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Widow of Colorado masscre victim
sues James Holmes´ psychiatrist

Telegraph [UK], by Nick Allen

Original Article

Posted By:JoniTx, 1/17/2013 2:37:33 PM

Los Angeles,- Chantel Blunk´s husband Jonathan, 26, a Navy veteran and father of two, was among the 12 people who died when James Holmes opened fire during a movie screening in the city of Aurora on July 20 last year. Mrs Blunk is also suing the University of Colorado where Holmes was a PhD neuroscience student. She alleges that Dr Lynne Fenton advised campus police after Holmes told her about the fantasy the month before the shooting. According to the lawsuit, police offered to apprehend Holmes for 72 hours so he could undergo psychiatric assessment, but
Headline resplit by staff.

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: civilservant, 1/17/2013 2:48:16 PM     (No. 9122548)

There are no half measures. One either goes Tarasoff, or not.
I agree with Mrs. Blunk. Sadly, I am sure that HPPA and PC forced the shrink´s hand, or at least gave her pause enough to equivocate.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: Teleologicus, 1/17/2013 2:58:47 PM     (No. 9122572)

This looks bad. We obviously don´t have all the facts, thanks to the usual stonewalling by public officials which permits all kinds of fantasies and false narratives to emerge that cause confusion and in some cases lasting social damage.

But what looks bad is that the psychiatrist judged the patient enough of a threat to notify the campus police but not enough to have him involuntarily evaluated. She will need a very convincing explanation for her failure to do so.

The same scenario, sans psychiatrist, applied to the Jared Loughner case. He was behaving bizarrely in class and was suspending pending a note from a psychiatrist saying he was safe to return. No effort seems to have been made by anyone, school, parents, or law enforcement, to have him evaluated. Once more, officials are stonewalling the public and refusing to make information available - but I have not read that he ever at any point saw a psychiatrist or counselor.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: mossley, 1/17/2013 3:04:47 PM     (No. 9122585)

#2, the answer is simple: HIPAA. Doctors face all kinds of legal issues revealing conditions. If she had had him committed, he could have sued and most likely won given our legal situation.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: lakerman1, 1/17/2013 3:07:51 PM     (No. 9122592)

It is part of the job description for a psychiatrist to advise the court to commit mentally ill people. HIPPA has nothing to do with that. And if there was any barrier, it was the incompetence/cowardice of the psychiatrist.
There is also the question about the mysterious package from the shooter describing what he was going to do, in detail, but it supposedly languished in the university´s mail room, so the psychiatrist could pull a sgt schultz.

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Reply 5 - Posted by: JAN, 1/17/2013 3:13:59 PM     (No. 9122604)

The psychiatrist refused an offer to have Holmes involuntarily committed for 72 hrs.

That evaluation would have shown him to be a danger to himself and others.

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Reply 6 - Posted by: mainelysane, 1/17/2013 3:14:43 PM     (No. 9122605)

I think issue of gun violence with these crazy killers is more one of psychotropic drugs Rxed by medical doctors than it is one of guns. Never forget that Andrea Yates, on 450 mg of Effexor as Rxed by her doctor by twice the normal dose, drowned her children one at a time in the family´s bathtub.


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Reply 7 - Posted by: Vaquero45, 1/17/2013 3:18:22 PM     (No. 9122612)

You won´t hear anything further. The psychiatrist´s malpractice carrier will settle this one quickly, for policy limits. That settlement will prevent any further disclosures.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: JoniTx, 1/17/2013 3:28:02 PM     (No. 9122626)

Here is a link to an August 5 story, Daily Mail, UK, with family photos:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2183730/Dark-Knight-massacre-Victim-Jonathan-Blunk-died-trying-fight-crazed-shooter-James-Holmes.html

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Reply 9 - Posted by: killerbee, 1/17/2013 4:18:51 PM     (No. 9122702)

And this is exactly what Obama´s edicts will bring about. It will happen more and more. So you´ll have psychiatrists declaring people "too crazy for weapons" more frequently to cover their butts.



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Reply 10 - Posted by: Keekng, 1/17/2013 4:27:54 PM     (No. 9122713)

Every person must be responsible and be held accountable for their actions...Especially doctors.

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Reply 11 - Posted by: Teleologicus, 1/17/2013 5:10:49 PM     (No. 9122787)

#3 -

As someone else posted, HIPAA has nothing whatever to do with whether or not a psychiatrist certifies a patient as mentally ill and dangerous to self or others. Nor are there any grounds for civil litigation if the psychiatrist acts in good faith and documents their thinking. Whatever the reasoning of this particular psychiatrist, it would and could have had nothing to do with legal risk to herself for requiring an emergency evaluation. There is essentially zero risk on that side of the equation. All of the risk to the psychiatrist is on the other side, for failure to take reasonable action when the evidence indicated it was necessary. I am afraid this doctor will have a very difficult time explaining why she notified campus security of potential danger but declined to take the next obvious step and have the individual evaluated. We do not have the facts. She undoubtedly had her reasons. In light of what subsequently happened, however, they are unlikely to be regarded as justified, even though this may be unfair and the verdict of hindsight.

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Reply 12 - Posted by: Chuzzles, 1/17/2013 5:31:33 PM     (No. 9122827)

I think it is about time that society starts looking at the psychiatric profession closely. They have been getting away with excusing bad behaviour for far too long and look where it is getting us.

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Reply 13 - Posted by: Flybynight, 1/17/2013 5:49:19 PM     (No. 9122862)

A nice big fat award or better yet, a huge settlement, will make EVERYbody feel much better. Especially the lawyers.

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Reply 14 - Posted by: nina584, 1/17/2013 7:01:00 PM     (No. 9123008)

If she can demonstrate he was not eligible to be Baker acted there is no lawsuit.

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