Mentally Ill and in Jail: A local mother shares her son's story - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Mentally Ill and in Jail: A local mother shares her son's story

Kathy's son was diagnosed with Schizophrenia at just 9 years old. (Source: WTOL) Kathy's son was diagnosed with Schizophrenia at just 9 years old. (Source: WTOL)
  • Special ReportsMore>>

  • Local college coaches weigh in on NCAA's new ruling

    Local college coaches weigh in on NCAA's new ruling

    Tuesday, July 31 2018 4:54 PM EDT2018-07-31 20:54:59 GMT
    (This NCAA Division I rule change was proposed last year by the Sun Belt Conference, which includes schools like Appalachian State, Arkansas State and Troy.)(This NCAA Division I rule change was proposed last year by the Sun Belt Conference, which includes schools like Appalachian State, Arkansas State and Troy.)

    Starting Wednesday, August 1, a new piece of NCAA legislation will go into effect, one that takes away a student-athletes’ required weekly day off.

    More >>

    Starting Wednesday, August 1, a new piece of NCAA legislation will go into effect, one that takes away a student-athletes’ required weekly day off.

    More >>
  • For sale by owner: Things to consider before you try to sell your own home

    For sale by owner: Things to consider before you try to sell your own home

    Friday, July 20 2018 11:53 AM EDT2018-07-20 15:53:59 GMT
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)

    In a hot seller's market, you may want to save some cash on commission and sell it yourself, but does "For Sale by Owner" really save you money?

    More >>

    In a hot seller's market, you may want to save some cash on commission and sell it yourself, but does "For Sale by Owner" really save you money?

    More >>
  • In the air: Just how germy are those hand dryers in public bathrooms?

    In the air: Just how germy are those hand dryers in public bathrooms?

    Monday, June 25 2018 5:45 PM EDT2018-06-25 21:45:19 GMT
    You probably do it without any thought, put your hands under the dryer after washing your hands at a public restroom. Have you every thought about what exactly is being blown onto your hands? Think about it, every time you flush, fecal bacteria may be shooting up into the air. In a recent national study, scientists say from there, it goes into the hand dryer and onto your hands.  "Just wash my hands, put them under there. Don't really give it no thought," Toledo resid...More >>
    You probably do it without any thought, put your hands under the dryer after washing your hands at a public restroom. Have you every thought about what exactly is being blown onto your hands? Think about it, every time you flush, fecal bacteria may be shooting up into the air. In a recent national study, scientists say from there, it goes into the hand dryer and onto your hands.  "Just wash my hands, put them under there. Don't really give it no thought," Toledo resid...More >>
LUCAS COUNTY, OH (WTOL) -

Kathy knew something was different about her son at an early age.

The first signs were at 8 years old when he took apart her alarm clock, she asked him why and he said the voices in his head told him to do it.

At 9, he was diagnosed with Schizophrenia.

“It’s very hard to take. It’s very hard to accept," said Kathy. 

Throughout his childhood, she felt her son was a “guinea pig,” trying out different medications.

As an adult, he found a medication that worked. But when a new doctor switched it, he began having hallucinations again.

That’s when he started having run-ins with the law.

One night, Toledo police were called out to his apartment. He was having hallucinations and got agitated. He was charged with assault on an officer and went to jail. Kathy says it was the worst place for him.

“No! Jail’s not where they need to be," said Kathy. "I tried everything. I called the center. I called everywhere and they said the only way they could help him is if he walked in himself and said he needed help." 

Kathy says her son did not get the medication he needed when he was in jail. He was confused when he was in jail and in court and didn’t know why he was there.

“They can’t protect these people, so the other prisoners are beating up on them. They can’t get any sleep, these people are walking floors, they’re hallucinating," said Kathy. 

Because her son was an adult, Kathy had very little control over his medical care. She hired an attorney to help her navigate the justice system, and get him the help and medicine he needed.

"Because once they’re 18, you have no say," said Kathy. 

She says she wanted more information when she got to court. She says without much money, it’s difficult to get treatment, and to get a good lawyer.

The lawyer she hired helped Kathy get power of attorney over her son’s medical care, but it took her more than a year to do it.

Her advice to other parents: Get power of attorney before they turn 18. That way you have a voice in their medical care before it gets to a critical level.

“Stop changing their medicine when it’s working. Why try something else? If it’s working, leave it alone!” said Kathy. 

So what's working... and what’s not when it comes to our judicial system? Hear the response from our judges, police and mental health board. 

Follow WTOL:  

Download our app here

Copyright 2016 WTOL. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly