Archive for the ‘Police Psychology Theories’ Category

Police Psychology Interview:  Intelligence and Counterintelligence

with James Turner, Ph.D.

 

Some of the earliest use of psychology in operational policing was by the military.  I remember reading stories of how B. F. Skinner invented a pigeon-controlled missile which were much more accurate than the guidance systems available at the time.  Police psychology: counterintelligenceEbbinghaus had military applications of his memory work at the turn of the twentieth century, and we all know the history of the IQ tests had military motivations.  Jim Turner worked in developing many uses of intelligence and counterintelligence while working for military agencies and police agencies some of which are still classified.  His last work was for the Joint Counterintelligence Training Academy where he taught.  This was an interview with Jim to learn a little more about intelligence in the police psychology world.

Gary:  Jim, what exactly is intelligence?

Jim:  Intelligence is a collection of information from a variety of technologies, that have to be interpreted.  Different types of intelligence include actionable intelligence, direct action and responses, then there is background intelligence on ongoing, internal and external processes.

Gary:  Then what is Counterintelligence? (more…)

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Police Psychology | Stress Inoculation:  Not Just for Gunfights

by Patricia A. Robinson, Ph.D.

Sonoita, Arizona

 If you Google “police stress inoculation shooting,” you’ll get about 300,000 results, with titles like “Why your firearms training MUST include stress inoculation drills.” Acute stress induces the so-called “fight or flight” response, stimulating the sympathetic nervous system and the adrenal-cortical system to prepare you to deal with the proverbial saber-tooth tiger about to pounce or the drug dealer drawing a pistol.  Without getting into the physiological weeds, we are familiar with the effects of the acute stress response:  pounding heart and rising blood pressure, tunnel vision, loss of fine motor control, auditory exclusion, and so on.  If you’re not prepared, these responses can wreak havoc with your shooting skills.

Trainers introduce artificial stress (e.g. time pressure, shoot/don’t shoot decisions, scenarios) in firearms training to ensure that when the real thing happens, an officer will still be able to perform, even under acute stress.   The middle of a gunfight is a bad time to be trying to think through step-by-step how to draw and fire your weapon or what to do when a malfunction occurs—your responses must be automatic.  With acute stress, when the gunfight is over (or the saber-tooth tiger has decided on a different entrée), our bodies return to normal. (more…)

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Police Psychology:  27 Symptoms of Anxiety

 

 

 

Site Administrator:  Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D. ABPP

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Police Psychology:  Stop the Murder!

by Dr. Gary S. Aumiller

Enough is enough!  In fourteen days, there has been a wholesale killing of people in a concert in Manchester, at a tourist site in England, and a guy with a hammer attacking people in Paris, in the shadow of the Cathedral of Notre Dame.  My wife said after the second attack that our 10-year old will never be able to visit Europe like we did without thinking about danger.  She’s at the age where she would be at an Ariana Grande concert and we would have taken her there.  And we certainly have been on the London Bridge when we were in London and at the Basilica when we were in Paris.  These sites are only about 200 miles apart.  It’s like 3 attacks from New York to Baltimore, or San Francisco to Fresno, or Miami to Orlando.  How do we Stop the Murder!

Obviously, allowing Sharia courts of law (the UK has at least 85) and setting up their own government is not going to help terrorism.  Allowing open borders doesn’t seem to help terrorism, circa 2017.  And constantly repeating statements like “we are all immigrants” does not help terrorism.  What is the secret, and where do we go from here?  I mean other groups have assimilated into American culture.  I can’t remember a story about an Amish person killing people or knocking down a building.  The European Jews, Chinese, French, and Italians seem to have assimilated well, sometimes even into their own separate neighborhoods.  As far as home grown, Mormon religions are non-violent, as are the Jehovah’s Witness.  They may be annoying proselytizers, but really we can shut a door on them without worrying about being blown up.   What is the difference and can police psychology help us understand how to handle this new terrorism better? (more…)

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Police Psychology | PTSD 4:  Flashbacks

Gary S. Aumiller, Ph.D.  ABPP

 

Of course, you are going to think I’ve lost it on this one, but it shows some merit.  And it makes some sense logically.  Researchers in England  say that flashbacks from traumatic events can be moderated through playing Tetris right after the event occurs.  That’s Tetris, the video game where you move puzzle pieces in all directions to make lines or blocks. etc. Makes you wonder if Candy Crush can be used for Ragin’ Anxiety and Donkey Kong and the Mario brothers could be used to sew up Open Heart Surgery!

So the thought is this: by playing a video game after a serious traumatic incident, you are stimulating your eye movement and concentration and that causes the brain to not be able to spend all its time to store long term memories, thus it doesn’t keep coming back into your head as much.  In fact, in the medical journal called Molecular Psychiatry in March of this year told of a study that gave people Tetris after a traumatic incident and others were given a placebo or basically nothing.  The Tetris group had 9 flashbacks the next week while the nothing groups had 23 flashback the next week.  Pretty significant!  Oxford University in England and the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden said just 20 minutes of Tetris right after a traumatic incident was all that was needed to greatly reduce all PTSD effects.  Scientific America reported the same effect in their study.  In fact, case studies are cropping up all over saying that Tetris therapy is great at reducing flashbacks if given in the hospital after car accident, witnessing shootings and even rape.  Let me get this right, (doctor calls out to nurse):  scalpel…suture…bandage…Gameboy.  This doesn’t make sense to me, but let’s look at it a little closer… (more…)

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