Nonverbal Communication: Police Miscommunication

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In today’s world it is rare to read, listen, or watch the news, or scroll through social media, without the mention of at least one type of law enforcement agency doing something good or bad. Additionally, at some point in everyone’s life they have or will interact with some sort of law enforcement. Therefore, law enforcement officers, or LEOs, and agencies must be able to effectively communicate with the public to protect and serve them. To effectively communicate with the public law enforcement officers train in communication and apply it through various methods and programs.
It is crucial that law enforcement officers are able to communicate with the public to keep citizens safe and to deescalate situations with criminals, so no one is
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Agencies bring in communication professionals to run scenarios with training officers and teach them the correct way to handle a situation. Officers train in personal and tactical communication in basic training and continuing education courses throughout their career. POST, peace officer standards and training, required law enforcement officers to take continuing education, starting in January of 2002. POST is the commission that sets standards for all law enforcement agents across the nation.
One area of communication that officers are trained in, is nonverbal communication. Not only do law enforcement officers train in reading nonverbal communication, they also learn how to utilize it effectively. Segal, Smith, Boose, and Jaffe (2013) claim that nonverbal communication is the most powerful tool that people can use to express what they really mean and towards building stronger relationships. Officers trained in reading nonverbal communication are able to detect if a person if lying about
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Otu Noel (2015), also studies and discusses how law enforcement officers use nonverbal communication in a conversation. Officers employ tactics such as, standing in close proximity to the suspect, maintaining eye contact, and voice control. Through those strategies officers establish dominance in a situation but it does not create a harsh environment for the suspect. Noel (2015) also explains the importance of maintaining dominance in a situation, because offenders are less likely to turn violent if the cop has control of the

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