My son, who has an autistic spectrum disorder, sent me this link; he told me if he ever goes to California, he'll have to make sure he doesn't see any cops.
More at the link.Last month Adrian Lamo, a man once hunted by the FBI, did something contrary to his nature. He picked up a payphone outside a Northern California supermarket and called the cops.
Someone had grabbed Lamo’s backpack containing the prescription anti-depressants he’d been on since 2004, the year he pleaded guilty to hacking The New York Times. He wanted his medication back. But when the police arrived at the Safeway parking lot it was Lamo, not the missing backpack, that interested them. Something about his halting, monotone speech, perhaps slowed by his medication, got the officers’ attention.
An ambulance arrived. “After a few moments of conversation, they just kind of exchanged a look and told me to get on the stretcher,” says Lamo.
Thus began Lamo’s journey through California’s mental health system — and self discovery. He was transported to a local emergency room and put under guard, and then transferred to the Woodland Memorial Hospital near Sacramento, where he was placed on a 72-hour involuntary psychiatric hold under a state law allowing the temporary forced hospitalization of those judged dangerous or unable to care for themselves. As the staff evaluated him and adjusted his medication, a judicial officer extended his stay, and three days became nine.
I certainly hope there is more to this -- the involuntary hold -- than what is reported; I fear, however, that there is not.