Loudoun County, VA (October 28, 2019) – The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) held the first-ever Advanced Crisis Intervention Training (CIT) in the Commonwealth of Virginia last week.
CIT is designed to protect the safety, dignity, and rights of persons suffering mental health issues. CIT deputies have specialized training in recognizing signs and symptoms of persons experiencing a behavioral crisis while maintaining officer and public safety.
The three-day advanced training focused on residents with Intellectual and developmental disabilities, especially children. “This advanced training continues to show our agency is a leader in crisis intervention, and we want to ensure that all of our residents are treated with compassion and respect,” said Loudoun County Sheriff Chapman. The LCSO CIT program has been recognized both regionally and nationally.
In October 2019, the LCSO held its 40th training session of Crisis Intervention Training in Loudoun County. Seven years ago Sheriff Chapman had a heady goal of training 25% of sworn personnel in CIT after assessing the number of incidents involving mental illness in the county. In 2017, the LCSO exceeded that goal by having 100% of all uniformed patrol and corrections deputies with two or more years trained in CIT. In addition, 100 percent of all dispatchers and call takers in the Emergency Communications Center are also trained in CIT.
The LCSO CIT program has trained over 600 personnel from the local, state, and federal levels.
The advanced training was developed by the LCSO in coordination with Loudoun County Mental Health, Substance Abuse & Developmental Services, and the Virginia CIT Coalition.
The advanced training included in-class instruction from Virginia CIT Coalition Trainer, Chief Dennis Lambert, of the Town of Dublin, VA Police Department, and Virginia CIT Coalition Trainer, Sgt. Danny Ratcliffe, of the Town of Pearisburg Police Department, VA.