MARSHFIELD, WI (OnFocus) – The Marshfield Police Department made what could have been a scary situation for a Marshfield man and the surrounding residents, into a peaceful resolution.
The department was able to diffuse the situation and begin the process of getting the man the help he needs. Contributing to the successful resolution were the Wood County Sheriff’s Department, Marathon County Sheriff’s Department, Marathon County Crisis Center, Marshfield S.W.A.T., Wisconsin State Patrol and Marshfield Fire and Rescue Department.
According to the police report, the Marshfield man involved was reportedly in mental distress and was seeing people that were not there. He then threatened to kill those “people” with the firearms he possessed, creating a danger to himself and those around him.
Instead of rushing to conclusions, the Marshfield Police Department stuck to their training and found out what was wrong with the man. They spoke to the man’s daughter and used their Crisis Intervention Training to talk to the man and calm him down. Negotiations with the man lasted throughout the duration of the situation but were not constant according to Lt. Travis Esser of the Marshfield Police Department.
Esser said the department has almost every officer trained for situations like this.
“Almost all of our officers now are training in what’s called CIT (Crisis Intervention Training),” Esser said. “It’s a 40-hour course that is usually done here locally with the help of the Wood County Crisis Intervention people. In addition to that, pretty much all of them have 40 hours worth of Crisis Negotiating Training as well. That is a course that is held through the FBI.”
After 26 hours of being at the scene, police were able to apprehend the man and transport him to a place in Winnebago Mental Health that is best suited to deal with the man and his sickness.
Esser said the ability to keep the public and individual safe is tough but also paramount to the success of the operation.
“In this particular case, we didn’t have anybody else in the home to have to be concerned about, it was just the one individual,” Esser said. “It is a balancing act to try to gauge the level of safety in terms of other people in the community and obviously, we want the individual that we’re dealing with to remain safe.”
Esser said the officers involved in any sort of crisis are trained to keep the public safe before themselves.
“We do have things that we look at in terms of priorities of life,” Esser said. “It’s our job first to protect the everyday citizens out there. Then certainly we want to protect the people that we’re dealing with. We usually fall at the bottom of that rung, protecting ourselves. Yesterday, we felt like we had that situation contained to a degree that we could keep everybody in the community safe while still actively dealing with the individual.”
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