Moving Home Page Forums Operational Leadership SWAT Command Decision-Making And Leadership I: Federman v. County of Kern Could video/audio assisted in determining if Federman was surrendering or aggressing the officers?

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    • #4501
    • #6362
      mmWayne Griffin

      I do believe that video/audio would have assisted greatly in determining if Federman was surrendering or aggressing the officers. Cameras are non bias. Cameras don’t lie. Camera don’t change their story. Cameras don’t forget. All they have are the accounts of the officers and others involved. This would have been a great tool to have in this case.

    • #6483
      mmDrew Leblanc

      I think you can look at audio/cameras from two different perspectives. One they will always show an account of the situation and it will always be there as a training tool to assist in future assignments, but the officers were already shown to have escalated the scene. All the camera would have done was shown even poorer situational awareness by team members during the active scene. I believe they are good in instances for training purposes and will allow us to be more transparent in our duties.

    • #6697
      Jeffrey Brown

      We have seen that audio and video does not always tell the whole story. But, it certainly may have cleared things up in this case. Since video/audio was not in use we will never know. I believe if video was in use the officers would have been granted immunity. In my opinion, it is a great tool for teams to video/audio operations not just for documentation and later litigation, but it is also great for reviewing performance.

    • #7684
      mmJacob Taylor

      I believe they would give you a portion of what happened, but relying on a very small view of what was happening, and lack of “human orientation” make video something very difficult to explain sometimes.

    • #7742
      Anthony Kies

      Video and audio would have most definitely assisted with the facts as it would have been on video which would be much more factual for the courts to physically see. The outcome however wouldn’t have changed and thus this case would have ended the same way it did.

    • #7748
      mmChris Eklund

      Video/audio would have helped to show the circumstances as they occurred. The operator perspective however is their own.

    • #7962
      Max Yakovlev

      Video/audio would of helped but its only part of the puzzle. Officer’s reaction and perspective is also in play and need to be taken into account.

    • #8069
      Adam Bradford

      Video and audio would have definitely helped ascertain whether Federman was surrendering or aggressing. A camera records actions, it doesn’t lie, it doesn’t have emotion.

    • #8330
      Jon Thompson

      Video and/or audio footage may have certainly cleared up whether or not Federman was surrendering or aggressing, but it doesn’t change the fact that the officers were there on a mental health evaluation. We cannot unnecessarily and unlawfully escalate a situation and then claim, “gee, he was being aggressive” as a cover for our actions. The short answer is that video and audio may have only changed the amount of zero’s on the check written to Federman’s family.

    • #8344
      Jesse Laintz

      It is hard to say that it could help, but I don’t think it would have hurt anything. There are instances where audio/video does not tell the entire story, and can even lead to more questions or unknowns. When it comes to this case and the surrendering or aggression of the subject it could have helped in showing such possibilities. So I do believe it “Could…assist” as the questions asks, but it is unknown without having it.

    • #8494
      mmShawn Wilson

      Does it matter; If I place myself in a position of jeopardy and then kill a subject on a mental health call. De-escalation, in this case I did not see any efforts to de-escalate the situation. Every move seemed to be offensive in nature and escalate the situation. “We are not at war with our citizens” why would one push a mental health call to the point of lethal force without using any de-escalation. It does matter what time period this happened in; Federman was an American citizen just like us. The Constitution has not changed.

    • #8502
      Thomas Carroll

      It may assist but video/audio is not always as helpful as we want it to be. More importantly, the focus of the investigation should be on the leadership and decision-making. I try not to be the Monday morning quarterback but I will always learn from others mistakes so I do not re-live them. This reinforces the need to use the critical thinking decision-making model and the importance of having a good professional development program.

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