More police departments choosing restraint over quick action

Feb 18, 2015 11:21 AM by News Staff

DENVER (AP) - At a time when some police departments have been criticized for using military-style methods of crowd control against protesters, the Denver Police Department tells officers to stand back and let demonstrations unfold with minimal intervention, making necessary arrests afterward.

The city's approach to protests is also being followed by other departments across the country, as experts say police interference can actually escalate violence and erode trust.

Denver's policy of restraint was in the spotlight over the weekend, when officers looked on as protesters threw red paint on a fallen officers memorial. Some officers were upset they could not intervene sooner.

Chuck Wexler of the Police Executive Research Forum says showing restraint is a departure from the days when officers would rush in and make arrests, sometimes causing more conflict.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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