Watch CBS News

Police Consultant/Expert Witness Believes Education Is Essential

Dave Blake is a consultant/expert witness in police practices and human factors at Blake Consulting & Training. Blake's goal as a consultant, expert witness and trainer is to expand the understanding of human performance science relative to a law enforcement officer's performance during critical incidents. Understanding the capabilities and limitations of human beings under stress allows for an unbiased judgement of performance and provides an avenue for future change.

(Photo Courtesy of Dave Blake)

Blake received a research-based graduate degree in psychology from Kaplan University, a bachelor's in criminal justice, as well as a Force Science Analyst certification from the Force Science Institute. He is also a Certified Criminal Investigator from the American College of Forensic Examiners.

What are the scope and responsibilities of your current role?

"As a consultant and expert witness in police practices, I provide an unbiased review of a law enforcement officer's performance during a critical incident to attorneys, risk managers and LE executives. As a trainer, I subcontract with the California Training Institute to provide human performance training to all individuals involved in the criminal justice environment."

What is your favorite part of your daily duties?

"I enjoy the investigative aspect of reviewing every detail involved in a critical incident. These reviews are inclusive of hundreds of pages of documentation, videos, photographs and other evidence which must be carefully inspected in order to provide a fact-based opinion. However, I find the most enjoyable aspect to be the sharing of human performance science to law enforcement in general. I believe human performance science provides a pathway to future 'best practice methodologies' that will benefit both law enforcement and the communities they serve."

Do you feel your education prepared you for your current role? 

"I believe education was essential in my progression. I left the police profession unexpectedly due to an on-duty injury. Having prepared myself by receiving a graduate degree, I was able to move in to my new role more easily. There are few professionals who currently apply empirical scientific evidence to law enforcement critical incidents and most, if not all have master's or doctoral degrees.  It is absolutely essential to understand research and research methodologies in order to work in this field."

Do you have any advice for people who desire to pursue a similar career?

"I believe higher education is essential to future success in any field, but in my area of expertise I believe a graduate degree is essential. One must be fully committed to this field as the continuing education requirements are extraordinary. As a professional in this field, one must seek to constantly expand both their practical and academic knowledge to fully appreciate the depth of what we explore."

Michelle Guilbeau is a writer, reviewer, teacher and business owner. She also has experience in school administration, literacy coaching and is proud founder of and Michelle enjoys sharing her knowledge of cities, food, travel, education and parenting issues with her readers. Her work can be found on

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.