Retired Memphis cop visits Lansing to teach mental health crisis intervention

Oct 8, 2015

In observance of Mental Illness Awareness Week, Current State talks with Sam Cochran, a retired Memphis police officer who helps law enforcement agencies intervene with the mentally ill.


This is Mental Illness Awareness Week in America, and in Michigan, advocates want you to be aware of a looming mental health problem. Service providers say more than 300 people in mid-Michigan who receive mental health care through Medicare will soon lose some of those services. They say that’s partly due to cuts in state general fund dollars that were made with the expectation that Medicaid expansion funding would fill the gaps.

This week, the Lansing chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is hosting a national expert on mental health crisis intervention. Sam Cochran is a retired Memphis police officer. He helped create a national model used by law enforcement agencies to intervene with mentally ill persons.

Current State speaks with Cochran about the program which was created back in 1987 following a confrontation between the Memphis police and a young man suffering from mental illness.