Psychological trauma expert Laura C. Wilson shares insight on Colorado shooting with The Washington PostJune 23, 20212 min read
A veteran police officer and a bystander were gunned down in a Denver suburb earlier this week in what authorities are saying was a targeted attack by someone who “expressed hatred” for police.
A 19-year veteran of the force, Gordon Beesly was allegedly killed because he was simply wearing a uniform and a badge.
The tragic fatality is getting massive coverage and UMW’s Laura C. Wilson was interviewed by The Washington Post to provide her expert perspective on the impact this incident will have on survivors.
Laura C. Wilson, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Mary Washington in Virginia, said that years ago she might have thought about each mass shooting or shooting in a public place as having unique characteristics that affect survivors. But she now considers the trauma of multiple events.
“When we start to see a lot of these events happening in a small community or within the country, we start to have these compounding impacts,” she said. “People now have more evidence that the world is unpredictable, more evidence that regardless of what I do I can’t keep myself safe.”
But Wilson stressed that the effects of trauma are unique to every individual, every survivor.
There will be extensive coverage of this killing and if you are a reporter looking to cover the issues survivors of mass shooting events will experience, then let us help.
Dr. Laura C. Wilson is a clinical psychologist whose expertise focuses on post-trauma functioning, particularly in survivors of sexual violence or mass trauma (e.g., terrorism, mass shootings, combat). Her research interests extend to predictors of violence and aggression, including psychophysiological and personality factors, as well as indicators of PTSD following mass trauma, long-term functioning among first responders, outcomes among survivors of sexual violence and the influence of media on mental illness stigma.
Dr. Wilson is available to speak with media, simply click on her icon to arrange an interview today.
Laura Wilson Associate Professor and Director of Safe Zone
Dr. Wilson focuses on post-trauma functioning, particularly in survivors of sexual violence or mass trauma