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Okla. Recruit Dies After Training Accident

October 16, 2012  | 

An Oklahoma City Police recruit who was critically injured during arrest and control training died as a result of that injury, the agency has announced.

Kelley Chase, 38, was scheduled to graduate with the 47-member Class 129 on Dec. 6. He died on Friday.

"Recruit Chase will be missed by all who knew him," according to an agency statement posted on Facebook. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family as well as Class 129."

Chase, who entered the academy on May 25, was participating in a two-week training block called "custody, control, and defensive tactics" when the injury occurred.

"It was basically a freak accident," Capt. Dexter Nelson told POLICE Magazine.

The instructor was demonstrating a take-down maneuver on Chase, when the recruit hit his head and didn't get up. At this point, it doesn't appear the instructor is at fault, Nelson said.

"They're not trying to knock people's heads off," Nelson said. "They're doing it at a speed where they can handle it, but where they can show proficiency of the technique."

As a result of Chase's death, Chief Bill Citty is reviewing various marital arts-style padded helmets for future recruits.

The internal affairs department is conducting an investigation, and the medical examiner will determine the exact cause of death.

Before joining the department, Chase was a military pilot based at Tinker Air Force Base who flew high-altitude AWACS missions. He leaves behind a wife and two small children.

By Paul Clinton

Tags: Oklahoma City PD, Training Accidents, Defensive Tactics, Gaining Compliance

Comments (8)

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

naynaybeme @ 10/17/2012 3:12 AM

God be with his family!

Nichole @ 10/17/2012 4:17 AM

I feel for the family of the victim as well as for the trainer. How awful to be doing your job and have something like that happen. I couldn't go back to work after something like that.

S.S @ 10/17/2012 7:39 AM

Terrible and unfortunate accident. Prayers go out to family and friends.

Jim A @ 10/17/2012 1:10 PM

It is terrible to lose an officer in a training exercise. We are used to hearing about it in the Army, Airforce, Navy, etc., but not police work.

To family, friends, instructors, fellow classmates,and fellow officers, I am sorry for the loss.

Charles D. Rutta @ 10/17/2012 2:06 PM

Keeping Chase's family and the instructor in my prayers. Its especially sad when we lose a guy who has already done more than most by serving America in the armed forces but then going on to contiune to serve in law enforcement.

Vixen63 @ 10/18/2012 11:19 AM

My prayers are with Recruit Officer Chase's personal and professional family. What an unfortunate incident, however, I am wondering, where exactly were they conducting this training? As a recruit I went through the same training and it was conducted in a padded gym. Not trying to place blame just wondering.

Bob @ 10/29/2012 7:33 AM

He won't get survivors benefits because he wasn't certified. If you die in training I think your family should be paid.

Ima Leprechaun @ 12/11/2012 3:46 PM

Police training officers are brutal and I'm suprised this doesnt happen more often. I don't see why people have to be brutalized to prove their manhood. If it happens in the field it is probably a freak accident but in training it is just poor training. I had similar training back in the day and they did take downs the first day and then the next day showed us how to fall without getting hurt. It would have saved me a concussion to have had the "how to fall" properly training first. Police training officers tend to enjoy being brutal for no good reason.

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