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Officer home after shooting in one of policing’s most dangerous calls: domestic violence

Jun 8, 2023, 6:50 PM | Updated: 6:54 pm

OGDEN, Utah — An Ogden police officer is back home tonight after being shot while responding to a domestic violence call earlier this week. Utah’s President of the Fraternal Order of Police says those types of calls are among the most dangerous law enforcement officers respond to.

“They’re extremely volatile and they have the potential to be more volatile because you’re not only involved in someone’s life at their worst moment, but it’s also a very emotional moment,” Brent Jex said.

According to FBI data, 43 of the 503 police officers killed nationwide between 2011 and 2020 are from domestic disturbance or domestic violence calls. That includes Ogden police officer Nathan Lyday in 2020.

“It seems to be even more dangerous than it was even five, ten years ago,” Jex said. “Some of the most disturbing calls cops go on are domestic when emotions are high.”

Because of that, Utah’s Peace Officer Standards and Training classes are including more domestic violence scenarios.

“Unfortunately, these types of incidents are becoming more and more common,” Captain Alex Garcia said. He is the Deputy Director of Utah’s Peace Officer Standards and Training. “Yes, we do reinforce that in the academy with the recruits that these are some of the most dangerous calls that you can go on.”

Of course, most domestic violence calls are a civil dispute or a keep-the-peace call.

However, when a protective order has been violated, or custody of children is involved, that’s when things can go bad fast.

“I would venture to say that the vast majority of new recruits, once they leave here, within their first week they’ve probably experienced or have had to respond to a domestic violence call,” Garcia said.

The Utah Fraternal Order of Police also feels a big concern with domestic violence calls is with repeat offenders. The police union would like to see more prosecution and penalties for those charged with assault from domestic violence cases because the group feels repeat offenders are often the most dangerous law enforcement officers must deal with.

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Officer home after shooting in one of policing’s most dangerous calls: domestic violence