Chicago police recruits first to receive training on new use-of-force policies

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson. (Photo: WTTW)

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson (Photo: WTTW)

Chicago police recruits will be the first to undergo training on the new use-of-force policies introduced in May to emphasize sanctity of life, de-escalation and accountability.

According to a press release from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office, the new set of policies will be part of a rigorous training plan and will become effective in the fall of 2017. The policies were drafted based on public feedback, community meetings and focus groups.

“As we welcome the next class of recruits, I am encouraged by the number of Chicagoans who are committed to be a part of the change that will shape CPD’s future,” said CPD Superintendent Eddie Johnson. “They will benefit from new use of force training, a renewed focus on the importance of being a real partner with the communities we serve, and understanding the many cultures that make Chicago a great city. I am confident that they will leave the Academy well prepared to be a trusted resource to the public and help make our city safer.”

As part of the new policies, officers will be required to use de-escalation techniques when possible and will be prohibited from firing to protect property, firing warning shots, or from firing into crowds, moving vehicles or buildings.

People threatening self-harm or suicide will no longer be treated as assailants, and use of force will not be allowed against those solely exercising their First Amendment rights. Use of force will also be prohibited as retaliation or punishment, and officers must document all incidents.

The training of the 86 new recruits is set to last six months.