BSIS Firearms Training Manual - October 2001 Edition

San Diego office of Academy Security Training

Please note:  This is a copyright of BSIS and is provided for the benefit of students.  As a state-licensed BSIS training facility, we are providing this for instruction to our students seeking the guard card.

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 Firearm Training Manual  53

12. Using a Baton: A baton may be used only for defensive purposes. The situation must justify the use of a baton as a defensive response. There are many factors that the guard should consider prior to using a baton which are covered in the baton-training course. In terms of de-escalation of force, would the use of the baton only increase the conflict and make the situation worse? For example, if the suspect were drunk, uncooperative and refusing to leave, would use of a baton be justified? Should the guard retreat, not use the baton, contact the police and wait for them to respond to the situation?

13. Using a Firearm: A firearm MUST be used for only defensive purposes. It is the highest level of force. The situation must justify the use of deadly force. That is, there MUST be an imminent and immediate danger to life. A shooting carries a high degree of risk for all involved parties and for innocent bystanders as well. The shooting will result in the guard and the company being thoroughly investigated by the local police and the Bureau. If the shooting is not justified or if policies or procedures were not followed, the guard, and the company, may be subject to criminal prosecution, civil action or both.

14. Principles of de-escalation: In de-escalation, the guard takes active steps to remove, withdraw, retreat or distance himself/herself from the persons involved in the conflict for the purpose of avoiding and diffusing the conflict. This may range from not stepping foreword in response to a challenge, to physically retreating for the purpose of avoiding conflict, to taking cover to prepare to only observe and report. A good general rule to follow is this: If there is not a justification to use force, then engage in de-escalation. Do not engage in behaviors that escalate the conflict and result in the use of any force. This may mean NOT physically or verbally confronting nor pursuing a subject, or stepping back and retreating from the conflict, or withdrawing, taking cover and only preparing to notify and report to the police.

For example, suppose that while on duty you observe an armed robbery occurring at a store across the street from the property you are guarding. There is no justification for you to confront the robbers or initiate the use of force. The person and property you are assigned to protect is not under any immediate threat, neither your client’s business nor property is being robbed, and you are not trained to intervene in an armed robbery in progress across the street. The only appropriate response is for you to take cover, stay on post, notify the police, observe and prepare to report.

In discussing the case studies below, consider each of the following questions in your discussion: (1) Does a clear and present danger exist to justify a shooting? (2) Should the guard escalate or de-escalate, such as shoot, pursue, retreat, cover and conceal, avoid contact, and/or observe and report and wait for local law enforcement to respond to the situation?

15. Case Studies: Instructors are to thoroughly review and actively involve each student in the discussion of the case studies. The discussions are to focus on assessing the total


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