3550 Use of Force

Policy Type: 


This policy and requirements are intended to regulate the use of force by campus security, establish reporting requirements in every instance involving the use of force, and provide for the treatment of any injury or complaint of injury arising from the use of force.

It is hereby established that the policy of the College shall be that security officers employed by the College shall not be required to carry a firearm. In the event the College President, or his assignee, authorizes in writing an employee carry a firearm, this policy will govern the manner and use of firearms at the College. No College employee shall be authorized to carry a firearm unless he/she has been sworn and deputized by the Wayne County Sheriff and follows the rules, regulations and policies of the Wayne County Sheriff regarding use of force.

This policy is for internal use only, and is not intended to enlarge the employee's civil or criminal liability in any way. It shall not be construed as the creation of a higher legal standard of safety or care in an evidentiary sense with respect to third party claims, insofar as the employee's legal duty is imposed by law.

Noncompliance with this policy constitutes a violation of an employment duty only, except in such case as any noncompliance is also a violation of the law of our state and nation. Therefore, violations of this policy shall only form the basis of disciplinary action within the College.

In the event that a violation of the duties imposed by this policy also constitutes a breach of the duties imposed by the laws of our state and nation, nothing herein shall be construed to relieve one from that legal duty or from any action resulting from a breach of that legal duty.


It shall be the policy of this College to employ the minimum amount of force, reasonable and necessary, to accomplish the lawful performance of duty in protecting students, the College community and the public.

The use of non-lethal force is intended primarily for uses described herein involving unarmed assailants. It is understood that attacks by armed assailants may result in the employee employing a higher degree of force, up to and including deadly force.

This policy is premised on the uses of force contemplated by the following definitions:

  1. Deadly Force - any use of force likely to cause death or serious bodily harm.

  2. Non-lethal Force - force less than Deadly Force, i.e., force which in an officer's reasonable belief will not cause death or serious physical injury.

The use of unreasonable, unnecessary or excessive force, and/or the failure to secure proper medical treatment following the use of force is hereby prohibited and shall, in every case, result in certain and severe disciplinary action against those who use or allow the use of such force or fail to provide for the care of persons in custody.


  1. Non-lethal force may be used against persons assaulting a citizen or an officer to prevent injury and/or continuation of the assault when alternatives to the use of force have failed or are not available to the officer.

  2. Defensive Tactics

Such methods and/or tactics such as "arm-bars" and various subduing and "come-along" holds commonly taught in Michigan Law Enforcement Officer's Training Council ("MLEOTC") Approved Training may be used.

Such fundamental tactics shall normally be used prior to the use of greater force and the officers shall be required to report the specific circumstances that existed which compelled the use of any force.

It is the responsibility of all personnel to maintain proper physical conditioning and competence in the use of defensive tactics. It is expected that such tactics may discourage or prevent the necessity or the use of force.


The chief of campus security, while acting in his official capacity with the community college, having met the State of Michigan's qualifications and concealed weapons licensing requirements (M.C.L. 28.422 et. seg.), shall be authorized, but not required, to carry a handgun while on duty, provided:

  1. The officer has been duly sworn and deputized as a "special deputy" by the Wayne county Sheriff.

  2. The officer has successfully completed a police pistol course or other such orientation courses of the MLEOTC or its equivalent, and

  3. The officer maintains a minimum qualification score on the MLEOTC course twice yearly, with each weapon carried.

The officer's proficiency with firearms is a fundamental and mandatory element of his fitness to carry said firearm.

If the officer fails to meet the MLEOTC minimum qualification score for his weapon, he shall be prohibited from carrying such weapon(s) until such time as the minimum qualification score(s) is achieved.

No officer shall at any time carry any weapon with which he has not qualified and/or registered as required.

As used in this policy, the term "officer" shall mean the chief of campus security or other College employee who has been authorized in writing by the College President or his designee to carry a handgun. An officer who is so authorized to carry a handgun may carry such weapon only while on duty and only while performing the duties of a campus security officer.



