Connecticut police officers getting new use-of-force training
In Connecticut, police officers will get updated use-of-force training after a new curriculum was approved Thursday.
This new training emphasizes de-escalation - how to stop a police encounter from getting to the point where deadly force is necessary.
"When time is of the essence, they can ask themselves one question: 'Do I have to?'" says Milford Police Academy Commander Lt. Joe Sikorsky.
The state Police Officer Standards and Training Council says the new training will be a lot more interactive, featuring videos and real-world simulations.
"A properly trained police officer should know that force is the least desirable option, only to be used when necessary," Yale University security director Duane Lovello says.
Last year, state lawmakers passed a sweeping police reform package that says when officers can use deadly force - they have to "reasonably determine" that "no available reasonable alternative" exists.
Police cannot block a suspect's breathing and if they see other officers use excessive force, they must intervene.
"While they'll make those decisions in split seconds, that we, our departments, the media, the courts, and certainly the public, will dissect these decisions frame-by-frame," says Milford Police Chief Keith Mello.
Officers will now have to get use-of-force training every year instead of every three years.
As for the rest of the curriculum, all 9,000 police officers in the state will have to complete it by the end of 2022.