Rock for the Cops helps law enforcement officers cope after traumatic incidents

Rock for the Cops helps law enforcement officers cope after traumatic incidents

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - It's country music, for a good cause. The second annual Rock for the Cops concert was held Thursday night in Augusta.

The money raised will touch the lives of law enforcement officers across the CSRA. One hundred percent of the money raised tonight pays for special training after traumatic experiences.

Officers at the concert said sometimes this training, is what determines whether a person stays in law enforcement.

"Being an officer that was involved in a line of duty shooting, not only did it affect me, but it affected my wife and my children. It was a life-changing event for my entire family," said Richmond County Deputy Sheriff Patrick Cullinan.

In 2013, Deputy Sheriff Cullinan attended his first Post Critical Incident Seminar to help him cope with the shooting he saw up close and personal. The peer-based seminar helps officers cope with traumatic incidents they've encountered on the job, and encourages them to open up.

"It's okay to talk about this," he said. "You know, there's a stigma in law enforcement that that's been there for years that you just go about your business, and you don't talk about it. You suck it up."

After attending his first seminar, Cullinan worked with the Police Benevolent Association to create the Rock for the Cops. A concert where 100 percent of the proceeds would go towards sending officers to this seminar.

And this seminar, could be a matter of life or death for some officers.

"Annually we have between 150 and 160 or 70 law enforcement officers die in the line of duty," said Lt. Andy Carrier. "That's by gunfire, car accident, you name it. They're on the job, and it's duty related. You can multiply that number between two and three times, and that's how many officers will take their life every year."

As the next seminar approaches, officers want to remind people that just like everyone else, sometimes they need some help to cope.

"At the end of the day as law enforcement officers, we're still human. We're just like everybody else," Deputy Sheriff Cullinan said.

If you missed the concert tonight, but still want to donate to the Police Benevolent Association, click here for more information.

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