Police want to hear what a hostage taker has to say.
How Attica and Lewis Changed the Nature of Negotiation The historical events of the riot at Attica prison on Sept 9th, and the hostage situation in at Lewis State Prison Arizona led to a significant change in the application of crisis negotiation.
The lessons learned from each event changed the art of crisis negotiation as a result. Understanding how this transformation came to be, it is essential to discuss the events that transpired.
The Attica prison revolt served as a "wake-up call" to administers of crisis negotiation Strentz,p.
Lacking on this day were the necessary "experience" and "intelligence" of crisis negotiators, as well as the implementation of correct "command decisions," tactics, and techniques Strentz,p. The "art" of negotiation was unrefined, crude, "forceful," and disorganized Brown, Campbell,p.
However, among the prisoners, there was the opposite: The prisoners seized control of the central control room of the prison following an Crisis hostage managementcriminal justice essay in which 5 Company rebelled after not being led to their usual routine outside following breakfast.
The prisoners took 42 hostages but kept them safe as they produced a list of demands, including improvements in medical treatment and sanitation Christopher, As the inmates grew dispirited, violence became a real threat.
The prison was then set upon by the National Guard, and several hostages were killed by police fire. It was a deadly retaking of the prison because of failed negotiations.
One of the biggest lessons learned from this situation was the necessity of fairness and of not letting officers "take revenge" on prisoners by allowing them to be part of the "siege.
The art of negotiation now began to be about understanding the needs of those in revolt and attempting to deliver a peaceful non-violent outcome. But these lessons were not learned overnight. The Lewis State Prison example indicates as much.
Here, intwo prisoners took hostages. Their situation was much less motivated by a sense of injustice and much more by a desperate desire to escape their circumstances no matter what. The negotiation process over the next two weeks was much different from that of Attica, too, in that "more than 30 negotiators were utilized," which produced a team of negotiators from several FBI units as well as the local police department McMains, Mullins,p.
Several coordinators and team leaders were used as well. This was a coordinated effort rather than one-man-calling-the-shots affair.
Negotiations were difficult because the two men where "psychopaths" -- a much different scenario from what unfolded at Attica, where the inmates were viewed rather as victims of police brutality McMains, Mullins,p.
Negotiators were aware of the psychology of the hostage takers and used this knowledge as leverage within the negotiation process. This was one lesson learned from Attica: By day 10, the negotiators were attempting to build "rapport" with the inmates by sending them "small items" for "comfort" McMains, Mullins,p.
The negotiators also used relatives of the hostage takers as third-party intermediaries, in order to help talk sense into the hostage takers. This had an effect as soon one of the inmates was speaking of turning on the other.
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It is saddening when every day we read about reports of hostage taking happening all over the world. Reports from police intelligence departments across the world indicate that, hostage taking cases ranges from kidnapping of infants to taking hostage of crew of big water vessels, as is rampant along the coast of Somalia in Africa.
Hostage negotiation is an important part of the criminal justice system, and is a tactic that is practiced by most branches of criminal justice. Almost every law enforcement agency in the United States has established either a hostage recovery team or has a crisis negotiator on staff (McClain, Callaghan, Madrigal, Unwin, & Castoreno, ).
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