Spokane County Jail Command Staff discusses 'use of force' protocol




Posted on February 25, 2013 at 5:42 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 25 at 6:36 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Spokane County Jail has a protocol in place when inmates become out of control.

An inmate at the Spokane County Jail died yesterday after he was tased and placed in a restraint chair after he became unruly during his booking. Officials say Christopher Parker, 33, was diabetic and he had admitted to taking meth while he was arrested at his home.

Spokane Fire says that during preliminary investigations all parties believed Parker was well enough for transport  to jail. Medics have to consider whether a person is conscious, alert and oriented.

State Patrol is investigating this case and the Spokane County Jail could not comment.

However, Jail Command Staff says the jail has a protocol in place when talking to an out of control inmate doesn't seem to calm they down. 

When talking doesn't work and it's necessary to keep everyone involved safe is when use of force is considered.

Guards in the booking and transport area have tasers but those working on the cell floors only have handcuffs. Guards also consider using a restraint chair.

Jail Command Staff says it's often the best way to protect inmates from themselves.  Inmates are only put in the chair until their behavior is corrected and they are checked by medical.

Staff's main priority is to keep everyone safe.

Jail Command Staff does say that an inmates use of drugs or medical issue does not necessarily change the use of force protocol. That kind of information may change the way they deal with a situation but their tactic are basically the same. They would use the amount of force that's necessary to over the resistance the inmate is giving.