ILNews

Threats of violence sufficient to order involuntary commitment

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrint

Although an Indianapolis man never harmed another individual, his persistent threats of violence were sufficient to support his involuntary commitment to a mental health facility.

The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the judgment of the trial court in In the Matter of the Commitment of T.K. v. Department of Veterans Affairs, 49A05-1303-MH-100. It concluded the evidence showed that without treatment, T.K. was a danger to others and upheld the order for regular commitment to ensure T.K. received the needed long-term treatment.

T.K. appealed the trial court’s order for involuntary commitment on the grounds the evidence was insufficient. He conceded he had made “colorful verbal threats” but there was no evidence that he “has ever followed through with any assaultive, violent or dangerous behavior.”

The Court of Appeals rejected his argument. It found his behavior - which included more than 25 threatening phone calls that T.K. made in one week to Adult and Child, Inc., and the agency staff’s consideration that he was hostile, actively psychotic and delusional – was sufficient for the trial court to find him dangerous.

Further, pointing to prior court decisions, the Court of Appeals stated Indiana precedent indicates that the trial court did not have to wait until T.K. acted upon his threats before finding him dangerous.

The Court of Appeals also upheld the finding that a “regular commitment” which is the most restrictive form of involuntary commitment, was warranted. In particular, it noted T.K.’s prior commitments and his need for inpatient treatment followed by outpatient assistance.  
 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Indiana State Bar Association

Indianapolis Bar Association

Evansville Bar Association

Allen County Bar Association

Indiana Lawyer on Facebook

facebook
ADVERTISEMENT
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

ADVERTISEMENT