GRPD shares insight at use-of-force training class

Posted at 5:04 PM, Jun 08, 2015
and last updated 2015-06-09 08:45:38-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-- From St. Louis to New York, "use-of-force" within a police department has gotten a lot of attention lately.

One West Michigan police agency hopes to shed light into how its officers are trained to interact with the community. Grand Rapids police invited FOX 17 cameras into its special Use-of-Force Orientation Training Monday.

The day-long class is typically reserved for certain city employees and local leaders. It's a candid look into the particular training and decision making officers use on the streets. The class covers everything from the types of weapons they use to the ways of deescalating a situation.

GRPD says out of the roughly 15,000 arrests they make every year, less than 1% of their calls involve use of force. About 2-3 suspects are seriously hurt from these encounters each year.

"We want the public and the media to understand, we have nothing to hide," explained Sergeant Terry Dixon.

"We have a job to do and that's to serve and protect and enforce the law in this city.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t share why we do what we do. If you understand why law enforcement affects law the way we do, then you are more empathetic as to why we do the job that we do. You understand.”

This is the department's third class.

Use of Force training Grand Rapids