Law Officers Gather for 'De-Escalation Training'

posted by 1200 WOAI - 

There have been no officer involved shootings involving San Antonio area officers recently, and that is not by accident, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Dozens of officers gathered at a north side church on Monday for 'de-escalation' training, which Sheriff Javier Salazar says is among the most challenging and sophisticated training a law officer can receive.

"In a situation like that, seconds count, and you have to rely on your instincts and training to tell you what might possibly be going on in a person's mind," the Sheriff said.

In many cases, 'de-escalation training' results not in the police officer not firing shots, but a troubled person not taking a rash act, like committing suicide.

Four San Antonio Police Officers were honored during the training.  Two officers from South Patrol were able to calm a potential jumper, and two officers from North Patrol used their skills to help a military veteran in crisis.

Salazar says with situations on the street frequently very tense, de-escalation training can mean not just the difference between life and death, but the difference between having communities and neighborhoods supporters of law enforcement, or become opponents of the police, like we saw over the weekend after a legally armed man was shot dead by police.

"On an easy day, they are going to save their agencies some money, some time, and some aggravation," Salazar said.  "But on a real bad day they are going to possibly save a life."

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