Madisonville, KY. – On June 21, 2012, KSP Post 2 Detective Lonnie Kavanaugh was named CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) Officer of the Year for the Pennyroyal Center Region.
The award was presented as result of an incident that occurred on May 2, 2012. On that date, Det. Kavanaugh responded to a residence in Princeton, KY to assist the Princeton Police Department with a suicidal subject. When he arrived, there was a male subject holding a shotgun to his chest threatening to harm himself. Det. Kavanaugh utilized his CIT training and spoke with the subject in an effort to get him to relinquish his weapon. After negotiations, the subject surrendered his weapon and sought psychiatric help.
Per the CIT website, “Crisis Intervention Teams or “CIT” programs help people with mental illness cope and maintain recovery. CIT helps sustain more effective interactions among law enforcement, mental health care providers, individuals with mental illness, their families and communities and reduce the stigma of mental illness. CIT works to accomplish this purpose by raising public and stakeholder awareness through education and outreach, complying with recommended standards for developing, implementing and sustaining crisis intervention team programs, and by providing assistance to communities interested in developing CIT programs. The Kentucky CIT program maintains contact with local law enforcement, mental health professionals and advocates by establishing and remaining an active partner in the local community on the CIT Advisory Committee. The Kentucky CIT program began in 2001 in Louisville. Since that time, there have been over 1,550 law enforcement officers trained in the CIT model of verbal de-escalation, active listening skills and non-lethal weapons use. This program has decreased the number of injuries to officers and consumers and increased the number of consumers receiving the treatment they need for their mental illness.”
The Pennyroyal Center Region includes the following counties: Caldwell, Christian, Crittenden, Hopkins, Lyon, Muhlenberg, Todd and Trigg.
Det. Kavanaugh is a 19-year veteran of the KSP. He has been assigned to Post 2 Madisonville his entire career and has served as a detective for the past seven years.