Events took place Aug. 30, 2010
This is an ongoing blog as I shadow the 19th BLETP class through their MARCs training. To see the first post click here.
VASSALBORO – When there’s trouble, police need to be able to take control of the situation. Engaging with subjects is never black and white and no situation is ever the same. So how does one train for every situation? You get as close as you can.
The instructors on Aug. 30 gave the cadets a taste of different scenarios they may encounter on the street. This was to illustrate the need for the cadets to become familiar with their equipment so they would know where to reach for their handcuffs, their pepper spray, and defend their weapon if the need arose.
It’s easy for anyone to know what to do if someone has their fists up and want to fight or obey your every command. But that isn’t how all or even most situations play out.
Cadets would volunteer to engage with an instructor ( Tpr. Scott Hamilton of the Maine State Police, Justin Ames of the Maine Marine Patrol, Cpl Robert Burke of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, Shawn Carll of the Auburn Police Department, Deputy Arthur Smith of the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office) who was playing someone that was wanted on an active warrant for unpaid fines. Sometimes they would be verbally aggressive but compliant, other times they’d be outwardly nice but wouldn’t comply with orders; would start out aggressive and then become compliant, etc. After each scenario the cadets and instructors would deconstruct what had happened and go over what was done well, what could be improved and other options that are available to the officer.
It also illustrates how as officers the cadets will have to escalate and then de-escalate their level of force depending on how the person reacts.
Tpr. Scott Hamilton pointed out that no matter how a person behaves during arrest the goal is the same: get them handcuffed and take them to jail. A compliant person will make the job easier, but doesn’t change it.