Michigan police seminar featuring 'killology' instructor canceled after outcry

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A police training seminar featuring a controversial instructor who teaches officers to kill civilians has been canceled following outcry from local activists who worry the event will lead to more trigger-happy cops.

The seminar is taught by Dave Grossman, a 64-year-old former Army ranger who trains police in “killology,” his testosterone-laced psychology of killing, which he calls “righteous violence.”



“After hearing the concerns raised we have canceled the seminar,” Robert Stevenson, executive director of Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police, which organized the event, tells Metro Times.

Oak Pointe Church in Novi, where the seminar was to be held, also backed out Monday after receiving numerous calls about Grossman, who urges police to tap into their inner predator and kill without guilt or hesitation.



In a video that recently went viral, Grossman tells a class that police “have the best sex” after shooting a civilian.

“Our mission of ‘making disciples to know Jesus and make Him known’ is not in line with one of the speakers in question,” the church said in a statement. “Even though this was not a church event, we are responsible for what we host in our building and therefore endorse.”

The church added, "The main source of our concern is the teaching of David Grossman, director of the Killology Research Group. He has become a controversial figure due to his teaching around the topic of killing. In one of his on-line seminars he states 'Any natural or learned resistance to killing, any sense of the sanctity of human life, any human emotions, any remorse or compassion at the moment of truth can all be overcome and overwhelmed with training' (Unit 2, from 'On Combat'). Because of this statement and other elements of Lt. Col. Grossman’s teachings, we cannot welcome him as a speaker at Oak Pointe Church."

Stevenson says the seminar was designed to help officers cope after shooting a civilian.

“The training that Col. Grossman was scheduled to provide was how to help officers deal with PTSD and the psychological and physical aspect of what happens if they are ever involved in a fatal force incident and to help them heal and recover from said situation,” Stevenson says. “This is especially relevant in light of the Dearborn Officer that committed suicide (late last year) after being involved in a fatal force incident.”

In his book On Combat, Grossman describes police as sheepdogs, “a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed.”

Criminals, he said, are “wolves” who “feed on the sheep without mercy.”

The officer who killed Philando Castile, a 32-year-old Black man, in Minnesota in July 2016 attended one of Grossman’s seminars two years prior, prompting officials to cancel one of the instructor's training sessions.

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