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Some signs police look for in psychiatric crises

April 10, 2014
Associated Press

Police officers who receive crisis intervention training are taught how to recognize when someone with serious mental illness might be having a psychiatric crisis. Considering the overall circumstances, police look for these behaviors in a subject:

— Behavior that doesn't fit the circumstance (example: laughing at a funeral)

— Non-verbal and easily distracted

— Bizarre and disjointed thinking (delusions, hallucinations)

— Suicidal

— Normal coping skills are failing or not evident

— Unaware of self; dirty, disheveled, malodorous

— Unaware of surroundings and possible risk to personal safety


Source: Donald Kline, Montgomery County Emergency Service in Pennsylvania



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