One of the most difficult decisions a police officer will ever have to make is whether or not to use deadly force in the field. Though it's not often an Abilene Police Officer has to pull their gun and shoot. Two officers shot and killed a man who they said threatened their lives Wednesday.
"Every one of your officers in this department are highly trained and they're wanting to serve. But nobody wants to take a life," Assistant Chief of Police, Doug Wrenn said.
The officers involved in the Wednesday morning shooting on North 17th Street are now on routine administrative leave.
"Morning of, we were already making plans to get counseling sessions in place," Wrenn said. "That counseling is so critical to make sure that their head is clear and when they hit that button to go answer that next call, they're gonna be of sound mind to help the citizens."
Using deadly force is never an easy decision. With no time to think, the repercussions can sometimes show up long after the shooting.
"If they get back to the streets and start having doubts again, we have that employee assistance program available to them," Wrenn said.
APD also has an in-house chaplain and supervisors who make sure all officers are psychologically able to serve.
"We train for these critical incidents but you can never truly humanize it until it actually happens," Wrenn said. "In this case, we're optimistic everybody will recover from this and of course the department is standing behind them."
APD even has officers undergo psychological testing before they join the force to ensure they will be able to bounce back from any traumatic situations.