A Community Liaison Officer (CLO) is a non-law enforcement professional who responds alongside a police officer to the scene of an emergency or other situation that would traditionally be responded to solely by law enforcement. Whether responding to in-progress calls or conducting follow up, the goal of the community liaison is to divert individuals from the traditional criminal justice system and redirect them to the most appropriate resources.
What do CLOs do on the scene?
- Make community referrals
- Talk with the people involved, offer support & guidance
- Connect with family members
- Drive someone to the Emergency Department and wait with them
- Paperwork, phone calls, Mainecare
- Help our community members with non-criminal matters
What are the benefits of the CLO Program?
When implemented, the co-responder model has the potential to produce many benefits including:
- The creation of improved and more immediate responses to crisis situations;
- The ability to follow up with individuals, family members, and caregivers after a crisis to reduce the likelihood of further crisis situations;
- A decrease in expensive arrests and jail admissions for individuals in behavioral health crisis;
- A reduction in psychiatric hospitalizations; and more accurate on-scene needs assessments
- CLO’s free up law enforcement’s time to focus on matters related to criminal justice enforcement.
Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion
The Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (L.E.A.D.) program and philosophy is to redirect as many eligible individuals as possible away from the criminal justice system and connect them with intensive case management services and community resolution processes. L.E.A.D. will redirect low-level offenders, whose underlying issues are drug or alcohol dependency, mental illness, or homelessness, away from the criminal justice system and into community-based services that the criminal justice system is not equipped to provide.
Individuals who have a known history of drug or alcohol dependency, mental health illnesses, or homelessness related needs, should be referred to L.E.A.D., prior to summons or arrest, when probable cause exists that the individual committed any of the following offense(s):
- Non-Violent crime(s) when the following criteria are present;
- The complainant/victim, if applicable, is willing to decline assisting with prosecution in order to allow the offender to proceed with the redirection processes; and
- The individual committed an offense(s) where there is a nexus to drugs or alcohol, mental health, or homelessness related need, which can be based on, but not limited to, the following;
- Police reports, arrest records, criminal histories, etc., indicating that the individual was engaged in such activity; or
- A Deputies direct observation of the individual engaged in such activity; or
- Reliable and credible information to believe that the individual is engaged in such activity as provided by another; such as a first responder, professional, or witness.
L.E.A.D. Referral Types
Social Contact Referrals: the movement of individuals who are at high risk of future low-level criminal activity but not known to be currently engaged;
Pre-Arrest Defection Referrals: the movement of low-level offenders who are suspected of low-level criminal activity without criminal charges;
Pre-Arrest Diversion Referrals: the movement of low-level offenders who are charged with low-level criminal activity but not arrested.
For more information about diversion and deflection programs in Knox and Waldo County, contact Stephen Brimley at email@example.com