Photo of Watson, Amy C.

Amy C. Watson, PhD



Building & Room:

4242 ETMSW

Office Phone:

(312) 996-0039


Dr. Watson was a probation officer in DuPage County for five years, working primarily with probation clients with mental illness. She also has several years experience as a forensic social worker conducting mitigation investigations for death penalty cases.

Professional Interests:

Mental Health Policy
Interface of the criminal justice and mental health systems
Mental illness stigma and treatment participation

Teaching Experience:

SocW 554 Policy II: Mental Health Policy
SocW 557 Social Work with Military Services Members

Selected Publications

Repp, A.I., Watson, A.C., Burns, J. & Rickman Jones, L. (2019). The west side community outreach pilot project: A mental health outreach initiative in urban communities of color. Social Work in Mental Health. doi: 10.1080/15332985.2019.1625477

Neal, M., Solomon, J. & Watson, A. (2018). Crisis Intervention Team (CIT): Methods for Using Data to Inform Practice: A Step-by-Step Guide. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Watson, A.C., Compton, M.T., Draine, J.N. (2017). The crisis intervention team (CIT) model: An evidence-based policing practice? Behavioral Sciences and the Law. DOI: 10.1002/bsl.2304.

Morabito, MS, Kerr, AN, Watson, AC, Draine, J, Angell, B (2012). Crisis Intervention Teams and People with Mental Illness: Exploring the Factors that Influence the Use of Force. Crime & Delinquency.

Watson, A.C., Ottati, V.C., Draine, J.N., Morabito, M. (2011) CIT in context: The Impact of mental health resource availability and district saturation on call outcomes. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry

Watson, A.C, Ottati, V.C., Morabito, M., Draine, J., Kerr, A.N., Angell,B. (2010). Outcomes of police contacts with persons with mental illness: The impact of CIT. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. Vol 37 (4) p302-317. DOI10.107/s10488-009-0236-9.

Watson, AC, Angell, B, Vidalon, T, Davis, K (2010) Measuring Perceived Procedural Justice and Coercion among Persons with Mental Illness in Police Encounters: The Police Contact Experience Scale. Journal of Community Psychology, 38, 2, 206-226.

Kerr, AN, Morabito, MS & Watson, AC (2010). Police encounters, mental illness and injury: An Exploratory study. Journal of Police Crisis Negotiations 10 (1-2) 116-132.

Canada, K, Angell, B & Watson. AC (2010). Crisis Intervention Teams in Chicago: Successes on the ground. Journal of Police Crisis Negotiations. 10 (1-2) 86-100.

Compton, M.T., Broussard, B., Hankerson-Dyson, D., Krishan, S., Steward, T., Oliva, J.R., & Watson, AC (2010). System- and Policy-Level Challenges to Full Implementation of the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) Model. Journal of Police Crisis Negotiations. 10 (1-2) 72-85.

Lurigio, A & Watson, AC (2010). The Police and people with mental illness: New Approaches to a longstanding problem. Journal of Police Crisis Negotiations. 10 (1-2) 3-14.

Watson, AC (2010) Research in the real world: Studying Chicago Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program. Research on Social Work Practice. 20 536-543.

Watson AC, Kelly B & Vidalon T (2009). Examining the meaning attached to mental illness and mental health services among justice system involved youth and their parents. Qualitative Health Research, 19 (8) 1087-1099.

Watson AC, Angell B, Morabito MS, & Robinson N. (2008) Defying negative expectations: Dimensions of fair and respectful treatment by police officers as perceived by people with mental illness. Administration & Policy in Mental Health & Mental Health Services Research. 35, 449-457.

Watson AC Morabito MS, Draine J, Ottati V. (2008) Improving police response to persons with mental illness: A multi-level conceptualization of CIT. International Journal of Law & Psychiatry. 31, 359-368.



BA, Criminal Justice, Aurora University
AM, University of Chicago
PhD, University of Chicago

Professional Memberships

Chicago Consortium for Stigma Research
American Society of Criminology
Criminal Justice/Mental Health Committee, DuPage County

Research Currently in Progress

Testing a systems level intervention to improve police response to persons with mental illness: CIT in Chicago (NIMH)
Police, Procedural Justice & Persons with Mental Illness(NIMH)
Forensic Assertive Community Treatment: Re-Entry Evaluation ( Chicago Community Trust)
Police Officer Response to Emotionally Disturbed Person Calls ( Center for Mental Health Services and Criminal Justice Research)