Home Take Action Social Media Preventable Tragedies Videos Families in Pain HR2646 Contact

 National Helping Families

          in Mental Health Crisis Day

October 7, 2015

Mark your calendar

Join our effort on October 7th National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day

To change the status quo!


Join our effort on October 7th National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day

To change the status quo!


Join our effort on October 7th National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day

To change the status quo!


Join our effort on October 7th National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day

To change the status quo!


Join our effort on October 7th National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day

To change the status quo!


Mass Murder and Serious (Untreated) Mental Illness

According to Mental Illness Policy Org., in US Mass Shootings, 1982-2015:
Data From Mother Jones' Investigation
, 63% of mass shootings were committed by mentally ill individuals according to calculations.

This is consistent with the report, 28 Mass Murders in the United States January to December 2013, in which 50% of mass murders for that year were associated with mental illness and another 32% in which it is unknown.

But Are Mass Killings Increasing in Frequency? Treatment Advocacy Center provides statistics that provide an alarming ‘yes’ to that question.

It’s true statistics do show the 40% of the population with a vast array of mental health issues are no more violent than the rest of the population. But statistics of the smaller fraction within the 4% percent with the most serious illnesses such as schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder, and sometimes major depression who are not being treated, reveal this population is at much greater risk of acting out in violence. Such violence most often occurs against family members and caregivers, but as repeatedly seen, it is sometimes played out in mass killings as well.

While the verdict is still out on the Oregon mass shooting, in light of this information, we are likely to discover in the days ahead that Chris Harper-Mercer, the gunman at Umpqua Community College in Oregon suffered from untreated serious mental illness as well. He attended a school for special needs children with various learning and behavioral disabilities. His mother has also told a CNN reporter her son had mental health issues. On the other hand, because he is now deceased and cannot undergo psychological assessment, we may never have the full answer to this particular shooting. But as DJ Jaffe points out in Remember Chris Harper Mercer, the Person Who Killed Ten, “The Telegraph reports that one of Mr. Mercer's online handles was ‘Lithium_Love.’ Lithium is a medicine used to treat bipolar disorder…if the cause turns out to be related to untreated serious mental illness, then the solution is related to understanding and treating the illness, not burying our heads in the sand and painting a unidimensional portrait of a monster.”

What we do know is more than half of mass murders might be averted if adequate treatment were available for those who are the sickest. E. Fuller Torrey and Doris A. Fuller do an excellent job explaining this in The Potential Killers We Let Loose.

The answer to this increasingly frequent problem, reform of America’s broken mental health care system, is long overdue. But the solution is currently in sight–if legislators are willing to act. Unfortunately, the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, HR2646, is being held up in Congress. So families of the seriously mentally ill have planned a day of action on October 7, National Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Day.

Learn how you can help bring change and put a stop to these ongoing preventable tragedies.

Mental health bill could prevent mass shootings

James Holmes, who suffers from schizophrenia, was found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2012 mass shooting that left 12 dead and 70 injured at the movie theatre in Aurora, Colo. He has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. One juror's vote saved him from the death penalty. While it was Holmes who pulled the trigger, it is our broken mental health system that bears the responsibility for one of the bloodiest rampages in this county.…. Read More

Sandy Hook shooting report didn't address issue
of untreated mental illness

The Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate's report on the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting examined shooter Adam Lanza’s life and made public health recommendations. While some social scientists would take issue with using a case study to develop public policy, the report’s rich detail provides unique perspectives on how society failed itself, Lanza, and his family.…. Read More

Records show mental illness of Thanksgiving gunman

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Medical records show a South Florida man who gunned down four relatives during a Thanksgiving massacre was depressed and controlled by obsessive compulsive rituals.…. Read More

If You Think Someone Is Mentally Ill: Loughner's Six Warning Signs

In retrospect, it's easy to see the evidence that Tucson, Ariz., shooter Jared Loughner was mentally unstable. In his community-college classes, he would laugh randomly and loudly at nonevents. He would clench his fists and regularly pose strange, nonsensical questions to teachers and fellow students. "A lot of people didn't feel safe around him," a former classmate told Fox News.…. Read More

Va. Tech Gunman's Records Reveal Disorganized Mental Health System

The missing mental health records of Seung Hui Cho, released Wednesday afternoon, provide more evidence that Virginia Tech's counseling center and the state's mental health system failed to recognize, communicate and treat the gunman's increasingly erratic behavior.…. Read More

Father Sticks by Son Accused of Killing Family

OKLAHOMA CITY — Raymond Green doesn't regret letting his 40-year-old son live at his home, even after his beloved "Danny" allegedly turned the shared space into a crime scene, gunning down the family.…. Read More

An Avoidable Tragedy: Aaron Alexis and Mental Illness

Aaron Alexis was very obviously disturbed for a considerable period prior to the shooting in the Washington Navy Yard on Monday, and no one did much about it. I’m concerned at how heavily the media seems to have focussed on the issue of his security clearance, with the suggestion that this is a failure of prevention because the place where Alexis went crazy was a Navy base. It would be equally tragic if he’d gone on a shooting spree in a post office, supermarket, or hospital. What’s shocking is not that he had a security clearance, but that someone with such intense problems could slip through the social fabric so readily.…. Read More

My Son Has A Mental Illness. Here's The Conversation I Wish We Were Having About The Oregon Mass Shooting

As the mother of a teenager who has bipolar disorder, a mother who once worried about my own son’s violent behavior, I see mass shootings differently. I see promises broken, a society that has failed to help our most vulnerable.…. Read More

Matthew de Grood’s texts sent his father out into the night
to find his son … too late to stop Calgary stabbings

Matthew de Grood sent texts to his parents on the night five Calgary university students were stabbed that so alarmed his parents, his father Doug left the house to search for him and his mother Susan called police, says a police officer who knows the de Grood family.…. Read More

Elliot Rodger Report Details Long Struggle with Mental Illness

Eight months after Elliot Rodger’s mass murder in Isla Vista, the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Office released a highly anticipated report that recaps hundreds of investigative documents on the six homicides, 14 attempted murders, and one suicide that took place on May 23, 2014, in the small college town adjacent to UCSB.…. Read More

Families speak out 10 years after mental health tragedy

SACRAMENTO -- On January 10, 2001, 19-year-old Laura Wilcox and two other people were shot to death by Scott Harlan Thorpe, a 41-year old a mental patient who resisted his family's attempt to seek treatment.…. See video

Suspect in Louisiana theater rampage had history of mental illness

A 59-year-old man once hospitalized for psychiatric care was identified by authorities on Friday as the gunman who fatally shot two people in a rampage at a central Louisiana movie theater before killing himself as police closed in…. Read More