Community ripple effects of officer involved shootings

The string of recent shootings involving law enforcement has community-wide impact across the state.

ATLANTA — The state of Georgia has 84 shootings involving an officer so far in 2021, according to data from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. The state is on pace to surpass the 96 recorded in 2020. 

A Jackson County deputy was shot Friday while responding to a domestic incident, and a Henry County police officer was in similar situation. Both law enforcement officers were in critical but stable condition at last check. 

Thirty-year law enforcement veteran turned trainer Charles Rambo said the ripple effects of shootings involving police can be felt community-wide. 

“We have to console families,” Rambo said. “We now have to console the entire agency based on relationships and even in communities where that officer may be beloved.” 

RELATED: Gov. Kemp asks for ‘thoughts and prayers’ for Henry County officer injured in shooting

Rambo said he has had to tailor his training for officers to be more balanced.

“It’s helping them to survive in court, survive in the streets,” Rambo said. “It’s given them a different sense of community relations. Today’s generation of future leaders want to work in a collaborative environment where they feel their sacrifices are actually making a difference in the communities they serve.”

RELATED: Suspect still on the run after shooting Henry County officer

In recruiting and retaining more officers, Rambo said it’s not so much the risk and dangers that come with the calling, but rather the internal turmoil that can crop up within agencies and how officers are perceived throughout their communities. 

“These particular officers give their life and sacrifice,” Rambo said. “By all means, let’s celebrate them both in the community as well as agency for the job we’re doing. Otherwise, we won’t have law enforcement into the future.”