Illinois deputies learn how to deal with mentally ill

From Reuters:

As law enforcement officers across the United States feel the heat about excessive use of force, dealing with the mentally ill was the training focus for Cook County sheriff’s deputies this week.

Participants grappled with intense scenarios, such as a man who believes his wife and brother are having an affair, and who refuses to take his medication and then holds a knife to his own throat. The week-long training took place at Triton College near Chicago.

“Someone who is suffering from mental illness is no different than that person who is having that asthma attack or the person who is having that heart attack,” said Bob Maas, a crisis intervention trainer and 16-year sheriff’s deputy. “The only difference is that their illness is in their head, so why would you want to arrest somebody?”

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