Investigation into Mental Health System Continues Following Deeds Tragedy
Three investigations into Virginia’s mental system are ongoing following the Deeds family tragedy last month.
On November 19, State Senator Creigh Deeds' 24-year-old son Gus stabbed his father, and then shot and killed himself. The investigations are aimed at what happened the day before when workers from the Rockbridge Area Community Services Board evaluated Gus Deeds. It is unclear what happened during the mental evaluation, but the state inspector general, the Department of Behavioral Health and Disabilities Services and the Virginia State Police continue their own separate investigations.
Rockbridge CSB's executive director, Dennis Cropper, says he and other agency leaders met Wednesday night and discussed a specific case involving legal matters. Because of privacy laws, he couldn't confirm that it dealt with Gus Deeds but the Daily Progress reports that it was the first formal briefing on that case.
The board of directors began the meeting with a moment of silence for Gus and his father. After attending to regular matters, leaders went into a closed session for two hours.
"I think that that is the primary emphasis of the investigations that are ongoing, in terms of ‘what do we need to do to make this system work better?’ Both in terms of meeting the needs of the individual who needs some additional mental health services and for all of the agencies involved in a commitment hearing or custody order proceeding," Cropper stated.
Leaders hope to see extensions in the amount of time they can work with patients brought in under an emergency custody order. The executive director also says they're working on their own internal review. The inspector general's report may be completed as early as December 16.
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