Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. It’s Always Easier. . .

 

When I joined in 1981, the Albuquerque Police Department had a technique for restraining unruly suspects called “Total Appendage Restraint Procedure” or TARP. Despite the grandiose name, it simply meant cuffing one ankle with a set of leg irons, looping the chain around the chain of the handcuffs the arrestee had on (behind their back, of course) and cuffing the other ankle. The prisoner was thus trussed with bent knees, unable punch or kick and with limited mobility to bite or head-butt. We were taught how to do this in the police academy, but I don’t recall any instruction on the policy for monitoring the person so restrained. We were told to call it TARP and not “hogtie” or “suitcase.”

All was well until the late ’90s. An officer put a TARPed prisoner into the back of his car, face-down. When he got to the jail, the suspect was dead. It turns out that if you lay someone prone who has vascular or lung problems or is obese, is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and/or is agitated, they may die. The cause is something called “positional asphyxia.”

As a result of this, we were ordered to immediately stop using the Total Appendage Restraint Procedure. Shortly thereafter, every officer received extensive training on a new process called “Passive Restraint System,” or PRS. Gone were the leg irons. Instead, the PRS had looped nylon straps that could be cinched around the ankles. These still attached to the handcuffs, by another nylon strap. The legs were no longer bent, and the suspect had the ability to stand or sit. In addition, new policies for avoiding positional asphyxia were drilled into us. Arrestees were not to be laid prone, we were not allowed to put pressure on the torso, back, neck or head, and prisoners being taken to jail in the PRS had to ride seated, with a second officer in the back seat to monitor them. The Department also made it clear that not following these rules would result in severe disciplinary action.

That was several years before I retired in 2003. So, approximately twenty years ago, the local yokels in the hick town of Albuquerque figured out how to not kill people in the manner that George Floyd died. That a Minneapolis police officer thought nothing of putting a person in that position, and that none of the other officers objected to it indicates widespread incompetence throughout the leadership of the department. This and the response to the inevitable riots that occurred shows that the leadership of the city and state are equally inept.

One of the things I learned as a police officer is that it is always easier to enforce the law with the law-abiding. That may seem a bit facile: “Of course, because they don’t break the law.” But it also means that when you do have to arrest or cite them, they are a lot less likely to run, fight, curse and spit at you, or file a false complaint with internal affairs. Unfortunately, there are some officers who find ways to avoid the hassle. I would usually average ten DWI, two domestics and five felony arrests a month. There were officers on the same shift who didn’t arrest a single DWI or domestic violence offender for months at a time.

And the petit fascist leaders of various states and municipalities know this as well. That’s why they readily closed honest businesses, shut down parks and beaches, forbade even tiny social gatherings, and made us all wear masks. They knew that law-abiding people would largely go along with it. And arresting hairdressers, surfers, and sunbathers is a lot easier than getting rid of drug dealers. They whined about the protests against their diktats, but just because it made them look bad. They knew they were safe, even when some of the protesters were carrying guns. What is the score for police officers attacked, businesses vandalized or looted, freeways blocked, buildings and cars burned at the anti-lockdown protests? Zero.

The events of the last week have shown that the entire thing was just a power-grab and charade. How many mayors have told the current crowds of protesters to go back home for their own safety? Have any mayors have even come out from behind their wall of cops to talk to the protesters? Has Governor Cuomo stood up in front of them and said “The virus is death, don’t gather in large groups?” No, of course not. This means that either they don’t care about endangering minorities and young people, or the entire crisis was a lie. Or they are too scared to enforce the law with actual criminals.

Either way, the lockdown is over. Now.

Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

Published in Policing
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  1. Arahant Member

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    • #1
    • June 3, 2020, at 2:20 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  2. KentForrester Moderator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Aha! You’re up early again, Arahant.

    Jose, really interesting essay from the inside. Thanks.

