Cedar Rapids Police Department Use of Force Policy Includes:
Validation by CALEA Accreditation Standards
The Cedar Rapids Police Department was awarded full advanced accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA). There are 18,000 law enforcement agencies in the United States and the Police Department is one of only 5 percent of all law enforcement agencies that have earned this distinction. Our CALEA standards address the training of officers, including use of force issues. Officers will use only that amount of force, which is reasonably necessary to affect an arrest, defend oneself, or others and to accomplish lawful objectives. The Use of Force policy is published on the Police Department’s website.
Officers are trained to use de-escalation techniques and other alternatives to higher levels of force when such delay will not compromise officer safety or the safety of another person. The Cedar Rapids Police Department is committed to avoiding and minimizing injury to all parties during potential and active force encounters.
Bans Choke Holds and Vascular Restraints
Choke holds, vascular restraints, and knees to the neck are prohibited unless deadly force is justified. A person is presumed to reasonably believe that deadly force is necessary to avoid injury or risk to one’s life or another person’s (Iowa Code 702.2A).
When de-escalation techniques are not effective or appropriate, an officer may consider the use of less-lethal force to control a non-compliant or actively resistant individual.
Duty to Intervene
Any officer who witnesses another officer, acting in their official capacity, use force that is clearly beyond that which is objectively reasonable under the circumstances shall, when in a position to do so, safely and immediately intervene to prevent and/or discontinue the use of such force.
Warning Before Shooting
Where feasible, officers shall identify themselves as a law enforcement officer and warn of their intent to use deadly force. Officers are not justified in firing warning shots.
Prohibits Shooting At or From Moving Vehicles
Shooting at a moving vehicle is prohibited except when the occupant of the vehicle is utilizing deadly force against officers or other persons.
Comprehensive Reporting and Review
Any time officers use force, they are required to report the incident. The Police Department conducts a comprehensive review of all Use of Force incidents. An administrative review is conducted of all officer-involved shooting incidents, including a Shooting Review Board. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation investigates officer-involved shootings and use of force incidents resulting in serious injury or death.