This comprehensive seminar has no peer! Quite simply, there is nothing like it available anywhere else.

Course Description

DFM is a cutting-edge, three-day, 24-hour academic program. It has been structured to meet the needs of experienced law enforcement trainers, administrators and investigators tasked with managing deadly force issues. Although DFM follows a seminar structure, it affords student-instructor interactivity through small class size.


DFM pulls no punches! It is unconstrained by any bias oriented toward defending the status quo of police deadly force training, policies or procedures.


Course Training Objectives

Though this program does NOT involve a written examination, student performance objectives are outlined (below) to highlight specific course content.

Upon completion of this course, participants:

  • Will be familiar with relevant Federal deadly force case law.

  • Will become familiar with the 75+ deadly force variables that agencies should be attempting to document and correlate.

  • Will understand how to conduct comprehensive assessment of a firearms training program.

  • Will be able to describe elements of a defensible deadly force policy.

  • Will be able to identify situational and behavioral precursors to police applications of force.

  • Will know the frequency in which police officers misapply deadly force.

  • Will know the most significant correlates associated with mistaken use of deadly force.

  • Will know the occupationally and contextually specific definition of "furtive movement."

  • Will know when a "furtive movement" shooting is objectively reasonable.

  • Will know what "Threat Reflex" shootings are, and when they are most likely to occur.

  • Will be able to define "Death by Defiance" and identify when a police shooting might be attributable to it.

  • Will be able to identify the critical implications of the so-called, "Split-Second Syndrome" with regard to training, OIS investigations and in defense against litigation.

  • Will know the genesis of, as well as the policy and training implications of so-called “officer-created jeopardy.”

  • Will identify the most significant correlate pertinent to officer hit ratios and volume of fire.

  • Will be able to list the most influential correlates within bunch-shooting incidents.

  • Will be able to list the most important operational aspects of policing under low light conditions.

  • Will be able to Identify the degree of declination in marksmanship and the escalation of volume of fire associated with confrontations occurring under low light conditions.

  • Will be able to identify the degree of frequency in which mistake-of-fact shootings occur under low light conditions.

  • Will understand the process in which perceptual shorthand contributes to mistake-of-fact shootings.

  • Will know the strategy by which mistake-of-fact shootings might be attenuated.

  • Will be able to distinguish between sighted, aimed and point shooting, and know where each might be situationally viable.

  • Will know how often deadly force is being applied AFTER less-lethal and less-than-lethal devices have failed to produce the desired results.

  • Will know the intervals of deadly force training, qualification and "certification" recommended by PPSC.

  • Will be able to identify a comprehensive strategy pertinent to officers who fail to meet deadly force certification standards.

  • Will be able to identify those training and policy issues pertinent to addressing concealed carry of duty and off-duty firearms.

  • Will understand fundamental causal issues associated with negligent discharge of firearms.



Course Instructor

Thomas J. Aveni, MSFP

Tom has served on the state, county and local levels of law enforcement since 1978. He has worked as a sworn law enforcement officer in three states (NJ, UT, NH). He worked as a training coordinator at Smith & Wesson Academy from 1990-2001, during which time he trained over 12,000 officers in a variety of use of force disciplines. He currently works as a researcher, consultant and expert witness for PPSC.


Course Length

3 days/24 hours

Course Tuition


Dates & Locations

Please Note: All applications, tuition or POs must be received prior to the beginning of class. Tuition includes a comprehensive classroom manual and related classroom materials.


Eligible candidates for this program are members of the police, corrections, military and security communities. ALL applicants MUST provide credentials of their affiliation with an accredited law enforcement, corrections, military or security organization for acceptance into this program.

Refund Policy:

Refunds are allowable provided that customers comply with the following stipulations:

100% Refund: permissible if course withdrawal is no less than 30 days of the starting date of the course you've enrolled in.

50% Refund: is afforded if withdrawal is requested within 30 days of your course starting date, but not less than 7 days of that starting date.

Exceptional Circumstances Refund:

May be granted if the above stipulations are not met, but when emergency circumstances (i.e., professional or personal) might apply. These will be judged for merit on an individual basis.


Copyright 2010 The Police Policy Studies Council. All Rights Reserved