Officers can deflate a tense scene when they are able to spot symptoms of mental illness.
KENNEWICK, WA – Officers can deflate a tense scene when they are able to spot symptoms of mental illness.
Before they go out on the streets police officers go through some intensive training to deal with criminals and to know how to spot one. They are also trying to spot mental illness. In many cases a crime scene can escalate when officers are dealing with someone with a mental disability.
As part of a training course offered at the Kennewick police station, officers learn how to be part of a CIT (Crisis Intervention Team). By learning the tell tale signs that someone is suffering from a disease, some tense situations can be deflated by using new techniques to calm the person down.
"Recognizing when a person is in distress due to behavior and health concerns or awareness of the resources that we have here in our local community; who they can reach out to for support where we have the opportunity for treatment options rather than incarceration or arrest," explained Ed Thornbrugh from the Benton Franklin Department of Human Services
This is the 9th year Kennewick Police Department has hosted the class. Those graduating officers come from stations around the region. It is also open to fire fighters, EMS responders and probation officers.