Tuesday forum focuses on policing and mental illness

Islanders for Collaborative Policing will host a discussion tonight on how law enforcement can better respond to situations involving mentally ill residents.

The Ostling trial brought the topic to the forefront this summer, when a federal jury found the city at fault for not properly training officers to approach people suffering from mental illness. ICP founder Kim Hendrickson said tonight’s will highlight changes at BIPD and what initiatives could benefit the department.

“This event will be an opportunity, we hope, to raise community and officer awareness about mental impairment, suggest new kinds of community and police partnerships, and to consider best practices employed by other police departments,” Hendrickson said in an announcement for the discussion.

The free event will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. at Bethany Lutheran Church, 7968 Finch Road NE.

Participants include Joe Roszack of Kitsap Mental Health, Bill Mosiman of Bainbridge Island School District, Lis Eddy of the state Criminal Justice Training Commission, Dave Shurick of Poulsbo Police, and Bainbridge Police lieutenants Bob Day and Chris Jensen. Father Dennis Tierney of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church will serve as moderator.