New Use of Force Rules at LAPD

The civilian board that oversees the Los Angeles Police Department considered Tuesday a policy change - that would require officers to try to de-escalate confrontations before using force.

The new rule is an enhancement of a longstanding LAPD policy of, "reverence for life," and is intended to further reduce the number of times officers fire their guns.

The new line added to the existing policy: "Officers shall attempt to control an incident using time, distance, communications, and available resources in an effort to de-escalate the situation, whenever it is safe and reasonable to do so."

State and federal laws governing officers' use of force and self defense remain unchanged.

The policy shift, however, would create new criteria for how the Police Commission evaluates the performance of an officer following a shooting or other significant use of force.

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