    • #2
    • June 3, 2020, at 2:35 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  3. Daniel Brass Coolidge

    I heard Adam Carolla say this on his show and I think it is correct. The reason that cop kept his knee on that guy’s neck for so long was because the crowd was screaming for him to stop. That want to be tough guy cop wanted to show the mere citizens that he can’t be told what to do. What an a-hole. I hope he rots in jail.

    • #3
    • June 3, 2020, at 4:38 AM PDT
    • 11 likes
  4. Judge Mental Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    • #4
    • June 3, 2020, at 5:20 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  5. Susan Quinn Contributor

    Thanks, Joe. Great explanation from your own experience. I am beyond angry with all of this. I just wish I knew what to do.

    • #5
    • June 3, 2020, at 5:42 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  6. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Following Monday night’s rioting in NYC, Bill de Blasio was asked why he was allowing people to violate safe distancing and mask laws to protest while maintaining business and religious house of worship closures in the city. This was his answer:

    “When you see a nation, an entire nation, simultaneously grappling with extraordinary crisis seeded in 400 years of American racism, I’m sorry, that is not the same question as the understandably aggrieved store owner or the devout religious person who wants to go back to services,” said the mayor. “This is something that’s not about which side of the spectrum you’re on. It’s about a deep, deep American crisis. We have never seen anything quite like what we’ve seen in the last few days. This is a powerful, painful historical moment.”

    If the mayor truly believes COVID-19 is deadly in all situations, he’s in essence sentencing these people to the same type of painful deaths that tens of thousands of New Yorkers have suffered since March.

    If he doesn’t believe that, then the above quote is simply cover for the reality that he sees the #BLM protestors, the Antifa rioters, and the looters and arsonists in general, as his natural allies, and is willing to allow them freedom of expression while prohibiting believers of all faiths to exercise theirs. For people of faith, the mayor relishes being able to put down the ban hammer while shouting ‘coronavirus’, and his natural leftist beliefs makes him reflexively hostile to small businesses, and totally unconcerned whether or not they live or die.

    • #6
    • June 3, 2020, at 6:49 AM PDT
    • 14 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  7. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I think it’s about priorities and opportunism.

    Democrat officials really do believe the virus is dangerous. They also see the political value of fear and extraordinary powers.

    Democrats support the baseless protests, truly believing the nonsense peddled about racism. They also see the political value of wrecking Republicans’ prosperity before elections. 

    The Left is both deluded and nefarious. And they are in a habit of espousing self-contradictory beliefs.

    • #7
    • June 3, 2020, at 7:26 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  8. Arahant Member

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    Computer science?

    • #8
    • June 3, 2020, at 8:29 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  9. cirby Member

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    Good pepper spray is immensely worse than CS.

    When I did chemical warfare training in the USAF, the final test was “wear the mask in a tent full of the stuff, take a deep breath, and pull off the mask.” That tested the mask seal, and also served as a demonstration of how CS felt.

    I was the last person in line. When I took my mask off, I just stood there, for a long time. The tester finally pulled off his mask to check, his eyes teared up, and he ran out of the tent. I followed him at my leisure.

    It turns out that a certain percentage of the population is more or less immune to CS unless you soak them in it.

    • #9
    • June 3, 2020, at 10:13 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  10. Al French of Damascus Moderator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    Computer science?

    As opposed to CN – tear gas. C.S. is a more effective form.

    CN = Cry Now

    CS = acrylic Sooner

    • #10
    • June 3, 2020, at 10:16 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  11. Arahant Member

    cirby (View Comment):

    When I did chemical warfare training in the USAF, the final test was “wear the mask in a tent full of the stuff, take a deep breath, and pull off the mask.” That tested the mask seal, and also served as a demonstration of how CS felt.

    I was the last person in line. When I took my mask off, I just stood there, for a long time. The tester finally pulled off his mask to check, his eyes teared up, and he ran out of the tent. I followed him at my leisure.

    It turns out that a certain percentage of the population is more or less immune to CS unless you soak them in it.

    Now, that is a great story.

    • #11
    • June 3, 2020, at 10:26 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  12. Arahant Member

    Al French of Damascus (View Comment):

    As opposed to CN – tear gas. C.S. is a more effective form.

