Tactics, decisions to be included in LAPD officer-involved-shooting investigations

LOS ANGELES

An LAPD officer's behavior before a fatal officer-involved shooting will be given a closer look when the department investigates.

The police commission is adding some wording to current policy that instructs officials to look at the actions of officers before they fired their gun.

"Adjudicators may consider, quote, 'the tactical conduct and decisions leading up to the use of deadly force,'" said Los Angeles Police Commissioner Robert Saltzman.

On average there are 140 LAPD officer-involved shootings a year.

LAPD Inspector General Alexander Bustamante says only one of those would be subject to the new language.

"This is meant just for those very rare circumstances where the circumstances essentially created the need for the deadly force," said Bustamante.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck says the new wording doesn't change the way his department investigates officer-involved shootings.

"When you judge an officer's actions, you try to always keep the totality of the circumstances, and remember, sometimes the totality of the circumstances are going to support the officer's actions, more often than not," said Beck.

The commissioners come back in two weeks to finalize and approve the report. Beck emphasizes that the clarification in tactics will not have an effect on how his officers are trained.

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