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Int J Emerg Ment Health. 2006 Summer;8(3):165-74.

Suicide by cop: causes, reactions, and practical intervention strategies.

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Due to a combination of interpersonal manipulativeness, personal identification, and lack of heroic status, most police officers find suicide by cop (SBC) calls to be among the most disturbing shooting incidents. This article describes the dynamics of SBC and some of the factors that may contribute to it. Operational strategies and psychological techniques for de-escalating and resolving a SBC crisis are discussed. Finally, psychological reactions by officers to a SBC and psychotherapeutic strategies for dealing with the aftermath are described. Especially important is the recommendation that officers use intervention "failures" as tools for learning, so that purposeless remorse can be turned into enhanced life-saving skills for the next incident.

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