Texoma officers get Crisis Intervention Training

((Source: KAUZ))
Updated: Nov. 9, 2018 at 6:25 PM CST
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WICHITA FALLS, TX (RNN Texoma) - The Wichita Falls Police Department is partnering with Helen Farabee Centers for their Crisis Intervention Training.

The state requires peace officers to take it, teaching them how to better communicate with those dealing with mental conditions like PTSD, depression or autism.

“A lot of times their ability to communicate with someone is one of the most important tools that we have,” said training officer Joey Anderson.

He said they never know what their next call is going to be, and what they learn in this class could be put to the test.

The 40-hour course consists of lectures and hearing how these actions can help.

“Many of the stories are a lot alike, that one police officer took the extra time to talk to me, changed my life completely, and that’s what we’re hoping our officers can do,” Anderson said.

They also role play to practice figuring out what someone is going through and how to react.

“It may totally change the outcome of that individual,” he said.

Elliot Bonner, Helen Farabee Centers Veteran Peer Coordinator, feels this training is crucial for our area.

“This is a veteran community,” said Bonner.

“So if the officer is dealing with a veteran that is having PTSD issues and they know key elements or key words to say, then they can de-escalate that situation.”

By asking questions to find out if they are having flashbacks, suicidal thoughts or survivors guilt.

“Talk to that veteran get them some help, get them to the VA, get them to the out crisis centers here Helen Farabees and everybody goes home safely,” Bonner said.

WFPD invited other agencies to their training like Wichita County deputies, Burkburnett, Iowa Park, Chilicothe Police Departments, DPS Troopers and the Archer County Constable.

They say the class works to keep the public and officers safe.

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