is authorized‚Ķ[defines this restraint as] The lateral vascular neck restraint (LVNR), commonly known as a sleeper hold, or carotid chokehold, is a general term for a grappling hold that critically reduces or prevents either air (choking) or

blood (strangling) from passing through the neck of an opponent. The restriction may be of one or both and depends on the hold used and the reaction of the victim.”

San Francisco

“Officers are prohibited from using the following control holds:

a. Carotid restraint;

b. Choke hold–choking by means of pressure to the subjects trachea or other means that prevent breathing.”

San Jose

The “Carotid Restraint” may be used when other control techniques have failed or are inappropriate and deadly force may become objectively reasonable if the “Carotid Restraint” is not used.”

“The chokehold is prohibited as an authorized control technique to overcome resistance and shall not be used for this purpose. However, a chokehold may only be used by an officer as a deadly force option” (See: http://www.sjpd.org/images/Chokehold_Policy_2016-002.pdf)

(3) Objective goal: Duty to Intervene

RPD Response:

3. Failing to require officers to intervene and stop excessive or unnecessary force used by other officers and report these incidents immediately to a supervisor.

300.2.1 Duty to Intercede- Any officer present and observing another officer using force that is clearly beyond that which is objectively reasonable under the circumstances shall, when in a position to do so, intercede to prevent the use of unreasonable force. An officer who observes another employee use force that exceeds the degree of force permitted by law should promptly report these observations to a supervisor.

Richmond meets this objective criterium

(4) Objective goal: Ban Shooting at Moving Vehicles

RPD Response:

4. Failing to restrict officers from shooting at moving vehicles, which is regarded as a particularly dangerous and ineffective tactic.

300.4.1 SHOOTING AT MOVING VEHICLES
Shots fired at a moving vehicle, whether approaching or fleeing, are rarely effective and are generally discouraged.

(a) Unless it reasonably appears that it would endanger officers or the public, officers are expected to move out of the path of any approaching vehicle.

(b) This is not intended to restrict an officer’s right to use deadly force directed at the operator or passenger of a vehicle when it is reasonably perceived that the vehicle is being used as a weapon, or firearms are being used, or have been used from the vehicle against the officer or others.

Does Richmond Meet the criterium: No, Richmond does not ban shooting at moving vehicles

Examples of written policies that meets this objective criterium:

San Francisco

Policy Language: Section 2.e: MOVING VEHICLES. An officer shall not discharge a firearm at the operator or occupant of a moving vehicle unless the operator or occupant poses an immediate threat of death or serious bodily injury to the public or an officer by means other than the vehicle. Officers shall not discharge a firearm from his or her moving vehicle.

Los Angeles

Firearms shall not be discharged at a moving vehicle unless a person in the vehicle is immediately threatening the officer or another person with deadly force by means other than the vehicle. The moving vehicle itself shall not presumptively constitute a threat that justifies an officers use of deadly force. An officer threatened by an oncoming vehicle shall move out of its path instead of discharging a firearm at it or any of its occupants.

New Orleans

“300.5.1 SHOOTING AT OR FROM MOVING VEHICLES Shots fired at or from a moving vehicle are rarely effective. Officers shall not discharge a firearm from a moving vehicle or at a moving vehicle unless the occupants of the vehicle are using deadly force, other than the vehicle itself, against the officer or another person, and such action is necessary for self defense or to protect the other person; shall not intentionally place themselves in the path of, or reach inside, a moving vehicle; and, where possible, shall attempt to move out of the path of a moving vehicle before discharging their weapon. Officers should not shoot at any part of a vehicle in an attempt to disable the vehicle.

(5) Objective goal: Has Use of Force Continuum

RPD Response:

5. Failing to limit the types of force and/or weapons that can be used to respond to specific types of resistance and specific characteristics such as age, size, or disability.

300.3.2 FACTORS USED TO DETERMINE THE REASONABLENESS OF FORCE
When determining whether to apply force and evaluating whether an officer has used reasonable force, a number of factors should be taken into consideration, as time and circumstances permit.

These factors include, but are not limited to:

(a) Immediacy and severity of the threat to officers or others.

(b) The conduct of the individual being confronted, as reasonably perceived by the officer
at the time.

(c) Officer/subject factors (age, size, relative strength, skill level, injuries sustained, level
of exhaustion or fatigue, the number of officers available vs. subjects).

(d) The effects of drugs or alcohol.

(e) Subject’s mental state or capacity.

(f) Proximity of weapons or dangerous improvised devices.

(g) The degree to which the subject has been effectively restrained and his/her ability to
resist despite being restrained.

(h) The availability of other options and their possible effectiveness.

(i) Seriousness of the suspected offense or reason for contact with the individual.

(j) Training and experience of the officer.

(k) Potential for injury to officers, suspects and others.

(l) Whether the person appears to be resisting, attempting to evade arrest by flight or is attacking the officer.

(m) The risk and reasonably foreseeable consequences of escape.

(n) The apparent need for immediate control of the subject or a prompt resolution of the situation.

(o) Whether the conduct of the individual being confronted no longer reasonably appears to pose an imminent threat to the officer or others.

(p) Prior contacts with the subject or awareness of any propensity for violence.

(q) Any other exigent circumstances.

Note: the category cited by RPD is not on the 8 Can’t Wait list and is not a use of force continuum.  It is interesting RPD did not follow the 8 listed categories, and instead made up their own in several cases.

(6) Objective goal: Requires Exhaust All Alternatives Before Shooting

RPD Response:

6. Failing to require officers to exhaust all other reasonable means before resorting to deadly force.
Deadly force is authorized only when the officer is protecting him/herself or others from what is reasonably believed to be an imminent threat to life.

300.4 DEADLY FORCE APPLICATIONS

Use of deadly force is justified in the following circumstances:
(a) An officer may use deadly force to protect him/herself or others from what he/she reasonably believes would be an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.
(b) An officer may use deadly force to stop a fleeing subject when the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has committed, or intends to commit, a felony involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious bodily injury or death, and the officer reasonably believes that there is an imminent risk of serious bodily injury or death to any other person if the subject is not immediately apprehended. Under such circumstances, a verbal warning should precede the use of deadly force, where feasible. Imminent does not mean immediate or instantaneous. An imminent danger may exist even if the suspect is not at that very moment pointing a weapon at someone. For example, an imminent danger may exist if an officer reasonably believes any of the following:
1. The person has a weapon or is attempting to access one and it is reasonable to believe the person intends to use it against the officer or another.
2. The person is capable of causing serious bodily injury or death without a weapon and it is reasonable to believe the person intends to do so

Does Richmond Meet the criterium: No. Police Department Policy Manual does not require officers to exhaust all other reasonable means before resorting to deadly force.

Examples of written policies that meets this objective criterium:

Arlington, TX:

“Where the circumstances permit, it is the employee’s responsibility to first exhaust every reasonable means of employing the minimum amount of force, including the police employee’s physical presence and verbal skills, before escalating to a more severe application of force.”

“When police personnel should reasonably perceive that the potential exists that deadly force may be an outcome of any situation, the employee must plan ahead and use reasonable alternatives if time and opportunities permit. “Reasonable alternatives” is defined as an action that may be taken by police personnel that may allow the employee to avoid the use of deadly force. The reasonableness of the action is based on the time available, the opportunity of performing the action, and the facts apparent to the employee before and during the incident. This includes the presence of innocent third persons. Planned and supervised hazardous entry situations are recognized as meeting the requirement of reasonable alternatives.”

San Francisco

Section VI.G: “It is the policy of this Department to use deadly force only as a last resort when reasonable alternatives have been exhausted or are not feasible to protect the safety of the public and police officers. The use of firearms and other deadly force is the most serious decision an officer may ever make. When safe and feasible under the totality of circumstances, officers shall consider other objectively reasonable force options before discharging a firearm or using other deadly force.

Dallas

“Deadly force will be used with great restraint and as a last resort only when the level of resistance warrants the use of deadly force.”

“At the point when an officer should reasonably perceive the potential exists that deadly force may be an outcome of any situation, the officer must use reasonable alternatives if time and opportunities permit. The reasonableness of the action is based upon the time available, the opportunity of performing the action, and the facts apparent to the officer prior to and during the incident.

(7) Objective goal: Requires Warning Before Shooting

RPD Response:

7. Failing to require officers to give a verbal warning, when possible, before using serious force such as shooting, tasing, or pepper spraying someone.

 300.4 DEADLY FORCE APPLICATIONS
Under such circumstances, a verbal warning should precede the use of deadly force, where feasible.

308.3 ISSUING, CARRYING AND USING CONTROL DEVICES
Control devices may be used when a decision has been made to control, restrain or arrest a subject who is violent or who demonstrates the intent to be violent, and the use of the device appears reasonable under the circumstances. When reasonable, a verbal warning and opportunity to comply should precede the use of these devices.

309.4 VERBAL AND VISUAL WARNINGS
A verbal warning of the intended use of the CED should precede its application, unless it would otherwise endanger the safety of officers or when it is not practicable due to the circumstances.

The purpose of the warning is to:
(a) Provide the individual with a reasonable opportunity to voluntarily comply.

(b) Provide other officers and individuals with a warning that the CED may be deployed.

If, after a verbal warning, an individual is unwilling to voluntarily comply with an officer’s lawful orders and it appears both reasonable and feasible under the circumstances, the officer may, but is not required to, display the electrical arc (provided that a cartridge has not been loaded into the device), or the laser in a further attempt to gain compliance prior to the application of the CED. The aiming laser should never be intentionally directed into the eyes of another as it may permanently impair his/her vision.

The fact that a verbal or other warning was given or the reasons it was not given shall be documented by the officer deploying the CED in the related report.

Richmond meets this criterium

(8) Objective goal: Requires Comprehensive Reporting


RPD Response:

8. Failing to require officers to report each time they use force or threaten to use force (e.g., pointing a gun at a person).

The use of the firearm is only an actual use of force when fired…we aren’t threatening to shoot, we are challenging the subject to comply.

300.5 REPORTING THE USE OF FORCE

Any use of force by a member of this department shall be documented promptly, completely and accurately in an appropriate report, depending on the nature of the incident. The officer should articulate the factors perceived and why he/she believed the use of force was reasonable under the circumstances. To collect data for purposes of training, resource allocation, analysis and related purposes, the Department may require the completion of additional report forms, as specified in department policy, procedure or law.

Does Richmond Meet the criterium: No. Officers not required to report when they point a firearm at a civilian in Richmond

Examples of written policies that meets this objective criterium:

San Francisco

While the original policy states that officers are not required to report when they point a firearm at a civilian, unless it discharges, as of December 11 a new department policy has made pointing firearm now a reportable use of force

New Orleans

(i) Un-holstering a firearm and pointing it at a person constitutes a use of force, and shall accordingly be done only as objectively reasonable to accomplish a lawful police objective.”

“PR300.4 LEVELS OF FORCE

Force options are grouped in the following four (4) force levels for reporting and investigating purposes only:

PR300.4.1 LEVEL 1

Level-1 uses of force include pointing a firearm at a person and hand control or escort

techniques (e.g., elbow grip, wrist grip, or shoulder grip) applied as pressure point

compliance techniques or that result in injury or complaint of injury.

Seattle

8300.9. Pointing a Firearm at a Person is Type I Reportable Force

Officers shall document all incidents where they point a firearm at a person. See Section 8.400.

8400.1. Officers Shall Report All Uses of Force Except De Minimis Force