Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Another day of loss in Virginia

Our thoughts today are with the families and friends of Detective Vicky O. Armel and Officer Michael E. Garbarino, veterans of the police department in neighboring Fairfax County, Virginia, whose lives were tragically cut short one year ago today.

In the last year, we’ve met so many people who knew these fine officers. One person told us that Detective Armel was the officer that others sought when they encountered individuals experiencing problems with untreated mental illness. Their deaths reminded us that the police are often on the front line dealing with people experiencing psychiatric crises.

Of course, we can’t forget the family of the mentally ill man, Michael Kennedy, is grieving as well and they sought help several times to no avail. We know the police in Fairfax County and elsewhere are just as frustrated as families of the mentally ill by the inadequate response of the mental health system.

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