Local law enforcement completes CIT training
Seven members of law enforcement from the Concord Police Department, Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Department and the Kannapolis Police Department earned Crisis Intervention Team designation at a special graduation ceremony Oct. 17 at the Rowan Campus of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.
One member of the Concord Police Department, two members of the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Department and four members of the Kannapolis Police Department joined 16 other law enforcement members from eight area agencies who have completed the intensive 40-hour training.
Officer Robert Danner graduated from the Concord Police Department. Graduating officers from the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Department were deputy Roberto Rodriguez and deputy Susan Griffin. Graduating officers from the Kannapolis Police Department were Detective Timothy Roth, police officer Jennifer Hyatt, police officer Christopher Fisher and Detective Jamie Beach. Graduating officers from the Salisbury Police Department were Master Police Officer Rita Kay Rule, Master Police Officer Michael Colbert and Master Police Officer Jason Robertson.
Officers received a certificate of completion from the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College criminal justice department and a CIT uniform pin which distinguishes the officer as a member of the Crisis Intervention Team within his/her department.
The CIT training teaches law enforcement how to handle crises in mental health situations. The seven officers are members of the fourth graduating class for CIT training. The first three classes were held in January, April and July and graduated more than 70 officers from sheriff’s departments in Cabarrus, Davidson, Rowan, Stanly and Union County, as well as Kannapolis, Salisbury, Concord, Monroe and Albemarle police departments.
The training is sponsored by PBH, and is patterned after the Memphis, Tenn., Police Department CIT Program. The program was introduced to our area in January through the efforts of the Rowan, Cabarrus and Union county affiliates of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and PBH. It offers specialized training to law enforcement officers responding to mental health crisis situations and encourages cooperation among law enforcement agencies, mental health professionals and local community agencies to meet the needs of people experiencing a mental health crisis.
Participating officers earn continuing education credits to help them meet their annual law enforcement training requirements. The program emphasizes safety first and teaches crisis intervention and verbal de-escalation techniques that reduce the risk of harm. The goal of the program is to train 25 percent of all area law enforcement in Cabarrus, Davidson, Rowan, Stanly and Union counties.
The next class for CIT training will convene in January. For more information, contact PBH Community Relations Director Steve Tomlinson at 704-721-7066 or by e-mail at SteveT@pamh.com.