This clip from the In the Line of Duty video training series illustrates a tactically challenging and potentially dangerous situation; a stop on a vehicle with tinted windows. The LOD program, “Tinted Windows Shooting/Tinted Windows Training (Vol. 3, Program 12), shares numerous tips and tactics for safely navigating stops involving tinted windows.
Among them, as detailed in the video’s accompanying lesson plan, are:
Before approaching the vehicle, instruct the driver through the PA system to lower all car windows and turn on the interior light.
Have the driver exit the vehicle and approach the front of your patrol unit.
If you do approach the subject vehicle, approach from the passenger side and place your flashlight on the rear window in an effort to illuminate the back of the car so you can see inside from a side window.
Use moments when the headlights of on-coming traffic illuminate the interior to your advantage.
When approaching a darkened car, use your hand to detect movement inside. Placing your hand on the trunk, for example, will not only ensure that the trunk is closed but it will help you feel rocking and jerking of the car body that could tip you off to noticeable subject movement inside….like someone shuffling around trying to hide contraband or retrieve a weapon.
If back-up is arriving from the opposite direction, ask them to shine their spots into the front of the vehicle, thus blinding the subjects inside.