Sky News has produced a "hard-hitting" documentary playing on Monday and Tuesday showing American police officers getting a lesson in how police in the United Kingdom avoid shooting violent suspects.
Led by Chuck Wexler, a former hostage negotiator with the Boston PD, officers traveled across the Atlantic to see how Scottish police take down violent criminals without the use of deadly force. Sky News reports:
As the two sets of police officers met, Mr Wexler described how if confronted by a suspect holding a rock an American officer would pull out his gun.
"You're going to kill someone for throwing a rock. That's what you're gonna do," said Mr Wexler.
"How would society over here think about you shooting someone with a rock? They would not accept it."
The point of producing the documentary was to show how America can lessen the number of suspects killed by officers if the police were to employ different techniques, some of which include using shields and vehicles for non-lethal protection. They also learned different negotiating techniques. Sergeant Jim Young explained how he trains Scottish police:
The American style of policing, it's very authoritative. There's a difference of going in, straight up at this level, whereby you're ordering people, you're shouting at them. You can't go anywhere after that. But if you start down low you can adjust your communications to suit.
Sky News notes that in the last decade, armed Scottish police have only killed two suspects, while only one officer has been killed by a stabbing, in 1994. In contrast, 1,000 civilians were shot by police in 2015 alone, some of them unarmed, states the report.
Wexler, the American trainer, said, "It's about time that we step up and this is our chance. It's a crisis but it's also our chance to do the right thing."