Officer-involved shooting investigation - what's next?

Former lawman weighs in on procedure

BOCA RATON, Fla. - The name of the Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputy who shot and killed Seth Adams, has not been disclosed. But authorities say the deputy is off the streets for now, standard procedure in any shooting investigation.

"The officer is removed from duty and his firearm is taken from him and taken to the lab and the officer gets time to speak with the attorney with the union," says former Boca Raton Police Chief Andrew Scott.

Scott says every law enforcement officer is compelled to give a statement of what happened, and explain their use of deadly force.  

The police union and sheriff's office will  look into whether policies and procedures were followed. The State Attorney's Office heads the main investigation. Was the shooting justified?  

"They send an Assistant  State Attorney out to the scene to work with the homicide unit, to make sure all things are being done, God forbid there be a prosecution," says Scott.

Scott say in a case like this, the deputy may come back from administrative leave to do "light duty" work inside the department. But the deputy doesn't go back on patrol until, or unless, he's cleared in the shooting probe.
In the meantime, he is offered counseling.

"It's a very daunting event, I don't care how tough an officer thinks they are. When you use deadly force it's a traumatic event, psychologically and emotionally," says Scott.

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