Mental Illness Criminalized

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Cytizen H
Mental Illness Criminalized
Ripple

Hi Cytizen H.  Good to see you back.

Cytizen H

Quote:
Underlying McCullough's continuing detention, Hundert and Carlisle and Kem McCullough all contend, is a grave systemic discrimination, whereby people with a history of mental illness are too often seen as dangerous and, among other consequences, denied release, at least on the same terms as anybody else.

"I don't see any basis for a determination that he is a danger to the public," Carlisle said. "I really believe that it's a prejudice against the mentally ill."

Enright, the prosecutor, is cautious about whether McCullough's mental health played a role in the decision to deny bail: "I cannot say whether it was determinative," he said. "Do we treat mentally disordered offenders differently than those who aren't? Well, you look at all the circumstances - it's unfair to try to pigeonhole Crown decisions. Yes, I guess."

Cytizen H

Ripple wrote:

Hi Cytizen H.  Good to see you back.

 

Thanks!

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Welcome back Cytizen H! Nice topic.

skdadl

Bluidy stupid ignorant anti-democratic bourgeois bastards. Law enforcement in this province, from McGuinty (most boring human being on the planet) on down is in the hands of bluidy stupid ignorant anti-democratic bourgeois bastards.

Set that man free. What an appalling, disgusting abuse of his rights as a citizen, by twits whose thought doesn't go much deeper than table manners.

And if I get really mad about this, I may say more. Gah!

Sean in Ottawa

I am not so sure that they cared that he was mentally ill-- I think the issue is more like he offered an opportunity to justify police actions that day and they don't want to let go of that.

I think a lot of places are not very secure and it is rational that he would ahve kept those things locked in his car rather than left in his house.

It doesn't sound like they have a single thing to hold him. Terrible thing to do to someone.

milo204

this is heartbreaking, especially with a couple of family members who suffered from mental illness.  he did nothing wrong, and he has had his freedom "revoked" since the g20, which is insane since there is really no charge against him.  Also, that he has suffered a pretty brutal beating while in jail....this could be anyone's grandpa.

i hope he sues and gets a settlement.

Snert Snert's picture

Mental illness or not, there's something vaguely worrying about a guy who has a big grudge with his neighbours, travelling around with a crossbow that he claims he has to drive off bears (??!).

If he was involved in a longstanding custody dispute with his ex, would we be so blasé about that crossbow in the trunk?

BTW, I'm not proposing he be detained indefinitely or anything.  But I don't think this case is without some reasonable concerns either.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I think the point, Snert, is not that McCullogh is harmless, but that the reason he feels the need to drive around with a crossbow is tightly tied to his mental illness, which is not being considered wrt his detention. We might start by asking where is the institutional and community support for this individual, why no one was monitoring his potentially dangerous behaviour, and why, now that the facts have come to light, the police still insist on treating him like a run-of-the-mill criminal, rather than someone living with a mental illness.

remind remind's picture

Strawman snert, he wasn't, no point in putting up nothings to justify.

Sean in Ottawa

Yeah-- he is in a jail not a hospital.

There is not any good explanation for this treatment.

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
I think the point, Snert, is not that McCullogh is harmless, but that the reason he feels the need to drive around with a crossbow is tightly tied to his mental illness, which is not being considered wrt his detention. We might start by asking where is the institutional and community support for this individual, why no one was monitoring his potentially dangerous behaviour, and why, now that the facts have come to light, the police still insist on treating him like a run-of-the-mill criminal, rather than someone living with a mental illness.

 

All good questions. And all better, I think, than "set him free". Sounds to me like treatment would be the far better option. But outside of a 72 hour detainment order, is it possible to enforce a treatment order without a trial first?

remind remind's picture

apparently in Ontario, but then they put up with everything.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Snert wrote:

Mental illness or not, there's something vaguely worrying about a guy who has a big grudge with his neighbours, travelling around with a crossbow that he claims he has to drive off bears (??!).

 

I am not really looking forward to living in a society where "vaguely worrying" counts as probable cause for arrest and incarceration. Maybe, skip the whole prison idea and simply install security devices on all homes that can be enabled by police edict, and GPS tracking devices on all people at birth. Would that make you feel more secure in you bed at night Snert?

Indeed I find what you are saying to be "vaguely worrying".

Snert wrote:

Quote:
I think the point, Snert, is not that McCullogh is harmless, but that the reason he feels the need to drive around with a crossbow is tightly tied to his mental illness, which is not being considered wrt his detention. We might start by asking where is the institutional and community support for this individual, why no one was monitoring his potentially dangerous behaviour, and why, now that the facts have come to light, the police still insist on treating him like a run-of-the-mill criminal, rather than someone living with a mental illness.

 

All good questions. And all better, I think, than "set him free". Sounds to me like treatment would be the far better option. But outside of a 72 hour detainment order, is it possible to enforce a treatment order without a trial first?

Not ones that you have answers for I see. Regardless he has already been through court mandated treatment. As has been outlined he feels that he likes to keep his valuables with him. Hence the array of expensive equipment he carries around in his car, including a crossbow. This has already been explained.

He hasn't done anything to breach his previous treatment, except drive in a restricted area with personal items that he felt to valuable to leave at his home, which was burned down "mysteriously" when he left it unattended previously, during a dispute with neighbours.

The behaviour seems a little more reasoned when this mysterious burning down is factored in.

Caissa

Strange syntax in this paragraph. Is the prosecutor agreeing MCCullogh is being treated differnetly because of his medical condition?

 

Enright, the prosecutor, is cautious about whether McCullough's mental health played a role in the decision to deny bail: "I cannot say whether it was determinative," he said. "Do we treat mentally disordered offenders differently than those who aren't? Well, you look at all the circumstances - it's unfair to try to pigeonhole Crown decisions. Yes, I guess."

Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2010/08/22/g20-mccullough-crossbow-jail.html#ixzz0yIiHgsyc

N.R.KISSED

Catchfire wrote:

I think the point, Snert, is not that McCullogh is harmless, but that the reason he feels the need to drive around with a crossbow i

s tightly tied to his mental illness, which is not being considered wrt his detention.

We might start by asking where is the institutional and community support for this individual, why no one was monitoring his

potentially dangerous behaviour, and why, now that the facts have come to light,

the police still insist on treating him like a run-of-the-mill criminal, rather than someone living with a mental illness.

What evidence do we have that he isn't harmless? He's had disputes with neighbours,plenty of people have severe

disputes with neighbours. without being locked up in Whitby for an extended period of time. I

f the police had treated him as a common criminal he would probably have been released by now.

What concerns me is not only that people who are experiencing psycho/emotinoal distress

are kept in prison much longer than someone not labelled would be

but also that the fuzzy area of forensic psychiatry if someone is psychiatrically labelled

they can be detained indefinetly in a psychiatric prison on the basis of the psychiatrists pleasure.

 

 

If a person is considered non-compliant or lacks insight into their "illness" they will be detained indefintiely, Whitby is notorious for this.

The dispute with the neighbours is hardly one sided it was his car window that was smashed and his home that mysteriously burnt down.

Of course as someone labelled schizophrenic he will always be seen as the dangerous and problematic.

It is difficult to know from the story what the true situation is and we should be careful not to make any assumptions.

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:
Maybe, skip the whole prison idea and simply install security devices on all homes that can be enabled by police edict, and GPS tracking devices on all people at birth. Would that make you feel more secure in you bed at night Snert?

 

I already sleep OK knowing that when someone is pulled over with a restricted weapon — one that basically amounts to a silent rifle — they're not just sent on their merry way.

 

The only question is what to do with them, evidently.

 

Quote:
Not ones that you have answers for I see.

 

I think the whole thing is a bit big for one guy to have all the answers.

 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

NRK, I have no evidence. I am not commenting on whether he is harmless or not. I was responding to Snert and saying that his harm to the public has nothing to do with his arrest. He is in jail because he is mentally ill, not because he poses a threat (or not) to the public. Indeed, the thread title says the same thing.

ETA:

Snert wrote:
I already sleep OK knowing that when someone is pulled over with a restricted weapon — one that basically amounts to a silent rifle — they're not just sent on their merry way.

A crossbow is not a restricted weapon in Ontario.

Snert Snert's picture

Ah.  My bad... and Ontario's, IMHO.  My first exposure to the lethality of them was many years ago, when a man in (I believe) Ottawa used one to murder his ex in broad daylight.  Huh.

Sean in Ottawa

Actually Snert, I remember this. It was right on the street if I remember correctly.

All that said-- mental illness should not be managed through the penal system but I get your point.

Cueball Cueball's picture

There isn't a point. A man who has been previously diagnosed, and had some trouble with some neighbours, who had his own property damaged (apparently anonymously by said neighbours) has been ensnared in the G20 trap carrying various common construction items and one non-restricted weapon. His previous problems were dealt with in court mandated treatement and he was released. The issue with his neighbours has not recurred apparently. He did nothing illegal to warrent further suspension of his civil liberties, because he did nothing at all wrong, up to and including driving on the streets of Toronto during the G20.

You guys think it is just AOK for the police to put keep people in the slammer because once upon a time they were diagonosed by the psychiatric community, even though they have done absolutely nothing illegal.

Snert Snert's picture

Here's my concern with just setting him free:  I really can't buy the story about needing that crossbow to scare off bears.  Combined with a baseball bat (presumably for playing baseball with bears?) it just smells fishy.

And again, I'm not suggesting it's appropriate to detain him indefinitely, but I don't think it would be responsible to just go ahead and assume there's nothing wrong with this picture either.  It's a bit like pulling someone over and in their trunk is a balaclava, gloves, a roll of duct tape, a rope, a knife and a shovel.  They're all legal, yes?  All have innocent uses too, yes?

skdadl

God, Snert, but you scare me.

For unrelated reasons, facts about this guy's private life have become public in the past and are being repeated now. So now breathless gossips are saying, "Gee, maybe he's not harmless!"

So gosh, Snert, I'm going to scare you now. There are a lot of people -- the vast majority, in fact -- whose private lives have yet to be fingered over in public. What were we thinking?!? Can all of them be harmless? Clearly not! Let's start checking out everyone! Default presumption: you might not be harmless! Do you see where this is going, Snert?

 

Cueball Cueball's picture

I'd say that there is definitely something "vaguely disturbing" about Snerts obessession with security at any cost, even the cost of locking up the whole country for fear that they might potentially harm each other, or themselves, or (God Forbid!)  the ever benign state under the helm of our ever loving dear leader.

Snert Snert's picture

Yes, you're both right!  I want to do deep background checks on everyone!  I want to lock up the whole country.

Can "rabble" be a verb?  As in "I think I just got rabbled"?  Anyway, fair enough.  Let him go free, and give him his silent rifle back, too.  For the bears and the raccoons and such. 

Can I assume you both oppose the long gun registry, too?  Somehow I doubt it.  Security, and all that.

writer writer's picture

Vaguely disturbing? You are too kind, Cueball.

Cueball Cueball's picture

"Vaguely disturbing" is the phrase Snert used to justify McCullough's continuing incarceration.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Snert wrote:

Yes, you're both right!  I want to do deep background checks on everyone!  I want to lock up the whole country.

Can "rabble" be a verb?  As in "I think I just got rabbled"?  Anyway, fair enough.  Let him go free, and give him his silent rifle back, too.  For the bears and the raccoons and such. 

Can I assume you both oppose the long gun registry, too?  Somehow I doubt it.  Security, and all that.

You apparently support jailing people on the grounds that they have violated weapons registration laws that don't exist based on "vaguely disturbing" suspicions that you have about them.

writer writer's picture

I am aware of that, Cueball. Still, you are too kind. Snert's type of rationalization is all too familiar to require any vagueness in my books.

skdadl

NB: I like Snert. I didn't mean to pile on. I hope he's not in trouble again.

Snert Snert's picture

Actually, what I said was:

 

Quote:
Mental illness or not, there's something vaguely worrying about a guy who has a big grudge with his neighbours, travelling around with a crossbow that he claims he has to drive off bears (??!).

 

But nevermind that. Now I understand he fires the crossbow in the air to scare off bears. And the aluminum baseball bat is just a prized personal possession. So it's all good.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Snert, you need to dial back your not-so-subtle mocking, degrading and insulting comments about people with mental health issues, or anyone who's dealing with issues that you clearly don't understand or care about.

This man's rights were violated. Clearly you don't care about that, and that's up to you. But you will not openly mock him or anyone else who is being held by the police based on ableism or other bullshit reasons made up during the G20 aka "Let's Suspend All Civil Rights of Anyone We Choose."

First and last warning.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Thank you, Maysie.

I'd like to add one thing about Gary McCullough's situation, from personal experience.

A relative of mine(I'd rather not specify the relationship) was diagnosed, in the early 1960's, as being paranoid schizophrenic.  Later, I learned from ANOTHER relative that, at that time, this diagnosis was kind of meaningless...it was what the shrinks labelled you as if they didn't know what the hell was actually going on in your head.  If that is STILL the case with that diagnosis, it's also possible, if not probable, that McCullough is being given the wrong medications or the wrong course of therapy, which will of course be making his situation far worse.  His counsel in the case should bring this up in the pre-trial proceedings.

Has there been any explanation as to WHY they didn't have him kept in a mental health facility, rather than a general inmate population?

Is the Crown refusing to accept that McCullough has mental health issues?

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

And if this becomes a campaign, I'd like to suggest that the campaign sell "We're ALL 'Vaguely Disturbing'" t-shirts and badges.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Sadly, these opinion's, like Snert's remain.  And he's in the majority, make no mistake about it.  Their's a real war on.  Classs vs Class.  Fools, if we don't see it.  I, like many others, I'm sure, have had some brief experiences where "doctors" have diagnosed them.  "paranoid schizophrenic"?  "bi-polar"?  These diagnoses are short cuts.  A mentally ill dude got smoked by the cops the other night even though his parents tried to call for help.

 

Shame on us all.

 

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/854757--police-knew-of-mental-illness-before-fatal-shooting-family-says

 

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture
Cueball Cueball's picture

Yeah, I know. There is no limit to the use of force, when any potential threat is established. They say he had a knife so they shot him at least three times in the head and chest. Witnesses reports are confused as to if this guy challenged the police or was trying to run away. Not long ago they pumped that "mentally distraught" guy full of holes who was driving his car in manner the police believed to be a threat. He is dead too.

However, I note, Michael Bryant kills someone with his vehicle, and the last thing the Crown of the media establish is that he may have used his vehicle as a "weapon of opportunity".

These killings, combined with the police behaviour at the G20 is creating a serious image crisis for the Toronto PD.

Caissa

I don't know about Ontario but Mental Health Services in NB are inadequate. In the 90's there was a de-institutionalization movement, close the institutions and provide support services in the community. As usual, a good job was done of closing the institutions but a less than stellar job has been done of providing the services in the community . As a parent of two children on the autism spectrum, stories like this one just scare the shit out of me.

remind remind's picture

When you have rational sounding soft soap hate of the type espoused by snert, above, many people will buy into it as being plausible, which is why comments like that are so bloody dangerous to society, and in fact to all people.

 

 

 

 

Maysie Maysie's picture

Ken Burch, I believe the diagnosis "Borderline Personality Disorder" is the new generic label for "We Don't Know What The Hell's Wrong With You So We're Going To Call You This". Sadly, I'm not joking. If anyone (oldgoat? NR Kissed?) has more current info, please let us know.

And to RevolutionPlease and remind: since I've already given Snert a telling to, I would appreciate it if you would stop the pile on. Getting into a geared up oppressive argument about this is not where I'd prefer this thread goes. Thanks.

Caissa
Maysie Maysie's picture

Thanks for proving my point Caissa.

 

From the first link:

Quote:
While a person with depression or bipolar disorder typically endures the same mood for weeks, a person with BPD may experience intense bouts of anger, depression, and anxiety that may last only hours, or at most a day. These may be associated with episodes of impulsive aggression, self-injury, and drug or alcohol abuse. Distortions in cognition and sense of self can lead to frequent changes in long-term goals, career plans, jobs, friendships, gender identity, and values. Sometimes people with BPD view themselves as fundamentally bad, or unworthy. They may feel unfairly misunderstood or mistreated, bored, empty, and have little idea who they are. Such symptoms are most acute when people with BPD feel isolated and lacking in social support, and may result in frantic efforts to avoid being alone.

 

From the second:

Quote:

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a serious and often life-threatening disorder that is characterized by severe emotional pain and difficulties managing emotions. The problems associated with BPD include impulsivity (including suicidality and self-harm), severe negative emotion such as anger and/or shame, chaotic relationships, an extreme fear of abandonment, and accompanying difficulties maintaining a stable and accepting sense of self. Thus, BPD is characterized by pervasive instability of mood, interpersonal relationships, self-image, and actions, often negatively affecting loved ones, family and work life, long-term planning, and the individual's sense of self-identity.

Yeah, that's sure clear. WhatEVER.

remind remind's picture

"where you would prefer this thread to go"?

Wasn't really taking snert to task, at all, was  making the point that comments like snerts, are dangerous to society and promote an idea that this type of behaviour against a person is acceptable, when it isn't. And I think that is a fair observation on how such things permiate and change society.

