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Crisis Intervention Within Criminal Justice System

The criminal justice system is in place to ensure that citizens maintain law and order. The justice system also participates in punishing and correcting lawbreakers so that they can become responsible members of society. The system deals with different people, some of whom need crisis intervention. A crisis intervention program is fashioned to help victims return to an adaptive level of functioning if it is detected that they have mental health issues. According to Hannigan et al. (2020), security officers always encounter people with disruptive behaviors that must be addressed lest the individuals interfere with people’s peace in society. I had a chance to interview a professional involved in crisis intervention within the criminal justice system. This paper presents the role of the interviewee and a summary of the interviewee’s answers to the interview questions. Reflection on what works and what does not work is also presented.

Role of the Interviewee

The interviewee indicated that he is a Behavioral Case Manager (BCM) within his crisis intervention team. As a BCM, he said he is responsible for helping victims recover as they access mental health services. He prepares service plans for victims; plans indicate the conditions a victim is suffering from and the goals that need to be achieved by providing mental health services.

The interviewee also stated that throughout his service as a BCM, he has worked to help patients go through mental health and physical examination. He is also responsible for finding out whether a victim has been abusing drugs or whether a victim has a history of drug abuse so that addressing drug abuse disorder can be made part of a treatment program the victim is subjected. Successful preparation of mental health treatment plans has also been part of his role as he serves within the crisis intervention team.

Summary of Interviewee’s Answers

The second question asked the interviewee how he notices that an individual needs to be taken through crisis intervention. He argued that as a professional, he knows the diagnosis procedures that help detect whether an individual has mental health issues. The team keenly considers whether an individual has engaged in a criminal activity that can stimulate stress and depression. For example, a parent who has murdered her child will need to be taken through crisis intervention programs because the crime is likely to cause emotional torcher to the woman. An arrested person with confused thinking, changing mood, and a reduced ability to concentrate is expected to be taken through a crisis intervention program.

The third question focused on what the crisis intervention team does to a criminal who refuses to be subjected to any crisis intervention despite evidence that he needs the intervention. The interviewee argued that the cases have been rare, but they take a professional approach to addressing the situation. He mentioned that they usually try to speak to the criminal and persuade the criminal to pay attention to the team’s advice. Family members also get engaged to convince the criminal to agree and participate in a crisis intervention program. In the past, such criminals were given a tough option and asked to decide whether to enroll in a crisis intervention program or get subjected to the painful and arduous option.

Question four asked the interviewee about what his crisis intervention team does to ensure that criminals under any crisis intervention program do not harm themselves. The interviewee lamented that ensuring that individuals going through a crisis intervention program are safe has been an essential practice among the crisis intervention team. The team has a culture of doing a suicide risk assessment to find out those who have suicidal thoughts so that they can be assisted. Criminals undergoing crisis intervention programs have always been kept in areas that are free from anything that they can use as a weapon to harm themselves. The rooms are free from firearms, knives, spoons, and paper cutters.

The last question asked the interviewee to rate the success of his crisis intervention team. He confidently mentioned that the team has been very successful as it has reported many positive outcomes from the crisis intervention programs initiated. He was particularly proud that about 500 people handled by his team since he started working with the criminal justice department have recovered, and some of them have been allowed to go home. The interviewee recognized the team as hardworking and committed to excellence.

Reflection on what works and What Does not Work within Crisis Intervention Teams

One important thing that works within crisis intervention teams is collaboration. When the interviewee mentioned that the team has been successful in its crisis intervention because it works hard, I noticed someone proud of the level of collaboration experienced within the team. Working together towards a common goal is a critical success factor in a crisis intervention team.

Another thing that works within the team is that it knows what to do, especially when deciding on the criminals to be subjected to a crisis intervention program. When I interviewed the BCM, I noticed that the team has a diagnosis procedure it uses to identify the criminals who need enrolment into crisis intervention programs.

I realized that forcing criminals to enroll in a crisis intervention program does not work. From what the interviewee said about dealing with a resistant criminal, I realized that using force to enroll a criminal in a program is not an option for the crisis intervention team. The team has avoided force to an extent of engaging the family members of criminals to talk to their loved ones.

In conclusion, the criminal justice system ensures law and order are maintained. Crisis intervention is important for some individuals to help them get back to their normal states. The interview I had with the BCM gave me a chance to learn different concepts related to crisis intervention. I have since learned what works and what does not work among crisis intervention teams.


Hannigan, M. A., Hertig, C. A., & Gilbride, B. P. (2020). Crisis intervention. In The Professional Protection Officer (pp. 219-228). Butterworth-Heinemann.


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