March 12, 2017

Ty is a victim again. Tyler, our 18-year-old son was beaten up in jail last night. The guy who beat him was a lot bigger then Ty. No one stopped it. Saturday night is commissary night. No one called the guards. They didn't want to get locked in before they received their commissary. There are parts of the event he doesn't remember. He fell asleep and, thank God, he woke up this morning. No one checked on him during the night and he hasn't been checked on by a nurse or doctor. Why would you put a kid, who never hurt anyone, in with violent offenders?

Now, Ty has a headache and a black eye. He's nauseated and feels drunk and tipsy. This is concussion number 5 or 6. All have been severe. Another traumatic brain injury! Getting beat up is nothing new for my baby.

This will not help Ty's other problem. He hears voices. If only doctors had kept him in the hospital long term. Out of 15 ER visits, in under 2 years, he's spent only 2 weeks total as an inpatient. He's been hearing voices for at least a year and a half. He's never been stable. He's going to see a forensic psychiatrist next month. 

It's obvious that Muskegon County has a debtor's jail that relies on state money per inmate per day. They are being sued by the ACLU because of it. My main point is county mental health, the police & jail, and probation and parole are motivated to not help. They're all getting paid and do not want to loose their cut of the money. How can we motivate a system that runs off the backs of the poor and mentally ill? These agencies could provide AOT (Assisted Outpatient Treatment) and other programs. They're motivated not to do it. They CHOOSE not to do it.

We have no CIT (Crisis Intervention Training) officers which adds to the problem. Not one trained mental health officer in the entire county. Possibly 2 of my family friends in the House of Representatives will give us a chance to speak at a committee hearing. My knowledge is extensive.  I've been taking care of vulnerable children for 30 years, the majority which are mentally or medically handicapped. Our licenses have been in foster care, adoption, and refugee assistance — specifically for medically fragile children.  I also supervised the housekeeping department for infectious control at Milwaukee County Hospital. I've worked for the Department of Health Services and the legal system for years. 

March 15, 2017, update:  Two days ago I sent a letter to Lt. Governor Calley. At first there was no response. Tonight he said he'll look into Ty's situation. He said we have no judicial power. I also called the Muskegon County jail commander, but he's on vacation. Eventually, I was connected to the jail administrator who seemed angry that I called.  I said, "Ty probably never got a punch in. He's not a fighter. We are pressing charges against the guy who beat him up."

The officer was abrupt.  I said, "I'm a Mom. How am I not supposed to worry?" He said to call jail medical services so I did. The nurse there lied to me and said Ty passed a neurological exam with flying colors. I said, "Ty hasn't passed a neurological exam in years and this is his 6th traumatic head injury. He is a patient at Mary Free Bed Concussion Rehab Clinic. Today, Ty's vision is blurry. He can't see. He's tipsy. Dizzy, His eyes are swollen with a red line going down his face. He was punched in the jaw. He's badly bruised. He doesn't remember parts of what happened. His head hit the floor. He was kicked. He's nauseated and has a headache. We have private insurance that will pay. We can meet you at the hospital."

The nurse replied, "What do you want me to do? "

"We'd like him to get checked out at the hospital by doctors and get an MRI."

"Well, I don't know. What is your phone number?"

I wonder. Did I make things worse for my kid? What should I do next?

March 16, 2017, update: Ty told us tonight that he has a March 22, 2017, sentencing, moved up from June. This hearing will be in Judge Hickes court room, Muskegon County. We took a plea because of his deteriorating mental state. Ty thinks he's going to prison for a year or more - If the judge is merciful. Just scared to death at this point. The sentencing is in less then a week.  The forensic evaluation won't be finished until next month. Our guardianship hearing is scheduled for April 26. This feels like my son's starring in the movie "Unstoppable" with Denzel Washington. We just don't know how to stop this train.

It's apparent to us when Ty is sick. His eyes are blank and we can't talk to him. Especially when he's delusional, paranoid, and is hearing his commanding voices. Just pray, wherever the judge puts him, they'll help him. Hope the judge considers his developmental delay, serious mental illness, and intellectual disability,  Although he has a high IQ, Ty needs mental health treatment for his voices.  We saw him by video tonight. He's very bruised up. He's groggy, doesn't remember previous conversations, and his vision is poor. He kept squinting as he was trying to see us on the camera.

It's so sad. Tyler, my son, is trying to be a man but he's really a boy. This whole thing has left me in a state of shock.