Police are getting increasingly frustrated with the “unnecessary” and “hurtful” tactics cops use to arrest people they feel are committing a crime.
But for some of them, the tactics are just too out of place in an era of increased police presence.
“I have to say, I don’t know how I would feel if I was on the other side of the world in some sort of a situation like that, but I would absolutely feel uncomfortable,” said one police officer who requested anonymity to speak frankly about his experiences.
“But if I had to do it over again, I wouldn’t.”
In many cities, including Baltimore, Baltimore police have found themselves forced to deploy a form of civil disobedience that many have called excessive, unconstitutional and often counterproductive.
In Baltimore, where a handful of officers have died since 2011, the use of “disorderly conduct” to apprehend a suspect, often a black or Latino man, has become a major source of criticism.
The tactic has long been used by police to stop a nonviolent, unarmed person from committing a violent crime, often when the suspect is resisting arrest.
But it has now become a popular tool to hold suspects and suspects’ families accountable for their alleged crimes.
Last month, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said that the city would “reconsider the use and expansion of this practice.”
Police Chief Anthony Batts defended the use in a statement, saying that it was part of “a larger culture shift that has resulted in our officers being more responsive, more engaged, and more humane to the public.”
Batts said he hoped the city “will take a more deliberate approach to this issue and use our collective judgment in order to create a safer city for all.”
In some cases, the police officers involved in the protests say that the tactics were often counterproductive, resulting in an increase in arrests of nonviolent people, including people with mental illness.
“You’re always trying to get the person who you think is the bad guy out of the house,” one police sergeant told The Associated Press.
“When you start using ‘disorder,’ it just leads to a whole bunch of arrests.”
Officers say they have come to view the tactics as counterproductive because they can often make the situation worse.
“We’ve got to take that person out of there,” one officer said.
“If I want to arrest somebody, I’m going to do what I gotta do.”
Another officer told the AP that he was forced to use a chokehold to get a suspect’s arms away from his neck. “
There was a lot of tension,” he said.
Another officer told the AP that he was forced to use a chokehold to get a suspect’s arms away from his neck.
“He’s trying to fight me, but he’s not moving, he’s getting no resistance,” he added.
“Then, I can’t get my hands off him, so I just put a Taser on him, and it just kept him on the ground.”
A third officer said that his job as a detective involved trying to prevent “bad people” from committing violent crimes.
“It’s not what I’m trained to do, but that’s the nature of policing,” he told the outlet.
“They’re trying to find a good person to arrest, and the person you want to put behind bars is someone who is trying to commit a crime.”
In Baltimore City, where protesters have been calling for a boycott of the city over its record levels of violence, the department’s Chief of Police has said that officers should not be using the tactics.
“Disorderly Conduct is not an appropriate tool for a department of law enforcement, which is what we do every day,” he wrote in a Facebook post.
“Officers are trained to identify, disrupt, and arrest suspects who are in the process of committing a criminal offense.
They are also trained to provide necessary assistance to law enforcement in the execution of their duties.”
He added that officers must “follow the same principles of non-violence and civil disobedience.”
“We have officers who are on the streets who have engaged in the tactics that have led to death of people,” Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batters said at a news conference in January.
“In many cases, those tactics have resulted in officers being injured and killed.”
A Baltimore Police Department spokesman told the Associated Press that officers are required to use force only when necessary to arrest someone they believe is committing a felony or misdemeanor.
The department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“This is what law enforcement is supposed to do,” Batts told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday.
“What we are going to focus on is the individuals that are actually committing the crime.”
The Baltimore Police department also has come under fire in recent years for its use of deadly force against people of color, particularly in Baltimore City.
The police department has been under fire for using excessive force against Black men and women in the city and has come in for criticism for its handling of Freddie Gray’s death.
The city’s black population has