TPD trains on advanced mental health response

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Reported by: MirandaChristian
Updated: 11/14/2011 10:36 pm Published: 11/14/2011 10:16 pm

Tulsa police are undergoing advanced mental health response training. The training will enhance officer’s ability to handle incidents involving mental illness.

The weeklong course involves 20 TPD officers.

“Probably 3-7 percent of our calls daily deal with people with mental illness," said Major Tracie Lewis. "Officers are used to getting to a call, figuring out the problem, solving the problem and leaving."

Lewis said the incident involving William Sturdivant, a man who spent more than 127 hours on the Clear Channel Tower at FOX23 studios was an example of what could happen when dealing with mental illness.

Retired officer, Tyrone Lynn was called in to negotiate Sturdivant down. He spent just over seven hours conversing with Studivant.

"Everyone has a tower," said Lynn. "We all could be in that situation at some point."

Lynn said without proper intervention, what happened to Sturdivant could happen to anyone.

“The training TPD is giving shows they care, I think it’s great,” said Lynn. "Its definitely another level of expertise."

Two officers from Sand Springs, one from Owasso, Tulsa Public Schools and OSU-Tulsa were also invited.

Sturdivant’s family told FOX23 that he is doing well.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

gramba2010 - 11/15/2011 11:20 AM
0 Votes
I know several TPD officers who need mental health response themselves....LOL

Unwashed Mass - 11/15/2011 11:12 AM
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It took SWAT almost a week to figure out that shooting the towerman with pepperballs and rubber bullets wasnt working. They have had "training" before and this isnt going to change their mentality.
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