Quincy Police Department (QPD) has been focusing this year on the implementation of new training that centralizes on the de-escalation of crisis situations.
After the passage of I-940 in 2018, the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission (WSCJTC) was tasked with creating and adopting rules for new training requirements for officers, and rules for independent investigations into officer involved uses of deadly force. This became known as the Law Enforcement Training and Community Safety Act (LETCSA). LETCSA has led to the creation and updating of parts of the Washington Administrative Code (WAC).
WAC 139-11, which took effect in Dec. 2019, states that all law enforcement officers must complete a minimum of 40 hours of de-escalation and mental health training every three years. This requirement does not apply to reserve officers. Besides the de-escalation training, officers get additional training on crisis intervention tactics, hate crimes, Narcan use, bias based policing, excited delerium, cultural awareness diversity, active shooter and racial profiling.
Quincy officers have used some of these techniques in recent issues.
In late October, officers spent four hours with a subject who was threatening self harm wielding a large knife. Officers were able to successfully get the knife away from the man without any harm to anyone involved.
Another situation involved a subject who was unconscious and had shallow breathing in what appeared to be a drug overdose. QPD officers administered Narcan and chest compressions. Within five to 10 minutes, the subject was conscious, breathing normally and even able to stand on their own before being transported to the hospital for evaluation and further treatment.
Through the training, Quincy officers were prepared for each of these situations and responded accordingly to achieve the best outcome possible.
Captain Green said that QPD’s training and use of these tactics, as a result of informing and enforcing the new WAC codes and LETCSA, reinforces their commitment to the community and better prepares them to resolve dangerous situations with minimal use of force.