    CN = Cry Now

    CS = Cry (corrected) Sooner

    The one you really have to watch out for is CD = Cry Der. It’s like a spider…in armor.

    • #12
    • June 3, 2020, at 10:44 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  13. Percival Thatcher
    Percival Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Al French of Damascus (View Comment):

    As opposed to CN – tear gas. C.S. is a more effective form.

    CN = Cry Now

    CS = Cry (corrected) Sooner

    The one you really have to watch out for is CD = Cry Der. It’s like a spider…in armor.

    Mind yourself, knave.

    • #13
    • June 3, 2020, at 10:52 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  14. Manny Member

    Thanks for your expertise and experience. That was interesting and very relevant. Can anyone tell my why the officers were restraining Floyd? Was he resisting arrest? I have not seen anything on that. If a criminal is not resisting arrest, why would they need to tie his legs and pin him down? Isn’t being handcuffed enough?

    • #14
    • June 3, 2020, at 11:11 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  15. Unsk Member

    Great post. 

    . “So, approximately twenty years ago, the local yokels in the hick town of Albuquerque figured out how to not kill people in the manner that George Floyd died. That a Minneapolis police officer thought nothing of putting a person in that position, and that none of the other officers objected to it indicates widespread incompetence throughout the leadership of the department.”

    Something smells in Minneapolis. Minneapolis for those who don’t know is one of the most politically correct cities in America. That 3 or 4 officers would be engaged in such a life threatening arrest that ended in death for a allegedly counterfeit $20 bill is absurd. 

    D. Brass: “The reason that cop kept his knee on that guy’s neck for so long was because the crowd was screaming for him to stop. That want to be tough guy cop wanted to show the mere citizens that he can’t be told what to do.”

    I think this comment gets to the root of the problem because not only the police but almost every bureaucrat has been given such a shield of immunity that they feel that they can do almost anything without any accountability or liability particularly criminal liability. The Constitution at it’s core was a document through it’s use of checks and balances and other measures that severely limits government abuse if correctly enforced , but the Leftist Legal establishment and the Courts have over the past 100 years whittled away many of the Constitutional protections against abuse to the point that government abuse is now rampant. Everywhere.

     

    • #15
    • June 3, 2020, at 12:26 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  16. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Daniel Brass (View Comment):

    I heard Adam Carolla say this on his show and I think it is correct. The reason that cop kept his knee on that guy’s neck for so long was because the crowd was screaming for him to stop. That want to be tough guy cop wanted to show the mere citizens that he can’t be told what to do. What an a-hole. I hope he rots in jail.

    This is interesting for two reasons. First the preferred position for Wuhan Flu cases in respiratory distress is prone, the opposite of the topic of this post. I took care of a lot of ARDS cases and they were usually on their back, but the other has now been recommended.

    Second, there is reason to believe that the toxicology report will come back with fentanyl, possibly at overdose levels.

    Too many people have this cop already convicted. Maybe he was a bad cop although there are stories about those “excessive force” complaints. 

    • #16
    • June 3, 2020, at 12:29 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  17. Susan Quinn Contributor

    Unsk (View Comment):
    I think this comment gets to the root of the problem because not only the police but almost every bureaucrat has been given such a shield of immunity that they feel that they can do almost anything without any accountability or liability particularly criminal liability.

    I don’t know if that’s true, @unsk. If it were true, you wouldn’t have so many cops backing off of enforcement because they were concerned they would get in trouble. Not only that, the statistics show that the numbers of deaths by police have gone down. There are always some bad cops, and certainly there are many parts of government we could point to who abuse their power, but on the whole, I don’t think cops do.

    • #17
    • June 3, 2020, at 12:30 PM PDT
    • Like
  18. Arahant Member

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):
    Too many people have this cop already convicted.

    Exactly.

    • #18
    • June 3, 2020, at 12:32 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  19. Barfly Member

    cirby (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    Good pepper spray is immensely worse than CS.

