LSF Health Systems talks mental health, police de-escalation practices after fatal police-involved shooting

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A 41-year-old man is dead after he was shot by police following a standoff Saturday morning on Grunthal Street.

Bobby Brown died at the hospital after being tased, then shot by an officer.

The incident happened around 4:30 am when the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office received calls about a man who appeared to be on drugs and was knocking on doors while armed with knives.

Court documents show Brown had been charged with resisting officers, domestic battery and marijuana possession in the past.

Officers said Brown got to a relative’s house and when he got inside, he threatened to harm himself and others in the house. They also said he allegedly hid drugs and other paraphernalia in the house, then locked himself in the bathroom.

Officers got the family out of the home safely, then spent 45 minutes negotiating with Brown.


Investigators said the time between the gunshot and the taser was fairly close, which is why they continue to investigate and are reviewing body camera footage.

News4JAX spoke to JSO about their de-escalation practices in situations like this.

They said all officers are trained in dealing with an armed person and to decide when force is necessary – which is hard to do when dealing with an armed person.

The Chief of Investigations mentioned how in the early morning hours during the weekend none of the co-responder teams were on duty.

The co-responder teams are made up of mental health professionals funded by LSF Health Systems, who we contacted to talk about their scheduling and if it would have impacted the outcome of this situation.

Why is it that none of the mental health professionals were available on the weekends?

“I’m not sure why that happened. But what I can say is, when co-responder teams are called out, it’s usually for the primary reason of de-escalating a mental health situation,” said Doctor Christine Cauffield, Chief Operator of LSF Health Systems. “If there’s safety involved, if there’s any dangerous situation involving weapons, co-responder teams are generally not called out because the officers deem that this is a safety issue, a dangerous issue, weapons are present. Therefore, they don’t bring along the clinician for her or his safety, as well as the safety of others. So I’m not sure a co-responder team would have been called out in this particular situation.”


Cauffield said it’s ideal to have a co-responder team available 24/7 for a mental health crisis.

“It is not unusual for an individual who is addicted to drugs of any kind to also have a co-occurring mental health issue,” Cauffield said.

How likely is it for a mental health co-respondent to be successful in a situation where they have a person of interest or suspect, who is under the influence of drugs?

“It would depend upon the JSOs determination of the safety risk. If the JSO officer felt that there were no safety concerns, and there were no weapons present, they may determine that. Indeed, a co-responder team would be appropriate for the call. So, it just depends, every situation is different. They look for risk of lethality. They look for the environment in general, who’s at risk for safety hazards,” Cauffield said.

JSO said early on in the investigation it appeared Brown was emerging in their direction with the weapon, which officers wanted to give 25 feet to have reactionary time.

Copyright 2022 by WJXT News4JAX – All rights reserved.

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