Bruce Williams, seen in jail, is a symbol of a system so gutted it fails to protect the public from the dangerously mentally ill. (Hyunsoo Leo Kim | The Virginian-Pilot)
A riveting multi-part investigation in the Virginian-Pilot about how an increasingly broken mental health care system in the U.S. fails to protect the public from people too sick to not be institutionalized. People like convicted killer Bruce Williams, a diagnosed schizophrenic who grew up in an extremely violent alcoholic home. He hears voices in his head instructing him to kill people, and with multiple victims over the course of his life, he has. Through Williams' story, we are able to understand more about how and why the system is so broken.
The vast majority of the mentally ill are not like Williams – even those with schizophrenia, probably the most volatile disorder. They’re a bigger risk to themselves than to anyone else, shadowed by a spectre known as suicidal ideation, or SI for short.
Williams’ medical records are peppered with “SI,” plus a chilling addition: “HI” – homicidal ideation. In between his two murders, he says, he asked to be sent to an institution. No one committed him, despite his history.
Here and across the country, there’s been a philosophical and legal shift in mental health care. Home-based treatment is in, monitored by social workers who try to mainstream every patient. State institutions are out, reduced to skeletons with few beds.
"There’s little appetite for reviving the institutions," the report continues, "Even though they’re the only places someone like Williams can get the intensive treatment – not to mention the level of confinement – he obviously needs."
Read the entirety of the profile: PART 1, "Can't hold him." PART 2, "Can't fix him." PART 3, Can't stop him.
An interview with Williams, below.
[HT: Liz Szabo]
We just got the Sport model of the EPIKGO hoverboard at my office. Besides being terribly chic, it’s apparently bulletproof.
Ok, it’s not just solar powered. It’s also an anti-theft, waterproof marvel that keeps my phone’s power bar from ever getting into the red.Sure the idea seems obvious now – tuck a gigantic solar powered battery pack into an exposed slot and turn the wearer into a walking energy harvester. Simple maybe, but I didn’t […]
The office I work in is full of things old people buy to make themselves feel young again. I can honestly say that our awesome new toy, The Swagtron T3 Hoverboard, makes me feel very, very old. I’ll explain why later. Swagtron T3 Pros There’s no way to overcharge the battery and that means no […]
Python is immensely popular in the data science world for the same reason it is in most other areas of computing—it has highly readable syntax and is suitable for anything from short scripts to massive web services. One of its most exciting, newest applications, however, is in machine learning. You can dive into this booming […]
Learning new skills is a great way to improve your resume and stand out from other candidates. Especially in a workforce in which many job-seekers have a wide variety of qualifications. With lifetime access to Virtual Training Company, you won’t have to choose a specific focus. You can pick up new expertise whenever you deem it […]
Instead of throwing out all the empties after your next party, why not transform them into some new DIY glassware? Cut back on waste and add some home ambiance with the Kinkajou Bottle Cutter and Candle Making Kit.The Kinkajou is designed as a clamp-on scoring blade to make precise cuts. Just slide a bottle in, tighten […]