Triggers In Law Enforcement

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Triggers Certain behaviors alert officers to danger. These behaviors are also known as “triggers.” defines the word “trigger” as: “Anything, as an act or event that serves as a stimulus and initiates or precipitates a reaction or series of reaction” Example: An officer pulls over a vehicle and makes contact with the driver. The officer makes it clear, he would like the driver to keep their hands in plain view. “Can you keep your hands on the steering wheel please?,” the officer requests. The officer then repeats the orders to the citizen; “I need you to place your hands where I can see them.” “Keep them on the steering wheel.” The officer was not rude with his commands. He did not raise his voice toward the driver. His…show more content…
This is how law enforcement officers are trained in their academies, and those who have done time on the streets as a patrol officer, know those experiences weigh heavy on how one reacts in certain situations. Both academy training and work experience shape our officers. They know what they see most every day. In this case the officer drew his weapon and warned the driver to listen or the officer may have had to shoot, fearing the driver was reaching for a weapon. When a police officer is trained by their experience on patrol, also known as “on the job training” by what they see on the streets, so much more is learned. Survival is the one of our traits. When a police officer gives a person commands or orders and the subject is ignoring them, the police officer begins to think of other things that may be going on with the encounter. The “trigger” from his expertise on the street, and training from his academy, alerted him with several thoughts, none of which were good. His blood pressure began to rise and the officer became a bit more edgy. “Place your hands where I can see them!” He now shouted as he drew his gun from his holster. The driver continues to reach around in the vehicle until he saw the officer pull his handgun. “I’m not telling you again, put your hands where I can see them or we are going to have some problems.” The officer now raises his handgun. Suddenly the driver began to cooperate. The officer re-holstered his handgun, removed the driver from the car and placed him in the back seat of the police car. Because of the manner the driver conducted himself, the officer re-approached the vehicle (with the driver now detained) looked inside and saw the butt of a semi-automatic handgun. The officer then retrieved the handgun, ran it and it came back

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