Target: Longview Police Department Chief of Police, Don Dingler
Goal: Increase Crisis Intervention Training for police officers to prevent future unnecessary deaths.
A 17-year-old, Kristiana Coignard, was recently shot and killed at the Longview Police Department in Texas. She entered the office carrying a knife, allegedly threatening officers. Coignard had a documented history of mental illness, including bipolar disorder and depression. After attempting to use non-lethal force, the officers felt they had to shoot the young girl. Urge the Longview Police Department to require Crisis Intervention Training to better handle these situations in the future.
Exactly three officers were involved in the incident, and one fired shots. Many wonder why three officers were not able to detain a young girl allegedly carrying only a knife. The case is currently under further investigation as many details remain unclear. The officers involved have since been placed on paid leave.
The Longview Police Department, and many others across the nation, needs to increase education regarding mentally ill citizens and how to handle such situations before resorting to lethal force. An apparent lack of training in the mental health realm has led to far too many incidents that could have been handled differently.
Currently, the Longview Police Department has implemented Crisis Intervention Training; however, it is unclear whether the officers in question had received such training. Sign this petition to urge the Longview Police Department to require extensive Crisis Intervention Training for every officer in an effort to protect citizens.
Dear Chief of Police Don Dingler,
I am sorry to hear of the recent events that took place between three police officers and 17-year-old Kristiana Coignard. Though the details are not entirely clear, perhaps a different course of action could have been taken. A clear discourse among the Longview Police Department regarding mentally ill citizens could have potentially changed the outcome of this case.
In addition to the safety of police officers everywhere, it is vital to address the concerns of mentally ill citizens. In the case of a 17-year-old girl, it does not seem necessary that she be shot to death. All options must be exhausted before fatal action is taken.
I believe the public is aware of the complexity of this situation, and the proper response is to make sure this does not happen again, for the sake of the public and the police officers. I urge you to implement more extensive Crisis Intervention Training for every police officer at the Longview Police Department.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: BruceEmmerling via Pixabay