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Conn. hearing on mental health system

January 30, 2013 2:35:43 PM PST
If the goal is to fix Connecticut's mental health system, lawmakers got an earful of what's wrong with it.

At a hearing in Hartford Tuesday, frustrated parents like Cherise Townshend testified.

Her 26-year old son is schizophrenic.

The Sandy Hook shooting has sparked debate not only about gun control, but also how to best treat the mentally ill.

Even though details of Adam Lanza's medical background are not publically known, the 20-year-old gunman has been linked to Asperger's Syndrome, a form of autism.

Experts say while removing the stigma associated with mental illness is a positive step, some caution against automatically connecting it with violence.

Dr. David Bernstein is a forensic psychologist who specializes in threat assessment.

He says depression is the condition most often linked to school shootings, usually the result of bullying.

He says one useful change that could be put in place is the creation of assessment teams on the lookout for troubling behavior.

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