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Mental Illness

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NEWS
July 25, 1990 | JANNY SCOTT, TIMES MEDICAL WRITER
Vincent van Gogh, whose artistic brilliance and supposed madness have made him a focus of popular fascination, suffered not from epilepsy or insanity but from an inner-ear disorder that causes vertigo and ringing ears, a new analysis of his letters suggests. The authors of the study, reported today in the Journal of the American Medical Assn.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 24, 2014 | Mary McNamara
"House" meets "Homeland" and goes dancing with "Grey's Anatomy" on the new ABC "medical" drama, "Black Box," a show so deeply flawed and absurdly derivative you will wonder if you, like the main character, are experiencing a manic episode. Kelly Reilly stars as Dr. Catherine Black, a predictably brilliant and beautiful neurosurgeon who is also bipolar and prone to go off her meds. Like "Homeland's" Carrie Mathison and Dr. Gregory House, Black believes there is a direct relationship between her abilities and her disorder.
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HEALTH
August 15, 2012 | By Susan Brink, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
DENNY CRANE calls it "mad cow," but viewers of "Boston Legal" know William Shatner's character is in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. Another character on the show, Jerry Espenson (played by Christian Clemenson), has strange tics, can't keep his hands off his thighs, but, despite having obsessive-compulsive disorder, makes his living as a lawyer. Mental illness, long taboo or distorted by the media, is making its way into the fictional lives of television characters. Once, mentally ill people were commonly portrayed as homicidal maniacs, evil seductresses and assorted buffoons.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 10, 2014 | By Paige St. John
SACRAMENTO -- A federal judge Thursday called California's use of large amounts of pepper spray to subdue mentally ill prisoners a "horrific" violation of constitutional protections against cruel and unusual punishment. U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton's order requires California to continue revising policies that govern how mentally ill inmates in the state's prisons are disciplined, including the use of solitary confinement. He found that such isoaltion of mentally ill inmates "can and does cause serious psychological harm" and must be limited.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 10, 1992 | KEVIN BRASS, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
The camera focuses on Chris Clarke, sitting on his bed in Patton State Hospital near San Bernardino, talking about killing his fiancee. "Something snapped," he says almost inaudibly. "I began thinking things that were not real. I began having paranoid thoughts and believing people were trying to get me." The interviewer doesn't say a word. Clarke begins to cry softly. "It was as if somebody else came into my body," Clarke says. "I can't use that excuse.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 22, 1991 | THUAN LE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Nadia Puente thought she was going to help a teacher unload some books when she entered a gray car while walking home from school the afternoon of March 20, 1989. Early the next morning, the body of the 9-year-old Santa Ana girl was found stuffed in a silver trash can at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. Authorities allege that Nadia was kidnaped, sexually assaulted and killed by Richard Lucio DeHoyos, 34, a former assistant manager of a Taco Bell restaurant in Westminster.
OPINION
March 12, 2014
Re "A new look at Laura's Law," March 10 Allowing court-ordered Laura's Law treatment for adults with severe mental illnesses can help everyone if done correctly. The most important part of the article states that people suffering from debilitating mental illness - like Matthew Hoff, who aged out of mental health programs and is now serving time in prison - "may not recognize that they are ill. " Mental illness affects cognition, the ability to think clearly, and people who are severely affected need caring help.
SCIENCE
May 17, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
Go to a busy street in your community and count the next 25 adolescents who walk, bike, skateboard, stroll or saunter past. Odds are that two of those 25 kids (8.3% to be exact) would own up to having experienced 14 or more days in the last month that he or she considered "mentally unhealthy," according to a comprehensive report on the mental health of American youth issued Thursday. Between 2005 and 2010, roughly 2 million American adolescents between 12 and 17 acknowledged that for more than half of the previous month, they routinely had felt sad, angry, disconnected, stressed out, unloved or possibly willing to hurt themselves -- or others.
OPINION
December 22, 2012
The reaction to the school shootings in Newtown, Conn., last week was immediate and voluminous. Of the more than 600 letters sent to letters@latimes.com on the topic, about 120 of them mentioned mental illness as a cause for the violence. A handful of writers warned against jumping to conclusions and stigmatizing those whostruggle with mental disabilities; one writer even turned questions about psychology into ones for gun advocates. Here is a selection of those letters. In a letter published Tuesday, Michelle Uzeta, legal director of the Disability Rights Legal Center in Los Angeles, wrote: "The tendency in our society is to label what happened, pack it in a box and tuck it away somewhere.
