Friday, October 22, 2010

A Perspective....

This is an interesting story.

While most want to blame the poor, inexperienced Deputy Constable here there is more blame to go around. I'm sure the Deputy got frustrated and decided he couldn't do anything more with him. However try to put yourself in his position. You're a new police officer (you may not even be paid as Pct.6 has mostly unpaid reserve deputies) and you find this guy who is clearly mentally disturbed. He gives you a Chinese name, says he is 27 years old. He exhibits irrational behavior but probably nothing to suggest he is an immediate danger to himself or others. The Deputy takes him to a hospital and shelter and neither organization will accept him. What do you do with him then? He isn't under arrest so the deputy's right to detain him is very limited. What do you do then? This deputy got frustrated and just let him off at the corner not realizing who he had. All of these organizations are in place to help people. Granted their resources are limited so they make guidelines on what circumstances they will accept people. Adult protective services are notorious for not helping out at times. I've yet to have a case where APS actually helped me, or anyone I know out. CPS is a hit or miss kind of deal. Officers have worked overtime waiting on a decision from CPS about where to take a child then when they've waited long enough take the child to their intake center only to be refused and told they can't stay there. I've personally told officers to place the child there and walk out and see if CPS will kick the child out of their facility. Explain that to the press. Ben Taub is also a hit or miss deal. Most of the time they are helpful though there have been times when they tried to refuse obviously dangerous, deranged people based on some silly technicality.

Sometimes we find ourselves in situations where all of our organizations and resources cannot or will not help us leaving us to make decisions. While I think the deputy clearly made the wrong decision here I don't think he should get the entire blame for this. The shelters, the hospitals, even the kid's family shares some of the blame the way I see it.

1 comment:

Beat And Release said...

We really are limited as to what we can do in those sort of situations. This fellow tried everything he knew to, with the possible exception of asking a supervisor.

I also a case for blaming the family. I'm willing to bet this isn't the first time they let him get away.