search
top

IHOP Killer Had History of Mental Illness

Clayton Cramer noted earlier today:

Keep on eye on this story. I would be very surprised if Sencion was not well known to police for previous mental illness problems. I would be surprised if there is not a history of observational holds, followed by release because he was not an imminent danger.

So far his prediction would seem to be bearing out:

Family members told authorities that Sencion had a history of mental problems dating back to age 16, the official said.

Also this:

Eduardo Sencion, 32, had been taken into custody in South Lake Tahoe in 2000 under a California law that allows police to hold a person who presents a danger to themselves or others, South Lake Tahoe police spokesman Lt. David Stevenson said.

There’s no background check system that’s going to work to disarm mentally ill people like this if authorities refuse to act. Even under California law, this would only have disabled him from buying a firearm for five years. Being held under this particular California statute is not a federal disqualification, nor should it be, since the amount of due-process afforded is very low.

Our opponents will hew and haw that we must turn the country into a giant padded cell, rather than making sure authorities and the mental health system understand the importance of getting these people proper mental health treatment, and, when necessary, getting them off the street. It’s not going to do us any good if they switch from using guns to matches and gasoline. You have to get the mentally ill off the streets, or this kind of thing is going to continue occurring.

 

 

 

8 Responses to “IHOP Killer Had History of Mental Illness”

  1. Gene Hoffman says:

    Just a nit that CA WIC 5150/5250 holds generate a 10 year possession and purchase bar IIRC.

    -Gene

  2. DirtCrashr says:

    What do you want to bet he was on anti-depressants…

  3. GMC70 says:

    You have to get the mentally ill off the streets, or this kind of thing is going to continue occurring.

    Where shall we put them? We abolished the sorts of facilities needed to treat these folks several decades ago. Instead, we now use our prisons as, in effect, asylums for the insane. That should not be, but it is.

    If you are arguing for the reinstitution of an effective mental health system, with genuine treatment facilities, great. But the public is unwilling to pay for same, and frankly, doing so creates due process issues of its own: how do we decide who to lock up? What are the standards? We are depriving a person of their liberties, after all.

    And something else we should frankly consider: some of us are what some authorities would consider a “threat.” We have odd or different political leanings, we dare to insist that the state respect our personal rights, and we have “arsenals.” How long before authorities, armed with more aggressive mental health detention tools, come for some of us?

  4. Philbert says:

    I was with you until the end. “[G]et the mentally ill off the streets” is way too broad. Most Americans with mental illness are not homicidal maniacs and do not need to be deprived of their liberty. You had it right two sentences earlier – only dangerously ill people need to be held against their will.

  5. Chas says:

    Markie Marxist sez: “It’s one of our general principles of subverting capitalist America that we need to keep as many deranged homeless people on the streets as possible. Not only does it degrade America to have foul smelling, intoxicated men drinking in public, urinating in their pants, sleeping on the sidewalk, and yelling at passersby, but sometimes they commit real crimes. All of that adds up to helping us to convince people that capitalism isn’t working, so they should go with our socialist agenda instead. Then we can slide them down the road to totalitarianism. The more crazies on the street, the better! It works for US! Ha! Ha!”

  6. Sage Thrasher says:

    What GMC70 said:

    * “You have to get the mentally ill off the streets, or this kind of thing is going to continue occurring.”

    * But the public is unwilling to pay…

    That’s about the size of it. Especially now in times of financial collapse, state services to the mentally ill are being cut–even programs proven to be both beneficial and cost-saving (as in, they keep people out of the more expensive option: jail). Gripe all you want, but if you want to live in a functioning society, you have to pay the maintenance costs. And cost of helping seriously impaired people is, quite frankly, beyond the means of most families. Unless you’re advocating for euthanasia, then caring for mentally disabled people should, IMHO, be a core function of government. We all hate to pay taxes, but on some level there are things that only government can do.

  7. I will have my book My Brother Ron: A Personal and Social History of the Deinstitutionalization of the Mentally Ill out in a couple of weeks as a Kindle publication. Let me just emphasize that saving money was at most a secondary motivation for deinstitutionalization, and it is not clear that rebuilding our mental health system is a lot more expensive than what we do now. Prisons are not only bad places for mentally ill people, they are very expensive ways to provide care for them. Also, it doesn’t take a lot of murder trials of mentally ill people to pay for a LOT of mental health care. A capital murder trial (and we have had several recently for mentally ill people here in Idaho) will consume six figures very quickly; appeals of the death sentence will consume seven figures easily over a period of ten years.

  8. “And something else we should frankly consider: some of us are what some authorities would consider a “threat.” We have odd or different political leanings, we dare to insist that the state respect our personal rights, and we have “arsenals.” How long before authorities, armed with more aggressive mental health detention tools, come for some of us?”

    We do need to be careful how much we relax the current standards, but what surprised me when researching my new book was how few examples I could find of inappropriate commitment under the old system. There was due process; hospitals were overcrowded, and doctors did not want anyone there without a good reason; even the ACLU as late as 1963 could not give any examples of such inappropriate hospitalizations when arguing for more paperwork and more lawyer involvement in the process.

    This is not the Soviet Union, nor was it back in the day.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. SayUncle » Shocking - [...] IHOP killer had history of mental illness. [...]
  2. Eduardo Sencion Was Crazy | Guns For Everyone - [...] 8, 2011 in Other Web Sites with 0 Comments…
top