A Reminder To Officers When Making Arrests.….

rom time to time I have touched on this sub­ject as more and more evi­dence sur­faces which reveals the gap­ing holes in one of the most basic func­tions police offi­cers are tasked with car­ry­ing out.
That task is the func­tion of effect­ing an arrest in a time­ly fash­ion using the most effec­tive means avail­able to the office/​s.

As a for­mer offi­cer of the JCF myself, I found the train­ing of recruits at the Academy woe­ful­ly inad­e­quate as far back as in the 80’s. Juxtapose that with what offi­cers are required to do in the field and the dis­par­i­ty is glar­ing. This is not just on the issue of effect­ing arrests but in oth­er crit­i­cal areas, young offi­cers are almost always left unsure of how to act and what to do when real life sit­u­a­tions present them­selves and they find that their train­ing did not address the how and when of that sit­u­a­tion.

Make The Damn Arrest With Authority…..

The train­ing may have evolved and grown to some minute degree but far too much time is wast­ed on drills and forms which are more befit­ting of banana republics than a mod­ern police depart­ment train­ing facil­i­ty.
Take away the drill and cer­e­mo­ni­al non­sense and teach recruits how to effect arrests, how to deal with hostage sit­u­a­tions, teach them how to res­cue drown­ing cit­i­zens, teach them how to han­dle ter­ror threats.

If you have to drill, (a)drill down on crowd con­trol, (2)Drill down on how to safe­ly and effec­tive­ly do a traf­fic stop, clear­ly offi­cers have no clue how to safe­ly exe­cute traf­fic stops. ©Teach them how to do pit-stops, there is so much that is not being taught to our police offi­cers it makes it lit­er­al­ly impos­si­ble for these young men and women to do a good and pro­fes­sion­al job.

THE UNENVIABLE TASK OF ARRESTINGSUBJECT
Police offi­cers are tasked with the unen­vi­able job of tak­ing sus­pects who have bro­ken our laws into cus­tody.
On every occa­sion that an offi­cer sees an offense being com­mit­ted or receives a report from some­one else about an offense com­mit­ted that offi­cer is in a lose-lose sit­u­a­tion.

(a)I will begin by address­ing those per­sons who believe that offi­cers who effect arrests may be char­ac­ter­ized as overzeal­ous. This ridicu­lous pos­ture would be laughed at in every sit­u­a­tion in which an offi­cer tries to arrests some­one who breaks the laws.
If an offi­cer decides to give some­one a break after he wit­ness­es a minor infrac­tion, (not a felony) it is his/​her right to do so.
If the same Officer decides against giv­ing that same offend­er a break, that is (not overzeal­ous­ness) it is his or her right not to do so.

To the best of my knowl­edge, no offi­cer gets spe­cial pay for effect­ing arrests, that is not how it works, even in sit­u­a­tions where offi­cers do very well work­ing over­time.
On every occa­sion that an offi­cer decides to effect an arrest, he sets him/​herself up to be crit­i­cized for the way the arrest is exe­cut­ed.
If he/​she decides against the arrest he/​she places him/​herself in dire jeop­ardy of fail­ing to car­ry out the dic­tates of the office he or she holds.

(b)Arrests are ugly when a per­son decides to resist. Police detrac­tors are quick to point to the ugli­ness of vio­lent arrests as if good police offi­cers chose to be vio­lent with peo­ple they are about to arrest.
The per­son being arrest­ed decides how that arrest is going to go down even how it will end. There is no law­ful argu­ment to be made for resist­ing offi­cers when one is told he/​she is under arrest. (That goes for sit­u­a­tions in which the arrestee is being wrong­ful­ly arrest­ed)
There are carve­outs in the law which gives cit­i­zens recourse in our courts if they are wrong­ful­ly arrest­ed.
Arrests become expo­nen­tial­ly more dif­fi­cult in sit­u­a­tions in which there are bystanders active­ly effec­tu­at­ing the escape of the offend­er.
It becomes almost an exer­cise in futil­i­ty when there are peo­ple active­ly assist­ing the offend­er to evade arrest rather than help­ing offi­cers to make the arrest.

