Metro updates use of force policies including controversial neck hold

LAS VEGAS - The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has updated its use of force policies including the categorization of a controversial neck hold.

Included in Thursday's announcement is the Lateral Vascular Neck Restraint which will no longer be considered a low-lethal use of force option.  LVMPD will now categorize the restraint as an intermediate or deadly use of force option.

The neck restraint became the center of controversy after the death of Tashii Brown in May.

An LVMPD officer tased, punched, and then put Brown in a neck hold which took his life, according to the department.

While the neck hold used on Brown wasn't specifically the Lateral Vascular Neck Restraint, the incident did put the use of neck holds in general into question.

After Brown's death, the ACLU of Nevada demanded LVMPD officials to change the policy regarding neck holds.

"This specific technique because it's so fraught with error, if it's not used in the correct manner, you frequently end up with individuals dying because of the result of its use," Tod Story, the executive director of the ACLU of Nevada said during an interview in May. 

LVMPD also updated several other use of force policies. Below are the changes according to the department:

Lateral Vascular Neck Restraint (LVNR) – LVNR will no longer be categorized as a low level option in the updated policy. All levels of the LVNR will be categorized as an intermediate or deadly use of force. To use the LVNR, an officer must be able to articulate that the subject had the intent to harm officers or others.

40mm Specialty Impact Weapon – In some instances, the low-lethality shotgun bean bag rounds have been ineffective on some subjects. In an ongoing effort to de-escalate violent situations and to keep officers safe, the LVMPD has deployed a new 40mm Specialty Impact Weapon. This is an intermediate force option when fired at a distance of five yards or more, and deadly force when fired at a distance of less than five yards.

Discharging a firearm at a moving vehicle – In light of recent vehicle ramming attacks that have been used in other parts of the U.S.A. and overseas, the LVMPD has updated its policy on discharging a firearm at or from a moving vehicle. The policy now reads, “It is the policy of this department that officers will not discharge a firearm at/from a moving vehicle unless it is absolutely necessary to preserve human life.”

For additional information about these policy changes, and to review the complete LVMPD use of force policy, please click here.

The entire updated use of force policy can also be accessed by going to www.lvmpd.com, and click on the box labeled “Transparency.” 

Go to the Office of Internal Oversight and Constitutional Policing, and click on the box “Force Related Policies.”


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