How many police officers do we have to lose to poor prisoner searches before people start taking this seriously? All too often I read about the grieving family of a police officer who was killed by a prisoner who had a concealed weapon and/or handcuff key on their person.
Mobile, AL – February 2012
A Mobile police officer was killed after the robbery suspect he was transporting used a handcuff key to remove his restraints and produced a three-inch knife to stab the officer multiple times. The suspect then escaped with the dead officer’s firearm and shot another police officer.
The violent felon (with prior felony arrests) went through the hands of multiple police officers before being transported to the local jail by the murdered officer. How many times was the suspect searched after the initial arrest? I’m guessing none.
Why did this prisoner still have his personal property? It is frequently a good idea to remove all property from the prisoner prior to transport. This helps you in making sure that you found and removed everything. It also removes anything from the prisoner that can be used as a weapon, even if you don’t recognize it as such.