We wonder how a right wing agenda gets traction,  and shifts society's thinking, wrongly? It is through comments like these.

People really need to be aware, in the greater society of these type s of subtle remarks, and object to them strongly, each and everytime, or we will be allowing more people to be locked up, all the time, as anti-different people sentiment grows..

 

 

oldgoat

Quote:
"We Don't Know What The Hell's Wrong With You So We're Going To Call You This"

 

Actually, this statement is often followed by a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder.  

 

"We Don't Know What The Hell's Wrong With You So We're Going To Call You This, and BTW I Really don't Like You Because You Bug Me",  now THAT'S when you get the BPD diagnosis. 

 

BPD is actually a bit of a diagnostic can of worms.  I can expand on this a bit more later, and dazzle you all with multi-axial diagnostic feats, but I have to go see clients.  One doesn't even have a diagnosis, poor soul. 

 

 

Caissa

When I was coordinating accommodations for students with disabilities, I met a few students with BPD. I'll defer to oldgoat who has a ton more experience. I look forward to hearing what he has to say.

Happy I could help you out, Maysie.

remind remind's picture

Read in some psych magazine a few years back that 83% of the world's population are not "normal", that leaves 17% who supposedly are.

 

One wonders about that....

Caissa

That would run contrary to statistical definitions of normal. Interesting....

Caissa

A panel of experts meets Thursday to decide the fate of a woman found not criminally responsible for the slaying of a 12-year old autistic boy in Grand Forks, B.C.

The B.C. Review Board will consider whether to commit Kimberly Ruth Noyes to a Port Coquitlam psychiatric facility.

Noyes trial established that she stabbed John Fulton to death in her townhouse in the summer of 2009. But she was found not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder.

Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2010/09/01/bc-noyes-fulton-psychiatric-hearing.html#ixzz0yNpXuomX

N.R.KISSED

The borderline diagnosis has an interesting history. Originally the term comes from when Freudians made the distinction between neurotic and psychotic disorders, people labelled bordrline were considered a little from column A a little from column B. Not to say psychiatric labelling is anymore scientific or specific today. The term BPD is generally a pejoritive that is given to people who are considered "difficult". The reality is that approximately 90% of those given the label have experienced severe trauma usully ongoing starting in childhood. Strangely people who have experienced severe ongoing abuse in childhood, can have difficulties in forming relationships, have a poor sense of self and engage in behaviour that is perceived as self destructive( although to the people themselves they are methods of coping) and even more surprisingly the experience anger at times when they feel threatened. Psychiatry fails to acknowledge the context of trauma and in doing so renders peoples experiences and responses to others as meaningless. Unfortunately the disrespect, hostility and abuse trauma survivors experience within the psychiatric system is a continuation of their early experiences. The underlying dynamics of trauma is never addressed and the people can be dismissed as difficult or non-compliant.

N.R.KISSED

Catchfire wrote:

NRK, I have no evidence. I am not commenting on whether he is harmless or not. I was responding to Snert and saying that his harm to the public has nothing to do with his arrest. He is in jail because he is mentally ill, not because he poses a threat (or not) to the public. Indeed, the thread title says the same thing.

ETA:

Snert wrote:
I already sleep OK knowing that when someone is pulled over with a restricted weapon — one that basically amounts to a silent rifle — they're not just sent on their merry way.

A crossbow is not a restricted weapon in Ontario.

Catchfire my friend I wasn't meaning to get on your case or focus on semantics. I was hoping to demonstrate that the concept of harm or danger is so deeply embedded within the imposed construction of psychiatric identity that it almost automatically arises in any discussion. (Note the entirely irrelevant posting concerning a case in which someone labelled has engaged in violence.) I was merely pointing out that you did raise the question of him not being harmless whereas one can say as far as we know he is harmless.

My deeper concern is that this man was robbed of his liberty for several years because he was arguing with neighbours. This would not happen to someone without a diagnosis. People are often held in these situations for long periods of time if they refuse to take debilitating drugs or do not accept the psychiatric definition of their experience. I know of a woman who was held in Whitby for about two years, who did nothing violent or threatening but was arrested on a minor charge, the psychiatrists would not let her out because she refused to take the medications they were trying to force on her. This man is facing a greater threat of confinement if he ends up by a court mandated to recieve treatment.

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