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NCJ Number: 135562 Find in a Library
Title: Role of the Police With the Mentally Ill (From Criminal Court Consultation, P 137-155, 1989, Richard Rosner, Ronnie B Harmon, eds. -- See NCJ-135552)
Author(s): S Travin
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 19
Sponsoring Agency: Plenum Press
New York, NY 10013
Sale Source: Plenum Press
233 Spring Street
New York, NY 10013
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Police need training and guidelines regarding their interactions with mentally disturbed individuals, because they are usually the only social control agency available 24 hours a day and thus may become involved in situations that present dangers for both the police and the mentally disturbed individuals.
Abstract: Police officers function both as law enforcement officers and as peace officers. Their work involves extensive discretionary decisionmaking. They use discretion when they decide on one of the three basic ways of handling mentally disturbed citizens in the community: hospitalization, arrest, or informal disposition. In cases in which the individual remains violent and seriously disturbed, psychiatric hospitalization or criminal arrest are usually the only choices. However, a recent study by the Police Executive Research Forum has confirmed that police agencies are not adequately preparing their officers to deal with mentally ill persons. Therefore, actions are needed to improve training and supervision in this area as well as to improve the crucial relationships between the police and mental health providers. 68 references
Main Term(s): Police crisis intervention; Police in-service training
Index Term(s): Mentally ill offenders; Police education; Police policies and procedures; Police-citizen interactions
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