NH State Prison

The New Hampshire State Prison.

One morning in April 2021, a man at the New Hampshire State Prison was agitated, yelling and giving officers the finger. When he didn’t follow corrections officers’ orders to face the wall, several officers pulled him to the ground. As he struggled, they hit him in the back, yelled, shackled his legs, held a Taser to his back and shocked him.

That’s not the de-escalation that correctional officers are trained to practice when people in the state prison and county jails are having a mental health crisis. But few officers have had more than the most basic of training on mental health issues — in part because a more intensive training session offered in New Hampshire takes a full 40-hour week.