Article Review : Law Enforcement Restraint Essays

Article Review : Law Enforcement Restraint Essays

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The article “Law enforcement restraint in the use of deadly force within the context of ‘the deadly mix’” examines the reports of using excessive force by the American law enforcement officers. A survey was given to 295 law enforcement officers across the United States of America in hopes to gather insight regarding their experiences with using discretion towards the use of force. The study conducted by the researchers shows that 70 per cent of the police officers sampled had been in a situation where they could have used deadly force legally, but chose not to. Police officers exercised restraint in deadly force in 93 per cent of the situation in which they could have legally fired their weapon.(Pinizzotto et al.) The article uses the context of “the deadly mix” to provide explanations as to why police officers chose not to use deadly force.
The next two sections in article provide examples on practicing restraint or making the decision to use deadly force. The decision section provides an example with the same defender in both situations, but two different law enforcement officers. The two examples take place at night and are typical traffic stops that police officers make on a daily basis. The first example provides views from both the offender and police officers point of view. The police officers and offender are both very attentive of one another studying the non-verbal communication of each other. The offender gives brief examples as he watches the police officers from his mirrors inside the car. The offender notices that the police officer never takes his eyes off the offender and upon approaching the vehicle maintains control by placing his hand on his firearm as he approaches the vehicle. These non-verbal signs alert the...


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... dynamic between the offender, the officer and the situation. In the context of ‘the deadly mix’ theory both situational and attitudinal factors are incorporated.

I agree with the writers on the limitations of the research because of the little amount of literature research done on the subject. Upon doing research outside of the deadly force paradigm, I tried to search for more research in regards to restraint, but came up short. Research that has been done on restraint was conducted by the same research team that wrote this article. I felt that including their paper would be bias considering they stated that more research needed to be completed on the topic, but still took it into account. The restraint model reveals that law enforcement entities can ensure the safety of the officer, the public and the offender in maintaining order and justice. (Pinizzotto et al.)

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