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Attorney General's Advisory Group on Law Enforcement Training Issues Report

4/30/2015

Law Enforcement Administrator,

Please see below, the press release sent out on the Attorney General’s Advisory Group on Law Enforcement Training.  A link to the full report is available at the bottom of the page.

Mary E. Davis
Executive Director - Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission/Academy
Office of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine
Office number: 740-845-2700
Fax number: 866-578-0009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
April 23, 2015
MEDIA CONTACTS:
Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Jill Del Greco: 614-466-3840

Attorney General's Advisory Group on Law Enforement Training Issues Report

(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine today accepted the report issued by the Attorney General's Advisory Group on Law Enforcement Training.  DeWine appointed the 16-member group in December to examine how Ohio trains its law enforcement officers and make suggestions for improvement.

"Ohio is one of the first states that has taken an in-depth look at the way we train our peace officers and its impact on community relations," said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. "I appreciate the Advisory Group's hard work in coming up with a set of recommendations to improve the way we train our peace officers."

The Advisory Group was led by Dr. Reginald A. Wilkinson, former director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and Chief Joseph Morbitzer of the Westerville Police Department.

The report recommends that Ohio consider increasing the standards for candidates to be admitted to any basic peace officer training academy to include: a high school GED or equivalent, passing a drug screening, passing a truth verification test, passing a physical fitness test, a psychological evaluation, and adding sex offenses and misdemeanor crimes of violence as disqualifiers. Ohio currently only requires that a candidate be 18, have a medical provider say that they are physically able to attend an academy and not have felony convictions or weapons offenses that prohibit carrying a firearm.

The report also calls for substantially increasing the number of hours of instruction for basic training from the current 605 hours. The report also recommends that basic academies teach implicit bias and procedural justice, and that scenario-based training be added as well as a post academy scenario-based certification exam by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission prior to certification as a peace officer.  This scenario-based exam would require that "training villages" be constructed at OPOTA locations in London and Richfield.

The report recommends that the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission (OPOTC) conduct a review of the basic training academies in Ohio to ensure the quality of training.  The Advisory Group stated in the report that reducing the number of basic academies in the state to a lower number that can be more reasonably managed will help ensure better trained officers. There are currently 62 active peace officer basic academies in Ohio.

The report recommends increasing the training hours for all peace officers to forty hours annually.   Currently in Ohio, officers are only required to have four hours of annual training.   The report recommends that training include community-police relationship training, mental health and de-escalation training, and use of force review.   The report recommends that all law enforcement agencies adopt a use of force policy and that OPOTC create a model use of force policy.

A copy of the report is available on the Ohio Attorney General's website.
 

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