Chicago Police DepartmentGeneral Order G03-02-01
The Use of Force Model
Issue Date:16 May 2012Effective Date:16 May 2012
Rescinds:15 August 2003 Version
Index Category:Field Operations
I.Purpose
This directive:
  • A.explains the Use of Force Model.
  • B.includes a graphic representation of the Use of Force Model.
II.Department Policy
The Department utilizes a Use of Force Model to provide guidance on the appropriate amount of force to be used to effect a lawful purpose. The Use of Force Model employs the progressive and reasonable escalation and de-escalation of member-applied force in proportional response to the actions and level of resistance offered by a subject. Such response may progress from the member’s actual presence at the scene to the application of deadly force.
  • A.The primary objective of the use of force is to ensure control of a subject with the reasonable force necessary based on the totality of the circumstances.
  • B.Whenever reasonable, members will exercise persuasion, advice, and warning prior to the use of physical force.
  • C.When force is applied, a member will escalate or de-escalate to the amount of force which is reasonably necessary to overcome the subject’s resistance and to gain control.
    • 1.Members are not required to start at the lowest levels of the Use of Force Model; they will select the appropriate level of force based on the subject’s actions.
    • 2.Members will modify their level of force in relation to the amount of resistance offered by the subject.
      • a.As the subject offers less resistance, the member will lower the amount or type of force used.
      • b.As the subject increases resistance, the member may increase the amount or type of force used.
III.Use of Force Model
  • A.The Use of Force Model is a graphic representation of the guidelines for the appropriate use of force in relation to the actions of a subject.
  • B.The Use of Force Model utilized by the Chicago Police Department is pictured in Illustration No. 1.
  • C.The Use of Force Model is a guideline that cannot account for all factors constituting the “totality of circumstances” by which a specific use of force is evaluated. The Model is to be used only in conjunction with the Department directives and training regarding the use of force.


Illustration No. 1
Garry F. McCarthy
Superintendent of Police
11-205 TRH