All you need to know about this study is contained in the paragraph below. What these educated idiots fail to realize is that cops have to COMMUNICATE, not talk to, a wide variety of people. Read the italicized bullshit then ask yourself, who talks like that? Is the average hoodrat who dropped out school in the eighth grade going to understand? How about a wetback with an English vocabulary equal to your average German Shepard? How come they only analyzed half the conversation? Wouldn’t it be helpful to know if the recipient understood and complied voluntarily? Did they note any change in the tone and tenor of the conversation, as an indication, that the officer was trying to find common ground?
Using footage from body-worn cameras, we analyze the respectfulness of police officer language toward white and black community members during routine traffic stops. We develop computational linguistic methods that extract levels of respect automatically from transcripts, informed by a thin-slicing study of participant ratings of officer utterances. We find that officers speak with consistently less respect toward black versus white community members, even after controlling for the race of the officer, the severity of the infraction, the location of the stop, and the outcome of the stop. Get-ready-for-the-next-installment-in-the-war-on-cops
Buried further in the study was this observation: Officer utterances were also higher in Respect when spoken to older community members and when a citation was issued. [Data coefficients omitted here.] and We found that race was not associated with the formality of officer’s utterances. Instead, utterances were higher in Formality in interactions with older and female community members.
So much bullshit, so little time. Any officer worth his salt knows that how one uses language can determine the tone and tenor of any interaction. A Mister directed to a day laborer will pay dividends more than the expenditure of effort. Want to turn an arrogant banker’s world upside down? Call him Bubba or by his first name, or any other suitable form of endearment, once his attitude changes the officer can reward him with Mister. I don’t care if the transvestite whores mother named him George. If I can get cooperation and compliance then Peaches it is, you go, girl.
Two war stories. I came across two bikers camped out in the park where camping was not allowed. I intended to wake them and send them on their way. As I was announcing my presence, I observed the butt of a .44 magnum pistol between the two. I commanded, “Police freeze” repeatedly with no result. One of the two bikers pantomimed waking up as he groped for the pistol. Finally, I shouted, motherfucker touch that gun and I’ll kill you!” They keyword was “gun.” By announcing I had seen the gun, my “Police, Freeze” went from pro forma to specific, and the biker’s advantage was gone.
In the second incident, I responded to a burglary of residence leading to the Aggravated Rape of the resident. I interviewed the victim, to get a description of the suspect and to locate any evidence. It was my first experience with a rape victim. The conversation went something like this:
The victim had been asleep.
Me: Can you describe him?
Victim: No, there were no lights, and he had a mask on.
Me: Did he have a weapon?
Victim: No, he had a knife.
Me: What happened next?
Victim: He yanked my underwear off, and started fumbling around.
Me: Did he achieve penetration?
Me: Did he get it in?
Victim: No, he couldn’t
Me: Did he have an erection?
Me: A hard-on?
Me: What happened next?
Victim: He made me blow him.
Me: Did he have an orgasm?
Me: Did he come?
Victim: Oh yeah, he blew a load
Me: I’m sorry to be so graphic, this is my first report like this, and I want to get it straight.
Victim: That’s Okay, it’s not my first time.
The point is that the people that cops talk to didn’t all sign up for the same class. We take them as we find them and there all sorts of barriers to communication, race, age, experience, ego, and bias. Cops only control half the equation. Trying to quell a barroom brawl is not the time to point out the politically correct way of doing things.
I wish I had a quarter for every scene where cops were trying to figure out what happened and talking to onlookers. Invariably, the following exchange would occur.
Witness: And then this motherfucker in the striped shirt….
Idiot Cop: Hey, watch your fucking mouth.
Looking at what they have reported thus far, I don’t think these researchers are going to admit that “mirroring” is an accepted technique for interviews and interrogations. I suspect the researchers will not track the obvious lies, evasions, and half-truths fed to the officer. The savvy officer will gleefully collect all the lies he can stand against the time when he can confront the subject. These researchers will never admit that a threat sincerely delivered is a better alternative than a load of 00 buck in the chest.
Here is a blog and follow up that I wrote regarding an officer involved shooting. I think the officer made a variety of tactical errors and some failures in logic that set him up for the result. I also think that to be plain vanilla professional; the officer failed to communicate the urgency of the situation.
My suspicion is that both parties are so busy reciting their lines they are not listening to what is each is saying. Maybe if the officer had risked a three-day suspension by shouting, “ASSHOLE GET YOUR HANDS UP, DO IT NOW” he wouldn’t be on trial for manslaughter.