  1. Deadly force may be used only when the life of a student, College employee, HFC Foundation Director, HFC Trustee, public invitee on the College campus, or officer is in jeopardy.

    1. Each decision to use deadly force must be justified within the framework of this policy and the laws of our state and nation. These mandates, in combination with training and experience, provide the foundation on which proper responses must be formulated.
  2. Firearms and deadly force are authorized only to prevent death or serious bodily harm to students, College employees, public invitees on the College campus or the officer. An officer shall never use deadly force unless the officer is deputized and follows the rules, regulations, and policies governing the use of deadly force which have been adopted by the Wayne County Sheriff.


  1. The officer has either witnessed or knows with a reasonable certainty that the person against whom deadly force may be used has committed a felony or crime involving the use or threatened use of deadly force against another person; and

  2. Other reasonable means of defense either do not exist or have been exhausted; and

  3. The risk of further death or injury to others if the violent felon is not apprehended exceeds the risks inherentin the use of firearms and reasonable shooting background and line of sight exist to avoid injury or death to others.


Firearms or deadly force shall not be used except for self defense of the officer or to prevent death or serious bodily harm to students, College employees, the HFC Foundation Directors, HFC Trustees, or public invitees on the College campus. In addition, deadly force shall not be used in any of the following instances, manners or for any of the following purposes, whether on duty or off duty:

  1. Misdemeanors or civil infractions;

  2. To fire "warning shots" or shots to "attract attention";

  3. Shots shall not be fired from a moving vehicle;

  4. Shots shall not be fired at a moving vehicle except for self defense of the officer or to prevent death or serious bodily harm to others;

  5. Shots shall not be fired toward, into or at a crowd or gathering;

  6. Officers shall not engage in any "horseplay", "quick-draw", or any other similar activity; and

  7. Deadly force shall not be used for any purpose or in any manner otherwise prohibited by this policy or by law.


Anytime an officer finds it necessary to use force which results in an injury to a person, the officer shall:

  1. Determine the physical condition of any injured person and render any necessary first aid.

  2. Request any necessary emergency medical aid.


Firearms shall not be displayed or drawn except in those limited situations where the use of firearms is authorized under this policy.


  1. No officer shall be permitted to carry any type of firearm which has not been approved in writing by the College President or his designee. Only an MLEOTC approved and/or recommended handgun and ammunition shall be permitted to be carried by the officer. Under no circumstances are automatic or long barrel weapons to be used, nor shall any altered or unapproved ammunition be used.

  2. No officer shall carry any firearm for which the officer has not completed the applicable qualification course and training. No officer shall possess any handgun that has not been properly registered in accordance with Michigan statutes.

  3. The officer shall provide his supervisor with a record of the make, model, caliber, and serial number of any firearm an officer carries while on duty. Any theft or loss of a firearm shall be reported to the officer's supervisor in a written report and shall include all facts surrounding the loss or theft.


Any incident whereby campus security is authorized to use force or defensive techniques in any manner, including the drawing and/or use of firearms, shall be memorialized immediately thereafter in a detailed written report by the Director of Campus Security. The report shall include all pertinent facts leading to the decision to use said defensive techniques, force or firearm; it shall further state the degree of force used and the consequences of the use of said force. The report shall be forwarded directly to the security director's supervisor and the office of the College President. The officer shall not make any further statements or comments regarding the incident to any other person prior to completion of an investigation by the College President or his designee, unless otherwise authorized by the College President or his designee, except that the officer shall be required to cooperate with the local police department in any investigation it conducts. This policy and the requirement that an officer cooperate with the local police department shall not be construed as limiting or in anyway infringing on an officer's assertion of those rights which are guaranteed by the U.S. and Michigan Constitutions when the officer submits a written report or statement or is otherwise directed to answer questions concerning the incident as a condition of continued employment.

Adopted Date: 
Monday, February 20, 1995
Board Approved