Police officer training is ongoing throughout the year. Officers are mandated by state statute to complete the basic police academy program. Additionally, all recruits must complete 80 hours of instruction within the core training portion of the field training program prior to carrying a weapon or making an arrest.

The Ball State Police Department uses a field training program based on the most frequent activities performed by police officers. Additionally, selected Ball State officers serve as guest instructors at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy and the North Central Indiana Law Enforcement Training Council.

Types of Training

Steps to Follow When a Foreign National is Arrested or Detained

  • Determine the foreign national's country. In the absence of other information, assume this is the country on whose passport or other travel documents the foreign national travels.
  • If the foreign national's country is not on the mandatory notification list:
    • Offer, without delay, to notify the foreign national's consular officials of the arrest/detention.
    • If the foreign national asks that consular notification be given, notify the nearest consular officials of the foreign national's country without delay.
  • If the foreign national's country is on the list of mandatory notification countries:
    • Notify that country's nearest consular officials, without delay, of the arrest/detention.
    • Tell the foreign national that you are making this notification.
  • Keep a written record of the provision of notification and actions taken.

The list of countries and their specific requirements can be found on the U.S. Embassy’s website. 

An active shooter is defined as one or more subjects who participate in a random or systematic shooting spree, demonstrating their intent to continuously harm others. The overriding objective appears to be that of inflicting serious bodily injury/death rather than other criminal conduct.

These situations are dynamic and evolve rapidly, demanding immediate deployment of law enforcement resources to stop the shooting and mitigate harm to innocent victims. Learn more about what to do if there is an active shooter on campus.

The University Police Department’s has established an “all-hazard” plan for responding to critical incidents such as natural and man-made disasters, civil disturbances, mass arrests, bomb threats, hostage/barricaded person situation, acts of terrorism, and other unusual incidents.

The plan follows the standard incident command system (ICS) protocols, which include functional provisions for command, operations, planning, logistics, and finance/administration.

The objectives include, but are not limited to:

  • reduce or minimize the loss of life and property
  • maintain law and order
  • make notifications to help restore essential services and provide vital resources to affected areas
  • prepare proper reports
  • provide for continuity of government
  • provide the basis for subsequent recovery

Hate crimes (also known as bias-motivated crimes) occur when a perpetrator targets a victim because of his or her perceived membership in a certain social group, usually defined by racial group, religion, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, nationality, age, gender, gender identity, or political affiliation.

A "hate crime" can take two forms:

  • "Hate crime" generally refers to criminal acts which are seen to have been motivated by hatred of one or more of the listed conditions.
  • The second kind is hate speech, which is speech defined as a crime.

While hate crimes are rarely debated, the hate speech concept is controversial, as criminalizing speech can be seen as impugning freedom of speech. Incidents may involve physical assault, damage to property, bullying, harassment, verbal abuse or insults, or offensive graffiti or letters.

CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) is an emergency medical procedure for victims of cardiac or respiratory arrest.

An AED (automated external defibrillator) is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses potentially life threatening irregular heart rhythms and applies electrical shock for the heart to reestablish an effective rhythm.

All personnel operating department vehicles shall exercise due regard for the safety of all persons. No task, call, or incident justifies disregard of public safety. Further, the public expects its police officers to demonstrate exemplary driving behavior. All department personnel who operate police vehicles will comply with safe driving procedures.

The foundation of the agency’s recruit training is an extensive manual titled “Field Training Program for Probationary Officers.” The agency’s field training program is least 21 weeks in duration, with both classroom and field components.

Certification for solo patrol will be the decision of the field-training unit, which is comprised of all field-training officers, the captain and the chief of police. (Note: Probationary officers with previous law enforcement experience or graduates of the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy’s Basic Course who demonstrate the ability to exceed standards in all evaluation guidelines areas, may, upon recommendation of the F.T.O. team, achieve certification prior to the conclusion of the standard 21 week field training program through the early release option.) The selection of the agency’s field training officers shall be conducted at the discretion of the chief or his/her designee. 

It is mandatory that all personnel who carry firearms, as a duty requirement, attend all firearms training and qualification sessions offered by the department.

The agency and its firearms instructors will make every effort to assist officers in attaining qualifying/passing scores. Officers not attaining passing scores will be given remedial training on the spot to correct the deficiency as time may permit. Other remedial measures may include repeated attempts under the guidance of one or more other (different) firearms instructors, or rescheduled qualification.

Ball State University police officers will have less lethal force options available to them in the performance of their duties. Typically these options will fall into the category of intermediate weapons. Appropriate medical attention will be given to those against whom less lethal force is used.

Less lethal force options available to the Ball State University police officers include police baton, pepper spray, Taser, and pepperball guns.

Police officers are often in situations where physical conflict, aggression, resistance, and even life-threatening assault can occur. Officers are generally not afforded the opportunity of simply walking away. In deed, officers are required and sworn to protect the public and themselves against such violence. When it occurs, officers need to be ready, willing, and able to meet that violence with control and restraint in the effort of providing public safety to the citizens they serve.

At the Ball State University Police Department, we pride ourselves as officers that are well-trained and experienced in the area of use of force. Officers are trained to never use force in a punitive nature and to always use force as a last resort and only that which is reasonable to control the given situation.

Officers are trained in topics such as:

  • use of force policy
  • use of force case law and statutes
  • Threat Control Matrix
  • use of physical force
  • use of less lethal force (baton, pepper spray, Taser, pepperball)
  • use of firearms
  • subject control principles and techniques
  • edged weapons fighting and defense
  • ground fighting techniques

The University Police Department is proud to have use of force and physical tactics instructors on staff that are certified through the Indiana Law Enforcement Training Board. These instructors not only provide in-service training to the members of the department, but also to University students, faculty and staff with classroom lectures and self-defense courses, as well as to officers from around the state as guest instructors at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy. They have instructed officers from and in other states as well.

The department’s use of force and physical tactics instructors are:

  • Lt. David Bell
  • Lt. Matt Gaither
  • Ofc. Wendel Jaggers
  • Sgt. Steven Jennings

The Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is a battery of three tests administered and evaluated in a standardized manner to obtain validated indicators of impairment and establish probable cause for arrest.

These tests were developed as a result of research sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and conducted by the Southern California Research Institute.

A formal program of training was developed and is available through NHTSA to help law enforcement officers become more skillful at detecting DWI suspects, describing the behavior of these suspects, and presenting effective testimony in court. Formal administration and accreditation of the program is provided through the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP).

The three tests of the SFST are:

  • Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
  • Walk and Turn
  • One Leg Stand

Strategies and Tactics of Patrol Stops (STOPS) deals with the uncertainty of a vehicle stop and how to survive. Officers learn what not to do during a low-risk, unknown risk, and a high-risk traffic stop.

The goal of the STOPS program is to instruct sworn law enforcement officers in the following:

  • assessment of risks and threat cues by drivers and passengers
  • safe positioning of police and violator vehicles
  • safe methods for approaching vehicles and making contact with driver/passenger
  • how to stop and approach vehicles other than passenger cars
  • case law regarding vehicle stops
  • safe methods for conducting “felony,” or high-risk stops
  • procedures and law regarding vehicle searches
  • how to avoid citizen complaints and conflict with violators
  • risk factors that must be considered during a vehicle pursuit, which often begins with a traffic stop

This training covers educational, enforcement, and reporting issues to improve officers' knowledge of and ability to enforce occupant protection laws.

A significant portion of the curriculum is skill-based to provide officers with the abilities necessary to identify driving risks and to evaluate the events of a crash.

The program also provides strategies for increasing occupant protection use, ranging from advocacy to managing resources.