Jones County Sheriff's Department to provide special training, certification for area officers

Jones County Sheriff's Department to provide special training, certification for area officers
Photo credit: WDAM
Photo credit: WDAM

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The Jones County Sheriff's Department will now be providing special training and certification for CIT or crisis intervention teams.

The program is designed for officers to be able to assist anyone in a crisis and get them to a mental health facility instead of being put behind bars.

This will make the Jones County Sheriff's Department the second agency in the state to be able to train and certify crisis intervention teams.

The department has teamed up with Pine Belt Mental Healthcare Resources in order to assist officers and those individuals that need help.

Deputies and officers from the Pine Belt area have been traveling to Lauderdale County Sheriff's Department in order to attend certification classes, but now the Jones County Sheriff's Department will be able to train area officers and certify them, according to state law.

Jamie Tedford, a CIT trained officer and trainer with the Jones County Sheriff's Department, said that this program is one that is needed in this area.

"We're really excited about the program, we have nine deputies that are CIT certified at this time," Tedford said. "Now we're going to be able to use our facility here at the Jones County Sheriff's Department's Training Center, to train other officers from around this area and region to certify them as CIT officers as well."

To find out more information about this program, you can call the Jones County Sheriff's Department at 601-425-3147 or contact Jessica Welborn at jwelborn@co.jones.ms.us.