The Washington Post reports: To join the few and the proud who police Britain’s streets with a gun, first you have to walk the beat unarmed for years.
Then there is the rigorous selection process — an unforgiving complement of fitness tests, psychological appraisals and marksmanship exams. Finally, there is the training, which involves endless drilling on even the most routine scenarios.
“They rehearse those situations like a SEAL team trying to get into Osama bin Laden’s compound,” Cambridge University criminologist Lawrence Sherman said.
Yet, in a country where the vast majority of police officers patrol with batons and pepper spray, the elite cadre of British cops who are entrusted with guns almost never use them. Police in Britain have fatally shot two people in the past three years. [Continue reading…]