How the Denver Sheriff Department is improving in-custody mental health services
Dr. Nikki Johnson is the Denver Sheriff Department’s first chief of mental health services and is charged with improving in-custody mental health services
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Law enforcement officers are often placed in situations where they encounter individuals with mental illness. There are varying degrees of response to a law officers’ presence, from compliant and docile, to combative or assaultive. Training that equips officers with the skill set required to deal with these individuals appropriately is important. Once an individual has been controlled or transported, they may be taken to a professional psychiatric detention and treatment facility, or to a locked detention facility for processing. What happens next varies from agency to agency.
In this episode of the Policing Matters podcast, host Jim Dudley speaks with Dr. Nikki Johnson, the first chief of mental health services for the Denver Sheriff Department in Colorado. Dr. Johnson was hired in January 2021 to drive the strategy and performance of the mental health services provided within the Denver Sheriff Department, which is the largest provider of psychiatric services in Denver.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES: IN-CUSTODY MENTAL HEALTHCARE
- How one agency is decriminalizing mental illness, saving money and bettering lives
- Is a concrete cell really the best we have to offer our mentally ill?
- In-custody suicide prevention
- Nashville sheriff offers mentally ill an alternative to jail
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES: MENTAL HEALTH OUTREACH PROGRAMS
- This officer’s partner is a mental health counselor
- Persons in mental health crisis: A primer for police response
- Lessons learned from implementing a co-response police-mental health team
- 8 things to know before establishing a mobile crisis intervention co-responder program
- Roundtable: How to develop a successful mental health intervention program