The limits of pain compliance

Click image or click here to watch video

Pain compliance is quite literally the use of pain as a method to achieve compliance, and discourage resistance and aggressive behaviour. It’s an integral part of any police use of force continuum policies. However, its effectiveness varies greatly depending on the individual’s pain tolerance, mental state, and the intensity of the situation.

Individuals under the influence of drugs, experiencing a mental health crisis, or in a state of excited delirium might not respond as expected to pain compliance techniques. Adrenaline and other physiological factors can significantly diminish pain perception, leading to less effectiveness in gaining compliance and potentially escalating the situation to more extreme uses of force.

Pain compliance is not a substitute for physical control. It should not be seen as a primary strategy but rather a part of a broader set of tactics aimed at safely controlling and detaining individuals.

It’s crucial for law enforcement to have a clear objective when employing pain compliance and to be prepared to shift tactics if it’s not effective.

Continuous application of pain without gaining control can be perceived as excessive and lead to public scrutiny and distrust. In extreme cases, it can lead to serious injury and death, particularly when the subject is of poor health.

Training, skills, fitness and teamwork are the only answer.

The public’s perception of pain compliance is increasingly critical. With widespread access to information and a growing emphasis on police accountability, the use of force is under more scrutiny than ever. Law enforcement agencies need to ensure their personnel are well-trained in a variety of techniques, understand the implications of their actions, and are capable of making judicious decisions in the heat of the moment.

In conclusion, while pain compliance can be a part of law enforcement’s toolkit, it should be used judiciously and in conjunction with other tactics aimed at safely and efficiently resolving confrontations. Continuous training, public engagement, and a commitment to ethical practices are vital in maintaining public trust and ensuring the safety of both officers and those they serve.

The Norway Incident: Cop charged with assault after failing to control on the ground

Click image above or here to watch video

Bystanders and the court of public opinion

The failure of wristlocks and armbar takedowns

News coverage of the incident from Norway:

On October 30, Kevin Simensen, a 26-year-old man, was subjected to violence by the police. Initially, no one believed his account, but new surveillance footage has emerged that supports his claims.

The footage shows a police officer in his 30s repeatedly striking Simensen outside a gas station in Kongsberg. This video has gained significant attention recently. TV2 has also obtained another video that shows what happened immediately after the first surveillance footage. Simensen believes this second video was taken after he was pepper-sprayed and before his friend Kristian was hit with a baton.

Due to the surveillance footage, the case has taken a turn. The officer has been charged with violence and gross negligence in the line of duty. The police chief, Ole Sæverud, stated that the charged officer has not been in active duty since the video came to light.

Both Simensen and his friend Kristian Teigen appreciate the media attention the case is getting. They believe it’s crucial for people to realize that such incidents do happen in Norway. Teigen also mentioned that the police deleted some of the footage they had initially captured.

Simensen, who has been dealing with PTSD since the incident, is slowly reintegrating into society. He had previously served with NATO in the Mediterranean for six months.

The officer’s lawyer, Gry Schrøder Berger, stated that the video doesn’t show the entire sequence of events and that her client is currently struggling emotionally.

The case is now pending court evaluation.

https://www.tv2.no/nyheter/innenriks/ny-video-av-politivolden-foler-meg-makteslos/15697249/

The Buskerud District Court ruled that the officer’s use of force against Kevin Simensen was lawful. The officer had been accused of gross bodily harm after forcibly restraining Simensen, who was pepper-sprayed and hit multiple times with both a baton and a fist.

The ruling was not unanimous; one of the judges dissented, arguing that the officer’s actions were not in line with the police law’s guidelines on the use of force. The court’s majority opinion emphasized that Simensen did not cease resisting arrest and that the officer had little time to consider alternative actions.

The Special Unit for Police Affairs, which had been prosecuting the case, stated that they would review the court’s reasoning before deciding on whether to appeal. Kevin Simensen and his legal team expressed disappointment with the verdict, stating that it could further erode public trust in the legal system.

Ole Sæverud, the Police Chief in Kongsberg, has not yet commented on whether the acquitted officer will return to duty. He mentioned that the officer is currently suspended and that they would need to thoroughly review the verdict before making any decisions.

https://www.tv2.no/nyheter/innenriks/politimann-frikjent-i-kongsberg-saken/15877423/

Police officer shows how skills and fitness prevent injuries during arrest

This police officer demonstrates how fighting skills – grappling skills in particular – and physical strength and fitness translate to less harm for both suspects and officers in the real world.

The officer uses a body lock lift and takes him to the ground carefully, without slamming the head, then applies pressure and controls the suspect on the ground before applying handcuffs.

Note that the officer kneels on the head area for a moment during cuffing – this does not cause any harm to the suspect as no pressure is applied to the neck, and it is used for only a short time in transition.

The suspect does not appear to have any injuries, and does not appear to be suffering any pain or discomfort when he stands up.

No pepper spray, no batons, no Taser, no strikes, no gun.

Methods of control comparison – police vs MMA fighter Matt Serra

The methods used by police in this example are typical of those used by people who have very little grappling experience – holding wrists and pressing down on the head without controlling the body. Two police hold the man who has been arrested for possession of a knife in a public place, while a crowd gathers which becomes a safety concern for the officers. Although the methods used are not causing harm (the suspect is lying on his side rather than face down, most of the officer’s weight is on his own feet and the knee is pressed into the head rather than neck), the knee on the head resembles the George Floyd incident which could quickly incite the crowd to intervene.

It is very likely the man was actively resisting and attempting to escape custody before this video clip starts, however it would not make sense to continue once he saw that a crowd had gathered and was filming. Playing the victim only makes sense, whether it is right or wrong. This video resulted in the police officer being suspended.

Matt Serra, shown in the second video restraining a man who had just threatened restaurant staff and attempted to punch him, sits in the mount position which has the man immobilised. Serra controls the wrists only to prevent him from grabbing and hitting, not as the primary method of control. It also allows the man to breathe and causes very little discomfort.