Officer Involved Shooting Debriefing

Debriefings following an officer involved shooting or when a peace officer is fired upon is for many agencies a standard part of the post-incident protocol. It is suggested by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, Police Psychological Services Section (IACP-PPSS) that “Post-shooting and other critical incident interventions should be conducted only by licensed mental health professionals trained and experienced in working with law enforcement personnel and familiar with officer-involved shootings and other critical incidents” (Officer Involved Shooting Guidelines, 2013).

Dr. Roland has conducted over 1000 of these debriefings for both individuals and groups and has the expertise to offer culturally competent interventions.

The goal of the contact is to reduce the impact of these events, mitigate potential impairment, educate individuals as to the normal reactions and experiences following these incidents, and provide support in returning the employee to work so that they may continue with their careers.

An OIS debriefing is a confidential session that is solely for the purpose of the involved employee’s well-being. These are NOT fitness-for-duty evaluations, and feedback about an employee’s status or “clearing them back to work” is not part of the process. Follow-up sessions can be offered as needed.

It is important to remember that individuals can have varying reactions to these events, and a post-shooting intervention is tailored to meet the needs of the employee. Services can also be provided for spouses and significant others, as these critical incidents impact families and loved ones as well.

The recommendations in the IACP-PPSS OIS Guidelines are followed in this office, and can be found at www.theiacp.org.

Please consider using this resource to help plan your agency’s response to an OIS ahead of the occurrence, so that when your personnel need help you are ready to offer them assistance with an efficient and seamless process.