A retired Oklahoma City police officer is now teaching de-escalation tactics to both citizens and officers. He’s an expert in his field and says it is possible for protesters and officers to meet in the middle.
“So, we meet in the middle, I have a fear of you, you have a fear of me. And depending on what one does over the other it can cause a verbal confrontation, to physical, an arrest or even deadly force,” said Oklahoma City retired police officer Stanley Campbell.
What happened to George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis officers left much of the world angry, disgusted and heartbroken.
“I'm retired in 2012 and still I dropped tears for this man in this incident, this should not have happened,” said Campbell.
Twenty-year retired police veteran Campbell said the tactic was one he was taught while he was with the Oklahoma City Police Department but is no longer practiced by OKC police.
“In 1991 I was taught the knee across the neck technique and in 1996, I took over that program and we removed that technique taught to the police department so, they didn't accidentally take lives of our citizens,” said Campbell.
And while tear gas and rubber bullets were deployed during violent protests over the weekend, Campbell said OKC officers are trained to de-escalate a situation by keeping an open mind.
“Acknowledging someone's anger, just trying to have a true understanding being empathetic toward whatever is causing you this high stress at this time and trying to employ other tactics,” said Campbell.
He said despite what many may believe Floyd's unjust death isn't lost on our officers.
“We are all feeling pain right now, law enforcement and citizens this is something that should not have happened,” said Floyd.
According to Stanley the Oklahoma City Police Department has reached out to him and he's planning on working with them to sharpen their de-escalation tactics and cultural sensitivity.