While many of the duties in security are well known, it is less commonly realized that when an incident does occur, the involvement of the officer present may not end as the shift does and they will need to make a testimony as a witness in court. Though likely few need to be reminded of the procedures of a courtroom, some of the preparations necessary for an officer to make before their appearance are worth reviewing.
Preparing for the testimony does not begin the day of the trial, or even at the beginning of the incident; in fact the officer must start each shift with the possibility that his actions may be reviewed in mind. Reports made as part of a daily job routine are not considered hearsay and are admissible as evidence. Keeping the record straight from the time of the incident will prevent false memories or outside influences from poisoning the testimony with inconsistencies, which would remove the ability to ascertain the truth and doom the trial to failure.
While opinions on appropriate dress vary by company, our guards do not show up to court in their security uniforms, but instead take a professional civilian look. On the witness stand officers should always react neutrally, only giving facts and not opinions. As with all testifiers in court, security officers should know as much as they can about the opposition’s intentions, and make sure their own notes and talking points follow normal legal guidelines.