FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — The Frankfort police department is taking a different approach to training by utilizing Jiu-Jitsu.
Brian Jones, owner of Valhalla Academy partnered with the force to teach officers self-defense and control tactics.
"Jiu-jitsu is based on control, and it's based on physical principles and leverage," explained Jones. "It's not based on pain, and it's not based on striking. So, you can gain control of somebody, stay safe, without causing harm, or do harm to them or the officer who's arresting the suspect."
It's a 12-week program that's currently optional. Lieutenant Scott Tracy with Training and Professional Standards says about 16 officers out of 58 have decided to participate.
He says he hopes it makes them better decision-makers while out in the field.
"I'm always looking at new ways to make training better and to help officers be safer and ways that we can also keep the community safe," said Tracy.
Jones has trained with officers for about a decade but started training in martial arts when he was nine.
"I like teaching everybody, including law enforcement because... not only is it a practical system, but it really does make you a better person," said Jones.
Officers across the country are training in martial arts as an alternative to tasers or guns during situations that can be de-escalated.
But critics say making arrests slightly less dangerous isn't getting to the real root of the problem.
It's optional now, but the Frankfort police are looking into making the training mandatory for incoming officers.