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Viewpoint: Start of an era at Boise Police Dept., end of an era at College of Western Idaho

This episode of Viewpoint focuses on the new Boise PD division dedicated to innovative training, as well as the retirement of long-time CWI President Bert Glandon.

BOISE, Idaho — It's the start of something new at the Boise Police Department. BPD recently launched a new division that focuses on innovative training and hired a new captain to lead it. It's called the Training, Education and Development Division (TEDD).

After a nationwide search, the department hired Captain Spencer Fomby to command the division. He was sworn in on March 1. Captain Fomby brings 20 years of law enforcement experience to the position. He comes to Boise from the Berkeley, Calif. Police Department where he served as a lieutenant and tactical instructor. He will guide the division in mental health awareness training, training in de-escalation techniques and education in implicit bias, among other things.

During the taping of this Sunday's Viewpoint, Fomby laid out the goals and objectives of TEDD:

Capt. Spencer Fomby: The main thing is to look at the way we train police officers, the type of education we provide, giving them opportunities for career development and also looking at the wellness program. Chief Lee and I are both working on several national initiatives, and we're very much aware of the national trends, the national standards toward police training, and we want to make sure that everything we do at BPD is related to national standards and best practices.
Doug Petcash: Can you give me some examples of the types of situations and circumstances that this training will cover?
Capt. Spencer Fomby: It's everything from routine patrol tactics, there's just a whole group of training topics that officers have to understand, from first-aid to how we interact with people in a mental health crisis, the way we interact with people from various backgrounds, our immigrant community. And the thing that people really focus on are the use of force incidents. My real background is training officers how to use various levels of force, when it's appropriate, when it's legal. I was a use of force instructor in basically every discipline in use of force, and I created two courses that are certified in the state of California around de-escalation. So one of my main focuses is the way we deal with people who are in a mental health crisis, people who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol or otherwise non-compliant.

Also on this edition of Viewpoint, the end of an era at the College of Western Idaho. Long-time President Bert Glandon is retiring on May 15. He talks about the amazing growth CWI has experienced during his tenure, how the college is holding up through the pandemic, and why he decided now is the time to step away.

Viewpoint airs Sunday mornings at 6:30 on KTVB.

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