What 911 Data Does and Does Not Tell Us About Divertible Calls

Historically, law enforcement has been the default response to 911 calls for service, including incidents involving individuals with behavioral health conditions, quality-of-life concerns, and social service needs. Many of these incidents are service-based, and the presence of law enforcement may not be needed. However, understanding the nature, appropriate response, and outcomes of these calls for service requires the careful collection and examination of 911 data. This breakout session will feature perspectives from multiple professionals on how the measurement and interpretation of 911 data inform decisions pertaining to 911 response and call diversion. Panelists will highlight what examinations of 911 data have shown and discuss current practices in 911 call classification and diversion in communities.

Robin Engel, PhD, Director, International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) / UC Center for Police Research & Policy

Robin S. Engel, PhD, is Professor of Criminal Justice at the University of Cincinnati (UC) and Director of the International Association of Chiefs of Police/UC Center for Police Research and Policy. She formerly served as UC’s vice president for safety and reform. Robin engages in policy research and evaluation, with expertise in empirical assessments of police behavior, police-community relations, and crime reduction strategies. She has served as principal investigator for over 80 research grants, totaling over $22 million. Additionally, she has published over 60 research articles, books, and chapters, along with dozens of technical reports for practitioners, and has been ranked among top academics, and the number one woman in the field of criminal justice/criminology based on publications in prestigious peer-reviewed journals. She currently serves as the co-chair of IACP’s Research Advisory Committee and as a consultant on police training for the Ohio Attorney General.

Dr. Rebecca Neusteter, Executive Director, University of Chicago Health Lab

Dr. Rebecca Neusteter is executive director of the University of Chicago Health Lab and principal investigator of Transform911. She has dedicated her career to advancing equity in the criminal justice and health care systems. She works to enhance public safety, civic participation, and opportunities to support health and vitality. Neusteter holds a PhD in criminal justice from John Jay College of the Graduate Center, City University of New York; an MS in urban policy analysis and management from the Milano Graduate School of the New School University; and a BA in sociology from Chapman University.

Kevin Hall, Assistant Chief, Tuscon Police Department

Assistant Chief Kevin Hall is a 29-year member of the Tucson Police Department, joining the department in 1992. He has held the position of patrol officer, detective, patrol sergeant, SWAT sergeant, investigative sergeant, patrol lieutenant, Field Services Bureau executive officer, patrol captain, and now assistant chief. He has worked in a variety of assignments within the department, including Patrol Operations Divisions South, Midtown, East; the Gang Unit; Physical Child Abuse Unit; Internal Affairs; Homicide; and the Home Invasion/Kidnapping Unit. Assistant Chief Hall has completed the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives in State & Local Government, Police Executive Research Forum Senior Management Institute for Police, Northwestern University Center for Public Safety, School of Police Staff and Command, University of Arizona Eller School of Management Southwest Leadership and Foundations of Public Sector Leadership programs. He holds two bachelor’s degrees from the University of California and a master’s from Arizona State University.

Chiara Jaranilla, Crisis Call Diversion Program Manager, Harris Center for Mental Health and IDD

Chiara Jaranilla is the program manager for The Harris Center for Mental Health and IDD’s 911 Crisis Call Diversion program in Houston, TX, where she provides general program and staff oversight of daily operations and coordination with stakeholder partnerships at the Houston Police Department, the Houston Fire Department, and the City of Houston. The 911 Crisis Call Diversion program serves as a learning site for law enforcement diversion, and Chiara has provided technical assistance and consultation for over 50 community agencies throughout the nation since 2020. Jaranilla is a qualified mental health professional with over seven years of experience in crisis intervention, suicide prevention, and case management. She received her BS in psychology from the University of Houston and is currently a graduate student at the University of Houston – Victoria working toward an MS in clinical mental health counseling. Jaranilla also has experience working with The Harris Center’s 24hr Crisis Line and Mobile Crisis Outreach Team, The Houston Area Women’s Center, and Crisis Text Line.

Ashley Romo

Ashley Romo, Officer, Houston Police Department Mental Health Division

Ashley Romo is a police officer with the Houston Police Department. She has been an officer for seven years serving the last four years in the HPD Mental Health Division. Her position as special projects liaison allows her to work hand in hand with the Harris Center’s Crisis Call Diversion Program. Officer Romo assists in training the crisis call counselors in their new hire training by providing basic knowledge on law enforcement, Texas laws, and HPD general orders. She also reviews audio of emergency calls taken by the counselors and provides recordings to management for further training and quality assurance. Officer Romo received a BS in criminal justice from Texas State University.