Mental Health Patients Bused to California Charged With Crimes
Dozens of mental health patients who were improperly bused from Nevada to California and other states in recent years have been arrested for crimes ranging from minor offenses to murder, the Sacramento Bee reports (Hubert/Reese, Sacramento Bee, 12/15).
Background on Busing Practices
According to a Bee review of bus receipts kept by the Nevada Division of Mental Health and Developmental Services, the number of patients with mental illnesses sent by Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital to other cities via Greyhound bus increased by 66% from 2009 to 2012.
The Bee found that Rawson-Neal has sent more than 1,500 patients to other cities since July 2008.
According to the review, about one-third of such individuals traveled to California (California Healthline, 8/27).
Details of Recent Report
For a report last week, the Bee cross-checked more than 1,000 names from the Greyhound receipts over the past three years with arrest records from cities across the country. More than 325 of those individuals were sent to California.
According to the Bee, many of the names were uncommon, which indicates a high probability of accuracy. The analysis also used additional information to confirm that individuals were the same person later arrested for a crime, including:
- Family interviews;
- Individual interviews; and
- Media reports about the case.
The analysis found that since 2008, dozens of former Rawson-Neal patients have been arrested for crimes including:
- Attempted murder and murder;
- Drug crimes;
- Sex crimes;
- Vagrancy; and
The analysis also found that some of the patients were arrested for minor offenses often associated with homelessness (Sacramento Bee, 12/15).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.