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1. A brief description of two forensic psychology professional roles in law enforcement (Police). Then, analyze the impact of each role in both an internal context (i.e., within the police department) and an external context (i.e., outside the police department—neighborhoods, schools, etc.). Be specific and provide examples. Support your analysis with references to the Learning Resources.

a. Describe two roles that forensic psychology professionals have when working with police. (These roles should be different from the ones used in question 1 above.)
b. Compare the roles (similarities and differences) including how they pertain to internal and external contexts of police work. Be specific and provide examples.
c. Analyze the insights and/or conclusions you had because of this comparison.
d. Support your responses with references to the Learning Resources and the research literature.

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Forensic Psychology Roles

1. Critical Police Psychology Practice - Fitness for Duty Evaluation

Dr. Laurence Miller (2006), a practicing police psychologist and author writes that "in cases where it is suspected that personal traits, disorders, or stress reactions are causing or contributing to problem behavior or substandard performance, and where the usual channels of review, coaching, counseling, and discipline have failed to effect a substantial change, a formal psychological fitness for duty (FFD) evaluation may be ordered." Miller writes about the task that an FFD police psychologist performs as the psychological health of a police officer or a law enforcement professional is essential in ensuring that they are fit for duty. From an external viewpoint, the role is deemed important - it is partly for the welfare of the police officers & co. in as much as it is part of ensuring top service to the public. From an internal viewpoint however, an FFD and the expert performing the role is mostly viewed negatively by police since being referred to it can bring on negative stigma (i.e. that the person being referred is not 'right') and this can affect organizational standing. The truth, an FFD is standard procedure and all must go through it, especially when behavior is not according to expectations.

2. Deadly Force Incidence Assessments

Much as FFD is standard practice for police psychologists, especially those who are part of a department, analysing an incident that resulted to the use of deadly force is also just as essential and standard. According to Frazier (2011), "Police officers have the discretion to use deadly force when they deem appropriate. This awesome authority sets police apart from every other profession...A police officer that applies deadly force is scrutinized administratively and criminally." This scrutiny has to do with the legality and morality of the action but also with the impact that the DFI can have on the officers and the people directly impacted by it. In Kitaeff (2011), a police officer names "Peter" admitted to turning to alcohol after a deadly force incident. He was diagnosed with PTSD as his behavior impacted his work and his private life. The role therefore is integral for the purpose of justice but also welfare and external viewpoint. Internally, it is necessary to allow the police to be able to determine the ethics and morality of the action and to look after the officers who have one way or the other taken part.

3. Critical Incident Aftermath Counsellor

PTSD is a proven state that many can enter having experienced traumatic incidences. For the police this can include deadly force incidents and other tragedies (i.e. 9-11, Katrina) where they personally experienced the tragedy and had roles and responsibilities in the frontline. Kiateff (2011) writes that critical incident counseling is a core domain practice in police psychology to help with stress intervention to support the psychological health of the entire organization. Outside of seeing officers ...

Solution Summary

The solution describes forensic psychology roles in law enforcement (police).

See Also This Related BrainMass Solution

Forensic Psychology - Contributions to Policing

To truly understand a field of study, you must first understand its place and relevance in history. Although forensic psychology, i.e., the study of psychology as it relates to legal issues, may have begun as early as the 1800s, its impact on police work did not occur until much later. In 1919, Germany recognized the need for psychologists within a police department; however, in the United States, this need was not recognized until 1968 when the Los Angeles Police Department (L.A.P.D.) hired Martin Reiser, EdD. Dr. Reiser, who has become known as the "Father of Police Psychology," emphasized that police psychologists need to understand the inner workings of the police department and must speak in a way that police could relate to. He also understood the bureaucracy of the police department and warned psychologists that any new programs may take a long time to implement. As a result of Reiser's knowledge of forensic psychology, his perseverance, and his ability to be accepted into the world of the L.A.P.D., he successfully worked as a police psychologist for many years and wrote numerous books and articles on the topic of police psychology. Since then, other psychologists have made great strides in working and developing programs within police departments.

The connection between forensic psychology and police psychology is still being fostered, primarily because police psychology itself is a newer branch of forensic psychology. Police psychology focuses on police professionals and organizations and on the needs of both in order to solve cases and provide better training. Over the years, most police departments began hiring part-time forensic psychology consultants as opposed to full-time employees in an effort to address specific issues relevant to police work. These psychology professionals are schooled in forensic psychology and can apply different areas of study to the needs of police professionals.
, consider the specific areas within the field of forensic psychology that are relevant to police work and how they have impacted the field of police work.

Select two contributions that forensic psychology has made to the field of police work. Think about how these contributions have impacted the field of police work and why.

a description of two forensic psychology contributions to police work. Then, evaluate the impact of each contribution to the field of police work. Be specific and provide examples.

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