Use of Force
The Kansas City, Kansas Police Department is committed to both the safety of the community and of our officers. We believe that training and culture are key to achieving both. Recruits graduating from the Kansas City, Kansas Police Academy receive in-depth use of force training and de-escalation techniques. That training is updated and reinforced each year during the department's mandatory, annual in-service trainings.
In 2021, the Department made modifications to its policies in order to align them with the 8 Can't Wait movement launched by Campaign Zero after the beating death of George Floyd by members of the Minneapolis Police Department. The KCKPD is one of only a handful of agencies within the State of Kansas that are compliant with 8 Can't Wait.
The Department adheres to a Force Continuum as well as the "One Plus One" theory of use of force. This is a tool that assists officers in making good, sound decisions and use force reasonably, proportionally, and appropriately to overcome the level of resistance offered. This makes it clear to the officers that the subject dictates the level of resistance and the officer responds with a level of control. The higher the level of resistance the higher the level of control is needed to subdue the subject and end the conflict as soon as possible.
The result of this rigorous training program is that use of force incidents are a rare occurrence within the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department. In 2022, only .25% of all calls for service and 4.7% of arrests required a use of force. In each instance of a defensive action, the officer is required to notify his/her supervisor. The supervisor then reports on scene and initiates an investigation into the circumstances that surround the defensive action. The supervisor determines if general orders and policies have been followed and documents the entire investigation for further review by a captain. The captain then forwards it to the defensive action coordinators, along with instructors, for an additional review. If issues are noted an investigation is initiated, if not, the matter is considered closed.
In 2022, four complaints of excessive force were reported to Internal Affairs. Three were sustained, prompting discipline and retraining of all officers involved; one incident was unfounded.