SPOKANE, Wash. — Spokane Police said domestic violence calls can be dangerous for them.
Two Spokane police officers remain on paid leave after a domestic violence suspect shot at them in North Spokane Tuesday.
"They responded to a very tense situation that is almost like a tinderbox and you're putting officers in those situations,” Spokane Police Chief Craig Meidl said.
Domestic violence situations are more hazardous than any other police respond to. Nationwide, 91 police officers were killed between 2010 and 2014. 20 of those deaths happened as a result of a domestic violence call.
This makes domestic violence more dangerous than calls involving robbery, burglary and people with weapons.
This case underscores danger of #police going to domestic violence cases. Out of 91 police officers deaths between 2010 and 2014, a quarter of cases were DV crimes. More than any other call pic.twitter.com/Czku656jy6— Ryan Simms (@KREMRyan) November 30, 2017
"We're coming on the scene at a crisis moment and we're interjecting ourselves at that time when it's reached a peak,” Chief Meidl said.
SPD has the danger of domestic violence calls in mind and has specific safeguards in place to keep officers safe.
The first of those safeguards: It’s mandatory at least two officers respond.
Once on scene, officers are required to page for backup if the situation escalates dramatically.
An example of this would be if the suspect pulls out a gun.
In the police world, it is referred to a “pin” call.
It’s not only mandatory to ask for backup but a captain or supervisor is also required to head to the scene.
While rare, police said pin calls are necessary to save lives in emergency situations, including their own.