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Danville man found competent to stand trial for mother's murder

Original post made on Jun 14, 2011

Psychiatrists at Napa State Hospital have found Andrew Mantas, now 21, competent to stand trial for the 2006 bludgeoning death of his mother, Contra Costa County Deputy District Attorney Dan Cabral said today.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, June 13, 2011, 10:18 PM


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Posted by Bill
a resident of Danville
on Jun 14, 2011 at 7:18 am

A very sad commentary on the state of awareness of severe mental illness in this day and age. Andrew sounds as if he was suffering from severe paranoid schizophrenia and his mother thought he was possessed by demons? She takes his to the hospital and they refuse to admit him? Another sad statement of our lack of adequate psychiatric hospitalization resources here in the SF Bay Area. Now that he has been, "restored to sanity" he can now be tried for murder? If he was insane at the time he killed his mother why waste taxpayers money by having a trial? This whole story just supports my contention that we don't know what we are doing with severe and persistent mental illness in our society.

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Posted by Mark
a resident of San Ramon
on Jun 14, 2011 at 8:40 am

I can admit to knowing something about mental heath issues firsthand. And I can state how hard it is to suffer from mental heath concerns in a society which is vastly ignorant to them. For example, my condition is quite mild in comparison to the case outlined in this commentary, but, for example, to apply for a job I would have to conceal my condition from a prospective employer as there is little to no insight and understanding regarding mental health concerns in workplaces today. In my case, it has taken most of my young adult life to learn about my own issues, e.g., where they were past on from within my family, to learn about and recognize the actual symptoms, etc. It took great pains to very gradually improve my condition - it is a very deep and complex condition which took most of my time and energy and concentration to remedy. Most assume that psychiatric care and medications are the only means of recovery. Although I admit to times where I wish there was a quick means of recovery, I believe the way I went about it was actually the best - for my case. Regarding the situation in this commentary, clearly this was a much worse condition that needed special care, isolation, and psychiatric treatment. But also it speaks to the inability, and or lack of education regarding mental health issues in our day and age. If we are to be a learned society on this topic then this specific case, for instance, may not have ended in such a way. But sadly this is treated statistically, I mean how many instances of this kind have happened in Danville since then? Has anyone as a result of this taken the time to learn about mental health?

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Posted by FanDanville
a resident of Danville
on Jun 14, 2011 at 12:30 pm

And they charged him as an "adult," as well.
Wow.....a double-whammy of possible mistakes!

Lesson: Don't you dare go crazy! We'll mix you in with the criminals...and you can kill them...or be killed.

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Posted by Chris
a resident of another community
on Jun 15, 2011 at 11:57 am

I too feel this is a sad commentary on treatment of someone suffering from severe mental health issues. Especially since his mother would still be here if only someone had cared and paid attention to his mental state. She tried to get help and because of the lack of understanding or caring she is gone and her son is doomed to a life of pain and sadness for what he had done. Does anyone really believe he would have done such a thing if not for mental illness? I can only hope he will continue to be treated for his condition(s) and will be shown some mercy when he goes to trial.

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Posted by marimask
a resident of Danville
on Jun 16, 2011 at 8:47 pm

I concur Bill! My brother has suffered with Paranoid Schizophrenia for most of his life. He's been pushed all around the system. When he is committed, a patient advocate comes around and he's released onto the streets. I just thank God that he's not a violent person (yet). The system is afraid of him, so they just ignore the issue. Strangely, this boy was in my son's class and he knew he wasn't "right" and been exposed to my brother (his uncle) all his life. You're right, this boy/man was mentally ill at the time; how can he be "all better" now?! One DOESN'T recover from mental illness (not schizophrenia anyway. Sad, Sad Day!