    When I did chemical warfare training in the USAF, the final test was “wear the mask in a tent full of the stuff, take a deep breath, and pull off the mask.” That tested the mask seal, and also served as a demonstration of how CS felt.

    I was the last person in line. When I took my mask off, I just stood there, for a long time. The tester finally pulled off his mask to check, his eyes teared up, and he ran out of the tent. I followed him at my leisure.

    It turns out that a certain percentage of the population is more or less immune to CS unless you soak them in it.

    You were the last person in line – you got the lowest dose of anyone in your cohort. 

    CS is some nasty, irritating gas. It makes your eyes water and nose run first, and if you get enough you’ll vomit. Nobody is immune, but different people respond to different doses.

    • #19
    • June 3, 2020, at 1:21 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  20. cirby Member

    Barfly (View Comment):

    cirby (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    JosePluma: Or maybe it turns out that pepper spray and tear gas kill the Wuhan Virus. If so, I’ve missed it in the literature.

    It’s certainly worth a try.

    Those don’t work. You need CS.

    Good pepper spray is immensely worse than CS.

    When I did chemical warfare training in the USAF, the final test was “wear the mask in a tent full of the stuff, take a deep breath, and pull off the mask.” That tested the mask seal, and also served as a demonstration of how CS felt.

    I was the last person in line. When I took my mask off, I just stood there, for a long time. The tester finally pulled off his mask to check, his eyes teared up, and he ran out of the tent. I followed him at my leisure.

    It turns out that a certain percentage of the population is more or less immune to CS unless you soak them in it.

    You were the last person in line – you got the lowest dose of anyone in your cohort.

    CS is some nasty, irritating gas. It makes your eyes water and nose run first, and if you get enough you’ll vomit. Nobody is immune, but different people respond to different doses.

    Actually, I probably got the highest dose – they kept setting off new canisters. The instructor’s reaction should have told you that.

    • #20
    • June 3, 2020, at 1:55 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  21. Joe Boyle Member

    I went through BCT at Ft Ord CA. We were given classes on how to don a gas mask. And then came the tear gas confidence demonstration. In the tent a tear gas capsule was burning and you had to take off your mask and state name,rank and serial number before you could leave the tent. After that in formation, cadre showed red smoke, green smoke and LA smog. The smog was tear gas. Most of the formation ran, helmets and rifles flying everywhere. Only a few of us donned masks. Later in my career those capsules supplied much fun. As a training NCO I simply requisitioned them from the ammo supply point. During field training one could put one the engine block of a parked jeep, sit back and wait for the fun.

    • #21
    • June 4, 2020, at 9:05 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  22. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    Aaron Miller (View Comment):

    I think it’s about priorities and opportunism.

    Democrat officials really do believe the virus is dangerous. They also see the political value of fear and extraordinary powers.

    Democrats support the baseless protests, truly believing the nonsense peddled about racism. They also see the political value of wrecking Republicans’ prosperity before elections.

    The Left is both deluded and nefarious. And they are in a habit of espousing self-contradictory beliefs.

    When the leaders of a political movement coat the delusion and the nefarious activities with the idea of superlative virtue, all hell can break loose.

    • #22
    • June 5, 2020, at 2:05 PM PDT
    • Like
    • This comment has been edited.
  23. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Unsk (View Comment):
    I think this comment gets to the root of the problem because not only the police but almost every bureaucrat has been given such a shield of immunity that they feel that they can do almost anything without any accountability or liability particularly criminal liability.

    I don’t know if that’s true, @unsk. If it were true, you wouldn’t have so many cops backing off of enforcement because they were concerned they would get in trouble. Not only that, the statistics show that the numbers of deaths by police have gone down. There are always some bad cops, and certainly there are many parts of government we could point to who abuse their power, but on the whole, I don’t think cops do.

    In my county in Northern Calif, morale is low among the citizens. 

