Saturday, November 13, 2010

Environmental Weapons

There's a space in the Use Of Force Continuum (remember I talked about that quite some time ago?) where you are allowed to use what we term "environmental weapons".

That means that if you feel that you are in enough jeopardy that you might be allowed to employ up to deadly force in defending yourself or a fellow officer, anything goes.

An environmental weapon is anything that you may have at hand, including chairs, sticks, filing cabinets or rocks. You could use your keys or even your radio to beat someone upside the head with it if necessary.

The inmates, of course, follow no such rules. They have no code of conduct. They don't much worry about losing their jobs, if you know what I mean.

So in that sense when I find something inside the fence that I deem might be a handy weapon I try to get it outside the fence as soon as possible.

The three chunks of rock pictured above all ended up inadvertently coming home either in my coat pockets or in my lunchbox when I forgot to toss them out once I was outside. There are many many more of them that got tossed outside the fence.

I could probably pick up one sharp rock bigger than my fist every single day for the next twenty years and not make a good dent in the supply.

And that's not to mention the bits of metal and broken glass and screws and nails I've picked up and disposed of over the last seven years. I could probably have filled a small dumpster by now.

There's nothing that can be done about them other than get them outside when we find them. In that case I can look at each one and say "Well, at least that one won't be used against anybody in here."

It makes me feel like I'm contributing something.

Making the world safer on rock at a time. Huh-yeah.


  1. Making one's world safer, especially that world, is a good thing I'd say.

  2. Do you get a lot of those being used frequently?

  3. Just Plain Tired- I could carry away two big rocks a day for the rest of my life and never get even close to done.

    Misty- Not often, but it does happen. And I don't see leaving them laying around as temptation.