Police Chief Talks About Officer Training

The mother of a Bellaire athlete shot by police questions whether police undergo enough training, especially psychological training to make sure they can handle themselves in stressful situations. Although that shooting wasn’t a Houston case, HPD Chief Harold Hurtt addressed those concerns today. Bill Stamps has that story.

When incidents occur like the police shooting of Bellaire athlete Robbie Tolan, many people wonder why some officers react they way they do, and what departments do to make sure their officers their officers don’t panic in the heat of the moment.

Tolan wasn’t shot by an HPD officer, but Houston Police Chief Harold Hurtt talked about the training his officers must undergo.

“We put them in training at the academy. They’re there for six months. We talk about the laws and rules. Also, how to become a good officer or and outstanding officer. After they get out that six months of training, they go into field training where they’re put with an experienced officer. They’re evaluated during the training and at the conclusion of that training. And they’re mandatory training that I require they attend.”

Chief Hurtt says any complaints made against an officer are always investigated. Those investigated may lead to disciplinary action or the clearing of the officer of any wrongdoing. Overall, Hurtt says he likes the system HPD has in place.

“We have a good system of accountability, training, follow up and if discipline is needed, we also do that in a fair and equitable manner.”

Bill Stamps, KUHF Houston Public Radio News.