I have an incredible amount of respect for our country’s police officers. In the military, when we deploy, we go overseas knowing that in 6,7,12, or 15 months down the line, we get to come home. We have to keep our game face on for a set amount of time, focus on hunting down the enemy, and then we come home. It struck me the last time we were working with LAPD that they don’t have an end date when they can flip the switch off. Every day at work, for them, is game day. For the entire length of their career, they are home.
Working the same neighborhoods for years at a time gives the police an incredible advantage. They know the streets just as good as the criminals who work them. They know who the bad guys are and they know who they need to focus their efforts on. The problem is, even when they catch a criminal, there is the chance that they get off and don’t get convicted. If the judge throws out any evidence or the jury doubts anything the prosecution presented, the criminal walks. That’s got to be frustrating.
In that arena, we can help. From my experiences with LAPD different task-forces, their ability to find criminals is incredible. They’ve got the recognition part down. Where we can help is the next step, which is being able to effectively communicate what they saw. Using the domains, we can quantify and describe exactly what caused our interest on those specific people.
Instead of only being able to say that “the person looked shady” or that “the guy gave me a bad feeling,” which creates doubt as to why you really were interested in the person, we teach effective communication. It wasn’t that the person fit a certain racial group that drew your attention, it was the fact that you observed him continually patting his waistband which is a kinesic cue indicative of a concealed weapon and had situational awareness that was a deviation above your baseline as you observed him “checking his six.” It wasn’t the place of worship the person just exited that made you focus on him, it was the fact that everyone else coming out of the same building was proxemically pushed away from him as he gave subtle direction to his entourage. It wasn’t the gender of the individual that caused you to arrest them, it was their departure from a known criminal anchor point, and exhibition of nervous behavior upon noticing the police watching them.
When the police identify any of those anomalies in their baseline the decision is often to contact that person. During the follow on questioning, as you observe a cluster of three lie or deception indicators that lead you to believe that they warranted further questioning in the police station, there is a quantifiable reason, not just a feeling.
Everything we teach has a backing in one of many scientific fields. We haven’t made this material up. The behavior cues that we teach and the way that humans interact with their environment are not random. However, when you can communicate why that person is a threat or exhibiting criminal behavior by using proven scientific fields and the associated terminology your credibility will immediately increase.
Disagree? Let me know.