Former police chief: people don't understand Ferguson police tactics

5 years 7 months 2 weeks ago Sunday, August 17 2014 Aug 17, 2014 Sunday, August 17, 2014 12:52:00 AM CDT August 17, 2014 in News
By: James Packard, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Dr. Joel Shults, a former Colorado police chief, will speak on Aug. 29 to Missouri police about how to reduce the use of force.

"I think there is an intentional, deliberate effort by police hate groups to tell a twisted narrative about policing. Right now some things that are really quite normal in the world of police work gets a twisted narrative," Shults said.

Shults spent time as the police chief in Alamosa, Colorado, where he says he saw things he took issue with.

"I began doing some research that I called the VALOR project, what I found is that police officers were frequently victims of crime on the job and prosecution of the offenders was very very low," Shults said.

He said any time there is a case of police brutality, it is concerning, but it is often not what people think. He said in order to change perceptions, the language police use with the public in response to events like those in Ferguson needs to change.

"When there's corruption or an act of police brutality, we say 'well, that was just one bad apple.' Well, that's still true because bureau of justice statistics show 99.9 percent of police-citizen contacts involve no force at all. And then again in the 90th-percentile of times when force is used, it is later determined to be justified and lawful. That kind of information is being completely lost in the current debate," said Shults.

"We can't say things like 'that's just one bad apple'," he said. "We can't say things like 'I'm out here every day laying my life on the line and so you're gonna have to cut me some slack'. I think that's true but that doesn't wash with today's public. They don't want to hear that that's not a narrative that makes sense to them."

Shults also said the timing of police releasing surveillance video of Michael Brown robbing a convenience store shortly after announcing the name of the officer who shot Brown likely wasn't predicted to garner criticism.

"That made all the sense in the world from a police perspective," Shults said. "It's open records, people asked for it." 

"It's almost like a parent and a teenager," Shults said. "One says 'I thought I was doing the right thing, I thought that's what you wanted', and then the teenager says 'well, if you thought that you were wrong and you don't really understand me.'"

When asked what he thinks Ferguson police chief Tom Jackson should do in the situation, Shults said, "I think what the chief needs to do is to do a very careful cultural study of the population that he needs to communicate with."

Shults also said the kind of tactical equipment police have on hand, which has been brought into question by many, is often on hand in case it is needed. But, police often have it just in-case. 

Shults said the most important take-away for what is happening in Ferguson is to communicate with police effectively.

"People of good will, who want better policing are going to achieve it by supporting their police officers. I urge everyone to take the time to, in a friendly way, approach the police officers that serve them and say, we recognize you have a great challenge and a great trust, we appreciate what you're doing and we want to do everything we can to support you and move you in what ever direction serves the public best," Shults said. 

Shults' seminar will take place on Aug. 29 at the Baymont Hotel and Suites in Jefferson City from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information and how to register, visit Shults' website.

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - Starting April 2, Jefferson City Schools is offering meals to students impacted by school closures. Students from... More >>
10 minutes ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 8:15:00 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - Three separate MU Zoom sessions were disrupted by individuals who entered the meetings uninvited and used "discriminatory... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 8:59:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
CUBA, Mo. (AP) — An eastern Missouri man was charged with making a terrorist threat after he allegedly coughed toward... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 8:22:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – As the COVID-19 pandemic forces more people to stay indoors, the beautiful weather is still drawing plenty of... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 6:24:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Paying rent has become a challenge for thousands of Missourians who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19.... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 5:49:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - COVID-19 has already changed many aspects of daily life, from visiting restaurants to attending school. Now, first responders... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 5:09:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Governor Mike Parson addressed the public at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, saying the state plans to restrict... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 3:45:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in Top Stories
As COVID-19 spreads, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about the impacts on the community. KOMU 8 News... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 2:49:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
MONITEAU COUNTY - The Moniteau County Police chased down and arrested two people in a stolen car for multiple charges,... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 2:30:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
FAYETTE - Central Methodist University took steps to help rural Missouri medical professionals in the midst of COVID-19 by donating... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 2:04:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — As state and commercial testing is more available for the Missourians, the number of confirmed cases is rising.... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - COMO Youth Soccer, Sporting Columbia and Columbia Select started hosting daily practices using Zoom back when school got... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 1:24:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in Top Stories
(CNN) -- Postponing Tokyo 2020 will have provided a sense of relief to many Olympians but the delay in the... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 12:51:47 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Public School district announced Wednesday it's putting classes on pause through the end of the week... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 10:11:00 AM CDT April 01, 2020 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - As the weather gets warmer and plants continue to bloom, season allergies will become more of an issue... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 5:51:00 AM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
In this COVID-19 town hall, KOMU 8's Emily Spain talks with Graham McCaulley about how the ongoing pandemic has affected... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, March 31 2020 Mar 31, 2020 Tuesday, March 31, 2020 11:42:00 PM CDT March 31, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - For Scott Denson, music is his escape from reality. And, during this global pandemic he knew he wasn't... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, March 31 2020 Mar 31, 2020 Tuesday, March 31, 2020 9:38:00 PM CDT March 31, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Former Kansas City Council woman Alissia Canady is running as a Democrat for Missouri lieutenant... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, March 31 2020 Mar 31, 2020 Tuesday, March 31, 2020 7:57:41 PM CDT March 31, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 52°
9am 55°
10am 57°
11am 60°
12pm 63°