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Lasd Less Lethal

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  • 1. ARL Human Effects of Non-lethal Force in Field Settings Cdr. Charles S. Heal, MPA MS John M. Kenny, PhD, MBA Viktor E. Bovbjerg, PhD MPH W. Bosseau Murray, MD, FFA
  • 2. ARL
  • 3. ARL The need for operational data • Underpinnings for NLW human effects and effectiveness “The business of human effects characterization is absolutely • biophysical, physiologic fundamental to the entire Non-Lethal Weapons Program… The value added • human and animal experimentation of human effects characterization will drive change in acquisitions” • physical and computer modeling COL (Ret) G. Fenton (Past Director, JNLWD) 5 Dec 01 • “sentinel events”/case series • Relatively little from observational settings • difficulty of data collection, verification, generalizability • inconsistency in data definitions • failure to translate outcomes to those meaningful at operational and medical levels
  • 4. ARL Specific aims • Describe NLW use in a large metropolitan area, similar to those encountered in military operations other than war and civilian law enforcement • Describe the range of biobehavioral effects of NLW use, including desired and achieved behavior change, and identify weapon-, setting-, and target-level predictors of successful NLW use • Describe the range of biomedical effects of NLW use, and identify weapon-, setting-, and target- level predictors of health effects
  • 5. Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department ARL • Personnel: 8,271 sworn; 2nd largest in US • 23 regional stations; wide range of specialized bureaus (e.g. Aero, Special Enforcement, Emergency Operations) • National/international leader in NLW development, adoption, doctrine • LA County: c 10m residents, 4,000+ sq mi, population density 29-14,555 people/sq mile; wide range of geography, built environment, activity Experience in areas of NLW core capabilities: deny access, clear facilities, crowd control, incapacitate, area denial
  • 6. ARL Data collection linked by incident number Electronic data “Paper” data Data Systems Bureau Reserve Forces Bureau -force reports: weapons, -incident details: target injuries, treatment activity, range, clothing, -demographics, armed & countermeasures, injuries intoxication status -intended and achieved -incident identification response, objective -statements, photos identifiers stripped University of Virginia
  • 7. LASD Force Data ARL
  • 8. ARL Human health effects data • Approved by UVA IRB and LASD • Abstracted from incident reports • Injury data from EMS, ED, hospital, jail medical facilities, deputy observations, suspect statements • All NLW incidents documented by medical personnel external to LASD • Any incident involving complaint of pain, suspected injury evaluated by ED/hospital • Weapon use, weapon-specific injuries and injury sites extracted • Weapon-specific rates calculated • Complete injury ascertainment, 1997-2003
  • 9. ARL Uses of force*, LASD, 1995-2003 10000 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 *defined as any force greater than unresisted handcuffing
  • 10. ARL NLW use, LASD, 1995-2003 Weapon Uses ARWEN 145 37 mm stinger 114 Stun bag 261 Sting ball 644 TASER 454 Chemical (tear gas) 143 Chemical (OC spray) 11,169 Baton (impact) 302
  • 11. Changes in LASD non-lethal ARL weapons use, 1995-2003 900 37mm 800 % change from 1995 ARWEN 700 OC 600 sting ball stun bag 500 taser 400 300 200 100 0 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
  • 12. Percentage of NLW use resulting ARL in injury, by weapon, 1997-2003 Sting Stun Flash- “Hand to Injury 37mm ARWEN ball bag TASER Baton light hand” None 59.6 29.5 77.0 9.2 24.0 24.5 31.4 46.9 Concussion 0.4 0.2 Fracture 2.9 0.2 0.8 0.4 1.0 0.8 Organ damage 0.4 Paralysis 0.2 Soft tissue 5.7 5.5 2.2 9.0 4.7 2.9 damage Laceration 1.8 3.8 2.1 5.9 2.4 4.3 5.5 3.9 Puncture wound 0.9 2.1 59.7 0.4 0.1 Bruise 20.2 25.7 2.3 37.8 0.7 31.3 23.2 10.1 Burn 5.1 0.4 0.2 Abrasion 10.5 21.0 4.2 34.0 3.2 12.4 10.6 12.8 Dislocation 0.2 Sprain/twist 1.0 0.1
  • 13. Injury sites, among LASD NLW ARL uses resulting in injury, percentage by weapon, 1997-2003 Head, neck, face 15.2% 17.7% 32.9% 7.0% 3.5% Torso 34.8% 60.8% 31.1% 71.7% 76.6% 47.9% 19.1% 36.0% 19.4% 19.0% 37mm Stinger ARWEN Stingball Stun bag TASER Extremities * % of injuries in each site, by weapon
  • 14. ARL Limitations • Rare events • “Type of injury” may be insufficient to classify injury • Potential for biased documentation by severity • Documentation of complete recovery • Unanswered questions • When does a large kinetic round result in no injury? • What is the range of injury severity within “type” of injury (e.g. laceration, puncture wound)? • Which injuries posed greater threat of disability? • Are some weapons more often associated with other uses of force, injuries to deputies? • Which weapons were effective, in which settings, against which opponents?
  • 15. Current effort: record review ARL • Verification, detail of effects • Specific information on injury, injury site, extent of injury, treatment provided • Injuries to deputies • Effectiveness • Specifics of setting: range, suspect characteristics and activity, countermeasures • Rounds fired, hits • Need for follow-on force, lethal force • Achievement of behavioral goal (e.g. incapacitation, deterrence) • Achievement of operational objective
  • 16. 100 ARL Desired Effect Unintended Most will Consequence be affected Probability of Effect (%) Operational effectiveness vs. Env ating Ope ed for lope ir unintended consequences W Des r NL e 50 Very few will experience unintended effects 0 Dose “Calculating lethal weapon effectiveness…is familiar. There is a vast amount of data characterising weapon effects, Both the ‘effect’ and target characteristics, and weapon-target combinations… ‘effectiveness’ must be “This is not the case, however, for non-lethal weapons clearly understood… (NLWs). It isn’t possible to tap a long history of operational LTC Mark C. Wrobel, Human experience, past analysis, and existing models to assess Effects Officer, JNLWD, 30 the effectiveness of non-lethal systems…” OCT 03 NATO SAS-035 Study Team, March 2003, with permission
  • 17. ARL Using study results • Estimate NLW effectiveness, human effects • Identify situations in which effectiveness is likely to be achieved with minimal unintended effects • Support larger efforts to characterize NLW effects and effectiveness (e.g. NATO SAS-035) • Feasibility and methodology for collecting field NLW data • Support further systematic field studies • Benchmark effectiveness and safety for NLW developers • Inform doctrine/training • Inform modeling of NLW human effects