30 September 2020 was a terrifying night in a Phoenix neighborhood. A man was acting violently, assaulting people and causing property damage. The predator tried to kill a woman who was siting in her car, fleeing she ran to a near by house for safety. A female police sergeant responded.
Reference: AZCentral News Report
The female sergeant displayed great courage as she pressed forward in relentless pursuit of a knife wielding predator who threatened her community. As Street Fighters we know when our mind is gripped by fear, our body is often captured by inertia, which is fear's Siamese twin. She found herself alone in her moment of greatest danger. In a gunfight our real enemy is fear and not the bullet. What oftentimes keeps us moving forward is the near presence of a buddy. She faced peril alone. As we know, the battlefield is cold, the most lonesome of places. It is the emptiness that grips us with fear.
Communicating under stress is not easy. She used an effective command voice combined with forceful body language as she began issuing commands. "Hey man, just lay down, let's talk. Hey man, what's your name. I need you to drop that. Stay down, you're all good. Drop it, let's talk."
As she talked she was able to get a grip on her emotions and will her respiration back to its normal shallow rate. Knowing that de-escalation skills are the cornerstone to ensuring crisis resolution, she understood the social, behavioral, legal, ethical and tactical considerations as she tried to prevent the situation escalating into an undesirable outcome.
She was able to effectively communicate to dispatch providing vital information to her buddies who were racing to assist her.
How you expect to behave in the aftermath of a shooting becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The image you have of yourself and how you pre-program yourself to behave during a violent encounter will become reality when the moment comes to "piss ice water." She avoided panic and screaming incoherently into the radio by first visualizing her response, taking a deep breath and thinking what she would say. She projected calmness, determination and decisiveness.
Obviously she was in superb aerobic condition. However, a study by the International Association Chief of Police (IACP) showed when compared with the general population LEOs average physical fitness levels are below normal in areas of aerobic fitness, body fat, abdominal and upper body strength.
If a DEA Watch reader is one of these out of shape LEOs I urge you to start a physical conditioning program, Motivation is what gets you started, desire is what keeps you going.
She possessed the attributes that make a Street Fighter: moral fiber and iron will, self-mastery, indefatigable tenacity and the guts to pull the trigger.