Officers responded for a second time in just over a month to the same residence in the Pine Lake Park section of the Township for a call involving a suicidal, 27-year-old female armed with a knife. Upon arrival, the officers made contact with the subject who had slashed her arms and neck with a kitchen knife. After refusing to comply with repeated commands from officers, she grabbed a pair of scissors and began actively cutting herself again. A Conducted Energy Device was deployed on the subject, allowing the officers to safely take her into custody before she could inflict further injuries upon herself. The female was subsequently transported to a local hospital for treatment of her self-inflicted injuries and mental state.
“The use of the Conducted Energy Device by our officer caused a dangerous situation to be resolved, quickly and without causing further injury to the subject,” said Chief Lisa Parker.
The decision to purchase these devices was made after extensive research was conducted and after careful consideration was given as to their usefulness by officers on the street, who have been seeing an ever increasing number of unpredictable and oftentimes dangerous encounters. One such type of call where officers are seeing a marked increase in occurrence is in the area of mental health related or emotionally disturbed persons (EDP) calls. The Manchester Township Police Department has seen a 61 percent increase in the number of mental health related calls between 2012 and 2016. In 2012, department personnel responded to 298 mental health related calls wherein officers responded to 481 such calls in 2016. These types of calls have the propensity to turn violent, oftentimes with little to no warning to the officer. With the addition of the CED, officers now have a viable option for controlling such an individual without putting themselves in potentially dangerous situations.