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Feb 19, 2014

Mental Health Association issues release on shooting death of PG man

Moses Williams, a mentally challenged person, was shot and killed by the police in Big Falls.  Police told News Five that Williams was shot after chopping the left arm of one of the officer. Today, the Mental Health Association issued a statement on the confrontation between Williams and the police that ended in his death. The Association is appealing to the authorities not to send unprepared police officers alone to deal with situation such as Williams’ case. The association says that a person experiencing an acute psychotic episode will probably not react rationally to an order to put down his weapon and is likely to become even more aggressive as reportedly was the case with Williams.  The M.H.A. says the unfortunate incident underlines the need for the Police to work more closely with Mental Health professionals when dealing with these situations and that the Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner stationed in Punta Gorda would have been familiar with Williams. Had she been consulted, she might very well have been able to defuse the situation without the use of force.  The M.H.A. concludes that Williams was probably not compliant with his medication and needed to be involuntarily confined to a mental health facility to stabilise his condition before being released back to his community.

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