There’s a piece in The Atlantic by Sue Rahr, one-time Sheriff of King County, Washington, about the myth that protects out violent police culture, but its an early bit that jumped out at me.
The presentation we heard contained evidence that the responding officers’ tactics had created the conditions that made the shooting necessary, to ensure their own safety. (The term of art is “officer-created jeopardy.”) But the review process had been negotiated with the police union and by design had remained out of the public’s view and tightly focused on the moment the officers had fired their weapons.
This is my first exposure to the phrase “officer-created jeopardy”, described here by Cynthia Lee in an article from 2021.
An officer’s decisions and conduct prior to that officer’s use of deadly force can create jeopardy for the civilian and the officer, increasing the risk of an officer-civilian encounter turning into a deadly confrontation. Such con- duct is part of the totality of the circumstances. Yet in cases involving officer- created jeopardy, many trial courts restrict the jury to considering only the facts and circumstances known to the officer at the moment the officer chose to use deadly force, precluding consideration of the officer’s antecedent con- duct that may have increased the risk of a deadly confrontation.
This literally, back in “the day”, is what I argued on Portland Communique was responsible for the escalations that led Portland officers to shoot and kill Kendra James in 2003 and James Jahar Perez in 2004.
I suppose it’s progress that in the 2020s we have a term-of-art for this, but I note that the Force Science Institute (brainchild of the William Lewinski mentioned in my Communique piece who has made a career of testifying in defense of killings committed by police officers) has posted about it with an unsurprising degree of derision.