About These Stories
Post-critical incidents can arise from different situations, and don't always involve shootings. The following are real-life stories from real-life officers. Names have been omitted to protect the identity and privacy of the officers and individuals involved. Any images used are for illustrative purposes only.
“Every year since, I remember the birthday of the young girl who drowned.”
It was a beautiful sunny day. A day like any other. Early in the afternoon, a new lateral transfer and I were checking the neighborhoods and businesses in our assigned patrol area. This was typically the enjoyable part of the day; making contact with citizens, business owners and employees through conversation, or a friendly wave and a smile. A call on the radio to respond to an injury accident in a business parking lot “code 3” abruptly ended the tranquility of the afternoon.
“After the gun went off, the first thought I had was, ‘Oh my god, I just shot my pistol.’”
Everyone dreams of the perfect job, but, many of us never have a chance to fulfill that dream. That wasn’t the case for one retired central Kentucky law enforcement officer. “I always dreamed of being an officer,” he said. “I didn’t want to be anything else. I wanted to wear that uniform.” Five years into his career on a cold, damp, rainy fall evening in the mid-1990s, the officer’s dream became a nightmare.
“When am I going to wake up and this will be behind me?”
His 18-year-old son was days from leaving home for the national guard. Just 17 days out of the academy, the Kentucky officer invited his son to ride along with him in their hometown to see what his dad was doing each day in his new career. They responded to a domestic disturbance call.
“I just couldn’t seem to let it go”
In the wee hours of a chilly October morning in 2014, western Kentucky deputies were dispatched to a two-vehicle accident where one person was ejected from a vehicle. The first deputy to arrive took in the immediate scene and located the ejected individual.