“Get on the Ground, arms out, palms up, chin in the carpet, spread your legs, don’t move”
Imagine you were subject to a home invasion. You ordered the suspect to drop the knife. He complies. You have him move away from the knife and order him to “get on the ground, spread your arms out – palms up, chin in the carpet, spread your legs, don’t move.”
You are holding a home invader at gun point and have ordered him to the ground. He is proned out.
You do a scan (360 degrees). Your back is facing a wall. No more threats visible. You dial 911. Police are on the way. You breathe a sigh of relief.
Home Invader on ground in Prone Position – Reactionary Gap
BUT, is the threat really over? Is it time to feel secure? Are you actually in control? How much reactionary time do you actually have?
Force Science Institute ltd., has issued its report #357 (dated February 20, 2018), which found that a suspect can scramble up from a proned-out position to a flight-or-fight stance in under 1 second. This information is attributable to Force Science Institute, ltd., Report #357 www.forcescience.org . Reproduced with permission.
Prone positions used for this testing were as follows:
1) flat on their belly, hands tucked under their chest (a position that offenders may assume in direct defiance of officers’ positioning orders);
2) arms out to the side in a T position, palms up.
3) arms out and legs crossed at the ankles;
4) arms out, ankles crossed, legs bent so the feet were angled back toward the butt.
As the report states: “From all four positions flat on the ground,”… “the subjects rose up to standing in one second or less. They got up in different ways, but in no more than a second—faster than we expected—they were up with their hands off the ground and their body weight fully supported by their feet in kind of a crouch from which they could launch an aggressive move or start to escape.”
TAKE-AWAY. “Our conclusion is that prone positioning, even with supposed hindrances like crossing the legs, is not as safe or as inhibiting to suspects as many officers believe,” O’Neill says. “A proned-out suspect still presents significant potential danger and officers should remain vigilant.”
Shasta Defense comment: Although the report addresses the concerns of Law Enforcement Officers with suspects in the prone position, the same significant potential danger exists for you, even in your own home.