Incoming Detroit police interim chief looks to improve response to mental health calls

Mental health calls among most dangerous Detroit police face

Mental health related calls have been on the rise for years in the City of Detroit. Now the new Detroit interim police chief, James White, wants to address the issue.
Mental health related calls have been on the rise for years in the City of Detroit. Now the new Detroit interim police chief, James White, wants to address the issue.

DETROIT – Mental health related calls have been on the rise for years in the City of Detroit.

Now the new Detroit interim police chief, James White, wants to address the issue.

He is actually uniquely qualified to address the issue. White has a master’s degree in counseling.

There is a video showing a man with a knife in the middle of a street cutting a Detroit police officer last summer. The man was shot and killed by officers. His family says he dealt with mental challenges.

Another video showed Detroit police confronting, Michael Moza, who was in the grip of a mental health crisis. He was quickly released from the hospital and went on a shooting spree.

Mental health calls are some of the most dangerous Detroit police face.

He says his officers will receive top notch counseling due to the stress they face on the streets. They will also get more training on how to handle people in a mental health crisis.

“Fifteen plus thousand runs a year, how many result of in use of force because the officers have to control the situation,” said White.

Detroit activist and Pastor Mo Hardwick says it is a big plus for the city and officers on the street. The pastor believes it will result in less lawsuits and be better for the city.

Also, mental health isn’t the only focus for the interim police chief when he hits the ground running in June.

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About the Authors:

Shawn Ley is an Emmy-Award winning reporter. In more than 20 years covering stories in television news, Shawn’s reporting has taken him from war-torn eastern Europe, to reporting from an F-16 fighter jet and now to the fast and furious breaking news of Detroit.

Natasha Dado is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit.