Over 300 injured, one killed in police training exercises

Over 300 people have been injured and one person was killed during training programmes at the national police academy over the past four years, the AD reports on Wednesday.

The injuries range from broken bones and torn muscles to concussion and broken teeth, the AD says.

In total, 317 trainee officers were injured, a figure the academy considers ‘acceptable’, the paper says. ‘Given the total of thousands of training hours, this is a very small percentage,’ academy chairman Leo Kuijs told the paper.

Kick boxing

The academy has been in the headlines recently after four students were injured during a training session with a kick boxer. One ended up with a broken jaw and another with bruised ribs. The academy has apologised to the trainees.

Students and other sources, however, have told the paper there is ‘structural abuse’ and some training is unsupervised. For example, professional boxers and karate experts are brought in and trainees are told to take them on in the gym for a full minute.

In one programme, students were handcuffed and blindfolded and thrown in a swimming pool. Other officers had to dive for the key to rescue them, the paper says. That session has now been scrapped.

Kuijs told the AD he has not received any signals of structural abuse and that he is unaware students are told they will be sacked if they protest about being given tasks which are too dangerous. ‘I defend the education we give,’ he is quoted as saying.

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