The updated Cleveland Police Use of Force and De-escalation policy went into effect January 1st.
It clarifies when and how police officers can use force on an individual and stresses de-escalation of a situation before that force is applied.
First, we wanted to verify if all Cleveland officers had been trained in the updated policy.
Our source is Sgt. Jennifer Ciaccia, Public Information Officer for the Cleveland Police Department.
She says all officers were trained in with updated policy procedures last year. Those who may not have been trained might have been on military duty or a type of leave, such as medical.
With permission, Cleveland police officers are permitted to work secondary jobs. They wear their uniform but are not paid by the city. That's what police Sgt Dean Graziolli was doing earlier this month at the Corner Alley Uptown in University Circle when he got into an altercation and shot and killed 21-year-old Thomas Yatsco. The incident happened two weeks after the de-escalation policy went into effect.
We wanted to verify if the policy must be followed by officers working secondary jobs.
Again our source is Sgt. Ciaccia who says the policy does apply to part-time off-duty work. The only thing officers are not required to do is wear their body cam.
Both of our questions were verified.
Sgt. Graziolli was injured in the altercation and is currently on light duty while the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department investigates the details of what happened and should determine if the officer was in violation of department policy.
One more thing, the new policy states officers will be trained in tactics and techniques of de-escalation and tested on laws and policy regarding use of force on a yearly basis. If you'd like to see the new guidelines for yourself, read below: