10 commandments for cops after use of deadly force

Getting through the aftermath of an officer-involved shooting requires an extended test of survival skills


Reprinted with permission from Force Science News #376.

Your first priority in using deadly force is to survive the life-threatening circumstances that prompted you to pull the trigger. Then there’s surviving the aftermath. Some officers claim that can be even more stressful, and certainly it’s a more extended test of survival skills of a different kind, considering that shooting cases can drag on for years before they’re finally resolved.

Police attorney Scott Wood, a former officer, a certified Force Science Analyst and a Force Science instructor, has helped scores of officers navigate the perilous post-shooting passage, including some who’ve dominated national headlines.

Based on his experiences, he has compiled what he considers the 10 commandments for surviving what lies in store after the smoke clears. Here’s what he urges you to remember:

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