Use of Force
Our use of force training program is extensive.
- POST requires officers to receive a minimum of 62 hours in arrest control techniques, 64 hours in firearms, and there is no requirement for Taser training in the Law Enforcement Training Academy.
- We send our new non-certified officers to the Jefferson County and Lakewood Combined Academy, and they exceed the minimum hours requirement with 88 hours trained in arrest control techniques, 92 hours in firearms, and 8 hours in Taser.
- POST mandates 12 hours of continuing education in arrest control techniques, firearms and driving with a minimum of 1 hour dedicated to each of those areas. The state also requires 4 hours of proper holds and restraints training in a 5 year period.
- CALEA accreditation requires annual use of force training in lethal weapons and Tasers and biennial training in less lethal weapons. All instructors are certified in the area they train to include handgun instructors, rifle instructors, less lethal impact munitions instructors, oleoresin capsicum aerosol instructors (pepper spray), Taser instructors, and arrest control instructors.
- Our arrest control program consists of a blend of Krav Maga Worldwide and Pressure Point Control Tactics (PPCT) training. PPCT was the first subject control system designed based on tactical, legal and medical research. PPCT focuses on two primary areas: controlling low-level resistance with fingertip touch pressure to nerve pressure points and controlling high-level resistance with defensive counter strikes and the baton, which produce motor dysfunctions and controlled stuns.
- Annually, all officers are required to review our use of force policy.
- Officers have received an annual average of 10.5 hours in firearms training and 2.5 hours in Taser training since 2017.
- Officers receive an annual average of 4 hours in arrest control techniques, with the baton being incorporated into that training every other year.
- One hour of oleoresin capsicum aerosol (pepper spray) training is received every other year.
- In 2019, we implemented Less Lethal Impact Munitions training during our in-service training program with 1.5 hours being taught in both 2019 and 2020.
The Golden Police Department has implemented a robust process to review police use of force incidents. The process requires that all incidents of use of force be recorded in our computer software program thus making them trackable. The process includes a board of members who review the incident and related policies to determine if the actions of the member were within or outside of policy. The board is comprised of the Deputy Chief, Patrol Captain, the Support Services Captain, one non-sworn member, and subject matter experts from the disciplines of driving, firearms, and use of force. After review by the Board the packet is forwarded to the Chief of Police for final review. All incidents found to be in violation of policy are addressed by the division head and/or the member’s direct supervisor. As warranted, training and/or corrective action is taken. Dependent on the review process, the matter may be reassigned for investigation as an internal affairs complaint to be conducted by the Professional Standards Unit. Annually, the department conducts an analysis of its use of force incidents, policies and practices.
Should an officer be involved in a deadly force encounter, the incident will be investigated by the Jefferson County Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT). The team is comprised of highly trained and skilled investigators, working under the authority of the District Attorney and comprised of personnel from participating law enforcement agencies within the district and the District Attorney’s Office. The role of the team is to fully investigate incidents in which any law enforcement officer within the Judicial District uses deadly force, or attempts to use deadly force, against a human being while acting under the color of official law enforcement duties. At the request of the involved agency’s CEO, the CIRT may investigate other use of force situations resulting in deaths, in-custody deaths or other non-traffic situations involving injury or death where an outside investigation may assist in ensuring the integrity of the case.
Upon completion of the CIRT investigation the District Attorney makes the determination as to whether or not the incident was a criminal law violation as well as what if any charges are to be filed.
Learn more about the Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT)