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It has been a year since Gladys and Herman Whitfield Jr. called the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department because their son was having an apparent mental health episode. But it was a call that ended in tragedy. Herman “Tres” Whitfield III died in police custody. Following Whitfield’s death on April 25, 2022, spiritual leaders from Faith in Indiana called for action to ensure that such a tragedy would not reoccur, and some progress has been made.

What’s next?

Faith in Indiana and city officials have emphasized the need for a 24-hour and fully funded mental health crisis response team, and Indianapolis now has a Mobile Crisis Assistance Team, or MCAT. But the team only operates 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Details of a pilot program were teased last September. While the details of the new program are not public, city officials and faith leaders have been working behind the scenes to finalize a contract with the organization establishing it, said Josh Riddick of Faith in Indiana, who added that an announcement is coming soon.

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