Chicago Police Shooting Draws FBI Investigation, Raises Questions About Officer Training

An incident occurred in a Chicago subway station where two police officers, unable to apprehend a resisting suspect, were forced to open fire.

As explained in the video, two officers were unable to apprehend a suspect accused of hopping cars on one of the Chicago L-trains. Although this practice is forbidden with clear markers stating so on the train, an FBI investigation is being pursued with respect to whether or not the amount of force used was justified for the incident.

The Grand Avenue Red Line station is known as one of the central stations in Chicago’s downtown district, having direct connections to stadiums of the Chicago White Sox, Cubs, DePaul University, Loyola University, and the main downtown streets.

As a Chicago native born-and-raised, I have ridden this exact line many times throughout the course of my tenure living in the city. Jumping cars on a moving train are reserved strictly for emergencies, though if you ride the train long enough you will invariably witness a questionable character or two switching cars without a valid justification. Switching cars is strictly forbidden due to the fact that in the past, people have been found urinating in the space between carts, panhandlers have jumped between carts to solicit a greater amount of people for money, and drug dealers have been found exchanging product in these spaces.

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The officers rightfully apprehended the suspect as he was in violation of Chicago civil code, despite the fact that they ended up opening fire the suspect survived and is currently in critical condition at a local Chicago hospital.

This incident having occurred in a large metropolitan area outlines the lack of training that some of the Chicago Police Force currently has in hand-to-hand combat. This is occurring not only in Chicago, but around the world. Officers thinking about training as a hobby ought to be reminded that not only do most jiu-jitsu academies have discounts for police officers, but also that martial arts tuition can be used as a tax deduction since the skills learned in an academy directly correlate with on-the-job duties.

Officers are strongly encouraged to lobby their defensive tactics department to increase the budget for police training, in addition to taking up jiu-jitsu as a side hobby. The Redzovic family, with three schools in the Chicago metropolitan area and several affiliates around the city, have trained extensively with Rener Gracie in officer survival tactics and currently offer discounts for law enforcement, having several students who are currently police officers themselves. They are currently offering a free month of training for active CPD officers. The Gracies also have a certified training center in the Elgin suburb of Chicago where the instructors there have also undergone defensive tactics training.

If we are to improve perceptions between the police officers and the public at large, there must be intervention made on the parts of local departments to become more progressive in their officer’s training. It begins with awareness and a proactive effort on the part of the officers to take initiative in their hand-to-hand skills.

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