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Mental Health Suspects Strain Police Resources


Times are tough and that can impact local police work in many ways.  Bend Police Lt Chris Carney says budgets are tighter than usual but police often need to do more especially when dealing with tricky cases that involve people with mental health issues. Lt. Carney was a guest on 1110 KBND Tuesday morning.
 
"if we go to a mental health type of call - its going to take at least 3 sometimes even 5-10 officers - the dynamic one the other day where someone had a gun- we had to block off streets- bring a team together- the drain on the resources for city of bend,  oregon state police and pretty much anywhere are enormous.
 
Recently the Portland Police Department came under fire from the US Department of Justice for "excessive force" in dealing with some people suffering from mental problems.  The Portland Police Department is working to reform how officers respond to these difficult situations. 
 
Lt. Carney says Bend Police also do extensive training on ways to deescalate a situation where someone is irrational and/or violent.  He says they also seem to see more mental health cases connected to the Holiday Season combined with a poor local economy. 
 
 "WHAT WE SEE OR TEND TO SEE IS A LOT MORE DEPRESSION....WE KNOW WE HAVE TOUGH ECONOMic TIMES- ESPECIALLY WHEN CHRISTMAS COMES AROUND - AND PEOPLE FEEL LIKE THEY WOULD LIKE TO DO A LOT MORE FOR THEIR KIDS -OR THEIR FAMILIES -THAT PUSHES them into a FEELING OF DEPRESSION, feeling 'WHY CAN'T THINGS BE BETTER?'- AND THEN THERE'S also THE STRESS OF MULTIPLE JOBS AND MULTI-TASKING.... IT PUTS A LOT OF STRESS ON THEM."
 
To hear this entire interivew with Lt. Carney, and a reminder of some traffic laws that are sometimes ignored, go to the Your Town Podcast on this website.  Lr. Carney is a regular guest on 1110 KBND's morning news.

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