BROKEN ARROW, Oklahoma - A woman locked herself inside a QuikTrip restroom and committed suicide regardless of the negotiator on scene, officials said.

“At the end of the day we can’t control what anybody is going to do...our actions are in response to theirs,” Broken Arrow Detective Rhianna Russell said. “You just want to talk to them and see if you can help try and restore them back to a normal functioning level so that they can work their own way through their crisis.” 

Russell is part of the BAPD’s Crisis Negotiation Team. Their job starts when situations are already tense. 

“We are trying to de-escalate and calm them down and help them figure out the path they want to take and help influence that decision,” Russell said. 

She said each team member has different roles once they get to a scene. The main goal is to get the person to calm down so they can end things peacefully. That conversation can start with something as simple as introducing themselves and asking for a name. 

“It takes a while. Try and find something positive in their life that will help them come back down to that lower level. Where they can start thinking about what that positive thing is- of reasons they shouldn’t do what they are wanting to do,” Russell said.

It is a powerful job and one that doesn’t always end the way negotiators hope but Russell says it is still worth it to try because you never know when one conversation might just be powerful enough to make a difference. 

“You know you never know when it is going to happen that you are going to make a difference but sometimes you find out later that you do,” said Russell.