Tulsa Officers Rely On Back Up Amid Uptick In Assaults

Tuesday, September 5th 2017, 11:07 pm
By: News On 6

Two Tulsa police officers were assaulted Monday and Tuesday morning.

A suspect jumped into a Tulsa Police Department patrol car, taking it for a spin before jumping out and running off.

With these types of incidents happening more often, police say they can't just assume they'll be ok handling a call alone.

9/5/2017 Related Story: Broken Arrow Citizens Undergo Police Training

Tulsa criminals have been known to be unpredictable.

Just this week a suspect in west Tulsa hopped into an officer’s car and drove off.

And this morning, two officers were punched by onlookers during a homicide investigation at the Savanna Landing apartments.

These are just a few examples of what officers could encounter on any given day. Officers say that's why they call for back up.

"You've got a second pair of eyes, a second trained officer there, you know, with their gun and other less lethal options,” said Tulsa Police Sgt. Brandon Smith. “And if something bad were to happen, they're there to help you out."

Police say with the way the environment is today, calling in a "backer" is usually needed.

"Law enforcement changes based on the environment,” stated TPD Sgt. Shane Tuell. "We're not trying to bring our backers or bring extra officers to a situation for intimidation, a lot of times it's just for our own safety."

Between unpredictable criminals and police ambushes around the country, officers say it's better to be safe than sorry.

“I don't think there's any reason to not have a backer if you're going to a call; just take one with you and it's like insurance, you'd rather have it than not,” said Sgt. Smith.

TPD encourages folks to fill out a ride along form and go out with an officer for a day to actually see what they do and why they do it.