WPD negotiator details talks between suspect following standoff

Published: Sep. 30, 2016 at 8:35 PM CDT
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The Wichita Police Department's Crisis Negotiation Team was called out at around 2:30 Friday morning for a standoff to help a woman that had a gun to her head.

This came after a short police chase that left one sheriff's deputy in the hospital. Behind all of the lights and sirens, negotiators began their work by talking with the officers that were already on scene.

"At this point we decided to go into a coaching phase where we actually coach the officer instead of taking over the negotiations because he'd already developed the rapport," said Christian Cory, a member of the negotiation team.

Over the next three hours, Cory and other members of the team helped the officers on scene talk to the woman until she surrendered to police.

"The communication allows them a chance to vent, to tell their side of the story and before we can work down to behavior change we have to work on rapport skills, our empathy, things like that to really understand the situation." said Cory.

Cory says Friday morning's situation is an example of the team's best possible outcome in situations like this - but getting to that point takes plenty of patience and training.

"A lot of people say, 'Hey, I can talk to anybody, I'm a good talker, I can talk'." Cory said. "A lot of times it's just about being a great listener."

The suspect, Shellie R. Robinson of Wichita, was booked for a felony probation violation, aggravated battery of a law enforcement officer, criminal possession of a firearm, possession of opiates, possession of a hallucinogenic, possession of drug paraphernalia, obstruct, flee and elude and driving while suspended.

The officer that was injured was transported to a hospital with serious injuries, but he is expected to recover.