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Using the force continuum to keep the base safe

By Lance Cpl. Nicholas Lubchenko | Marine Corps Installations East | June 1, 2018

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MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. – Military Police and Marine Corps Civilian Law Enforcement Program officers sharpened their skills with use-of-force training here, May 25.
The Base Provost Marshal’s Office personnel conduct use-of-force training at least once a year, which helps them in situations with non-compliant individuals – especially those who pose a threat to themselves or others.
“These use-of-force scenarios demonstrate how the officers should approach the subject and de-escalate the (situation),” said Lance Cpl. Samuel Wentworth, ammunition technician with Security Company, Headquarters and Support Battalion, MCB Camp Lejeune.
The scenarios included an open-area stop and a building search; in the open-area stop, police officers responded to a simulated call from someone who reported a suspicious person with a gun in an area that is open to the public. In the building search, officers responded to a simulated call from someone who reported that an individual had entered a building that was secured for the evening.
“Today we did the open-area and unsecured-building scenarios,” said Michael Weiler, Provost Marshal’s Office training staff. “This training reinforces the force continuum that they have learned to ensure they are using the appropriate amount of force for the situation.”
The force continuum that military police officers use ranges from minimum force, which includes verbal commands, to maximum force, which entails using deadly force.
“There are many different situations and individuals that the police officers must deal with that change the level of force they must use to keep the base and its inhabitants safe,” said Weiler. “There are passive individuals who you give commands to, who just ignore you, but they don’t show any aggression. There are also active, assaultive personnel – with them, you may have to use defensive tactics or compliance technics.”
The training challenged the military police officers with different types of suspects; compliant, non-compliant and aggressive. Some even engaged the officers with weapons.
“We stress use of force to make sure that everything is done correctly, not only to protect ourselves but also everyone else around us,” said Wentworth.
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