Bruce Monkhouse said:
But you 'call for a taser backup"? Just wow....this is getting silly.
I can deliver that "chemical irritant" from a very fair distance and if you say it isn't effective, then practice it more. Pain compliance is not even going to slow down that lad,....sucking for enough oxygen to keep fighting will.
Yes. Tasers, when effective, incapacitate. They aren’t pain compliance when employed in probe mode; neuromuscular incapacitation is achieved by putting enough current between two points in the body to lock up the musculature. Chemicals debilitate, but we’re all trained, through our own exposure to same, to fight through it. That training is as much about us knowing that the *other* guy can fight through as it is about knowing *we* can. I’ve been tasered twice as well. If it connects, you’re generally going down and completely unable to fight it. Someone sucking wind can still swing a knife. You don’t bum rush a guy holding a knife.
With lethal overwatch in place, tasers are absolutely appropriate to have shoulder-to-shoulder with an officer with lethal. Legacy cartridges are good for about 21’, the new ones are good for about 25’. Still not a comfortable distance from a knife, but they’re an option that can be safely used within the reactionary gap so long as your cover officer is switched on. Last time the guys in my crew had a knife stand-off that’s what happened; the first two members on scene had guns out (unfortunately the only guy qualified and equipped with 40mm was the first on scene and stuck with gun), and the third then was able to deploy taser. It took a couple shots to connect due to clothing, but it worked.
Taser would not have been ideal in this case due to the tight confines of the streetcar, but it was still the appropriate option given what’s on the road. Police don’t generally roll with extinguisher sized OC unless it’s a public order unit. It can work if the plan is to spray, distract, then hit them with a polyester pig pile, but that’s not really a sound COA up a set of streetcar stairs, in a doorway, against an offender with a knife.
SOP, had he not advanced and forced the shot, would have been contain, negotiate, and use time and space. That seemed to have been Forcillo’s intent, he just didn’t have time to do it. They might have elected to attempt taser, and it could certainly have worked if the guy with it was a good shot... But that still would have left Yatim up in a streetcar with a known knife immediately at hand and who knows what else in his pockets.
I recognize there are TTPs, resources, and capabilities that will be much more effective within an institution than in a street environment. The significant difference doesn’t make what I’m saying ‘silly’. I can’t speak for what you guys do or how. I can speak, from experience, to how we deal with a guy in a vehicle in a public setting who’s brandishing a blade. Fortunately in the few such situations I’ve been to, we’ve been able to talk things out while maintaining proper overwatch.
Forcillo did things as right as he could be expected to up until the second volley of shots. That inexcusable error is why he’s in prison.