It will NEVER look good when an officer has to use force to stop a fleeing suspect and place them in handcuffs, but when officers have the right training, the results are significant!
MPD officers participating in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) training, as compared to their coworkers electing to NOT participate, had the following statistics for 2020:
The world is always changing, and we believe, as your law enforcement agency, that we must grow and evolve as well. Our goal is to train and equip our officers, so they are ready to handle ever changing situations using the minimum amount of force necessary. One SIGNIFICANT way we have re-focused our physical training is with the addition of BJJ taught by an outside expert with his own training facility; Humberto Borges. Outside training is an important component as it allows officers to be trained by someone recognized as an expert in their field instead of a co-worker with limited experience.
Roughly two years ago we began requiring all newly hired officers to attend a minimum of (1) BJJ training session per week until they were done with their academy and field training. To our knowledge, we were the first agency in the country to pay for and require this training. The program was so successful the department opened the program to all existing officers the following year. Every MPD officer can now sign up and attend up to (3) BJJ classes each week. The department pays the officer for their time as well as covers the cost of the classes.
Why does this matter?!
Since the program was launched, we have been collecting data regarding use of force issues by officers both in the BJJ program as well as officers that have elected to not participate. We now have real stats documenting how BJJ training impacted both officers and suspects being arrested. As you read above, officers gained confidence in their ability to detain and place a person in handcuffs resulting in less need to use their Taser. Even better, the officers training in BJJ have significantly less injuries to themselves and others when they have to use force to effect an arrest.
Please take a minute to read an article written by Chief Dan Flynn addressing this issue toward other agency leaders: The Time for BJJ
At the recent Georgia Association Chiefs of Police (G.A.C.P.) winter meeting, MPD Major King and Sergeant Figureoa conducted a training session on the use of Brazilian Ju-Jitsu in law enforcement. Major King and Sergeant Figueroa received positive feedback from the chief's in attendance as well as an invitation to present the same information to elected leaders at the state capitol. On February 8th Major King presented his data and recommendations to Senator John Albers and other elected officials Senator Albers invited. Senator Albers expressed his desire to explore ways this training be made available state-wide. Future meetings are planned to continue exploring the concept.