On its front page, the Wall Street Journal (10/23, Fields, Subscription Publication) reports a noticeable uptick over the past decade in the number of fatal confrontations between police officers and people with severe mental illnesses. A small number of those cases are known as “suicide by cop” in which police officers are intentionally provoked to react with lethal force. In other cases, police officers with poor or no mental health training misread a situation with deadly results. Some police departments are now sending officers to special crisis-intervention training and teaching them how to respond to situations involving people with severe mental illnesses, emphasizing communication and use of non-lethal weapons.
— “Lives of Mentally Ill, Police Collide, The Wall Street Journal, October 23, 2013.