Stoughton, who is a former officer, said police departments emphasize keeping someone in the prone position just long enough to restrain them, then take them out of it either by rolling them onto their side, sitting them up or having them stand.
Another potential injury involves the placement of pressure. A great deal of pressure and weight on a suspect’s neck can cause fatal damage.
In his book on use of force, Stoughton wrote, “Officers should avoid putting their body weight on the subject’s neck or head; the pressure of such a position can fracture the hyoid bone or cervical spine, depending on the position of the subject’s head.”
Finally, any officers involved in this maneuver must closely monitor the suspect’s well-being, he said. Kneeling on their neck for an extended period of time could be fatal.