LOS ANGELES (KABC) --Los Angeles County sheriff's officials give a closer look at the "use of force" by local law enforcement agencies as numbers show that city police shootings have decreased in the last year.
Sheriff Jim McDonnell said priority one for local law enforcement today is intensive instruction in how to avert a deadly confrontation.
He added that knowing how and when to back off is today's priority.
In the total number of LAPD officer-involved shootings, statistics show a positive trend. According to Capt. Andy Neiman of the LAPD, a total of 20 officer-involved shootings have been reported in 2016, which is down from 30 shootings in 2015. Nine of the incidents were fatal both last year and this year.
L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti said he would want law enforcement officers to be as praised for stepping back from a situation to preserve life, as they are for going out and rushing into a dangerous situation.
Local departments were investing millions of body cams, seeking a clearer picture of confrontations captured on cellphones that don't show the whole story.
"Everybody automatically makes a judgement based on, at the time, very little information without the benefit of an investigation," McDonnell said.
LAPD's OIS investigations are more labor-intensive, scientific and costly than ever before.
Two independent groups from the Force Investigation Unit respond. In the process, one group asks whether the officer followed training, and another group asks whether the officer committed a crime.
The units are monitored by the Office of Inspector General, and the DA is present, too.
"It must be our highest priority to protect and to serve and anybody who breaks the law, even if they have badge, needs to be held accountable," Garcetti said.
In L.A., it is the civilian police commission who holds the ultimate power.
"For us here, in Los Angeles, we have been through this pain. We know it. We saw it in Rodney King. We changed our system," Garcetti added.