San Antonio

Sheriff says man shot by deputy had been brought in before for mental health

San Antonio – A man shot and killed by a Bexar County sheriff’s deputy on Thursday had been taken in a number of occasions for mental health care, stated Sheriff Javier Salazar, prompting him to ask, ”why was he even right here for us to make contact with him at this time?”

Nicholas Norris, 38, was shot close to the intersection of Potranco Road and Sundance Crest, simply outdoors of Loop 1604 on Thursday after a pursuit.

Salazar stated a deputy who had stopped to take a break at a comfort retailer was informed by a clerk that there was a man outdoors who had been “scaring” clients the last few days.

When the deputy went to speak with Norris, he sped off in an SUV, Salazar stated. The deputy chased him at first however the pursuit was referred to as off.


However, Salazar stated deputies later noticed Norris driving erratically on Potranco Road, and so they made contact with him. There was a battle, although, and a deputy shot Norris in the aspect.

Norris later died on the best way to the hospital.

Salazar stated regulation enforcement had brought Norris to the hospital before – for mental health help – and appeared to question why he wasn’t nonetheless there.

“We believe we know who he is,” Salazar informed reporters on Thursday before the discharge of Norris’s identification. “If it’s him, we have got evidence that he’s been in contact with mental health units and mental health issues several times over the course of the past couple of weeks.

I know that our SMART Team has dealt with him at one point and we believe that he was taken to the hospital at that point, self-surrendered,” Salazar stated Thursday, referring to the county’s mental health group. “We do believe that another agency, I think it was SAPD, may have E-D’d him over the course of the past couple of weeks. Which begs the question for me is ‘why is he even out here if law enforcement has done what we’re supposed to do?’ We’re supposed to take these people to get help. It appears that’s been done at least twice. Why is he even here?”


An “E-D,” or emergency detention, is a process that permits regulation enforcement to take somebody into custody for analysis at a mental health facility, with out a warrant, in the event that they consider the individual is mentally in poor health and is a right away hazard to themselves or others.

While his feedback appeared to point Norris had gone to the hospital voluntarily with the SMART Team, Salazar later referred to Norris as being “E-D’d” by each the SMART group and SAPD.

The particular particulars in Norris’s case are unclear past what Salazar informed reporters on Thursday.

The BCSO public info office didn’t reply to a request Friday for extra detailed info on Norris’s earlier contacts with regulation enforcement, nor did the SAPD public info office verify whether or not its officers had brought Norris to a hospital below emergency detention as Salazar stated.

Even in the event that they did, there was no signal in on-line Bexar County court docket data of a choose permitting him to be detained, which signifies docs will need to have launched him inside 72 hours.


Doug Beach, the president of the San Antonio affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), says the choice on whether or not to maintain somebody for therapy is a medical one.

“So the sheriff’s question is, ‘well, once they went in, why are we letting them out again?’ Well, again, that’s a medical decision on the part of the medical staff. And if they feel like that person doesn’t need to be held, they won’t,” Beach stated.

Once police or deputies deliver somebody to the hospital – the remaining is out of their arms. Doctors decide in the event that they wish to discharge or detain somebody for extra therapy, based mostly on whether or not they consider the individual is each mentally in poor health and a hazard to themself or others.

To maintain them detained on that foundation, the power has to submit paperwork inside 48 hours of making use of for an Order of Protective Custody. For the affected person to be detained previous 72 hours, a choose has to comply with it in a possible trigger listening to.


Mental Health Public Defenders characterize the individuals in these hearings, specializing in what their shopper desires, even when it’s not what their physician is recommending.

“We represent the person’s of interest, not the best interest of the community or the best interest of the patient,” stated Chief Public Defender Michael Young.

Even if the order is granted, the pinnacle of the San Antonio affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) says most individuals find yourself being discharged inside 14 days.

“There are some provisions where a person can get longer term care. But, you know, it’s not that common, and it’s harder to get,” Beach stated.

Once somebody is discharged, Beach says, they’ll nonetheless be assigned a follow-up plan.

“If they don’t follow through on that, of course, you know, they may end up back on the street or causing a problem,” he stated.

Quite presumably beginning the entire course of over once more.

CLICK HERE for a extra thorough walk-through of the emergency detention and long-term dedication course of.

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