Again I would like to start by stating I AM NOT ANTI-COP, they have a hard enough job to do without armchair quarterbacks dissecting decisions that are made in milliseconds during the worse conditions imaginable.
I understand and actually accept the fact that there is a certain unspoken code for Law Enforcement to look out for Brothers in Blue, I get that. When you work in any high stress position you develop certain bonds and loyalties, again I get that.
I can even understand a Police Officer turning a blind eye to a minor infraction committed by a fellow Brother in Blue.
The Blue Privilege I am concerned about is when a serious incident is ignored by a fellow Officer. I am fairly certain that this does not happen all to often, I like to believe most Police Officers do the job with integrity because they want to protect and serve. I also can say that the Officers I know do not want to be associated with “ the bad apples” and are glad when those type of Cops get weeded out. That being said mistakes happen, Police Officers are Humans and subject to the same flaws as other human beings. A bad day at home, a hangover, financial issues and any number of factors come into play affecting the decisions the Officer makes. As a Human I accept the fact that Cops will screw up, I do not accept the fact that being a Cop offers some level of protection that I,and other civilians do not have.
On that same line of reasoning one glaring privilege ,I routinely see while conducting Investigations, Is the way a civilian is treated after a shooting VS the way the Police are treated.
If a civilian is involved in a shooting, whether it was a justified action or a criminal act, that person will be transported immediately to the local Police department and questioned about his or her involvement. Normally the person involved is enduring a stressful time and is suffering from anxiety, excitement and confusion. This person just shot someone and is now expected to recall events in some cognitive way that makes sense. This could result is giving a statement that could impact that persons life in a dramatic way including arrest and incarceration. There is normally no lag time between the incident and the interview.
On the other hand If a Police Officer is involved in a shooting that Officer, in almost all cases, will not be interviewed for at least 48 hours, known as the 48 hour rule. This allows the Officer, among other things, to emotionally decompress and to accurately recall the events. This is based on studies that have shown that“ in high stress, adrenaline infused situations, memories can often be inaccurate if they are immediate”. **As someone that was involved in a shooting, I can tell you this is true.**
If a highly trained Police Officer, whom is also vetted by some sort of pre hire psychological interview, has the luxury of waiting 48 hours, why are lowly untrained civilians not allotted the same treatment?
Robert Clark CFI,PCI
Robert Clark Agency Investigations/Consulting 609-638-1143 Robertclarkagency@icloud.com