Street Survival: When it comes to using deadly force, are you a P.O. or a C.O.?

All officers must ask themselves if they can take the life of another if that dire decision is thrust upon them by fate or circumstance


This article is part of a series by Lt. Dan Marcou. Click here to access all of Dan's street survival lessons.

In recognition of the release of “Street Survival II: Tactics for Deadly Encounters,” I am writing a series of articles on street survival designed to turn the tables on the current generation of cop-killing criminals. In this series I will share the tactics I acquired during a career dedicated not only to ensuring my own personal survival, but assisting other officers in their quest to survive as well.

“Heads up!”

Remember that? When you were a kid, and you least expected it, one of your friends would shout that phrase and launch a football or a basketball in your direction. If your reactions were sharp enough, you caught it and, if not, you fumbled the ball.

That’s about how suddenly deadly threats develop at times for officers except without anyone having the courtesy to shout, “Heads up!”

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