The Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) concept has been implemented in the 21st Judicial District to aid agencies investigating Peace Officer involved fatal or near fatal incidents. Peace Officers are unique because society has granted Peace Officers the power and authority to use deadly force. Stringent laws and guidelines related to the use of deadly force ensure that Peace Officers do not abuse the power that has been granted to them by our free society.
This unique power presents challenges to agencies that are tasked with investigating the use of deadly force incidents. It is the intention of the CIRT concept to make these investigations less traumatic for the involved Peace Officer, their agency and the community they serve. The pooling of resources will hopefully reduce the time that it takes to complete these investigations and reach closure for the Peace Officer, the agency, the community, as well as other involved parties. The CIRT will be staffed with experienced and highly trained investigators supported by experienced supervisors.
When activated, the CIRT will respond, investigate, and present the facts in the most expeditious manner possible. It is trusted that this unit will be viewed by member agencies and the public as a highly professional and unbiased fact finding team working together to resolve difficult situations.
The Critical Incident Response Team is comprised of representatives of the following agencies: Grand Junction Police Department, Mesa County Sheriff's Office, Fruita Police Department, Palisade Police Department, Colorado State Patrol, 21st Judicial District Attorney's Office, and Colorado Bureau of Investigation.
Types of Incidents CIRT Will Investigate
(CIRT is typically activated for these incidents and at the discretion of the agency leader.)
Peace Officer Involved Shooting -- Whenever a Peace Officer discharges a firearm whether accidently or intentionally at a person.
Traffic Incident -- Whenever an on-duty Peace Officer is involved in a motor vehicle collision (whether in pursuit or otherwise) which results in death or serious bodily injury to a person.
In-Custody Death and/or Use of Force -- Whenever a person dies while in law enforcement custody, or has sustained serious bodily injury(s) (or death) at a location or scene due to use of force by a Peace Officers.