NO PLACE FOR MENTALLY ILL: About 3 in 10 inmates — nearly 2,600 — in Iowa’s prisons have a serious mental illness, and at least 7,000 offenders who are under supervised release need treatment for mental health issues, according to new data from the Iowa Department of Corrections. The department’s medical director said the state prison system has become “the largest mental health institute in Iowa.” Identifying and providing treatment to more people with mental illness before they become high risks to commit crimes would be more effective for patients and reduce the stress on prison resources, where the inmate population remains over capacity and mental health services are often overwhelmed or inadequate. The state’s ongoing mental health care reform must address this situation.
SHOOTING HORSES: A Cedar Rapids man, Ryan Grafft, was arrested for allegedly shooting three horses, one of which died, on Jan. 27. He told authorities, according to their report, that he didn’t know why he fired about 20 shots into the pasture along Falcon Road in northern Johnson County but said it was a “stupid” thing to do. And sad, too.
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