    We had one police officer I encountered who was a renegade. He once threatened to kill me when I suggested that he give me a warning. (I was doing 57 ,mph in a 55 mph zone.) This suggestion caused him to flip out and start screaming that I had no respect for authority – No respect for Authority!

    Over the years following that experience, I had discussed the issue of police as renegades with neighbors. Most of us were of the consensus that we would handle problems on our own – cops seemed to escalate too many situations.

    A few years later, this authority-driven cop was headline news. It turns out that he had been molesting a local 14 year old for three years.

    Again and again I read in the papers about police being called to a scene where a mentally ill person is not behaving correctly. (That by the way is the definition of mental illness. A scrambled brain doesn’t make for good behavior.) In one local instance a 30 something mentally ill guy was trashing his own mobile home. The cops issued orders for him to settle down. He didn’t – so they shot and killed him. What made it doubly tragic was his main care provider – his mom – had taken her first vacation in 22 years, thinking maybe things would be alright while she relaxed.

    As someone who took care of the elderly and the brain damaged, rule number one about mental illness is you don’t issue a command, then threaten “Do this or Else!” That style of interaction escalates the problem. If the cops had left and gotten donuts, in 45 minutes the guy most likely would have been calm as a lamb. Apparently police training does not teach the “waiting it out” concept. It is a concept that is desperately needed.

    • #23
    • June 5, 2020, at 2:19 PM PDT
    • Like
  24. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Jack Dunphy has now weighed in in National Review and his opinions will not please the lynch the cops crowd.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2020/06/the-george-floyd-killing-a-police-officers-view/

    Now a narrative has been erected and universally adopted, one that brands Chauvin as a racist murderer and George Floyd as a martyr to the never-ending quest for social justice. And who would dare question this narrative, with the video of Floyd’s death as unambiguous as it is?

    But there are reasons to question it, and an honest search for truth demands that it be questioned.

    On May 28, three days after Floyd’s death, there emerged the first hint that the narrative may have been too hastily constructed and that its foundation was less than solid. The Hennepin County medical examiner issued a press release citing preliminary results from George Floyd’s autopsy. “The cause and manner of death,” it read, “is currently pending further testing and investigation.”

    This should have given a dispassionate observer pause. Surely, one might have assumed, an autopsy would have revealed evidence of the injuries Floyd had suffered and that no further testing and investigation should be required. This first bit of equivocation from the medical examiner went all but unnoticed in the media as the protests and rioting in Minneapolis grew larger and spread across the country. Later came another press release, this one containing more — but far from complete — details on why Floyd died. The cause of death was listed as “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression.” It went on to list “other significant conditions: Arteriosclerotic and hypertensive heart disease; fentanyl intoxication; recent methamphetamine use.”

    Will anyone back down ? I doubt it.

    • #24
    • June 5, 2020, at 2:31 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  25. Barfly Member

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):
    Jack Dunphy has now weighed in in National Review and his opinions will not please the lynch the cops crowd.

    I don’t know anyone in that crowd, and as far as I can tell those people aren’t likely to read National Review, or anything else for that matter. Do you know anyone in the “lynch the cops” crowd? (Not some garbage lefty; I mean someone we’d otherwise respect.)

    I think it’s well known among the rational that Mr. Floyd contributed to his own death by his drug use, his criminal act before the arrest, and quite likely by resisting during the arrest. Frankly – yawn. We all know all that already.

    @jackdunphy is a good guy, but his article is representative of one-half of America’s police problem. His article may be true, but it is quite beside the real point that matters: Mr. Floyd was in custody and restraints. Under those circumstances, the police were responsible for him. If they’d sat him up he’d be alive. Every other factor is one hundred times less relevant – to the current situation, and to the broader distrust of police.

    That distrust is real and merited. I can’t help but see Jack’s article in that light.

    [Edit: I could be wrong about the “still be alive if they’d sat him up.” But I don’t think so. And the knee on the neck is so outrageously unprofessional and incompetent I still find it hard to believe.]

    • #25
    • June 6, 2020, at 9:00 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
    • This comment has been edited.