Month: May 2023

Look at Me!    

Look at Me!    

The “Traveling Tactical Trainer” at home in Port Moody, British Columbia, Canada (Oct., 2023).

Welcome to my Police Judo Book Blog. It is my intention to both entertain and educate you about matters relating to use of force in general, and the martial art of Police Judo specifically. Please join me as I shove off on this new personal venture as a blogging virgin. As it turns out, I will be embarking on a year-long world tour to study police use-of-force training programs (as I originally did in 1986). I plan on leaving in late 2023 (Instagram I am looking to visit police agencies and their training academies, as well as do some sightseeing, so if you are able to help me out in these regards, then please drop me a line on the contact page. After Australia and New Zealand, I will be crossing Canada starting in June 2024,  and then it’s the United States and Europe.

First off, why should you listen to me? After more than 50 years of studying and teaching martial arts (overlapping 27 years of street policing), half of which was done on the other side of the tracks, if you will, I have lots to say about real-world experience pertaining the rough stuff on the street. “I know more ways to kill you than you know how to die” I’d joke to arrestees in my younger years. I will relate some of the hundreds of physical encounters I’ve had on the street as this blog progresses. I do, indeed, know where the rubber meets the road. If anyone is currently looking for a “suicide by cop” situation from me, you are too late, for I retired in 2006! The badge says “Retired”, but I am still very capable of dealing with the criminal element. (“I don’t need no stinking badge…or gun”, as I have already proven). Yes, the criminal element hasn’t seen the last of me yet. Though I am getting old (I was born in 1953 – the year Elizabeth was crowned Queen of England and the year that Sir Edmund Hillary first scaled Mt. Everest), I am still fairly fit; I try to remain mug-proof (using my repertoire of nasty and sneaky stuff). Anyone attempting to “end me” could be the first person in Heaven in a wheelchair…even God can’t fix that stuff (“Bless him, for he knew not what to do!”).

book cover imageBut, enough of this bravado. As clearly pointed out in my newly-released book (2021) Comprehensive Joint-Locking Techniques for Law Enforcement (#alarsenaultbooks), there is a huge difference between competing in sports and arresting criminals on the street. A few colleagues of mine and I won a contract with a Karate organization looking to “street-proof” their collective martial arts clubs. Ten different martial arts teachers applied, but not one of them had any real street experience at all. We won the contract based on our collective street policing experience and significant knowledge about police use of force and its legal and practical application. I’d say that these sports experts needed street-proofing themselves for applying!

Some of my writings will straight-up deal with tactics and techniques used in Police Judo. This joint-locking book of mine consolidates a fair amount of knowledge with police use specifically in mind. Feel free to “pretzelate” anyone you like, but do so with use-of-force legalities and ethics in mind. After all, it is you who must justify the force that is used, not me.

Other writings will take you to different places around the world where I learned various techniques, and to a lesser extent, taught martial arts. As previously mentioned, I am embarking on another world tour to look at police use-of-force training. Still other stories that I will tell you about will revolve around some of my personal experiences in life, policing, and studying martial arts, all to be told with some degree of pugilism (and a sense of humour) in mind.

I do not know all of what there is to know about martial arts and its application to law enforcement, but I have forgotten more about these matters than many police pugilists can remember. Having said that, my memory isn’t as good as it once was and my “war stories” grow richer with time. Isn’t that the way these tales progress? What distinguishes myself from the ranks and files, of even police use-of-force trainers, is my significant street experience in making hard physical arrests. Indeed, I have executed over two thousand formal criminal arrests, and have probably been engaged in an equal number of physical altercations stemming from the breaking up of fights, ejecting troublemakers from bars, breaching problematic miscreants, throwing drunks into the paddy wagon, etc. To say that I have triumphed over this plethora of arrestees during my career is no overstatement; to have done so without being dragged into Internal Investigations or without giving the criminal element an opening to bash me, is even more remarkable. I am not invulnerable, just operationally invincible (to beat me is to kill me; I have endured many minor Internal investigations for which no fault could be found). Remaining cool under pressure allows me to be dispassionate in the problem-solving part of taking tough guys into custody. The best strategy is to take the fight to an impending assailant. Competence breeds confidence – this allowed me to step up and make hard physical arrests.

I just want you to know that I do have important and sage things to say about using force from deep first-hand experience. This goes far beyond weekend certification courses, high grades in the martial arts, or studying books and videos (all of which I too have done). Few officers can challenge to better my street credentials. I feel sorry for those professing the knowledge, but who lack the experience, to teach use of force to anyone. Imagine how I feel for their students. To those of who have walked with me on parallel beats in the wild world of policing, I salute you; you know that I speak the truth. For those of you who have had limited exposure to the nastiness of criminal depravity, please learn from those of us who have found victory in these many encounters. Your life (and that of others) could depend on it.

I will leave you with a quote from the most famous (and greatest) boxer of all time, Muhammad Ali:

“I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale;
handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail;
only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalised a brick;
I’m so mean I make medicine sick.”

Stay healthy and keep training while maintaining a sense of humour.

Next time: Why learn about joint locking?