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January 22, 2010

NM city releases video of officer 'pummeling' teen

Two Santa Fe officers were fired and another was disciplined in the '07 incident

Albuquerque Journal

SANTA FE, N.M. — The city on Wednesday released a surveillance video showing a four-year veteran of the Santa Fe Police Department pummeling a handcuffed teenager at the Santa Fe Police Station as two other officers look on.

The tape shows officer David Smoker - who was fired after the incident - throwing 17-year-old Brendon Singer to the floor and delivering blows to the teenager's head, buttocks and spine.

Expert Perspective

An unfortunate reality of police work is that inevitably you’re going to find yourself dealing with obnoxious people. Here are a few tips for helping to prepare yourself for the inevitable moment when a suspect pushes your buttons.

1. Don’t take it personally. This can be extremely challenging, but it’s crucial.

2. Add “I will refrain from…” to your “when/then” thinking exercises. By doing this, you’ll be more prepared to act promptly, professionally and in a controlled fashion that’s in line with departmental policy, the law and professional common sense.

3. Be aware of your stress level and prepare yourself accordingly.

4. Take proactive steps that can reduce stress.

5. Be ready to help diffuse other officers if necessary and let them know that it’s OK for them to diffuse you.

6. Take action when it’s justified.

Read more: 6 tips for dealing with challenging suspects

Full story: NM city releases video of officer 'pummeling' teen

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