Dancing With The Devil…

By Sean Riley – President & Founder Safe Call Now

As I prepare to speak and train the undercover officers around the country, I have to remind myself how challenging their job really is and ask myself…  Do we set them up for failure???

Over the last nine years I’ve had the honor to have an open invitation to speak at The International Association of Undercover Officers conferences nationwide.  Charlie Fuller (my “Bo”) has been a mentor to me and adviser on how to help the undercover officers when life goes bad for them and they require treatment.  Imagine a job where you get paid to drink, lie, drive cool cars and basically do whatever you want?  Not a bad gig… until you come home to the real world and deal with life.

One thing I’ve learned while training undercover officers and placing them into treatment is that in order to do well in the profession, you sometimes become the “lie”.  Think about it?  In order to achieve the objective in whatever undercover role you adopt, you become an actor.  To stay alive you become adept at becoming a great role player.  If you get caught in a lie when undercover there is the potential that you may lose your life so you become an even better liar than those out there lying to you.  Is it getting confusing, yes it can be.  The healthy boundaries of life can start getting blurred and obliterated for the undercover officer.

Imagine if you will, being undercover in a role for a long period of time and all the things you despise about those that commit crimes and you yourself start living in that world and order to become the best, you become them.  It happens far more often than you think.  Now do this for 10 or 15 years.  Once you become the role you play, your family doesn’t recognize you anymore.  You are no longer the person you were.  Admiration and adulation from your bosses and even the bad guys becomes intoxicating and your negative behavior receives valued praise.  The “switch” begins.

A new “normal” for the UC begins where a family or a marriage may not be as important as it once was.  The morals and ethics you once believed in don’t seem so concrete anymore and all you valued in life before has gone away.  You start to lose those things that used to be important to you and once you wake up and want them back it may be too late.  What do you do?  You try and get back to your old “normal” and you can’t because you only know how to be the actor you were not meant to be.  Not having the appropriate life tools in place, undercover officers sometimes resort to substance abuse, suicide, divorce and many other negative behaviors.

The good news… there is a solution.  We’ve been blessed at Safe Call Now to assist and place into treatment many undercover officers and their family members.  Their lives are changed and they do recover to have a great life, family, career and retirement.  What they deserve for the noble job they do.

As Charlie Fuller states, “No one in the country will come in and help my UC’s other than Safe Call Now”.  I’ll go to the grave with that.  Stay safe out there.

If you, someone you love or someone you know needs help, call:

Safe Call Now:  24 Hour Confidential Hotline:  206-459-3020

For more information on the First Responders program:  Click here

Or call Shannon Clairemont at 661-466-6352 or Vanessa Stapleton at 304-651-3008

One thought on “Dancing With The Devil…

  1. Sean, This is a great article. I spent 12 years working UC and everything you mentioned was experienced. It tooks years to “deprogram,” how I wish Safe Call would’ve been around back then. Thank God for you!!


Comments are closed.