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Ask The Expert

Mark Rivera

FBI-CJIS Security Policy Compliance Officer

Mark Rivera, Customer Retention Manager and CJIS Security Compliance Officer with Vigilant Solutions, served for sixteen years with the Maryland State Police, retiring at the rank of First Sergeant with thirteen of those years at the supervisory and command level. He holds a Master of Science Degree in Management from The Johns Hopkins University and Secret clearance through the FBI, Baltimore.

Search Result: Winning Edge

Displaying 1  -  20  of  29

In Praise of Pepper Spray

July 8, 2016

While a TASER may be a better option at times, pepper spray can be a practical choice. The key is to know when the use of pepper spray is appropriate and will be effective.

The Hands Have It

June 9, 2016

The simple, but effective, hand position explained in this article is derived from a basic Taekwondo maneuver. I've also seen boxers like Joe Frazier and George Forman use this "cover-up" very effectively as cover followed by a left hook.

Go For The Legs

May 4, 2016

Communications and sensitivity skills training are not enough. In fact, the third and critical component of training that should be mandatory for all law enforcement officers is defensive tactics.

Gaining Compliance with Targeted Pressure

April 7, 2016

There are pressure-sensitive areas on the body that can cause pain and/or become distractors when triggered, and thus can be used when attempting to arrest an active resister or aggressive assailant.

Shooting from the Hip

March 4, 2016

Hip shooting can give you the edge you need to defeat an assailant that's close to you. At close distances all we're looking for is hits on a human-sized target.

Balance Manipulation in Arrest and Control

February 29, 2016

The system, called "JET," is a product of the Jinsei Institute of Durango, CO, which maintains that the use of balance manipulation can decrease a subject's ability to move, resist, or escalate and give trained officers significant advantages during approach and contact.

Real World Weapon Retention Tactics

January 29, 2016

Retention holsters have their benefits and can help you defeat some gun grabs, but all officers also need to know how to defeat the attacker physically during a gun grab attack.

Take Your Firearms Training Seriously

December 28, 2015

We talked to the officers in question after each event, telling them they needed to slow down enough to be able to make correct decisions and to get good solid hits high center mass on the targets. One of the officers later asked me how they are supposed to balance slowing down with wanting to shoot quickly enough to not get shot during a real incident.

Keep Your Patrol Rifle on Safe

November 10, 2015

While the topic of how to use the mechanical safety on a patrol rifle may seem to be a relatively minor issue, it's one that is worthy of some thought.

Time to Get Real

October 28, 2015

The reality of close-quarter engagements is that they are some of the most dangerous situations faced by law enforcement officers. Statistics show that a majority of attacks against officers occur in close quarters during initial or first-contact situations.

Instinct and Knife Attack Defense

September 4, 2015

It is ridiculous to think that an officer could take a single defensive tactics course that teaches specific techniques for knife defense and then be prepared for a knife attack.

Don't Reach for the Keys

August 31, 2015

Reaching into a vehicle and taking the keys to prevent a suspect from driving off is a tactical error that has sent many an officer for medical treatment.

Strength in Numbers

June 30, 2015

If at all possible, arrests should be made using the principle of mass, which means having two officers for every suspect you arrest. There are two advantages to this: the arrestee is less likely to resist and two officers are more likely to be able to control the suspect if needed.

Moving While Shooting

May 31, 2015

There are a number of benefits to shooting while moving. First, a moving target is a much harder target to hit than one that is stationary. Secondly, it lessens that action-versus-reaction gap

Reacting to Gun Grabs

April 30, 2015

In addition to the built-in retention of your holster, there are some techniques and tactics that you need to know in order to keep your duty weapon in place during a physical altercation.

Carrying After Retirement

March 31, 2015

From middle age through our senior years, most of us start to experience some physical problems that can make shooting a handgun accurately much more difficult. Let's look at how you can address each of them.

Fight from the Guard on the Ground

February 6, 2015

Let's discuss the best strategy to deal with the situation where you are forced to the ground by the arrestee, who ends up in your "guard" (on top but not mounted—simply between your legs).

Critical Space

January 30, 2015

Law enforcement personnel have known for decades that the majority of gunfights involving police occur inside 10 feet. Critical Space shooting techniques take into account the close proximity officers must operate in with both citizens and suspects. 

Revisiting the "21-Foot Rule"

September 18, 2014

The so-called "21-Foot Rule" was born and soon spread throughout the law enforcement community. But is the "21-Foot Rule" a forensic fact or a police myth?

Countering Gun Grabs on the Ground

August 30, 2014

Even a well-trained officer can find him- or herself on the ground when initiating an arrest. Things happen quickly and things can get ugly quickly. Be sure that you are ready to counter any grabs for your weapons.

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