FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 5, 2020
In response to the murder of George Floyd, the Charlottesville Police Department has received numerous media and community requests for information relating to bias-based policing, de-escalation and our body-worn cameras.
The Department of Criminal Justice Services, (DCJS), which is the governing organization for the Commonwealth of Virginia, mandates the following biennially in order to be certified as a law enforcement officer:
Cultural Diversity/Bias-Based Policing (2 hours)
Legal Training (4 hours)
Elective Courses (38 hours)
CPD officers also attend a 40-hour de-escalation course to become members of the Thomas Jefferson Crisis Intervention Team (CIT). To date, more than 85 percent of all CPD officers are certified CIT members.
- This training has a direct application for the de-escalation of all encounters for those in crisis, but has a mental health focus. Our Training Unit is also moving forward with an annual refresher course for all CIT-trained officers.
Since July 2019, all members of CPD who started at the Central Shenandoah Criminal Justice Training Academy have been given two hours of specific de-escalation instruction. This course focuses on the following:
- Effective communication, identifying subject stressors in order to mitigate and lessen tactical interventions.
- CSCJTA has also conducted scenario-based training of common calls in order to practice de-escalation concepts in a more stressful environment.
Since July 2019, CPD has provided the opportunity for Response to Resistance training every other month for two hours.
- This training includes the practical application of de-escalation concepts, focusing on tactical decision-making, which provides time for an individual’s emotional regulation, unambiguous communications, minimizing the application of force, and checking the well-being of the individual once control is established.
In addition to previously disclosed trainings, CPD participated in eight hours of de-escalation training in June 2018. CPD also employs a certified trainer in Fair and Impartial Policing, which is a program funded by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services.
CPD budgeted for the use of Body-Worn Cameras for all sworn personnel in 2015 and the BWCs were deployed midyear 2016. Effective April 1, 2018, BWCs were required equipment for patrol personnel. Our Mobile Recording Systems policy states:
“Body-worn camera activation shall occur at the commencement of law enforcement activity, or as soon thereafter as is practical and safe under the circumstances. An officer is not required to activate the BWC if activation would jeopardize the safety of himself or any other person(s).”
The entire policy is available here.
CPD also posts annual crime statistics, internal affairs/complaint data, investigative detentions and “use of force” summaries, which are also available on our website here. More specifically, CPD’s policies including “Response to Resistance”are posted on our website and can be accessed here.
The Charlottesville Police Department is committed to providing the best training and tools possible for our officers, as we work to promote greater transparency and improving relationships with our most vulnerable communities. We are committed to changing the culture of our department to reflect the needs of all Charlottesville residents, as we embrace a 21st Century model of policing.
Public Information Officer
Charlottesville Police Department