©Most arrests in Jamaica has to hap­pen with a cer­tain degree of force, because of the envi­ron­ments of hos­til­i­ty and law­less­ness per­va­sive in the coun­try. This has become more per­va­sive in recent times for a con­flu­ence of rea­sons. Many have become more bel­liger­ent and defi­ant, some are oper­at­ing on the mis­guid­ed notion that the INDECOM act pro­tects them from being arrest­ed or gives them the pow­er to fight with offi­cers.
Officers improp­er­ly trained and unsure of their pow­ers add fuel to this fire which inex­orably will lead to death before offend­ers real­ize the dan­ger in what they are doing.
God for­bid that the Ministry of National Security, the Justice Ministry or the JCF lead­er­ship would edu­cate the pub­lic about this issue.
The Justice Ministry is more focused on pro­tect­ing the rights of crim­i­nals than uphold­ing and enhanc­ing the rule of Law under Delroy Chuck.

(d) If there is more than one offi­cer at a scene where a sus­pect is to be arrest­ed both offi­cers must be on the same wave­length as to when to step in and make the arrest.
It must be assumed at all times that the sus­pect will resist, offi­cers attuned to their jobs can pick this up imme­di­ate­ly after telling the sub­ject he/​she is under arrest so both or all three offi­cers must move quick­ly to arrest the sus­pect.

(e) Speed is a crit­i­cal friend of the police when mak­ing arrests, two or three offi­cers must simul­ta­ne­ous­ly grab a bel­liger­ent strug­gling sub­ject take him/​her to the ground and cuff his/​her hands behind his/​her back.
In a sit­u­a­tion in which there are two offi­cers, both offi­cers must take down the fight­ing sub­ject and as quick­ly as pos­si­ble cuff the sub­ject.
If there are bystanders get­ting too close there must be loud bark­ing orders com­mand­ing them to step back.
It is a mat­ter of life and death that offi­cers have this safe­ty zones around them as they work to arrest a bel­liger­ent sub­ject.

(f) After the ini­tial sub­ject is hand­cuffed, offi­cers must grab any offend­er who vio­lat­ed their order to step away and place them under arrest.
Officers are empow­ered to use appro­pri­ate force to ensure their own safe­ty are guar­an­teed, they should set an exam­ple that they are not going to stand for the behav­ior we are wit­ness­ing on our streets.

(g) Removing arrest­ed sus­pects from the scene of the arrest is crit­i­cal for con­trol. Officers should endeav­or to be quick, decid­ed, pro­fes­sion­al, and sure of what they are doing.
Bystanders who would be inclined to inter­fere in arrests also observe the offi­cers involved in the process, they do not inter­fere in sit­u­a­tions in which deci­sive, no-non­sense offi­cers are oper­at­ing.
Offenders(usually male) who shout out instruc­tions to oth­ers to fight offi­cers and demand that oth­ers help in the release of the per­sons being arrest­ed usu­al­ly do so from behind front-line obstruc­tion­ists.
They must be force­ful­ly brought under arrest swift­ly and deci­sive­ly. These actions send an unequiv­o­cal mes­sage that this kind of behav­ior will not be tol­er­at­ed.

The new police com­mis­sion­er (sol­dier) major gen­er­al Anthony Anderson. The for­mer head of the FLA, for­mer and first National secu­ri­ty advis­er.

The police high com­mand con­tin­ues to brag about its train­ing though clear­ly its train­ing needs to be thrown out and a train­ing pro­gram adopt­ed which reflects the chal­lenges offi­cers face.
The changes being made today, includ­ing the change at the top in which a non-police com­mis­sion­er is foist­ed on offi­cers are made against the police, not for the police.
It is not the first time it has been done, but we lose sight of the real­i­ty if we ignore the inep­ti­tude of the high com­mand to effec­tu­ate prac­ti­cal com­mon sense approach­es which made the inter­lop­ing pos­si­ble in the first place.

For most of the thou­sands of rank and file offi­cers of the JCF who have the option to leave the depart­ment I would humbly sug­gest that you find alter­na­tive employ­ment.
Simply put, many Jamaicans are inher­ent­ly cor­rupt anti-law enforce­ment peo­ple, Transparency International year­ly report­ing gives a rea­son­able assess­ment of the true numer­i­cal depth of that cor­rup­tion.

To oth­ers who do not have the means to leave study up on your laws and police duties. Use the laws to your advan­tage, do the job and do it well.
If their crim­i­nal enhance­ment agency INDECOM charge you when you car­ry out your sworn func­tion fight them to the privy coun­cil, you will win.
When you win sue for hun­dreds of mil­lions of dol­lars, you will win.