NEWS
December 5, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Childbirth can trigger psychiatric illnesses in some women, including depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and even psychosis. A study published Monday, however, draws the first connection ever between postpartum mental illness and later bipolar disorder. Researchers searched a Danish registry of more than 120,000 women receiving treatment for a first episode of a psychiatric illness other than bipolar disorder. They found 3,062 women who had a first episode of a mental disorder other than bipolar disorder but who were later diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
NATIONAL
April 6, 2014 | By Cindy Carcamo
ALBUQUERQUE - When Wynema and Michael Gonzagowski moved to town about two years ago, family and friends warned them about what they described as the heavy-handed tactics and aggressive attitude of Albuquerque police. At first the couple brushed off the warnings, saying things couldn't be as bad as what they had experienced in Los Angeles in the LAPD's Rampart Division, which became infamous for corruption in its anti-gang unit in the 1990s. But the Gonzagowskis, like others here, began to grow suspicious of their Police Department.
OPINION
March 12, 2014
Re "A new look at Laura's Law," March 10 Allowing court-ordered Laura's Law treatment for adults with severe mental illnesses can help everyone if done correctly. The most important part of the article states that people suffering from debilitating mental illness - like Matthew Hoff, who aged out of mental health programs and is now serving time in prison - "may not recognize that they are ill. " Mental illness affects cognition, the ability to think clearly, and people who are severely affected need caring help.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 9, 2014 | By Paloma Esquivel
Almost as soon as Matthew Hoff turned 18 and aged out of the mental health programs he'd been enrolled in since childhood, he was out on the streets and in and out of jail. His parents tried to get him back into treatment for bipolar and other brain disorders he suffers, but the young man wasn't cooperative and he wasn't considered dangerous or gravely disabled. So they stood by helplessly as their son faded from their reach. Less than a year later, Hoff walked into a Buena Park bank with a robbery note and left with a handful of cash.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 4, 2014 | Alan Zarembo
Nearly 1 in 5 U.S. soldiers had a common mental illness, such as depression, panic disorder or ADHD, before enlisting in the Army, according to a new study that raises questions about the military's assessment and screening of recruits. More than 8% of soldiers had thought about killing themselves and 1.1% had a past suicide attempt, researchers found from confidential surveys and interviews with 5,428 soldiers at Army installations across the country. The findings, published online Monday in two papers in JAMA Psychiatry, point to a weakness in the recruiting process, experts said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 5, 2014 | By Jack Leonard
A lawyer for a judge on trial for allegedly shoving a woman after a dispute over a bag of dog waste compared the case to the Salem Witch trials on Wednesday and accused the Los Angeles city attorney's office of unethically pursuing his client. Attorney James Blatt told jurors during closing arguments that city prosecutors had failed to adequately investigate the allegations and relied solely on the word of the victim, whom Blatt described as mentally ill. Blatt said the city attorney's office was more interested in "going after that big target" than listening to Superior Court Judge Craig Richman's account of what happened.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 21, 2014 | Steve Lopez
It's hard for me to even think about the horrific way in which Kelly Thomas died. I know too many people like him - lost, sick, disoriented souls who, through no fault of their own, have been hit with a disease that puts them in peril. Not guilty, came the verdict last week. The two Fullerton police officers caught on camera viciously beating Thomas in 2011 were acquitted of criminal wrongdoing in his death. Whether you agree or disagree with the jury, there's plenty of guilt to go around.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 13, 2014 | By Paresh Dave
A Los Angeles County judge accused of shoving and injuring a woman during a dispute about her dog's waste wants the case dismissed because of what his lawyer says is her history of mental illness. City prosecutors say the altercation occurred July 18 when L os Angeles County Superior Court Judge Craig Richman saw Connie Romero place a plastic bag of animal waste on the curb next to a street. Romero, 51, accuses Richman of knocking her down from behind, leading to a cut over her left eye, a scrape on her left shoulder and swelling on her wrist.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2014 | By Jason Wells
A former paralegal convicted of killing and then dismembering a gang member who walked into his Fresno apartment in 2008 screamed, shouted expletives and laughed out loud Thursday as a judge sentenced him to 28 years to life in prison. In a tightly guarded Fresno County Superior Courtroom, Brian Waldron, 55, essentially went ballistic during his sentencing hearing, telling his attorneys they did a lousy job and interrupting the judge throughout the proceeding, the Fresno Bee reported . Waldron had insisted that he killed 21-year-old Jonathan Taylor in self-defense after the gang member walked into his apartment drunk on Oct. 24, 2008, and refused to leave.
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