CPS saw increase in use of force in 2019

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By Nick Seebruch
CPS saw increase in use of force in 2019
CPS Chief Danny Aikman at a CPS Board Meeting on Thursday, November 7, 2019 (Nick Seebruch/ Seaway News).

CORNWALL, Ontario – At the Cornwall Police Board meeting on Thursday, Feb. 6, Cornwall Police Service (CPS) Chief Danny Aikman presented the annual use of force report for 2019.

The total number of use of force arrests in 2019 was 40, plus two incidents involving animals.

The majority of incidents where CPS officers used force in 2019 resulted from the use of a Conducted Energy Weapon (CEW) or taser with a total of 34 incidents. There were seven incidents where a fire arm was used, two where open hand or grounding techniques were used and one where an officer used their baton. This number is different than the total number of use of force arrests and includes the two incidents that involved animals.

The past three years have seen a steady increase in the use of force amongst CPS officers. In 2017, there was a total of 24 use of force arrests and 34 in 2018

“From year-to-year we come across different interactions,” said Chief Aikman explaining that the interactions that each officer may encounter through the course of their duties will dictate the level of force they use in response.

The total number of arrests n 2019 was 1855, which is an increase of 122 from 2018.

Chief Aikman explained that CPS has seen an increase in knives in their encounters when  they respond to calls for service.

“We are seeing a lot more use of knives, which is a concern,” he said. “I think we are fortunate in Cornwall that we don’t have a significant number of gun incidents.”

CPS officers receive eight hours of training a year on use of force with four additional hours for firearms training.

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