Essential Report

Most Appropriate Police Response

Apr 2, 2012

Q. There is a debate in many parts of Australia on the appropriate response of police to a range of situations.

In your opinion which of the following is the most appropriate response for police in the following situations? (Version B – asked of half the sample).

 

Most appropriate police response

 

Situation

Firearm

Taser

Capsicum spray

Baton

Physical restraint

Verbal response

Don’t know

Police confronted with an armed individual

55%

25%

7%

2%

2%

1%

8%

Police confronted with a drug (eg ice amphetamines) or alcohol affected individual

5%

37%

28%

3%

18%

2%

7%

Police confronted with a mentally ill individual (eg schizophrenic episode)

2%

24%

24%

1%

31%

10%

7%

Police confronted with a gang or mob

39%

19%

19%

8%

3%

2%

9%

A firearm was considered to be the most appropriate police response when confronted with an armed individual (55%) or a gang or mob (39%).

When confronted with a drug or alcohol affected individual the most appropriate responses were thought to be taser (37%) and capsicum spray (28%).

When confronted with a mentally ill individual the most appropriate responses were thought to be physical restraint (31%), taser (24%) and capsicum spray (24%).

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