Shots Fired is a journey “behind the shield” and the experiences of the real human beings behind the badge. It explores true events through the participants’ own eyes and takes readers inside the minds of officers during the actual event. The officers detail the roller coaster of emotions and severe trauma experienced during and after a shooting event.
Along with the intimate, in-depth explorations of the incidents themselves, the book touches the aftermath of police-involved shootings—the debriefings, internal and external investigations, and psychological evaluations. It challenges many commonly held assumptions created by the media such as the meaning of “unarmed” and why the police can’t just “shoot him in the leg,” creating an understanding that reaches beyond slogans such as “hands up, don’t shoot.”
The book is valuable reading for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of police shootings—officers and police departments, reporters and politicians, and the public who rely on the police to keep them safe.
SubtitleThe Misunderstandings, Misconceptions, and Myths about Police Shootings
AuthorBy Joseph K. Loughlin, By Kate Clark Flora
Published24 October 2017
Dimensions6.00 x 9.00in.
Illustrations30 color photos.
About the author
Kate Clark Flora writes true crime, strong women, and police procedurals. A Good Man with a Dog is a memoir she co-wrote with a retired Maine game warden. Her fascination with people?s bad behavior began in the Maine attorney general?s office, where she chased deadbeat dads and protected battered children. Flora lives in Concord, Massachusetts.
Loughlin and Flora previously collaborated on the true crime story Finding Amy, which was nominated for an Edgar Award.
—Colonel (ret.) David Hunt, New York Times bestselling author, Fox News military and terrorism analyst
“A thoughtful and timely book, Shots Fired goes beyond the headlines to educate the reader while at the same time delivering harrowing accounts of officers under the gun.”
?SFPD Sgt. Adam Plantinga, author of 400 Things Cops Know
“Shots Fired is a gripping account of what really happens when police officers find themselves in deadly-force encounters. The author points out that ‘from the Michael Brown incident on August 9, 2014 to the end of that year, forty-seven officers were killed by gunfire alone.’ Yet how many can cite their names? In an era when so many are demonizing law enforcement, this book reveals the humanity of those brave souls who walk the thin blue line.”
—Thomas Jackson, author of Policing Ferguson, Policing America
“A very important book that reveals, in stark detail, the grim realities beyond the inflammatory headlines of officer-involved shootings. Shocking, heartbreaking, and eye-opening, the up-close-and-personal accounts in Shots Fired will make you reconsider all you thought you knew about police work.”
—Catherine Pelonero, New York Times bestselling author of Kitty Genovese
“Shots Fired by Loughlin and Flora is a valuable addition to the literature of use of force, and a breath of fresh air and common sense in the current debate.”
—Massad Ayoob, author of Deadly Force: Understanding Your Right to Self Defense
“Shots Fired is must-reading for anyone with a sincere interest in the realities of deadly force incidents. It captures the nature of these events and the all-too-real human factors that are in play. It is educational, deeply moving, and a revelation of the searing personal experience that using deadly force inflicts upon our law enforcement officers. All concerned and interested citizens should read it, and if I had my way it would be mandatory reading for any reporter contemplating a story on a police shooting.”
—Urey W. Patrick, author of In Defense of Self and Others
“By focusing on the emotional stories that cops told the author about their experiences during and after officer-involved shootings, Shots Fired provides compelling information about the critical matter of the role that deadly force plays in modern American police work.”
—David Klinger, professor of criminology and criminal justice at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, author of Into the Kill Zone
“Pulling the trigger is not a casual event, especially for a police officer whose mission is to ‘preserve and protect.’ The more our citizenry understand about the pressures these officers must endure to do their jobs well, the better for our society. Our contribution to their efforts on our behalf is to be aware and informed.”
—James Hawes, former Navy SEAL officer
“This book offers us a peek behind the headlines at the human beings whose lives were changed forever by their actions. The candid interviews with police officers involved in a shooting incident are sobering and terrifying. By the time the whole truth is available the media has moved on. These accounts remind us there is always more than one side to the story.”
—Lynne Finch, author of Female and Armed
“The best thing a good book can do for you is to open your mind. It is not always a comfortable process, but it is always a rewarding one. Joseph K. Loughlin and Kate Clark Flora open your mind to the experience of police officers who are faced with the most consequential decision they must make—the decision to use deadly force. The authors invite you to step out of your preconceptions and into the cop’s unique life-or-death frame of reference. Accept the invitation, and one thing is certain: you will think hard before you pass judgment on the next news story that comes your way concerning an ‘officer-involved shooting.’”
—Alan Axelrod, Cops, Crooks, and Criminologists and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Forensics
“Shots Fired reads like a fast-moving thriller at breathtaking pace. It is filled with vivid descriptions of street wars and real-life action heroes who expose themselves to the most dangerous and vile elements of our society without thanks so the rest of us can sleep. Be proud of them; I am.”
—John Geddes, co-author of Be a Hero: The Essential Survival Guide to Active-Shooter Events
“There’s a gulf between the law-abiding public’s perception of a police arrest and the stark reality. When they think about it, most citizens assume an arrest is a sterile, formal process with the subject generally ‘coming quietly.’ If only. Shots Fired takes us down the dark alleys behind the violent interface between officers and perpetrators. I found the shocked memories of individual officers raw, compelling and illuminating. Shots Fired is essential reading for all those genuinely interested in a functional society.”
—Alun Rees, co-author of Be a Hero: The Essential Survival Guide to Active-Shooter Events
“Shots Fired is not about medals or a trip the White House. It’s about every small-time arrest you never hear about that explodes into the unimaginable. While anti-cop activists spread lies, the truth of what takes place in these tales is harrowing but important. There are three possible audiences for Shots Fired: good guys, bad guys, and everyone else.”
—Roger Eckstine, author of Shooter’s Bible Guide to Home Defense
“Whether you’re a cop, want to be one, or simply know someone in law enforcement, Shots Fired will make you think and often shudder about the short- and long-term consequences of trying to ‘protect and serve’ when the situation deteriorates and deadly force may be called for. We civilians live in an insulated world. Cops on the street live in a world that resembles the Old West with criminals who may be inherently stupid, but are also cunning, ruthless, and can be nothing short of dangerous predators. Praise to those who carry a badge, I don’t know how they can handle the job stress of being a cop in today’s world. I couldn’t!”
—Andy Lightbody, author of The Terrorism Survival Guide
“An enlightening and emotional read from beginning to end, Shots Fired draws you in from the very first paragraphs. Joseph Loughlin intricately describes the complex details of the police officer’s duties and shows how officers must deal with communities that now question their intentions and legitimacy. This is a book that should be read by all—our law enforcement communities deserve that the public know the truth beyond sensational and often inaccurate news stories.”
—Don D. Mann, Navy SEAL Team SIX (ret.), New York Times bestselling author of Inside SEAL Team SIX
"Rarely does a book entertain me enough to actually read it from cover to cover. This long-overdue book, with its urgent message and dynamic delivery of gripping true stories, was definitely an exception. I only hope the right people read it."—David Black, author of What to Do When the Shit Hits the Fan