Instructor wanted to add realism to his training, but things got too real.

While the popular Police Academy films have taught us that the institution is full of hairbrained schemes and fun people who can make sound effects with their mouths, a real-life incident in Japan’s Okayama City has shown us that this is really only half true.

At the prefectural police’s training facility a lieutenant was instructing a class on self-defense, and one day in December of last year, the lesson was how to repel a knife-wielding attacker.

After explaining the technique the instructor picked up a knife and selected a 19-year-old cadet to attempt to subdue him. Apparently, further explanation was in order, because during the practice session the lieutenant accidentally stabbed the cadet in the chest.

The cadet was rushed to hospital with a wound that reportedly reached his lungs, though after a stay of four days, his injury was no longer life-threatening. Nevertheless, he resigned from police work in January of this year.

Normally, imitation knives are used during these kinds of training sessions. However, this particular instructor thought it would “heighten the tension” if he used an actual survival knife instead.

▼ CGI re-enactment of this guy’s fantasy training session.

And while the instructor did accomplish his goal of realism, the Okayama Prefectural Police didn’t appreciate his independent efforts to set the mood. They charged him with criminal negligence resulting in injury, fined him 500,000 yen (US$4,600), and issued an official reprimand.

Readers of the news were largely surprised at the disturbing mentality this officer of the law possessed, but there were still a few who agreed with his logic.

“That’s just too sad…”
“It wasn’t a mistake? He brought it on purpose for training? What an idiot.”
“It’s strange that the one who was stabbed no linger has his job.”
“Macho BS.”
“Even in training, reality is important.”

“The psychopath replaced it on purpose?”
“This ‘reality’ will teach all the recruits that the best course of action is to always run away from a knife.”
“Isn’t this a violation of the weapon laws?”

Japan does have some strict laws regarding knives, classified by their sizes, but there is no information about the exact size of this particular blade. In fact, many details of this case are unknown because at the time, the Okayama Police had declared it, “not a case to be announced.”

It had only come to light because the officer who was stabbed filed a lawsuit against Okayama Prefecture for 5.5 million yen ($51,000) in damages, citing that he suffers from PTSD as a result of the incident. Regarding the suit, Okayama Police have gone on record saying, “It is true that he was injured during training, and we will respond in good faith.”

With a disturbing increase in knife attacks and threats on police officers in Japan, proper training is indeed essential for everyone’s safety. But there are far better ways to simulate tension than an actual threat of stabbing, such as making them run laps to get their heart beating, or holding the training in a spooky haunted tunnel.

Source: NHK, My Game News Flash
Top image: Wikipedia/Skipbreath
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