Phoenix Police Must Now Document Whenever They Point Their Gun at Someone

August 21, 2019 AT 8:18 AM

By Jason Hanna

Phoenix police officers must now document every instance in which they point a gun at a person -- a decision that the city long considered but now has been made after recent public outcry about aggressive police tactics in Arizona's capital.

From now on, Phoenix officers must fill out a form when an officer points a gun, and the incident will be reviewed by a supervisor, city officials announced Monday.

"When a gun is pointed at someone, that's a traumatic event," Police Chief Jeri Williams said at a news conference. "I think this is a first step in being ... that accountable, transparent organization that is willing to share what we do and how we do it."

The decision comes two months after a tense community meeting where residents vented about a well-publicized incident, in which video showed an officer pull a gun on a family during a shoplifting investigation outside a Phoenix dollar store in May.

City officials haven't linked Monday's announcement directly to that incident. Two separate panels already had recommended that the police department record each gun draw, including the National Police Foundation this April.

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