Analysis Of Skyrocketing Mental Competency Cases Leaves More Questions Than Answers
A working group has been looking into why the number of cases referred to Los Angeles County's mental health court to determine defendants' competency swelled from 944 in 2010 to 3,528 in 2015. They've released a preliminary report but the authors say they need to do more research.
Los Angeles Times:
Report On Increase In Mental Competency Cases Leaves Many Unanswered Questions
Misdemeanor cases filed by city attorneys are driving a surge in competency cases that is overwhelming Los Angeles County's mental health court, according to a preliminary report released Wednesday. The report suggests that the increase might be linked to the county’s rising homeless population, to criminal justice reform measures that may have resulted in fewer people participating in mandated treatment programs, and to the scarcity of psychiatric hospital beds. (Sewell, 5/25)