Lethal Applications of Impact Tools
The necessary and deliberate lethal applications of impact tools is a subject rarely discussed in professional use of force circles. I find this quite remarkable, given that I was taught, from an early age, to use a variety of sticks to accomplish all manner of things. Including killing!
There is a difference to be made immediately between an individual who, when using a baton, loses control and ends up using lethal force and a professional whom needs to resort to bodily harm or lethal response via their impact tool. I am referring to the latter only.
If you've assessed a situation and determined your baton to be an appropriate response or added safety and the situation then escalates; putting your baton away and accessing your sidearm (if you have one) may not be practical or possible. If you would be legally justified in shooting the subject then, it follows, you can legally move to a lethal application of your impact tool.
The problem is that very few people are ever taught how to do this! The possibility of having to 'beat' a subject to death is the kind of eventuality most agencies have nightmares over. The truth is that, in a situation where it is justifiable, a simple switch in targeting can convert even one strike from a baton to a lethal blow.
"Sticks" have been used as killing tools since the dawn of man. Many who follow darker professions are adept at inflicting damage up to and including death with all manner of sticks/batons. Impact tools can and have been used to 'assist' in the application of neck restraints as well as apply spine and joint locks.
It is not just the 'body' of the impact tool that can be used to kill. At close quarters the butt can be lethally employed (much like the pommel on some fighting knives). In skilled hands, even on a collapsible baton, the tip can be used to sever arteries beneath the skin, without cutting the skin.
Interestingly, those who take the time to become capable of lethal applications of their impact tool are the least likely to cause unnecessary harm when employing their batons. Even when facing lethal force. The skill, knowledge and confidence they gain often makes them competent and capable enough not to have to resort to terminal measures, even when justified.