Directive 416.00, Post Officer Involved Deadly Force Temporary Altered Duty
- Critical Incident Stress Debriefing: A process that is designed to prevent or limit the development of post-traumatic stress in people exposed to critical incidents. It is a professionally conducted debriefing that helps members cope with and recover from an incident’s aftereffects. It enables participants to process their thoughts and feelings surrounding a critical incident in a controlled, safe environment.
- Involved Member: A member who is involved in the actual application of deadly force or directs another to use deadly physical force.
- Witness Member: A member, who observes or has firsthand knowledge of the events surrounding an in-custody death or use of deadly physical force by another member and other than observing the incident, did not use deadly force.
1. The Bureau recognizes that incidents involving the use of deadly force (or force resulting in serious injury) are extremely complex and can have significant impact on the involved members, the organization, and the community.
2. The Bureau is committed to supporting members involved in a deadly force incident. Members directly involved in the use of deadly force (or force resulting in serious injury as determined by the Chief of Police) will be placed on administrative leave and/or provided a structured, temporary altered assigned to facilitate the member returning to their regular duty.
3. Members who witness the use of deadly force (or force resulting in serious injury as determined by the Chief of Police) may be placed on administrative leave and/or temporary altered duty assignment following such an incident.
1. Altered Duty for Involved Members:
1.1. The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Coordinator will ensure that all involved Members are assigned a Traumatic Incident Committee team member as soon as practical following the use of deadly force.
1.2. Involved members will be placed on administrative leave immediately following an event until one (1) week after the end of the Grand Jury deliberations. This procedure recognizes the difficulty in processing such an event by a member until after the completion of the Grand Jury deliberations.
1.3. Members who need more time off work will be afforded the opportunity to use vacation or sick leave, if applicable.
1.4. If a member feels unable to return to work, they may file a claim under the Fire and Police Disability and Retirement System.
1.5. The Employee Assistance Coordinator will schedule the Critical Incident Stress Debriefing as soon as practical following the conclusion of the Grand Jury deliberations. This procedure recognizes the value in conducting this debriefing as soon as is procedurally possible.
1.6. The Employee Assistance Coordinator will assist in paring the involved member with a trained professional psychologist and ensure the involved member is scheduled for a session prior to returning to work, and at three (3), six (6), and twelve (12), months following the incident.
1.7. The involved member’s lieutenant will be responsible for keeping the member informed of the details of their temporary assignment. This procedure recognizes the value in the member receiving official communication in a timely, accurate, and regular manner.
1.8. Involved members will return to work at the conclusion of the administrative leave and after the Critical Incident Stress Debriefing.
1.9. The involved member’s return to work will be structured in a manner designed to continue to facilitate the member smoothly returning to their fully duty assignment.
2. Return to Work for Involved Members:
2.1. The first week of the structured return to duty assignment will include being paired with another member for a minimum of the first week. This procedure recognizes the benefit of being back with the involved member’s usual peers as well as being able to step back into the demands of the job in a progressive manner.
2.2. The first day will be administrative in nature and will include such things as obtaining back the involved member’s weapon and equipment, visiting the range if desired, and visiting the scene of occurrence if desired.
2.3. If the involved member is in an operational assignment, the rest of the week will involve working in a two (2) person “beat” car and taking non-priority calls. The intent is for the involved member to not have district responsibilities for the first week and to take calls in a self initiated and controlled manner.
2.4. If the involved member is in a non-operational assignment, a similar stair step approach assignment will be structured.
2.5. At the end of the first week, the involved member, the Employee Assistance Coordinator, and the member’s supervisor will make a determination if the member is ready for a complete return to unrestricted duty or decide if there would be additional benefit by continuing to be paired with a partner.
3. Witness Member:
3.1. Members that witness (as defined within this directive), the use of deadly force may be placed on administrative leave and/or placed in a temporary altered duty assignment following such an incident. This may also be referred to the Employee Assistance Program and assigned a Traumatic Incident Committee or Peer Support Team member.
3.2. These decisions, as well as the return to work process, will be determined on a case by case basis by the Branch Chief of the witness member in consultation with the Employee Assistance Coordinator, the witness member, and their assigned Traumatic Incident Committee or Peer Support Team member.
3.3. This procedure recognizes that witnessing such an event, though not being directly involved in the use of deadly force, can still have a significant impact on members.
4. Exceptional Circumstances:
4.1. In exceptional circumstances, the Chief of Police, reserves the ability to have a member remain on administrative leave beyond the provisions outlined in within this directive.
4.2. The Chief of Police, also reserves the ability to assign a member to a non-call taking assignment.
4.3. Factors that will be considered in making such determinations include, but are not limited to:
4.3.1. Member concerns,
4.3.2. Threats to members,
4.3.3. Media coverage,
4.3.4. Community concerns,
4.3.5. Grand Jury returning a true bill for a criminal indictment, and/or
4.3.6. There is an objective basis for the Chief of Police, to believe that the member may be terminated for employment.
PROVIDE FEEDBACK: Use this FORM