Orange County

Orlando police demonstrate policing techniques for dealing with crowds, resisting arrest

ORLANDO, Fla. — After a week of demonstrations over the murder of George Floyd, Orlando police demonstrated some of the techniques they use while dealing with the crowds and in cases of resisting arrest.

“The first thing we try to do is control their actions, and that might be by controlling the torso first,” Sgt. David Haddock said.

He said the knee-on-neck position demonstrated in the last moments of Floyd’s life do not fit within the department’s training.

READ: George Floyd protests live updates: Hundreds continue to march in downtown Orlando

Haddock said getting a person’s actions under control can be done by putting hands on the shoulders or one hand on the shoulder and a hand on the waist to try and control torso movement. And if that doesn't work, he said officers can put a knee on the shoulder blade.

“Understand what is happening right here. It's along the spine, not on the spine and it’s on the shoulder blade, a meaty portion that can take some weight, and it’s not on the neck,” he said.

Another tactic Orlando police said they’ve used to control crowds is officers with bicycles. In body camera video after someone in the crowd launches a bottle with some chemical inside, officers in bicycle gear move the crowd back.

READ: Deputies, police take extra precautions this weekend in Daytona Beach amid protests, events postponed

Capt. Rich Lane said they have used bicycles for over 30 years in the city.

“Bicycles are no different than if you see an orange cone, a barricade, a police car, a person, a traffic control device,” Lane said.

Lane, who is in charge of the crowd management team at OPD, said in his 14 years, they have never used tear gas until this week.

Lane said officers’ actions are dictated by what the actions are of the demonstrators and that tear gas is usually used when objects start to be thrown at officers.

Jeff Levkulich

Jeff Levkulich,

Jeff Levkulich joined the Eyewitness News team as a reporter in June 2015.

Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson,

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.