Walk in po­lice of­fi­cers’ shoes be­fore you judge

Baltimore Sun - - FROM PAGE ONE - Pa­tri­cia A. Leepa, El­li­cott City

Be­fore any cit­i­zen is ap­pointed to review and judge Bal­ti­more City po­lice of­fi­cers (“Of­fi­cers charged in Gray case hon­ored at con­ser­va­tive gala,” Sept. 27), they should be re­quired to com­plete he fol­low­ing:

First, ac­com­pany an of­fi­cer for an en­tire shift, day or night, in­clud­ing over­time for a full week in the ju­ris­dic­tion they are to judge. Sec­ond, par­tic­i­pate in a sim­u­lated sce­nario where they have to make a split-sec­ond de­ci­sion whether to fire a weapon or not at a sus­pected per­pe­tra­tor. And fi­nally, hand­cuff a com­bat­ive sus­pect with­out touch­ing them — also known as us­ing “ex­ces­sive force.”

Shifts in­volve four 10-hour days or five 8-hour days, but an of­fi­cer’s work­day isn’t over just be­cause the shift ends. Af­ter deal­ing with a sus­pect for hours, de­tailed re­ports must be writ­ten and pro­cessed. A 10-hour shift can eas­ily turn into 15 hours. For­get about eat­ing, as there’s no time, and the same ap­plies to bath­room stops. And then the of­fi­cer is re­quired to show up for their next shift with lit­tle or no sleep and do it all over again.

Stop try­ing to po­lice the po­lice and let them do their job.

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