Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Holmes Psychiatrist Part of CO Univ Assessment Team- Believed Had No Control After Dropped Out

It sounds like the University or at least the Assessment Team may be held accountable for not referring Holmes for psychiatric help when there were concerns about his behavior. However, it seems they missed a red flag when he dropped out suddenly, which should have alerted them to follow-up on his whereabouts and state of mind.

Excerpt - ABC News

Aurora, Colo., shooting suspect James Holmes came to the attention of the threat assessment committee at the University of Colorado but no further action was taken because he left the school more than a month before the attack that killed 12 and injured 58, sources told ABC News.
ABC News has learned that Dr. Lynne Fenton, the psychiatrist who was treating Holmes, 24, at the school, was also a key member of the university's threat assessment team. The group of experts were responsible for protecting the school from potentially violent students.
KMGH-TV, ABC News' affiliate in Denver, reported exclusively that, according to sources, by early June, Fenton had informed other members of the team about her concerns regarding Holmes.
But on June 10 -- three days after Holmes bought an assault weapon and added it to his already growing arsenal -- he suddenly told the university that he was dropping out of the neurosciences doctoral program with no explanation.
KMGH-TV reported last week that he'd purchased the weapon hours after failing a key oral exam.
Sources have told KMGH-TV that the threat assessment team never had a formal meeting and never intervened, believing that it had no control over Holmes once he'd left the university. 
Don Elliman, the university's chancellor, said last week that "to the best of our knowledge, at this point, we did everything we think we could have done."
But experts said today that Holmes' departure should have been a red alert.
"You know, I think that's the signal that you should intensify your efforts, not walk away," said Barry Spodak, a threat assessment expert. "Under those circumstances, most well-trained threat assessment teams would have gone into action."

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