When one considers instances of workplace violence, law enforcement officials are likely seen as mediators providing assistance to the victims. However, it was the officers themselves who experienced a workplace violence incident last week when one member of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) shot his supervisor during a meeting in the Glenn M. Anderson Federal Building in the Greater Los Angeles area.
According to reports, Ezequiel Garcia, the supervisor of a fraud task force was asked to meet with his superior, Deputy Special Agent Kevin Kozak and another unnamed officer for a performance review.
The unnamed officer had just stepped out of the meeting when he heard shots fired. He then rushed back into the room and saw that Kozack had been shot several times in the torso, hands and knees.
"There was a very, very intense struggle," ICE spokesperson Virginia Kice told The Associated Press. "They were physically struggling over the gun."
Ultimately, the unnamed officer deployed his service weapon and killed Garcia. Other officers in the building then came to Kozak's aid, and reports indicate he is now in stable condition.
This instance illustrates that even the most traditionally secure sectors of the workforce are prone to workplace violence incidents. Considering the effects of this type of tragedy, a business' decision makers would be well-advised to deploy the services of a certified business continuity consultant experienced in workplace violence prevention.
Another alternative that will better inform decision makers of the best practices for a workplace violence prevention program is sending representatives to attend the Workshop On Emerging Trends And Approaches: Integrating And Collaborating Resources In Preventing Violence In The Workplace at the Continuity Insights Management Conference 2012 in Scottsdale, Arizona, on April 19. This workshop will provide business representatives with a better understanding of workplace violence trends, and hopefully prevent similar tragedies in the future through organizational leadership.